When I wrote this post, I was sitting in our room in San Francisco at 4am, totally alert. Yes. Totally jet lagged. I needed to get some sleep before daylight. We only have 3 short days and want to make full use of it. Such a lovely city with it’s very hilly roads, chill out people and seriously good food. All the Americans that we met today had been so friendly, no airs, no snobbish attitudes and just being genuinely nice and extremely approachable. And you know what else? Always smiling! Is it just San Francisco?
I want to eat where Anthony Bourdian ate in the series of San Francisco, No Reservations. I must have watched the episodes and YouTube about half dozen times. One of these places was Tadich Grill. Opened in 1849 and is still as busy as ever. It’s located in the financial district and I’ve read that lunch and dinner time on weekdays are usually packed with business people and that the best spot to have a meal there is at the bar counter. Just like Bourdian. I wanted to have the bar experience and it was great that we got seats at the counter.
We started the night with the classic martini, shaken. It was awesome. Cold, smooth and a great way to start our first dinner in the US of A.
Sitting at the bar is fantastic. We get to see the men in white jackets (wait staff) serve and move behind the bar counter. Everyone knows and understands totally what needs to be done. It was a smooth operation. No collision in the tight space and when many were moving from one end to another. It was super fun to watch. And also it was great place to meet new people. 2 travelling nurses sat next to us and started talking to us. They were here because of Bourdian too! This guy is powerhouse…. By the way, they were both having a night out and were super drunk. In a good way though.
Before I move on to our shared entree, I have to wonder about the amount of bread that this place goes through everyday. Every seat and table is given a hunk of bread. And the wait staff is more than happy to top up with butter. And can someone enlighten me about the butter? Why is almost white in colour?
Ok. So back to the food. We ordered a clam chowder (8USD). A sip of cold martini and a spoonful of hot soup. So awesome. Worked really well. Maybe not for many but we are on holiday so everything tastes better. Mister claimed that this chowder is one of the better ones that he had tried. It was not too thick and gluggy. It was almost quite light, packed with delicious morsels of seafood. But first, another sip of that dry and classic martini.
And we were recommended to try one of their more popular dish, the Seafood Cioppino. It came in a big shallow bowl with 2 crusty grilled garlic bread. Loads of bay shrimps, clams, prawns, crab meat, big fat scallops and white fish. Seafood stew heaven! Every spoonful is delightful and different. Flavours big and bold. I could quite happily sit here all day and just eat this soup. I had this with a glass of Zinfandel instead.
We were heading to a steakhouse in the next couple of days so we opted for another seafood dish – Charcoal broiled fresh Alaskan halibut steak. It came with a side of big fat chips and roasted vegetables. The serving was just massive. The halibut was perfectly cooked and super fresh. I like this method of cooking. Might just try it out at home. So much food and just not enough room to put it all in! We struggled and had to surrender.
Have anyone heard of Negroni straight up? Mister was asked the question when he ordered a Negroni – do you want it straight up or on the rocks? Straight up it is then. It’s pretty strong and only meant to be sipped slowly and respectfully.
I love this place. I love how I could hang my jacket on the hook on the back walls. I love sitting on the bar counter and just watching and chatting to random people. The food is great. Cooked well and the people that works here are pretty passionate about this place. There are loads of them that have white hair but then there are also the younger ones that are learning and retaining the tradition. It has history and I hope that this place stays for another decade and another. This place feels San Fran. You should at least come for a drink. Nothing fancy. Nothing posh. It’s just San Fran
Post written in less than 30mins. And then I went to bed.
I have started a flickr album on our trip – Click IT It will be updated as I find time to edit the many many photos!