Another One Bites The Dust in San Francisco

blog

About Pickle: Eat like a local! Pickle makes the world yummy again by allowing everyone to share the food spots they love through photos, not lengthy, pretentious reviews.

Another one bites the dust as an apartment fire destroyed a favorite local watering hole and Mexican restaurant. San Francisco is a unique case of gentrification because, along with several other reasons, we also only have a given amount of space, causing a supply and demand issue. Because of this so many people have been displaced and we’ve lost countless local restaurants that felt tied to our San Francisco identity. We wanted to take this tragedy and opportunity to remember our favorite spots and remind everyone of all the great places that are still here. Here is a list of local landmarks and an ode to the foodie destinations we have lost over the years and suggestions on alternative local eats so your money can stay in the community.

PLAYA AZUL

546 Valencia st, SF

It’s hard to talk about this place in past tense because it happened so recently, but alas it’s true, the five alarm fire on 29th and Mission on Saturday destroyed 9 businesses and displaced 58 people from their homes. This was a part of Mission street that still had so much local flare. Most of the businesses here were family owned and have been established for over 15 years or more. Playa Azul wasn’t just a taqueria, it served full and heavy portions of fried calamari, fish tacos, and margaritas that could start your engine. It was always the perfect spot for brunch after a long night at El Rio. You will be missed Playa Azul, but on those long summer nights when you’re feeling nostalgic and need family style enchiladas, go to Puerto Alegre, another Mission favorite that has stood the test of time.

LIVERPOOL LIL’S

COW HOLLOW, SF

In this sleepy part of Cow Hollow, nestled up against the Presidio was Liverpool Lil’s. If you never got the chance to try their breaded Mac ‘n Cheese, you truly missed out on a historical moment. Always packed with locals, especially during Fleet Week, Lil’s was a neighborhood favorite, the closest thing to the Cheers bar this side of the pond. Their Facebook page reports that after the fire they planned to rebuild but given soaring rent prices in the area, the landlord decided not to renew their lease. The magnitude of loss really hit home in February when the iconic sign that swung over the doorway for nearly 45 years, was taken down. Thankfully they have a sister restaurant close by called the Brazen Head. Order a double cut pork chop or a pub style burger, have a few beers, and never forget the legacy of Liverpool Lil’s.

EL PEROL

Mission District, SF

El Perol was in one of the most colorful and lively places in the Mission at one time. In the back of several restaurants and other little shops, instead of having dumpsters and a forgotten back alley, it opened up into a small marketplace where there was often live music and you could buy all types of different food, jewelry, nic nacs, toys, and lucha libre masks. In the center of it all, El Perol was serving up the best Peruvian food in the Mission and possibly all of SF. Their empanadas were made fresh daily and their fried pork sandwich would have you feeling like you could date a sandwich. Tragedy struck last year when an electrical fire broke out and engulfed the entire market place, 3 other business and two apartment buildings. Landlords would only rebuild and renew leases with a rate increase way out of range for business owners who have been there for over 20 years. The owner of El Perol reopened in San Mateo, but if you need a local Peruvian spot, Cholo Soy is your new home.

ANTOJITOS SALVADORENOS AMINTA

Outer Mission, SF

This place used to be like an actual teleport machine to El Salvador. When you walk in patrons sat at the bar on little red stools and ordered fresh squeezed orange juice or coffee and perfectly stuffed pupusas. We can’t even put into words how much we will miss the shrimp and cheese pupusa, it was a masterpiece. Thankfully you can still get bomb ass pupusas but you might have to walk a little further than before. In the outer Mission, Balompie is serving up fresh pupusas on a daily and you can watch soccer while you burn your mouth on the cheese because you couldn’t wait for it to cool down.

About Pickle: Eat like a local! Pickle makes the world yummy again by allowing everyone to share the food spots they love through photos, not lengthy, pretentious reviews.

