Founded in Japan in 1980, MUJI is a company that sells clothes and household goods worldwide. They ‘ve recently opened their first west coast store right here in San Francisco, in the SOMA District. Why do we love it? We have fond memories of our first experience at a MUJI store, five years ago in Munich. There and here, the first feeling one feels upon entering the store is the zen-like experience of a design – focused space. From the design of the products to the design of the store itself, the MUJI vision is expressed in everything you see. From clothes to organizational aids, travel to stationery, furniture to kitchen, everything MUJI sells reflects their ideals of minimalism, of using natural or recyclable materials, of utility, of simplicity. You won’t find the bright colors of Uniqlo here, rather a subdued palette of neutrals and earthtones, of the materials of glass, cotton, paper and metal.
Nothing in the store is branded and in fact, the name MUJI finds its roots in the words Mujirushi Ryōhin, loosely translated as No Brand Quality Goods. That’s precisely what you get at MUJI. Objects here express beauty in their utility. And, it’s also affordable. It’s a true lifestyle store and one that outfits the kind of home we’d love to live in…we may not need to shop anywhere else!
(between Brannan St & Bryant St)
San Francisco, CA 94103
- Hours: Mon-Sat 10:30 pm – 8 pm, Sun 11 pm – 6:30 pm
From Eater SF: “As previously suspected, the beloved sandwich makers of Pal’s Take Away are really moving out of Tony’s Market, and it’s happening “sometime after January 2013.” Owner Jeff Mason wants a new Mission location with a full kitchen: for better sandwiches, more tables, and expanded hours. Check out the Kickstarter video with cameos from Josey Baker, Richie Nakano, and Roli Roti’s Thomas Odermatt. [EaterWire]
Story via Pal’s Take Away Moving – Eater SF.”
We encountered Pal’s Take away about three years ago in 2009 (rumor had it that amazing sandwiches were being served at lunchtime from the counter of the deli in Tony’s Market, a nondescript corner market in the Mission. Rumors proved to be true!) For a while we were obsessed in particular with the Wednesday tradition started at Pals, a rotating guest chef would create a special sandwich, available only on that day. From Jake Godby of Humphry Slocombe to Danny Bowein of Mission Chinese Food, Pal’s had guest chefs that pulled from the best of the San Francsico food theme, creating fantasy sandwiches. Indeed, there was a lot of great fun happening at this surprisingly little place, and we have had a lot of amazing food there. We here at MUS e YUM wish the owner Jeff Mason well on his new venture and look forward to following his food!!
Here’s what Jeff has to say about his food:
“The idea for Pal’s started A couple of years ago,when I thought that it would be a great idea to open a small take out sandwich counter that serves clean, great tasting new twists on old favorites at a reasonable price using all fresh,organic local ingredients from my grower friends and neighborhood backyard gardens.”
Pal’s Take away
2751 24th Street (( at the corner of Hampshire ))
San Francisco, CA
(Pals is inside Tony’s Market)
WE LOVE the pop up phenomenon that has become just one part of the food scene in San Francisco. The format brings rapid iteration to the streets, for a night or two a week a chef can try out a new concept, enjoying low overhead that frees the maker of the food to be experimental. The atmosphere is fun, full of foodie anticipation, and the owner of the space can bring a lot of variety to the neighborhood by trying different chefs on different nights for limited runs.
Brunos has hosted some very successful pop ups in the recent past, like Brunch Drunk Love. Now, the space gives way to burgers on Sundays and the oft overlooked Monday nights. If the concept, called KronnerBurgers, continues to do well, look for the owner to go full time and, by the sound of the menu, it just might. We wonder how the addition of bone-marrow to the burger enhances the umami experience… We’re always looking for the best burger, so look for a review soon.
Thanks Inside Scoop SF for the story! Inside Scoop SF » The KronnerBurger era begins at Bruno’s.
Right on schedule, Chris Kronner kicked off his KronnerBurger project at Bruno’s these past Sunday and Monday nights; to be specific, he’s inhabiting the little side area to the left of Bruno’s, a dark room usually reserved for weekend club crowd overflow.
The opening menu (click here to view) will be tweaked continually, but the most recent incarnation included a crab burger ($14), fries ($4), a wedge salad ($10) and of course, the signature KronnerBurger ($11). Marrow in various forms was also involved.
On the booze side, Gabriel Lowe (Locanda) will be on cocktail duty going forward. Sayre Piotrkowski (St. Vincent) will help out with the beers, and Sutton Cellars is going to provide a Basque-style cider.
So the important part: the schedule. For now, Kronner will be slinging burgers on Sunday and Monday nights for sure. This Saturday (12/1), he’ll be open for “happy hour” from 4:30pm-8pm.
In the coming weeks, he expects to continue to expand hours and days of operation, with the eventual goal of being open 7 days a week. Stay tuned and tune into Facebook for updates and specifics.
KronnerBurger: 2379 Mission Street, near 20th; kronnerburger.com
· Previously: Chris Kronner and his burgers descend upon Bruno’s [Inside Scoop]
Check out this article for a list of the top 20 sandwiches in San Francisco.
Our comments are below:
2, great quality meat, but fatty. Not quite seasoned enough.
5, bland, fatty, not sure why this one makes the list, least of all in the top 5
7, amazing quality meat, fatty yes, impeccably seasoned. A star.
11, simple and delicious, just the right amount of pepper, the greens balance the egg, mayo and cheese perfectly
13, fatty but decadent. Nice spice. The bun is so good!
14, we love lamb, just the right amount of veggies to add crunch and a burst of juice
15 yes, a calorie bomb. But it hits all the right notes. We go back again and again for it!
16 this is a great seafood roll and a good value, too!
17 nicely marinated meat, right spice mix, juicy and grilled flavors harmoniously blend
19 Great german fare, spicey and delicious with ‘craut and onions. Do have the beer with it. So good. Love the weiswurst at Rosamunde, too.
Craftsman and Wolves, a set on Flickr.
Easily one of the most anticipated bakery openings of the year, Craftsman and Wolves opened it’s doors prior to launching to give the neighborhood just a taste. That day, I started with the cocoa + carrot muffin, and it was good. Incredibly moist (almost wet, in fact) and incredibly rich.
On my next visit, I tried a hazelnut scone. Savoury yes, but not remarkable enough to be my favorite scone in the city. Arizmendi remains the leader, there.
Perhaps my favorite of their many creations is the passionfruit croissant, a perfectly executed croissant with a classic, crispy exterior and a wonderfully airy, layered center. The croissant is in turn covered with a passionfruit glaze and the marriage of that and the sesame seeds is truly special.
Craftsman and Wolves
746 Valencia St
(between 19th St & 18th St)
San Francisco, CA 94110
Meet the Pink Panther by ice cream superstars Mr. and Mrs. Miscellaneous. The Pink Panther is an ice cream flavored with almond liquor and chocolate liquors. Rich. You’ll find Mr. and Mrs. Miscellaneous in the Dogpatch neighborhood of San Francisco- urban, trendy and my favorite ice cream shop in the city.
Here are some other flavors I’ve tried there.
Pre-opening at Craftsman and Wolves, on Valencia in the Mission. San Francisco.
Easily one of the most anticipated bakery openings of the year, Craftsman and Wolves opened it’s doors prior to launching to give the neighborhood just a taste. Rather than buying, you could reach in a fish bowl and draw the name of a pastry, which you got as a free sample. I drew a cocoa + carrot muffin, and it was good. Incredibly moist (almost wet) and incredibly rich.
The richness matches the space, a concrete and wood industrial fantasy. The owner has a pedigree, previously of Telltale Preserves. Telltale was amazing and this should be equally so. More to come!
Craftsman and Wolves
746 Valencia St
(between 19th St & 18th St)
San Francisco, CA 94110
dining at Ragazza, a set on Flickr.
