Sunday, October 11, 2009

A Weekend In San Francisco: Day 2 Itinerary

Yesterday, I detailed a great introduction to the city of San Francisco at Fisherman's Warf. Today, we get a little deeper into the city ... and of course the food!

Day 2 Itinerary: The City & Golden Gate

By now, you should know how much I love breakfast. If you’re an early riser, grab a hot cup of coffee and walk down to the Golden Gate National State Park. I actually made this my morning run and was in awe of how beautiful it was. Hugging the edge of the coast, you can walk, jog or bike along dirt and concrete paths through Fort Mason, the Marina, and Crissy Field and the whole time have a spectacular view of the Golden Gate Bridge. Round trip, this path is about 7 miles so plan accordingly.

After working up a good appetite, head on over to Fog City Diner for brunch. You can choose among several gourmet twists to classic favorites including cinnamon vanilla challah French toast, cheddar biscuits and fennel garlic sausage gravy with eggs, huevos rancheros, eggs benedict with a sun dried tomato hollandaise … and many more mouth watering choices. The coffee is fresh, the service superb, and they have outdoor seating where you can enjoy the awesome California weather. Fog City Diner is also steps away from Coit Tower … if your legs aren’t too tired from spending the morning at Golden Gate.

After breakfast, head down to the Cable Car Turnaround on the corner of Taylor and Bay Street (near Columbus Ave) and pick up a daily passport. It is only $11 per person and allows you to hop on and off the cable car all day. (Ghiradelli Square also has a Turn Around, but the one on Columbus Ave will not have long lines or a wait.) The Cable Cars not only have a stop for all the major sites including Financial District, through Chinatown, over Nob Hill and stops at Van Ness Avenue, but riding one in San Francisco is a must on your to-do list.

Another "must-do" everyone told me about was tasting some of San Fran's best Deem Sum. I had many recommendations, but the one that popped up the most among locals was Yank Sing at the bottom of the Rincon Center at 101 Spear St. After dining there, my recommendation would be to do a little research ahead of time to decide what you want to try. There are no menus and staff swing by with cart fulls of items that will have your belly growling yum yum. It is very easy for me to over indulge and become a victim of my eyes being bigger than my stomach.

Later that afternoon, pack your bags, pickup a couple more loafs at Boudins and head out to the charming town of St. Helena in Napa Valley. Not only will you ride over the Golden Bridge, but the late afternoon warm "golden hour" hues of the sun setting in the valley will make a gorgeous drive. Roll down the windows, open the sunroof or let the top down and enjoy the ride. Check in at Glass Mountain Inn and rest up for the ultimate in wine tasting.

Tomorrow: Day 3 Itinerary ... tasting the juice of the vine.

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