It’s been awhile since we posted on a neighborhood to visit, so I had to go back and look at prior posts to make sure we didn’t repeat. Imagine my surprise when I realized that we hadn’t highlighted a favorite — Hayes Valley — and one that both Melissa and I spend a lot of time in. Despite having grown up in San Francisco, I didn’t really discover all the gems in Hayes Valley until my daughter started school down there nine years ago. Now that I sort of consider myself an expert, it’s definitely time to give Hayes Valley its own profile.
Where to eat:
No matter what you’re craving, the time of day, you can find a snack, drink, sit-down, take-out, you name it — to eat here. These are just a sampling of our usual haunts:
Arlequin Cafe: Most weekday mornings, you’ll find a couple of early risers waiting for the doors to open at 8am and a steady stream of customers as soon as they do. A favorite amongst the parents after drop-off, folks working on their laptops, etc.
Souvla: My favorite place to get a hearty salad (and side of their delicious fries). Their spit-fire roasted chicken, pork and lamb are delicious whether topped on a salad or served on their homemade pita.
Nojo Ramen: Their bowls of delectable ramen take time but are worth the wait. Go early to get a table before or after a show.
There are no shortage of good restaurants in Hayes Valley. Favorite places to sit-down include Monsieur Benjamin, Cala, Rich Table, and August Five. For a quick bite, snack or dessert, we head to Blue Bottle Coffee, Cala Tacos, Miete, and The Fatted Calf. We’re also looking forward to trying Nighbird, the latest new addition to the neighborhood.
WHERE TO SHOP:
This list was also hard to narrow down. A good afternoon here includes a nice lunch followed by a leisurely stroll up and down Hayes. These stores never fail to offer something we need to add to our shopping lists:
Be sure to also stop by Plantation Design, Maker & Moss, Steven Alan and Fiddlesticks.
one to watch:
We can’t wait to check out The Riddler, a new champagne bar on Laguna Street. More to love about one of our favorite hoods!
All photos courtesy of the respective businesses profiled in this post.