Wednesday, December 2, 2015

A Fine Evening in San Francisco

Well, of course we had a fine evening! 

So long, California mountains. Until next time.

What a great rig!

So many great barns out here
 After getting a late start, we got to the Da Vinci Villa hotel where, without wanting to sound too much like an advert, is exactly what we wanted (ok, maybe that would be a private mansion on the bay but there are budgets to mind), minus a tub. I could have soaked in a tub awhile... The desk people couldn't be more helpful (and fun, fun is good), the room is comfortable. There are some crazy room rates right now, a single would be 50.00, with a lot of the sights to see within a very do-able walk or a pretty inexpensive taxi ride. If San Francisco is on your list, this is a good time of year to be here.

Our walkabout time was shortened, but we managed to hit Jack's Cannery Bar (cheap oysters, good, not amazing but the sign worked) where we met a couple from England, the husband working his way through the 65 selections of beer on tap...or actually just having fun giving it a go. They owned a bar for 13 years and said there was no beer like British beer, but he does like Anchor Steam. He pulled out his phone and showed us photos of beer taps he's known and loved, which was a lot more interesting than many things. We learned a lot about that part of England (Derbyshire) and just might have to check it out one of these days. 

But first...for my brother

His shirt is from The Burnt Pig, their local pub
Then it was on to The Slanted Door. Sarah had heard about this this place and wanted to go for a long time; it lived up to the hype. Everything we ordered was amazing.

It's behind the Ferry Terminal

The only disappointment for me was that there was no slanted door

An oyster selection from Canada, California and Maine
Oops, forgot the photo until too late.

A spring roll of shrimp and pork
(I call these summer rolls but out here, summer rolls are the fried ones)

Tongue. Yeah, I know, but this was like the most tender beef and
I could have eaten a lot more of these bits of goodness

The open kitchen was a good show

Terrible photo but it was from a table across the way.
Yes, that's cotton candy. No, we didn't order any.

Duck, beautiful duck

Duck, cauliflower with bacon, ahi tuna
You know it's an amazing dinner when one drink was enough. We were planning a drink and then wine with dinner but none of us had even finished our drinks and didn't care. That might be a first.

The view of the Bay Bridge from outside the restaurant. 

It would be fun to take a ferry here sometime. To anywhere.
On a digestive stroll before we grabbed a taxi back to the hotel, we saw this really interesting place. Outside, the building was stately and classic, inside, we saw huge rafters and rustic lights. On the side was a small building, almost all glass, with a bright and shining bar. It was calling. We answered. 

At first we thought it was two separate buildings but they are connected by a small foyer sort of thing, wider than a hallway, smaller than a room. This is looking into the restaurant from the bar area. 

Milo, one of the twin bartenders who is full of all things gin information
and willing to share
After yet more indecision (the menu at The Slanted Door isn't lengthy but it is very difficult to choose one thing or another when everything sounds exactly like what you want), I chose a gin drink. I like gin and the descriptions were interesting, this one sounded good. But Milo said, 'I don't really like that, why don't you try this?' It wasn't a more expensive drink so I wasn't being shilled. I went with it and I'm so glad I did. If you think you don't like gin (and plenty of people seem to feel that way), this is the bar for you to check out. It was probably the best gin drink I've ever had and it was absolutely the most beautiful drink of any kind I've ever had. 

This is the gin it was made with

Miguel mixing Sarah's gin drink, also delicious

Elijah's bourbon. With egg white. Sounds yuck to me and it wasn't at all.

My beautiful drink - with added flowers
"Barca Gintonic features Bloom London Dry gin and Fever Tree Mediterranan tonic, garnished with fresh grapefruit, a sprig of fresh pine, and juniper berries." 

Nice bar set up (no bees or mosquitos in this weather!)

More kinds of gin than I've ever seen. 

I now know a lot more about gin. And the word terroir.
Next time we'll try the restaurant. The menu is like walking into some place in Spain...except those tapas usually came free with drinks. Coqueta, it's on my list.

Have a wending Wednesday. Do something watchfully.


  1. San Francisco, my favorite city of ever. You're right, a lot of people don't like gin, and scotch. I like both. When I was young and you took your bottle to a party and set it on a communal table, at the end of the evening if you brought gin or scotch, you took some home. Vodka, bourbon, rum, your bottle was empty. Oh, and tequila, it emptied quickly. Safe travels, my friend.

    1. That's funny! Now I know what to bring to the next party! It's good to be home. Very good. Thanks!