Friday, August 7, 2009

Not one of my favorite places

OK, maybe I wasn't at a good place in my life when I was in San Francisco. I had just broken up with a guy and went to visit my brother in SF. I was miserable the whole time, so my vision of the city is a bit skewed. So, I'm excited to see the city through Tony's eyes.

San Francisco is a city of districts and contradictions, each one with its own quirks and flavors. Chinatown is a bustling neighborhood with delicious restaurants around every turn. The Haight-Ashbury area is home to most of the city’s homeless. Down by Fisherman’s Wharf lives a hugely popular farmer’s market filled with fresh produce, beautiful flowers, and organic foods made by San Francisco’s own citizens. Tony really can’t go wrong, no matter where he goes…

Tony makes sure to travel the best of San Francisco. His trip begins with a stop at Pirate Cat Radio, a vegan café / radio station, where tony chats with DJ Monkey and samples their famous bacon maple latte – a concoction created using real refined bacon, despite Pirate Cat’s vegan theme.

He then meets up with is friend Oscar at Tadich Grill, San Francisco’s oldest restaurant, to eat the Hangtown Fry, a combination of oysters, eggs, and bacon, inspired by a man’s dying wish for a last meal. He also visits the Ferry Building Farmer’s Market, takes a trip to Oakland for some delicious tacos, burritos and tamales, and crosses back over the bridge to indulge in Sushi and Sushi Sebo.

One of the highlights of the episode is the cubana torta, a massive, dripping combination of meats, avocado, cheese, jalapenos, tomato, mayo and fried egg. Another highlight is experience at Incanto, a renowned restaurant where he dines on fried brains, spreadable salami, deep-fried ham crystals and venison heart tartare.

Tony’s last stop before leaving San Francisco is Red’s Java House, where the cheeseburgers are hot, the cheese is melted, the chili cheese fries are aplenty, and the beer is cold. A strangely simple end to a visit to a city that is so interesting, dynamic, and complex.

Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations, San Francisco airs Monday, August 10 at 10pm E/P on the Travel Channel.


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