Alien's Day Out

Alien’s Day Out in San Francisco (Pt 1)

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My San Francisco trip was so awesome and packed with yummy eats and amazing sights, that I need to split it into two parts. I’m only going to be able to share a small portion of all my photos! I just have to say… I love San Francisco. It’s my kind of city~~ Fairly small in size, but packed with tons of activity, amazing culture, cool people, accessible public transportation, and ofcourse, delicious vegan eats. If I could move to the US, SF just might be my top choice.

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This was my third time visiting SF but my first time driving there. It wasn’t that long of a drive… about 6.5 hours, including a few bathroom breaks and lunch. We could’ve gone the scenic route on highway 1, but that would’ve taken way too long, so we just took the speedy way on 5. We still got to see some nice scenery… dry hills, wind turbines, and a ton of cows grazing and stinking up the air. haha.

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In addition to snacks, we packed lunch consisting of pb & apple butter sandwiches, fruit salad, and doritos, and enjoyed it at one of the rest stop picnic areas. The fruit salad included some of my favorites: mango, papaya, nectarines, strawberries, and blueberries.

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Before crossing the bridge to the city, we took a mini detour to Berkeley and walked around the campus area and telegraph avenue.

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Along the way, we popped into Green Earth Cafe & Bakery and shared a soy coffee and cherry scone. The scone had more of a healthy, dense, muffin-like texture, and it didn’t feel oily to the touch like most other scones. Quite nice! I would’ve loved to visit Cinnaholic too but we couldn’t stay long because of the parking meter~

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Finally crossing the bay bridge into the city!

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We didn’t do a whole lot that evening, but for dinner my sister and I shared a vegan tofu curry pie and a side salad at Mission Pie. The pie crust was buttery and crispy-crunchy along the edge, and the filling was delicious. Loved the curry flavor– different from the usual pot pie. I haven’t had a pot pie since I was an omni!

We were actually only in the city for 2 full days (and then another day further north) so we tried to pack in as much as we could. We wanted to do a good mix of touristy but also more local stuff, and I think we struck a good balance between the two in the end. Most of our first full day was spent hanging around the Mission neighborhood, perhaps my favorite part of the city! So many veg-friendly markets, restaurants and cafes… not that the rest of SF isn’t, but it’s just got good vibes.

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My sister wanted to go to the ever-so-popular Tartine Bakery (completely unrelated to the Tartine bakery in Seoul) so we walked there in the morning because it was close to where we were staying. She got a morning bun and soy coffee. There didn’t seem to be anything vegan so I didn’t get anything, but just sipped on some of my sister’s coffee. I really loved the ambiance of the bakery, even though it was crazy packed inside, and had a line almost going out the door. :)

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After that, we walked next door and checked out BiRite market, which several of you readers recommended. :) Man, what an awesome shop. It wasn’t that large in size, but there were so many cool things to see and admire. We picked up a few things from the deli and headed to Dolores Park for a picnic lunch.

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We shared the Mediterranean wrap and a curried lentil salad. The wrap was a little drippy, but still tasted good. I especially loved the curried lentils and plan on making something similar when I go back. It was also so nice to hang out at Dolores Park, get some sun, read a book, and people-watch.

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Next, I dragged my sister to Rainbow Grocery, the huge health food market and worker-owned coop! Yes, one of my tourist destinations was a supermarket. Don’t laugh– i know some of you do the same! My sister is a definitely a trooper for following me to all of my vegan food spots. The market was so huge and they had absolutely everything, not just food, although I did spend the majority of my time in the food section. I was especially in awe of all the vegan cheese! I was going to buy a package of Daiya, but then realized that it would be in my bag for the rest of the hot day and probably get all melty, so I decided to just get it later in LA.

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I wanted to buy the whole store out, but in the end I came away with some primal vegan jerky strips, Justin’s peanut butter cups, dark chocolate orange bar, a package of vegan vanilla pudding mix, and sweet potato chips. :) A lady was serving samples of vegan chorizo on chips. It was really tasty and on sale so I bought one. hehe. She got me.

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Being the coffee addicts that my sister and I are, we also went to Blue Bottle! This was quite possibly the best vegan latte I’ve had ever (along with Intelligentsia’s). So delicious and also beautiful to look at. I now understand why so many of you recommended I try it.

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Later in the afternoon, we also went to the Ferry building. I’d been there before, but for some reason, it seemed so much more awesome this time around.

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Well, that just about sums up the first half our our san francisco trip. There’s plenty more photos to come, including those from my dinner at Gracias Madre. Stay tuned!

Feel free to Leave a comment!

5 Comments

  1. Oh.. Tartine Bakery…. I have their bread book, which is the kind of book you read more than bake from! (Lots of insight into baking and the bakery’s story) They have their own webpage actually: http://www.tartinebakery.com/
    Nice bread recipes but only some vegan/veganisable (pizza with nettles!) – I prefer Joe Ortiz’s The Village Baker (who incidentally has a bakery in Capitola, CA near San Francisco) and Dan Lepard’s The Handmade Loaf. (Okay, that was more than you ever wanted to know about bread baking books!)

    “Don’t laugh– i know some of you do the same!” Absolutely!!!

    Looks like you have fabulous time in SF. Will Part II include a trip to the Millennium Restaurant?

    • I’ve heard of the Village Baker one, but not the other. :) Didn’t realize Tartine Bakery had a book too!
      Unfortunately, I didn’t make it to Millennium Restaurant… abit too pricey for my budget. Perhaps next time!

      • Dan Lepard is a British baker. He has a weekly baking column in the Guardian – but it’s not all that vegan friendly. He did do a vegan month last year though: http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2011/mar/12/mocha-fig-muffins-recipe-lepard?INTCMP=SRCH (one recipe, the other three are linked on the side).

        His bread book is wonderful though and often vegan (or veganisable).

        Peter Reinhart also has some great bread books (he’s an East coast based baker) – I keep making his ‘multigrain extraordinaire bread’ because it’s easy, versatile and so good!

        Yeah, the Millennium Restaurant would be pricey but that’s the one restaurant I would save up for if I travelled to San Francisco!

  2. Mipa, I am experiencing so much food envy I need to go take a walk and chill out. ha! ;)

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