San Francisco and Napa Valley

Thursday, August 13, 2015 0 No tags Permalink 0

20523582746_19f46cc888_cMany of my close friends (all the way from Punahou days) live in San Francisco (hi, Shann, Noelle, Steph, and Kelly!) So visiting SF almost feels like a trip home to Hawaii. My trips tend to be a Napa/SF combo (see here and here) with a few days in each.

Below, snapshots from this week…

20361430088_1e6cf85141_c…which started with a 2am arrival into SFO and Thursday morning breakfast at Swan Oyster Depot. This is the Sicilian-style sashimi. Sashimi (hamachi, salmon, local halibut, ahi, and scallops) topped with olive oil, lemon, red onion, capers, and a bit of cracked black pepper. Best breakfast. And would have been even better with a hot bowl of rice. Next time I’ll make sure to come during crab backfat and uni season!

20523146906_f7d097f600_cAnd then a visit to Rice Paper Scissors for bun mang vit, my favorite kind of duck noodle soup.

20523140276_63050b289b_cBao had the pho and cafe sua da.

20523124406_8e4131f7f9_cA stop at the Hayes Valley location of Blue Bottle. New Orleans iced…

19928493193_162cbe8bf7_c…and espresso ice cream at Smitten (the ice cream is made-to-order with liquid nitrogen)…

20523104846_799d2f0a69_c…and a slice of dobostorte at 20th Century Cafe. Never underestimate the importance of fresh whipped cream.

20549638955_966f0bec7b_cThen we drove to Napa.

20555802651_6af732445c_c…while devouring these perfect canelés from Boulettes Larder…

20361597350_3336ae0523_cFirst time staying at Andaz Napa. There were old fashioneds at the bar…

20361642148_2b067933b5_c…and a feast at nearby Atlas Social. Pistachio semifreddo and sour cherries for dessert.

19926993734_d9b1d9f005_cA morning at Ehler’s…

20540721432_58b04b6d5a_c…and daily visits to Oxbow Market for everything from Three Twins ice cream (banana-chocolate chip)…

20556072031_b269bc2029_c…to Ritual (that’s nitro iced coffee on tap)…

20361536908_0fb3d78e67_c…and Fatted Calf for charcuterie. All the good stuff. Finocchiona, mortadella, salami cotto, salami toscano, and lamb bacon. Don’t forget cornichons. I always leave very happy.

20549608305_5d76ce0de0_cGot these strawberries from the Saturday market (held in the parking lot across the street from Oxbow) and took them back to the Andaz. I devoured them in bed. A bottle of sparkling water on the side, a good book, and lots of pillows. And the fireplace! Most peaceful afternoon in weeks.

20549573245_47c525a15f_cA trip to La Forêt. I love pâte de fruit, and these were excellent. Raspberry, strawberry, cherry, valencia oranges, pear (the best), and lime.

20540694462_038eed228d_cAnd how about this chocolate bar?? Nine little squares, an interior of green tea and crisp rice with white chocolate. So basically, it’s genmaicha chocolate! With actual rice.

20361522440_1c49093885_cAnd these are the newest cookies from Bouchon Bakery, It’s called the PB&C. The cookie is peanut butter, chocolate chunk, and sea salt. And the filling features peanut butter cream surrounded by a ring of whipped chocolate ganache.

20549949495_3b85a8f02a_cSatisfying that boudin blanc craving at Bouchon Bistro. Served with potato purée (and brown butter) and French plums. Saucy!

20361947978_3904d4902c_cDeviled eggs and fried capers.

20549956915_465037ef73_cAnd what is this? Barbajuan! I love barbajuan. I’ve only had it in Monaco (see variations from 2012, 2014, and 2015)…make sense because the dish originated from Monaco. But never in the US. Until now. It’s part of the swordfish entree, but we managed to order a few pieces solo. They’re usually stuffed with chard or spinach. But at Bouchon it was a savory eggplant purée (that tasted similar to a Vietnamese eggplant dish my grandma makes). This also made me very happy.

20556404221_4671eb5682_cAnd back to SF. Noelle lives across the street from Trou Normand and Mourad (a very nice coincidence)…

20361917548_70d784e0c0_c…charcuterie is a must at Trou Normand. Lamb pâté, rabbit pâté, and headcheese. Fennel salami and goat curry salami. Lardo, mortadella, and dry cured belly. Epi and aspic on the side.

19929042123_7e730c099b_cA scoop of the Toast and Jam (strawberry) at Humphry Slocombe…

19927277374_e6280efc80_c…on the way to dinner at flour + water. This is the chitarra with spot prawns, mangalitsa ‘nduja, and breadcrumbs.

20523649426_47a28a93f0_cA day in Sausalito with Shann…

20541018102_3b10349824_c…and a detour to In-N-Out ^-^

20523637896_cd6a4302ca_cHiding from the rain with hot chai…

20361863020_6a867c6d7a_c…at Samovar.

20523630846_82d5d6a42e_cAn afternoon at Red Blossom…

20363168569_7e70060dbe_c…drinking Fu Shou Shan.

20523619106_fb22ee0b4e_cMaking matcha with Noelle in the mornings. Which was followed by scrambled eggs on rice.

20549876375_8d8ce67319_cA killer Morrocan tea service at Mourad (more, soon!)

20549848185_34d8fabd67_cPlum-fig kouign amann…

20556310461_a32c6b81f7_c…and croissants at b. patisserie…

20361820778_165468be7d_c…followed by Song Tea (hi, Peter!)…

20540947772_09f2151491_c…and four different oolongs. This was bliss.

19928930343_b89d943a2a_cAnd Ichi Sushi, omakase with Noelle ^-^

No Comments Yet.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *