Mike Berman’s Washington Watch

San Francisco

Restaurant: The Buckeye Roadhouse

San Francisco: This is clearly a neighborhood restaurant. Dress is primarily casual to very casual, and the diners include young children and babies.

Restaurant: Prospect

San Francisco: As a gesture to environmental consciousness, the menu for the evening we were there was printed on the back side of the menu from the night before.

Restaurant: sauce

San Francisco: As a gesture to environmental consciousness, the menu for the evening we were there was printed on the back side of the menu from the night before.

Restaurant: Serpentine

San Francisco: The restaurant is located in an old industrial section of town which is going through a kind of rebirth. The inside of the restaurant can also best be described as industrial.

Restaurant: Quince

San Francisco: While the new location is somewhat fancier than the previous location, it remains a perfect dining situation.

Restaurant: Cotogna

San Francisco: This restaurant is literally next door to Quince. Cotogna is much more casual and is described as an Italian trattoria.

Restaurant: Kokkari

San Francisco: You enter this restaurant at a far corner of a large dining room that turns out to be one of two large dining rooms. The restaurant has a variety of private rooms that can become part of the main restaurant.

Restaurant: Cliff House

San Francisco: Cliff House has several observation areas and it is worth checking out each of them. On this particular day there were no seals in evidence, but an endless number of birds were hanging out on the various islands.

Restaurant: The Richmond Restaurant & Wine Bar

San Francisco: This is a relatively small neighborhood restaurant. Our table was by itself, in a corner to the right of the entrance.

Restaurant: Perbacco

San Francisco: Perbacco is quite large. To the left of the entry is a long, L-shaped bar with many high chairs. There are also several high, round tables with related chairs at the front.

Restaurant: Anchor & Hope

San Francisco: The 100-year old building has had a variety of uses, including as a mechanics’ warehouse, a fire station, and an artists’ studio. The restaurant has been there for about 3 years.

Restaurant: Spruce

San Francisco: The restaurant prides itself on its always fresh ingredients from local farms and ranches. As an interesting benefit to its customers, from 3:30-5:30 p.m. on Thursdays Spruce operates a farmers’ market.

Restaurant: Baker & Banker

San Francisco: Baker & Banker is quite different than Quince, but in my view equally good, and in some ways better. The food is superb, tasty and creative, but there is a feel to the restaurant that is very comfortable.

Restaurant: Michael Mina

San Francisco: As bright, energizing, and noisy as Bourbon Steak is, that is how quiet, dimly lit, and laid back is this restaurant. It is just plain fancier than its DC cousin.

Restaurant: Garabaldi on Presidi

San Francisco: The food was just plain good, and the portions were substantial.

Restaurant: piperade

San Francisco: Overall, the food was really good, nicely plated, but not fussy or overdone. It had the affect of comfort food, but was many notches above that which is usually described with that phrase.

Restaurant: Town's End Restaurant and Bakery

San Francisco: Breakfasts with Stanley are always a treat. The joints to which he takes WW always have "character." Town's End was no exception.

Restaurant: Eli's Restaurant

Washington, DC: If you regularly drive up 20th Street, NW, from M Street to Dupont Circle or Massachusetts Avenue, you have passed Eli's without noticing it or without giving it a second look.

Restaurant: Acquerello

San Francisco: The service was exceptional. There appear to be 3 captains working the floor, including the owner and his son, as well as a serving person.

Restaurant: Curbside Cafe

San Francisco: There was one serving person who handled all of the action from greeting folks to taking orders and delivering up the food. He was in perpetual motion. However, when he was attending to a given customer he was attentive and unhurried.

Restaurant: In-N-Out Burger

San Francisco: According to a friend, if you don't order an In-N-Out burger in a certain way, you make it very clear to everyone that you are not "In-N-Out Burger sophisticated."

Restaurant: Rocco's Cafe

San Francisco: This is a neighborhood joint that Stanley selected for my first breakfast in San Francisco. The place looks like it has been there for decades, but at least this location opened in 1990.

Restaurant: Mama's on Washington Square

San Francisco: If you decide to try Mama's, which WW recommends that you do, wear comfortable shoes; it is inevitable that you will spend some time waiting in line.

Restaurant: The Slanted Door

San Francisco: This 175 seat restaurant describes itself as Vietnamese, but is probably better described as Pan Asian.

Restaurant: Quince

San Francisco, California: If this is not the single best restaurant at which we have ever eaten, it is certainly in the top 2 or 3.

Restaurant: Boulevard

San Francisco, California: The restaurant is long from front to back; in fact, a block long. There is a bar along the wall from the front to about a third of the way back

Restaurant: Chez Panisse

Berkeley, California: On the main floor, there is a dining room that on any given day serves only a single meal for dinner. If that meal is not to your liking there are no alternatives.