One of my favorite Italian restaurants in San Francisco is Ragazza. The pizza is among the best in the city and you should order at least one, but look also to the other parts of the menu, and save room for those, too. This is a time when going with friends and sharing is ideal. Start with one of the house made salads. They’re creative and rotate with the season. Perhaps a persimmon and goat cheese and pistachio, or what’s pictured here, blood orange and pancetta. Get at least one order of the baked pasta with butternut squash. Split a pie, any are amazing, the crust thin, and blistered. Even roasts are represented on the menu, you’ll find the meat perfectly cooked. Finish with a desert pizza, a thicker version of the crust with nuttella, and whipped cream.
311 Divisadero St
(between Page St & Oak St)
San Francisco, CA 94117
It’s been nearly four years since my first trip to Mission Pie, a wonderful oasis for homespun dessert and savoury pies located in the Mission District of San Francisco. I was new to the food community then, and eager to learn more about it. I wanted to learn more about the provenance of the wonderful ingredients being used in the meals that I was enjoying. My eyes were being opened to the wealth that is the abundance of the Bay Area’s local produce.
I’d started taking photos, too, with my new digital camera and many of those pictures were of my food. I began to post photos of memorable meals on Flickr and Yelp, together with reviews of my experiences both good and bad. I wanted to document my excitement for what I was discovering and for what I was learning, all at the same time. And, I wanted to connect with others who shared my passion. And my passion was fed.
It’s funny now to think that something as quintessentially homespun as a warm-from-the-oven pie could be a novel new player on the bakery scene but then, it was. At a time when bakeries were vying for the top cupcake, a bakery devoted to the humble pie seemed novel and maybe even bold. No one was doing pie then. I sought out Mission Pie soon after it opened and on that visit, after tasting that perfectly cooked crust and the luminous brightness of the fruit inside, even then remarked to my friend that pie ‘just might be’ the new cupcake. Was I right? Maybe not quite on the grander scale but for me, it sure is! And I wanted to learn more. . .
What I also learned on this first visit made me love this business even more. Mission Pie is the retail outlet for a bigger picture and a bigger story. All the ingredients which comprise every one of those gorgeous pies comes from a ranch, the Pie Ranch, located outside the city on the San Mateo Coast. Bees make the honey, fruit falls from the trees, wheat is milled to flour, and the spirit, hard work and love of farmers and volunteers all come together there so that you and I may enjoy the fruits of their labor here, and I was- and am- blown away and moved by that concept.
Founded in 2002, The Pie Ranch is a working farm, not only producing food but producing change. Their mission (Mission Pie) is to feed and nourish the body, the mind, the consciousness and the broader community by educating people as to where their food comes from and how it gets to one’s table. The Ranch welcomes students from inner city schools and introduces them to the country, all the while teaching farming and an appreciation for where food comes from. They mentor adults who want to learn to farm sustainably.
So they’re doing far more than growing food or even making pies…they’re making a difference. You can see this passion in the eyes of every single person in this video and I invite you to check it out:
via Teach Pie. on Vimeo.
The Pie Ranch apprenticeship program gives apprentices the skills needed to become the next generation of successful farmers.
Pie Ranch is an education farm whose mission it is to inspire and connect people to know the source of their food, and to work together to bring greater health to the food system from seed to table.
Thanks to Nancy, Jered, Amy and all the apprentices and interns!
2901 Mission St
San Francisco, CA 94110
As if hearing our call here at MUS•e•YUM for the Best Burger in San Francisco, the fine fellows over at SF Eater have mobilized the entire city (and their fancy-shmancy number crunching servers) to scientifically determine just that! The winner? -no surprise here: celebrity chef and food concept innovator Ryann Starr and his 4505 Meats. Starr is a busy guy, running 4505 Meats at the Ferry Building on Thursdays as well as other pop up venues (like his fabulous turkey lunch right before Thanksgiving in Hayes Valley, link here) and the scrumptious 3-SUM Food Truck which you can find at various Off the Grid venues around town.