Eat Your Feelings About Brexit

uk

If you haven’t heard of Brexit, two things, number 1, read a newspaper once in a while, and 2, don’t worry, as Americans, we’re pretty bad when it comes to understanding, let alone caring about, European politics. But the gist of it is, last week the UK experienced its highest voter turnout rate since 1992 and drum roll please…the people voted to leave the European Union in a 52% to 48% split. As we know in the U.S, a voter split like that can sever a nation and divide people in a way that doesn’t exactly promote peace and love. No one knows the entire spectrum of what this means in terms of trade, immigration, and economic impact on the UK and abroad, but it’s certainly making people nervous. So all we can do now is wait, maybe eat a few cornish pies, and watch what unfolds, hoping that sane minds prevail. And there’s no better place to do all of that than at British restaurants and bars around San Francisco. Here’s a list of the best places to stock up on your UK comfort foods.

YOU SAY TOMATO

Nob Hill, SF

This little market next to a computer repair shop is your saving grace if you’ve run out of Marmite and other toast spreadables that look like street drugs but taste like anchovies. Whether you grew up in England or just watching Downtown Abbey, this place has it all, Fruit Pastilles, Wine Gums, and Bacon Fries. But if you’re a really cool nerd, you’ll buy a few Penguin bars and Cheese Flavoured Moments and play the Doctor Who pinball machine in the back til your fingers turn blue.

CROWN & CRUMPET TEA STOP CAFE

Japantown, SF

It’s a shame the U.S never adopted tea time because it’s the best way to put yourself into a deep food coma while looking fancy. It’s said that English tea time is really just an excuse for an indoor picnic and this place is worth the trek to Japantown to see why it’s called that. Order tea for three and a wrack of plates come out filled with crumpets, butter, jam, egg sandwiches, Yorkshire pudding, and sausage wrapped in pastry. It’s a complete carb overload and chances are you won’t be able to get out of your chair without digesting for an hour while sipping tea, so I guess that’s the point.

THE PIG AND WHISTLE

Inner Richmond, SF

This is a proper English pub complete with bangers and mash, dad bods, dark pints of ale, and lots of sports fans. The perfect place to drink away a weekday afternoon and forget about Brexit and the EU debacle for a while. Until you remember and realize the price of importing British products could go up and then where are you gonna get your Yorkshire tea and Reversy Percy?

CAVALIER

SOMA/Union Square, SF

British inspired cocktails and the best Shepherd’s pie this side of the pond. Home of the Pimm’s Cup and the Whiz Bang, this is hands down the best place to grab a cocktail in the area. The atmosphere is swanky, the street noise is poetic, and life feels like 20th century literature, especially after knocking back a few. Knowledgable staff will guide you through the best parts of the menu and talk to you for 25 minutes if you bring up the UK’s exit from the EU, so maybe just don’t until you’re done with your meal.

ABOUT PICKLE

A picture is worth a thousand Yelp reviews. Forget about reviews from disgruntled employees, or people just having a bad night, we help you find the real spots people love.

Life’s Too Short, Eat Ice Cream

San francisco doesn’t get the sticky humid heat of the midwest and east coast, but we do get perfect ice cream weather. Because we live in the foodie capitol, we take our frozen desserts more seriously than we take our personal lives, most of us will actively avoid house cleaning chores, clean clothes, and personal hygiene to instead run over to Dolores park and drink out of a coconut and get a double scoop, am I right? I think yes. Here are a few spots to help you procrastinate life and get your sweet tooth on.

birite

BI-RITE CREAMERY

Mission, SF

Bi-Rite is only a few blocks from Dolores park, making it an ideal pit-stop on your way to getting sunburned and sitting on a grassy knoll for 6 hours, Jessie stopped by and found out, in true SF style, Bi-Rite has really “creative ice cream flavors.”

joy

ALIMENTO

Telegraph Hill, SF

If you have friends or family from out of town, you’ll probably find yourself at Alimento. It’s an easy stroll from Fisherman’s Wharf and the Embarcadero, “joy is an understatement” – Nathalie

cream

CREAM

Mission, SF

This used to be just something you would drunkenly make in your dorm room at 2am. But someone made a business out of a munchie craving, and we are very happy they did, “best ice cream cookie sandwich place!” – Karen

smitten

SMITTEN

Hayes Valley, SF

If you want to know what it’s like to eat ice cream on the moon, check this place out. Each cup or cone is a frozen science experiment that’s made right in front of you with liquid nitrogen.

