In fact, two years ago today, we somehow stumbled into the awesome apartment we live in today; the address had been posted incorrectly on craigslist, so the fact that we figured out the correct address (thanks, google street view!) and arrived at the showing (only 1 other person found it, apparently!), won us a place to live.And we still love it.
Today, though, I am focusing in on the Neighborhoods.
Admittedly, we have stuck to the neighborhoods closest to the true center of the city, but from the map above, it's clear the we have branched out substantially from the one we call our own. Sometimes our weekend adventure is simply to walk to another neighborhood and just browse around and explore--eating, drinking, and shopping, as we come across cool places.
We have the below framed poster in our apartment, and we have checked off the various neighborhoods around the city.
Financial District - Will's SF office is located in the financial district, although he is often in the office in Palo Alto when in town. The financial district is a mix of touristy (it's near Union Square) and totally business that closes early, since business people have ideally left by dinner time. Some of our favorite restaurants are in the Financial District, though: Tyler Florence's Wayfare Tavern and the iconic Tadich Grill!
Nob Hill - We love Coit Tower on Telegraph Hill, and we enjoyed an absolutely incredible dinner for Will's birthday at Seven Hills (after drinks at Cafe Muse) in Nob Hill. This great neighborhood also features the famously curvy Lombard Street.
Russian Hill, a small neighborhood between Nob Hill and North Beach, has some great restaurants, and is the true host of Telegraph Hill, where Coit Tower stands. There are wild parrots in San Francisco, and you can almost always hear and see them in Russian Hill.
North Beach - The Italian neighborhood--lots going on here! Not only is North Beach prominently featured in Clint Eastwood's movie Dirty Harry, it's famous for the great Italian restaurants and seafood. Vicolleto, Tratoria Contadina, Liguria Bakery, and Park Tavern are our favorites.
Rogue Brewing Company has a brewpub here, too!
Our favorites are the seafood options on Pier 45, our salmon fishing boat Wacky Jacky, and the Bush Man. You have to visit to know what that is :)
South of Market (called SOMA here) - We know SOMA as the neighborhood near the ballpark and the Caltrain, one of our public transportation systems. In addition to these, we love Zero Zero, RN74 (amazing anniversary dinner here for year #3!), and the various bars near the ballpark. We also have a number of friends who live in SOMA, so we are here fairly often.
Pacific Heights is a great neighborhood: entertaining during the day and relatively quiet at night. It's where the moms wear the "Pac Heights uniform TM": capri workout pants and a fancy designer jacket when they drop their kids off at one of the numerous private schools. We love Fillmore Street, with the various go-to restaurants and bars: Delfina Pizzeria, Elite Cafe, the new Palmer's Tavern, Florio, and Woodhouse Fish Company. Yoppi frozen yogurt is another staple there.
Cow Hollow - overflowing into the Marina, Cow Hollow hosts Union Street. A convenient place for shopping, eating, desserting, sports-watching...Union Street has it all. Except parking spots.
Marina The Marina has the reputation of being the fratty neighborhood. Often times, that description is correct. But there are some hidden gems, like Bistro Aix and A16--two INCREDIBLE restaurants, amidst the excellent fratty bars (Tipsy Pig, Balboa Cafe, etc.).
Presidio - I have posted numerous shots from my various adventures in the Presidio--Immigrant Point Overlook, Inspiration Point, the Bay Ridge and Coastal hiking trails... In addition to these beautiful overlooks, the Presidio also has some great restaurants, like Presidio Social Club (old favorite) and Dixie (still need to try.)
Richmond and Inner Richmond are known for having a variety of ethnic food and shops. In addition to some interesting restaurants, like Q and Eats, this neighborhood is a decent place to buy ethnic groceries, like nori and rice noodles.
Seacliff is a beautiful neighborhood on the coast between the Presidio and Lands End. The views are awesome, and it would be amazing to have a house here...someday...
Sunset and Inner Sunset host a sleepy bunch of people, some international restaurants, and surfers. The Outer Sunset is near Ocean Beach, close to some of our post-surf favorites, such as Outerlands, Java Beach, Trouble Coffee, Tacos at Underdogs, and the General Store. The Sunset and Richmond neighborhoods are separated by Golden Gate Park, another favorite of ours.
Twin Peaks is home to not much beyond the Twin Peaks. Great views. Awesome place. My favorite photo from Twin Peaks is the background to this blog. See?
Noe Valley is known for being a family-friendly neighborhood. Sure enough, you will dodge Bob strollers and loose kids here. The brunch opportunities are plentiful, and their Farmer's Market is excellent. Their Whole Foods sells kombucha on tap....if you're into that kind of thing...Blech
Diamond Heights isn't a place we have explored enough. However, last weekend we explored Mount Davidson--the highest peak in San Francisco. It was awesome. And really foggy. Karl the Fog might live here.
Hayes Valley is a really interesting neighborhood (and one we had hoped to live in...before we got outbid by $500/month over the asking price for an apartment!) We still have more to explore here, but the shops, cafes, and bars are SO San Francisco. A very fun place.
Mission - This is one of our favorite places to visit for restaurants and bars. When we moved here, W's friend told us we weren't "hipster enough" to live here. Probably true. But we love the Mission. Great place to visit; so easy to get to; and then it's nice when we return to our quiet(er) and clean(er) neighborhood later in the evening :) Some of our favorites places are Mexican Food shops everywhere, Monk's Kettle, Southern Pacific Brewing, Limon, Farina and Delfina Pizzeria, Bi-Rite Creamery, El Farolito, and probably 30 others I can't think of right now. We have the longest list of places we'd like to visit in the Mission. Also, Mission Sunday Streets can't be beat!
Potrero Hill - On the outskirts of the Mission, there is a lot to explore in Potrero Hill. We have wandered the streets and enjoyed the food! The famous Anchor Brewing Company (Anchor Steam) is located here. Will got to experience a VIP tour there!
That's just scratching the top of our adventures around the city. Which neighborhoods would you want to explore?
Catching up on other snapshot posts?
Photos of SF Bridges
Touristy Sites for Non-Tourists, Too