Friday, April 29, 2011, by Laura Beck
4505 Meats won the Best Burger in the SF Bay Area Burger Brackets showdown! You go, girl. Congrats to 4505 Meats team and congrats to all of our restaurants and voters. You’re all the real winners here. I think.
4505 Meats Burger [Photo: HamBlogger]
Given the choice of trying a new restaurant or going back to one that is tried-and-true, I’ll usually opt for the former rather than the latter. So if a place does manage to keep me coming-back on a fairly regular basis why, that’s an endorsement in and of itself. Starstream certainly is that kind of place, and it certainly has a hold on me. I keep going back. And without fail, every time I do there’s at least one new thing waiting to be tried, something that blurs the line between sweet and savory (a distinguishing factor for which Starstream is known, check out my previous review here). As much as I try to resist that bit of sweet at the end of the meal, I can’t. (It is the best cookie in San Francisco, after all) And then there’s Remi, the owner and chef, who is a true gem.
The following is a lunch in pictures. Joining me on this latest visit was MUS•e•YUM Trustee, L., a former advertising exec. who’s eaten at some of the top restaurants in town and beyond, so he has a refined palate and holds the bar high. L. always presents a neutral and unbiased review. . . it was his first time eating here, in fact. (Not his last, he really liked it!)
On my plate were the roasted fig, basil & stracciatella cheese sandwich and the salad of arugula, pickled red onion and sliced fingerling potatoes . Both of these dishes reflect Chef Remi’s signature approach of bringing savory and sweet together, in a deftly-balanced way. L. also loved his meal, the Pork Conserva sandwich and Citrus Salad. He appreciated how well-balanced all the flavors were on his plate, as well. The brightness of the citrus fennel salad was a real highlight, as well as the iced Bergamot tea he ordered with his meal, very aromatic and rich. We both agree the rolls on which the sandwiches are served are pretty great and well worth mentioning; they’re beautiful, they’re flavorful, and they’re made in-house by Remi, as well. We also agreed the portion size is exactly right. We left completely satisfied, but not stuffed. In fact, as always, I had room for a little dessert, the dark chocolate and red chile pepper scone, dusted with gorgeous crystaline turbinado sugar. The flavor of the scone was nothing short of amazing, the richness of the chocolate totally satisfies your sweet tooth, and it’s accompanied by a real nice “kick” on the back-end, thanks to the chiles. Awesomeness.
And this visit we found out about a bit of exciting news from Chef Remi- . . . so stay tuned for a big story mid-February!
1830 Harrison at 14th St (near the Best Buy)
San Francisco, CA 94103
Hours: Mon-Fri 8 am – 4 pm
Links to articles in the Press:
I’ve tried a lot of macaroni and cheese combinations over the years but this one really stands out. Given that a basic macaroni and cheese recipe is forgiving of experimentation, feel free to change it up to suit your taste (or as is often the case, to make creative use of what’s in the fridge). Be assured though that this combination is pretty damn good!
I chose to feature Manchego cheese (Manchego is a spanish cheese from the La Mancha region) which is at once mild but not bland; it has a fully round, rich flavor which is both nutty and slightly sweet. Enhancing this balance of savory and sweetness, and lending a bit more aromatic character to it, I’ve added some vanilla to the roux. Providing a bit more kick, enough to add a slight bit of sharpness without overpowering the Manchego, I added a small portion of mature cheddar, as well as a white wine reduction which added a warm complexity to the dish.
Here is my recipe for the grandest of comfort foods, macaroni and cheese:
MUS•e•YUM Macaroni and Cheese
- 2 ½ c (9 ounces) dry pasta, I love Farfalle- it’s curvy enough to hold the sauce well.