Book a Table and Get a Ride with Pickle!

Organize an adventure with others, book a table, and take an Uber to the places you love! Check out all the new things you can now do with Pickle!

DGAsset_EmailNewFeature_BookTable

BOOK A TABLE

Get a table at the hottest places

Now you have quick and easy access to those often hard to get reservations! If you see a place you like, click on it, and book a spot with OpenTable

DGAsset_EmailNewFeature_Invite

INVITE PEOPLE TO GO

Gather around the things you love

Did you just have the best sushi or ramen of your life? Or find the best trail in the Marin Headlands? Now you can use our Invite button to easily get a group of like minded people together and share an experience!

DGAsset_EmailNewFeature_Uber

GET THERE WITH UBER

Get to where you’re going a lot faster

We just made it a lot easier to get around! Now you can click on a photo and request an Uber to pick you up and take you from door to door.

What’s Out There?

We’re creatures of comfort. We love the idea of adventure and trying new things. But often the daily grind gets us down and we end up just sticking with the places we know. This week we want to encourage you to get out and have a foodie adventure! Here’s a list of some of the leaps and bounds people are taking on Pickle:

Magnolia Brewing Company

CRAFTSMAN AND WOLVES

Mission District, SF

Josh W took a stunning photo of the Vegetable tartine with pickled green strawberries, who knew?! “Bomb coffee. Legit atmosphere. Fantastic grub.” Couldn’t have said it better ourselves.

Comstock saloon

COMSTOCK SALOON

North Beach, SF

With big windows looking onto Columbus Ave, artisanal cocktails and amazing food, it was so delicious that Sirinya L couldn’t even put it into words. Only emoji’s could express how tasty everything was.

Waterbar

WATERBAR

Rincon Hill, SF

Minjung Y. was taking in views of the bay while having brunch in a glass. Shrimp and bacon “Bloody Mary’s…decadent.”

Coit Tower

SUNSET RESERVOIR BREWING CO.

Sunset district, SF

Gladys D kept it short and sweet, “good food and beer.” Sometimes that’s all that matters.

Winter Is Coming

It looks like we’re going to actually have a winter in California this year. As the weather gets colder and the nights longer, have no fear, there’s an upside to all of this, comfort food! Warm, rich, and heavy meals with fluffy starches and root vegetables abound, goodbye summer bod, here comes winter. Check out some of the places our fellow Picklers are enjoying home style goodness while avoiding cabin fever:

Suppenkuche

SUPPENKUCHE

Hayes Valley, SF

Get your schnitzel down here! Jenny W says, “the authentic German food is great!” With home-made Bavarian specialties and beers as tall as your 5 year old, we want to spend all of January here.

scolari's

SCOLARI’S

Alameda, East Bay

Alameda is quickly becoming SF’s rival when it comes to great food. Krista B had “One of the best bacon cheeseburgers” she thinks she has ever eaten, “maybe THE best…”

Linea Caffe

LINEA CAFFE

Mission District, SF

You can’t get through winter without the power of a delicious latte! For that, Rachel’s emoji heart belongs to Linea Caffe.

Brenda's French Soul Food

BRENDA’S FRENCH SOUL FOOD

Tenderloin, SF

Gordon C’s full plate of golden brown Crawfish Beignets made this place look delicious! Living the dream, Gordon, livin’ the dream.