Empanadas – Fresca

Empanadas - Fresca
Peruvian aji de gallina, salsa criolla, hardboiled egg, olive, greens. $8
Fresca, San Francisco CA

These empanadas were really tasty and nicely priced at four bucks a piece. The crust was flaky and buttery and the Peruvian filling was delicious. Mmm…

Cocktails - Fresca
Killing Tyme: Four roses bourbon infused hibiscus, thyme, canton madeira, orange bitters. $10
House Manhattan. $10

Street tacos – Publico Urban Taqueria

Street tacos - Publico Urban Taqueria
Pollo asado and carne asada with salsa casera, red onion and cilantro. Each $2.29
Publico Urban Taqueria, San Francisco CA

Publico is a random food window in a shopping complex, but the food is pretty good and I love the salsa that they use. The tacos are a decent size and the price is great for a little shopping snack.

Women's Building, Mission
Women’s Building, Mission.

Taco de chivo – El Norteno Taco Truck

Taco de chivo - El Norteno Taco Truck
Corn tortilla with goat, salsa, onion and cilantro. Served with pickled vegetables. Each $1.75
El Norteno Taco Truck, San Francisco CA

Not many taco trucks serve goat tacos. El Norteno doesn’t serve it every day and they often run out when they do. These tacos were really tasty and the salsa was nice and spicy. Goat has a pretty bold flavor so the salsa and pickled vegetables were great in neutralizing it a bit. For less than two bucks each, these delicious tacos are a must-eat (especially if you have jury duty at the court house across the street)!

7×7 Magazine’s The Big Eat San Francisco: 100 Things to Eat + Drink Before You Die – 2013

Whimsical graffiti mural
Whimsical graffiti mural, Mission.

Wave nachos – Wave Bar & Lounge

Wave nachos - Wave Bar & Lounge
Served with chili con carne, marinara salsa and cheese dip. 340 PHP
Wave Bar & Lounge, Boracay PHILIPPINES

Huh, deconstructed nachos – interesting, lol! This is totally not what I expected and I don’t think I’ve ever had nachos served this way at a restaurant. It was actually really difficult assemble so that you got a bit of everything. It was WAY to much work to really enjoy. The marinara salsa was different, but I really didn’t like it. The cheese dip was REALLY runny, also not the way I like it for nachos. Overall, this wasn’t a very good version of an American standard.

Long Island iced tea - Wave Bar & Lounge
Long Island iced tea. It was pretty much all Coke, lame! Happy hour 2-for-1, 150 PHP

Main wing swimming pool
Main wing swimming pool, Boracay Regency.

Baja style fish taco made Nick’s way – The Taco Shop at Underdogs

Baja style fish taco made Nick's way - The Taco Shop at Underdogs
Beer batter fish in soft corn tortillas with cilantro, cabbage, red onions, roasted tomato and lime salsa. Nick’s way made with a grilled crispy corn tortilla wrapped in a soft tortilla with Monterey jack cheese, pinto beans, pico de gallo and guacamole. $5.50
The Taco Shop at Underdogs, San Francisco CA

Mmm, this really is a great taco! The fish is delicious and perfectly fried, not greasy at all, and really flavorful. And if you order the taco “Nick’s way”, you get at lot more flavors and textures to an already killer taco. Noms!

7×7 Magazine’s The Big Eat San Francisco: 100 Things to Eat + Drink Before You Die – 2010

Sierra Nevada Pale Ale - The Taco Shop at Underdogs

Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. $5

Germander sage
Germander sage (Salvia chamaedryoides, Lamiaceae), Castro.

Chips and salsa with Hass avocado guacamole – The Taco Shop at Underdogs

Chips and salsa with Hass avocado guacamole - The Taco Shop at Underdogs
Holy guacamole, that’s quite a pile of the stuff on this appetizer! I also liked that they didn’t over-smash the avocados. They were still mostly intact and ready to be dipped into, noms! $6.50
The Taco Shop at Underdogs, San Francisco CA

Emerging mushrooms
Emerging mushrooms, West Field Road.

Quesadilla de pibil – El Techo de Lolinda

Quesadilla de pibil - El Techo de Lolinda
Braised pork shoulder, oaxaca cheese, cilantro, salsa. $9
El Techo de Lolinda, San Francisco CA

Finally, a dish from El Techo that was actually good and priced approriately! Actually this was pretty large so I wouldn’t have minded if it had cost a few more bucks. The pork was tender and really flavorful, and I like their smokey salsa. I thought the oaxaca cheese was going to be the white, crumbly kind but I was happy to see that it was thick and melty!

San Francisco Bay at dawn
San Francisco Bay at dawn, Upper Market.

Guacamole – El Techo de Lolinda

Guacamole - El Techo de Lolinda
Cotija cheese, tortilla chips. $7
El Techo de Lolinda, San Francisco CA

This guacamole was good, but just because you add a little cheese on top of a small bowl of it doesn’t mean it’s worth seven bucks! I think most of the food items on their menu are overpriced, and all their tortilla chips were greasy. Not running back here to eat again any time soon.

Chips and salsa - El Techo de Lolinda
Chips and salsa. $3
Kinda lame that they also charge you for chips and salsa when most restaurants provide it complimentary. It’s not even listed on their menu so most people assume that it’s free.

Castro houses

SF houses on a hill, The Castro. I like the obvious delineation of where the former neighboring house used to be.

Seared salmon filet – Curbside Cafe

Seared salmon filet - Curbside Cafe
With Curbside orange salsa, served with mashed potatoes and sauteed rainbow kale. Chef Special (soup + entree) $20
Curbside Cafe, San Francisco CA

I tend to steer clear of pan seared salmon at restaurants because, more often than not, they come out dry and disgusting. This was surprising moist and juicy so I was happy. The potatoes were silky and lovely and the orange salsa was packed with flavor. Pretty yummy!

Francis Scott Key Monument
Francis Scott Key Monument, Golden Gate Park.

Southern empanadas – Nola

Southern empanadas - Nola
Ground chuck, holy trinity, manchego, cotija and oaxacan cheeses, bbq sauce, salsa fresca, bbq cream sauce. Happy hour $5
Nola, Palo Alto CA

Omg, these were two large empanadas for only five bucks! Now that’s a great value. These were definitely filling and you could probably make an entire meal of these. I loved all the flavors and it was pretty tasty, but the empanada dough was on the thick side and slightly undercooked in parts.

Purisima Creek Redwoods
Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve.