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Archive for the ‘Food’ Category

May-29-2010

Be part of the “Richmond Eats” archive project, June 1-5

We love our food in the Richmond, be it dim sum, piroshki, hamburgers, pho noodles or ice cream. Some of our favorite restaurants have been in the neighborhood for decades.

The Richmond District branch library is teaming up with the Internet Archive for a special project called “Richmond Eats”, whose purpose is to digitize, preserve and share our neighborhood’s diverse culinary history. And they need your help to get it started.

From June 1 until June 5, the library will hold a series of events to gather material for the archive. Stop by to share your Richmond neighborhood food history and family food ways with the project.

Bring in restaurant menus, recipes, or food-related photographs from the 1850s to present so they can be scanned and included in the project archive. The scanned images will then be used by students, researchers and the general public, and preserved in the city archives and on the Internet Archive.

Anything you bring in will be scanned and returned to you immediately. So if you have old menus from places like Bill’s Hamburgers, The Cliff House, favorite family recipes or photos from your childhood or family’s local history, please contribute! Scanning will take place at the Richmond branch library on:

Tuesday, June 1: 10am – 7pm
Wednesday, June 2: 1pm – 7pm
Thursday, June 3: 1pm – 4pm
Friday, June 4: 1pm – 4pm
Saturday, June 5: 10am – 4pm

A Russian translator will be available as needed and a Chinese translator will be on site at the Richmond Branch Library for the duration of the project.

Find out more about Richmond Eats at the SF Public Library website or call the Library at 355-5600. Then start digging through your closets and photo albums for items you can contribute!

Sarah B.


Burgerville, 1952. Courtesy of sfpl.org. Caption: Burgerville is going to celebrate April first in a big way. Gordon Mailloux, owner, operator, and brave man is going to giving away free hamburgers in his restaurants at 14th and Geary Blvd. On April first from 2 p.m. until 10 p.m., if he lasts that long. The occasion, he says, is the first
annual ‘Happy Hamburger Day’.


Geary Joe’s, 1964. Courtesy of sfpl.org. Caption: San Francisco businessmen should do more to spruce up their streets. Peter Zane, who runs Geary Joe’s restaurant at 18th Avenue, is talking about himself as well as others. But Zane plans to do something. He will soon install four trees in the sidewalk in front of his place, a spanking new spot. “It is not enough,” he says, ‘to let the city do it. Businessmen should realize they, too, have a responsibility. An attractive appearance inside is not enough. If a street is drab and dull, trade very easily also can be drab and dull.”


Lick Super, 1949. Courtesy of sfpl.org. Caption: Richmond District acquired a new food center today with the opening of the Lick Super Market at Seventh-av and Clement-st. There are five different stores inside, where customers may buy fruits and vegetables, delicatessen foods and liquors, poultry and fish, meats and groceries. In addition, the Super Market has facilities for parking.

6:14 pm | Posted under Food | 1 comment
May-28-2010

Joe’s Ice Cream begins anew

After 51 years in the neighborhood, the Richmond District’s best know ice cream shop has moved to a new address. Joe’s Ice Cream recently opened for business at 5420 Geary between 18th and 19th Avenues, just a half block from their original location.

I wasn’t the only one who stopped in tonight to check out the new and improved Joe’s. I had to squeeze by a line of parents with their kids that stretched from the ice cream counter out to the sidewalk.

The new Joe’s still has a separate ice cream area and “Joe’s Grill” counter just across the room where you can enjoy hot dogs, sandwiches, a slice of pie, and of course, milkshakes.

Thanks to the reuse of many artifacts from the original Joe’s, the new space retains a lot of the charm of the original location. You’ll find the same peghole menu up behind the ice cream counter, the decades old neon signs in the window, and a hodge podge of chairs at the inside tables.

And for those of you that enjoyed watching life go by from Joe’s windows while you ate, you can do the same in their new location. All under a charming black and white striped awning.

Still no word on what will take over Joe’s old space, whose windows are now covered over with brown paper.

Congratulations to Joe’s Ice Cream on their re-opening! With their new location and large crowds, I think it’s safe to say they’ll be serving their homemade ice cream to many more generations of San Franciscans.

Sarah B.


The ice cream counter which is on the right when you enter


Joe’s Grill, with its original sign overhead, sits across from the ice cream area


A view from the back of Joe’s


The original menu board is still there!

7:22 pm | Posted under Food | 8 comments
May-5-2010

Penny pinching at New May Wah Market (video)

From the Sushi Taste on a Ramen Budget blog comes a short video of former college student Jeff Bautista talking about why he chooses to shop (and save) at New May Way Market (707-719 Clement Street).

Forget the budgeting advice in the video. Check out Jeff’s adorable dimples…

Sarah B.

8:36 pm | Posted under Food, Shopping | 7 comments
May-3-2010

Vietnamese restaurant Quan Bac delights the Examiner

Last week, SF Examiner food critic Patricia Unterman gave high marks to Quan Bac, a Vietnamese restaurant located at
4112 Geary Boulevard between 5th and 6th Avenues.

Quan Bac was opened by by owner and head chef, Sarah Le, who has other small pho spots in the city. But Unterman says Quan Bac is Le’s “defining moment as a businesswoman and a chef.”

She devotes the first two paragraphs just to describing Le’s Vietnamese chicken salad, which she calls “one of the culinary masterpieces of San Francisco.”

