California is known for its cultural diversity, tourist attractions, its beaches, and its multi-cultural cuisine. The state is also known for its fresh seafood, so if you eat somewhere in California, order some fresh seafood at a local restaurant. If you eat in San Francisco, you will be pleasantly surprised. Here is a list of the best restaurants to visit in the Santa Cruz and the San Francisco area of California.
Boudin Sourdough Bakery & Cafe
Boudin Bakery & Cafe is the home of the freshest sourdough bread you can sink your teeth into. The restaurant incorporates its authentic sourdough bread as a starter while you wait for your meal. Boudin’s sourdough is incorporated in most of the lunch menu items from the pizza crust, bread bowl, burgers, clubs, and sandwiches as well as croutons.
Boudin Bakery & Cafe has a total of 28 restaurants in California. Boudin Bakery also has five locations in the San Francisco area, but the main one is at the Fisherman’s Wharf, which is located on 160 Jefferson Street. There is also an assortment of Boudin Bakery & Cafe restaurant locations in other California cities like San Jose, San Diego, Huntington Beach, Corte Madera, Walnut Creek, Fremont, Sunnyvale, Cupertino, Santa Clara, Vacaville, Stockton, Santa Rosa, Sacramento, Roseville, Santa Ana, Costa Mesa, Irvine, and San Marcos.
This establishment honors its authentic history by keeping the traditions alive by preserving their history at their museum. Sourdough, according to Boudin’s Museum, is one of the “10 San Francisco Food Originals.”
Cha’Am Thai Restaurant
The Cha’Am Thai Restaurant is a spacious eatery near the Mascone Center that serves classic Thailand dishes and tea. The restaurant is located on 701 Folsom Street in San Francisco. This establishment also has a modern and relaxing atmosphere to bring friends, colleagues, and dates.
Cha’Am Thai Restaurant also has the best crab fried rice as well as other menu items. Their crab fried rice is a colorful and flavorful dish that tastes as good as it looks. If you like seafood, you would love this dish! Cha’Am is a good place to eat in any setting whether it is with family, friends, or with co-workers.
Ghiradelli Ice Cream and Chocolate Shop
The Ghiradelli Ice Cream and Chocolate Shop is one of the best restaurants in California to serve ice cream and chocolate. This restaurant is located in the Westfield San Francisco Centre on 865 Market Street. Ghiradelli also has two other locations in San Francisco, which also sell their chocolate squares and other products. There are also other Ghiradelli restaurant locations in California like in Lanthrop and San Diego. They are also located in states like Nevada, Texas, Wisconsin, Illinois, Kentucky, Georgia, and Florida.
Ghiradelli, unlike Braums and other restaurants, offers ice cream with homemade hot fudge. Ghiradelli’s hot fudge puts the other restaurants’ hot fudge to shame, unlike other hot fudge, Ghiradelli’s is thick, warm and creamy. If you like hot fudge sundaes, Ghiradelli’s is the best place to get them. Although the sundaes are borderline expensive, they are worth it.
Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Museum
The Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Museum or the Golden Gate Fortune Cookies is located on 56 Ross Alley in Chinatown. Fortune cookies, according to Boudin’s Museum, is one of the “10 San Francisco Food Originals.” The Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Museum or Golden Gate Fortune Cookies is a landmark bakery that prepares fortune cookies in an open kitchen with free tours to Chinatown in San Francisco.
According to GoldenGateFortuneCookies.com, “The Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Museum has been in existence since 1962, San Francisco’s legendary Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Factory has been making fortune cookies by hand for 57 years. Unlike other fortune cookies that are offered at restaurants in Neosho or Joplin, Missouri; the Golden Gate Fortune Cookies have multiple flavors from strawberry and chocolate to green tea.”
The Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Museum is a good eatery and it is also a good place to watch how they make fortune cookies while trying free samples that are fresh and warm. The Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Museum also is a good place to grab a quick bite to eat with friends and family while enjoying a walk through Chinatown.
Delicious Dim Sum
Delicious Dim Sum is a Cantonese restaurant in San Francisco’s Chinatown, which is located on 752 Jackson Street. The restaurant has four stars on the Yelp app with most of the yelpers offering good reviews to the restaurant.
According to an elite Yelper, “The price cannot be beat. I got about 10 dumplings for $10. . .”
Delicious Dim Sum offers a variety of Asian comfort food from sticky rice-balls, dumplings and spring rolls. This restaurant is a good place to grab a quick bite to eat with friends and family while enjoying a walk through Chinatown.
Riva Fish House
Riva Fish House is a low-key establishment with a view of the Pacific Ocean. Riva is located near the Santa Cruz Boardwalk on 31 Municipal Wharf. For coastal areas like California, the seafood is the freshest and is on the menus of certain establishments like Boudin Bakery & Cafe, Cha’Am Thai Restaurant and Riva Fish House.
Riva Fish House serves portions of fresh prawns, oysters, and other seafood cuisines with a side of fried zucchini with another side of your choice. This restaurant also serves gelato at their gelato stand near the entrance. Riva Fish House also has a souvenir stand located next to the gelato stand, so when or if you want a dessert or a souvenir, you can go to the stand and order a cup of gelato or buy a t-shirt at their stand.
California has a great cultural cuisine palette from Asian to American establishments, which are the best restaurants to visit. There are also other restaurants to try as well. If you have the Yelp app on your phone, use it and it will help you find the best places to eat in the Santa Cruz and San Francisco area of California.
My name is Kaitlin Felder. I graduated from Missouri Southern State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Professional/Technical Writing in May 2019.