- 2 ½ c whole milk
- 1 whole white onion, sliced
- 1 bay leaf
- 10 whole black peppercorns
- 4 T unsalted butter
- ¼ c all-purpose flour
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Manchego cheese, grated (about 4 cups worth)
- Mature cheddar cheese, grated (about 1 cup)
- 1 ¼ c White wine ( I had a Riesling on hand and enjoyed it in this recipe but I’d love to experiment with other wines, too )
- 1 t vanilla extract
- ½ c fresh bread crumbs
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 2-quart baking dish.
2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Prepare your pasta as directed until it is about half-cooked, soft and tender on the surface with a distinct bite still left in the center, say 5-ish minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water and set aside. Stir through occasionally so that it doesn’t start to stick.
3. Put the milk in a small saucepan and add half of the onion slices, bay leaf and peppercorns. Bring just to a low boil over medium heat, watching the milk closely and stirring frequently to ensure it doesn’t boil over. . . then take the pan from the heat add the vanilla. Let the mixture sit to infuse for 10 to 15 minutes while it cools off.
4. Step #3 takes a long time. So, while you’re waiting on the milk, get out a small skillet and sauté the other half of the sliced onions in some olive oil. This won’t take long, a couple of minutes, or just until they turn translucent and ‘yellowish’. Before they start to brown remove the onion from the pan and transfer to a holding dish of some kind.
5. In the same skillet, still hot from sautéing the onions, deglaze: turn the heat up, pour in the white wine, stir together with all the bits left from the onions, and simmer to reduce it down to say, ½ c.
6. When the milk has finished infusing, get the pot in which you boiled your pasta and in it, melt the butter over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook, whisking constantly, until it foams up (it should not brown), 1 to 2 minutes. Strain the warm milk into the pan and whisk to blend. Continue to cook the sauce, whisking often, until it thickens, about 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and gradually whisk in the cheeses until fully melted. Now, add the white wine reduction and the reserved sautéed onions. Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper, then gently fold in the pasta until it is fully coated with the cheese sauce.
7. Pour the mixture into the prepared dish and sprinkle the bread crumbs evenly over. Set the dish on the oven rack and bake until the macaroni and cheese is bubbling hot and the top is nicely browned, about 40 minutes. Let sit for about 15 minutes before serving.
It was a great year for bakeries in SF, with several notable openings. Yet despite the competition one bakery still holds the title of our favorite and that is Thorough Bread and Pastry.
Why we love it:
- beautifully prepared food, every item we’ve ever had there has been exquisite
- broad choice, from morning pastries and loaves of bread to small, beautifully decorated artisanal desserts, parisian macarons and even sandwich offerings at lunch
- the prices are very reasonable, and it’s a great value for your money
- the beautiful space, perfect for lingering. Not only is there ample seating indoors but check out the charming garden behind- it’s a great place to read over your coffe or, to take a special friend for lunch.
- they have a mission, and that is to train future bakers. This store is affiliated with the San Francisco Baking Institute and serves as a laboratory for the students.
- friendly, quick service. It’s quite fun to shop here, and they’ll take good care of you.
248 Church St (between Market St & 15th St)
San Francisco, CA 94114
Here’s an approachably unusual, versatile, easy and quite delicious recipe for your next dinner party or …just a nice work-night treat for yourself. It fills any need for stand-in potatoes but elevates them to the star of the show. Your guests will want a copy of this recipe, no doubt!
1 1/2 pounds of your favorite potatoes and celery root, cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks
6 unpeeled garlic cloves
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 cinnamon stick, broken into pieces
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper.
1. Heat oven to 325 degrees. Put all the ingredients in a 10-inch cast-iron skillet and stir until combined.
2. Transfer to the oven and roast, stirring once or twice, until potatoes are tender, about an hour and 15 minutes. Then raise the oven temperature to 450 degrees and cook until potatoes are crusty, brown and tender, about 15 minutes longer.
Serves about 4 as a side dish.
P.S. I served the cinnamon roasted potatoes and celeriac on Christmas day with the following menu:
honey baked ham
home-made macaroni and cheese (manchego cheese, white wine rue)
green beans tossed with roasted fennel, shallots and currants.