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  1. #21
    Port de bras!!!
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    Alright, I pass Hayes Valley on the way from work and will check out Ritual if you promise it's the Sasha Cohen of coffee.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

  2. #22
    KWEEN 2016! YES WE KWAN!
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    Do Ritual and Blue Bottle back-to-back; they're only 1/2 block away from each other. Almost like a Michelle and Sasha duo - both very good, and different people will prefer one over the other. Ritual is the big kiosk fronting the dog park, while Blue Bottle is tucked away in the alley behind the Ritual/Smitten kiosks.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by UMBS Go Blue View Post
    IMHO, Philz is like the Sarah Hughes of coffee - good all-around but not at all spectacular or endearing - while there are so many other Michelle, Sasha, Yuna, or Mao-worthy establishments like (in my order of preference):

    1. Ritual Coffee - the best in San Francisco
    2. Blue Bottle Coffee - a very, very close second; enough of a cult following that they've expanded to Brooklyn and Chelsea in NYC
    3. Sightglass Coffee - an incredibly gorgeous space that will hopefully help gentrify an otherwise bleak SoMa block
    4. Four Barrel Coffee - hipsters swear by it; I was less impressed with the coffee than I was the atmosphere of the space - long lines and lively networking/conversation at all hours. So hipster, in fact, that they make no apologies for having no wi-fi, no power outlets, and insisting on quiet in their back alley overflow space
    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Alright, I pass Hayes Valley on the way from work and will check out Ritual if you promise it's the Sasha Cohen of coffee.


    What about Simple Pleasures in the Outer Richmond? I'd say it's the Anastasia Gimazetdinova of coffee.


  4. #24
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    Bookmarked. I was just nearby, up/down the entire length of both Geary and California, the other week. Do they roast their own beans or get them from elsewhere?

  5. #25
    Port de bras!!!
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    Then what kind of skater is Starbucks?


    Quote Originally Posted by UMBS Go Blue View Post
    Do Ritual and Blue Bottle back-to-back...
    If you see me posting at 3 am next week, you'll know why.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by UMBS Go Blue View Post
    Bookmarked. I was just nearby, up/down the entire length of both Geary and California, the other week. Do they roast their own beans or get them from elsewhere?
    They roast their own. The roastery is in the same block as the cafe.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Then what kind of skater is Starbucks?
    JoJo Starbuck.

    Don't look at me like that.

  7. #27
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    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

  8. #28
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    Walking in SF is definitely exercise! My sister is down in LA to visit me and we went hiking today. She says the walk up the hill to her apartment in Haight-Ashbury was steeper than the hike, and I was already huffing pretty hard! I'm not exactly out of shape either (I can full squat more than my body weight), but I'm definitely not a cardio person!

  9. #29
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    Also, my sister's bf is like, the biggest coffee snob I know. She says he switches between Ritual and Coffee Bar. Philz is okay, she likes their tea combinations better.

    He doesn't care for Sightglass or Four Barrel.

  10. #30

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    Thanks for the all the replies. I'm getting tired just reading all the recommendations. I have to get serious now and find one hotel, then make a short list of activities.

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Japanfan View Post
    I'm getting tired just reading all the recommendations.
    Have some coffee.

  12. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by UMBS Go Blue View Post

    1. Ritual Coffee - the best in San Francisco
    Argh... No downtown location. And the bayview location opens at 9am... What kind of coffee shop opens at 9am?

    Any good coffee shop suggestions for downtown?

  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by luenatic View Post
    Any good coffee shop suggestions for downtown?
    For better or worse, Downtown is clogged with Starbucks, Peets, and Specialty's branches.

    The best one I can think of off-hand is Cafe Madeleine. It's very clean and pleasant, quirky without being weird, and a bit out of place in modern-day San Francisco. The Anaïs Ventard of coffee, perhaps?

    It has locations at 43 O'Farrell St., 300 California St., and 149 New Montgomery St.

  14. #34

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    Thanks Vagabond! I'd been there when I was staying at the Omni in the Financial district. It was walking distance for me.

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    We always spend at least one day in Golden Gate Park. We rent bikes and simply tour it. There is a lot to see and we never manage to see and do everything. The Japanese Gardens are a frequent stop. There are museums, we typically do one while we are there. On the weekends most of the roads in the park are closed to traffic. Sutro baths is an interesting stop.

    We also did a tour of "famous ice cream" places. It was just for fun but also a fun way to see areas we didn't usually hit.

  16. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allskate View Post
    I definitely would recommend not staying at an airport hotel. The airport is not that close to the city and it won't be very convenient. I'd suggest looking for a boutique hotel within a couple of blocks of Union Square.
    Even if you stay at the airport, it's $8.25 each way on BART from San Francisco Airport to Montgomery, which is the middle of downtown. If Mr. Japanfan is going with you, that's $34 each day plus the time to commute, and I think you'd be better off spending the money on a centrally located hotel.

    I second, third, fourth Golden Gate Park. There's a great art/design museum in the park. There's also the Asian Art Museum on one side of City Hall, which you have to walk by to see: it's a beautiful building.
    "The team doesn't get automatic capacity because management is mad" -- Greg Smith, agile guy

  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by luenatic View Post
    Any good coffee shop suggestions for downtown?
    I'm on Team Blue Bottle. There's a Blue Bottle at the Ferry Building and one by the Mint.

  18. #38
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    Oh, even though you're from Vancouver, go to the Ferry Terminal. There's a mini crafts market across the street and a market around the terminal during the day, and there is some nice food inside. You can take a real ferry ride, not just the blip that is the SeaBus ride.
    "The team doesn't get automatic capacity because management is mad" -- Greg Smith, agile guy

  19. #39

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    Is the Ferry Building considered Downtown? I thought Downtown was Union Square. The coffee shop I went to in Union Square was Emporio Rulli.

  20. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by manhn View Post
    Is the Ferry Building considered Downtown? I thought Downtown was Union Square. The coffee shop I went to in Union Square was Emporio Rulli.
    I guess that some tourists, especially ones who mostly like to shop, might equate Downtown with just Union Square. I consider Downtown to include everything from Union Square to the Ferry Building, including the Financial District and a lot of SOMA. The Ferry Building is at the end of the Financial District and lots of people who work in the Financial District go to the Ferry Buiding at lunch, especially on farmer's market days. If someone is staying at an Embarcadero hotel, it takes just a few minutes to walk over to the Ferry Building.

    So, yeah, I consider the Blue Bottle shops at the Mint and the Ferry Building to be Downtown -- and well worth visiting.

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