Imagine a multicolored haystack mounded high on a white plate, the pale green of slivered cabbage, the orange of carrots, the pink of red onion, the beige of grilled chicken, interwoven with dark-green threads of kaffir lime leaf, cilantro and basil.

Unterman also praises Quan Bac’s lotus-root and jellyfish salad and says that the restaurant’s food is as authentic as any she has eaten on the “low plastic stools on the sidewalks of Hanoi.”

One of Quan Bac’s pork dishes got Unterman very excited:

Le’s Bun Cha Ha Noi ($8.95)… This bowl of juicy little charcoal-grilled pork patties, so moist and fragrant, and thin slices of charcoal-grilled pork chop comes with the same setup as the crepe, but with cold, rice vermicelli topped with chopped peanuts.

The pork, hot off the grill, is splashed with dipping sauce, which migrates to the bottom of the bowl and picks up the meat juices. Be sure to spoon this rich sauce into your lettuce rolls.

Read the full review at sfexaminer.com

Quan Bac is open daily from 10:30am to 10pm with dish prices ranging from $6.95 to $14.95. Unterman’s top recommendations: Pho ga, cha gio, Vietnamese crepe, chicken salad, lotus-root salad, fish cake, Vietnamese barbecue chicken.

Have you tried Quan Bac? Leave your review in the comments.

Sarah B.

10:15 am | Posted under Food | Comments Off
Apr-27-2010

A restaurant name inspired by the Governator?

I can’t help but think of Arnold when I pass by “Cali Pho Nia” at Clement and 11th Avenue. ;)

Sarah B.

11:27 am | Posted under Food, Photos | 4 comments
Apr-20-2010

New eatery on Geary & 15th: Lou’s Cafe

After a couple of people had recommended I try their sandwiches, I headed to Lou’s Cafe at 5017 Geary (near 15th) today to try it for myself. Lou’s Cafe opened its doors a few weeks ago after nearly a year of readying the former hair salon for the cafe.

Lou’s Cafe is run by the Brodeth family. Mom Ramana worked in catering at Andronico’s Deli for 19 years and runs the cafe together with her sons, TJ and Mark.

The menu has a nice variety of salads, soups, sandwiches (with Boar’s Heads meats) and espresso drinks featuring Illy brand coffee. I haven’t tried it yet but their hot chocolate uses Ghirardelli…mmm.

I had the turkey cranberry which came on toasted bread with a special homemade, pesto aioli sauce. With chips and a bottled water my total came to just under $10. The cafe also has a sandwich club – get 9 stamps on your card and the 10th sandwich is on the house.

Lou’s also offers free WiFi for customers and there is some seating on the sidewalk. Their website at louscafesf.com is not up yet, but TJ tells me it should be live in a few days. In the meantime, you can check out their sample menu below.

Welcome to the neighborhood Lou’s!

Sarah B.


3:36 pm | Posted under Business, Food | 7 comments
Apr-17-2010

Strong show of support for Louis’ Diner

I stopped by the “Friends of Louis’ Diner” event today. The restaurant, which has been run by three generations of the Hontalas family for 73 years, is facing possible closure as their lease is up for renewal.

According to federal law, the business, which sits on federal land, is open to other bidders. The diner will submit a bid to the National Park Service, which includes improvements to the property and a request for a multi-year lease.

The diner invited supporters to come out to show their support and enjoy free hot dogs, IT’S IT ice cream, and Louis’ Coney Island clam chowder. They also held a free raffle for diner t-shirts and sweatshirts.

A couple of hundred people dropped by, many of them patrons that have been going to Louis’ Diner for many years, some for decades.

I met one married couple who have been eating at Louis’ since the 1940s. They remembered ice skating at Sutro Baths down the block and then coming to Louis’ afterwards.

Sutro Baths historian Tom Bratton, who eats there about once a week, was there to show his support. He said his father was a manager at Sutro Baths and when the Hontalas family first opened the diner, his father used to come to the restaurant to help them with their English lessons.

I asked Tom what the best strategy was for securing the prized corner booth at Louis’, which overlooks the ruins of the Sutro Baths and the blue Pacific. He laughed and said “Good luck!” But then he told me they open at 6:30am so perhaps if I was first in line, I’d get it one day. ;)

If you’d like to show your support for Louis’ Diner to stay in business, you can sign the online petition, or email a story, memory (even a sentence!) to louisrestaurant1937@gmail.com which they will include with their bid to the National Park Service. If you prefer, mail in your words of support to: Louis’ Restaurant, 902 Point Lobos Road, San Francisco, CA 94121.

The Chronicle also had a nice article today about Louis’.

Sarah B.


6:13 pm | Posted under Food, History | 5 comments
Apr-12-2010

Morph opens today

After waiting for his prized Rosenthal and Steelite plates to arrive, the owner is finally ready to debut Morph to the neighborhood.

Morph is a new Japanese-Thai fusion bistro at 5344 Geary (between 17th and 18th Avenues). Grub Street SF reports that it will finally open tonight (5:30pm, closing time 10pm).

The restaurant has been transformed from its former life as a noodle house into a 49-seat, clubby Thai fusion bistro, serving wine, beer and maybe soju cocktails. Check out the photos of the interior – very spiffy!

If you’re one of the first to eat there, leave your review in the comments!

Sarah B.


10:01 am | Posted under Food | 2 comments
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