Forkin' Frisco: Exploring diverse eateries in the Castro
This often bustling neighborhood, one of the most prominent symbols of LGBT activism nationwide, offers a trendy personality that’s apparent in its array of clothing stores and outdoor cafes. From the numerous diners to the colorfully themed bars sporting vibrant neon signs, this neighborhood’s lively nature is also apparent in its myriad selection of good eats.
HINT: Just as its name implies, this bakery doesn’t cut corners when making fresh artisan baked treats. There’s nothing like enjoying the slice of carrot cake or Baba au Rhum, which is a pastry soaked in rum and garnished with crème Chantilly and a raspberry, on a lazy afternoon with a fresh cup of coffee.
248 Church St.
HINT: Despite its odd name and energy-drink design sense, this sandwich shop is an excellent purveyor, serving high-quality, zesty banh-mi sandwiches for an affordable price of $4.75. It offers two “special” combos with various types of pork, including an irresistible Banh-Mi with roasted pork, ham and pate.
2275 Market St.
HINT: Started by two cousins, this Vietnamese restaurant offers a quaint mix of rustic and traditional cuisine in a fine-dining atmosphere. From imperial rolls stuffed with fried basa and rice vermicelli, to lemongrass pork garnished with a cucumber salad, this family restaurant maintains a personal touch in every dish. Step on in and feel right at home.
4039 18th St.
HINT: Some – particularly grammar freaks – may simply be put off by the two “z”s in its name, but that has no bearing on how great the food tastes. Boasting a menu of meat and vegetarian options, highlights include the juicy chicken boti kabobs and crispy samosas. Make sure to wash it down with the marsala chai tea, which will leave a gentle spicy and sweet aftertaste.
4238 18th St.