I have lived in the Bay Area for a very long time, and if there is one thing that this city does well it’s food. California is a huge state, so it makes sense that the cities here would also be very large as a result. The problem is, not a lot of people know which restaurants are actually good. Why would you waste precious time and money at a restaurant that you probably won’t even like when you could just read someone else’s opinions on it, and then decide beforehand? That is where my reviews come in, since I am pretty much a seasoned professional on anything San Francisco.
Belly is the first restaurant on this list, and it is amazing. Between the great service and food, it is truly a wonder that the management can keep their prices so low. Belly is located in uptown Oakland, which just so happens to be a nice area in town. You can visit the San Francisco bay, head to one of the nearby theaters, or get a hotel room and just eat your food in there. If Belly served food that was more suited for being eaten in a small container, then I am certain that I would enjoy walking around while I ate it.
Personally I think that service is the most important part of a restaurant experience, so I’ll start there. Belly has some great staff who are very good at what they do. Belly tends to get packed a lot during the week, since it is a great restaurant found near in the Bay Area. It’s a pretty popular tourist destination, after all. But no matter how busy the restaurant is, the staff never lose their cool.
Sometimes I feel like I’m being waited on by robots, because grumpy people who need to eat have no effect on them. There are some restaurants in California that I have been to where the staff shouted at each other, without any provocation! You would have to really hate your job or coworkers to do that. On top of being very calm overall, I am always witnessing the servers washing down tables and making sure everything is clean. Out of the many times that I have eaten at Belly, I have never been served a dirty dish or utensil.
Cleanliness is paramount in restaurants, and it’s another thing that can instantly end a restaurant’s career when managed improperly. That’s enough about the service, though. Food is the reason we go to restaurants, and it’s better at keeping us alive than service is. Belly serves Mexican and American food, so even the pickiest of eaters should be able to find something. My kids are horrible when it comes to choosing a meal whenever we go out to eat, but even they have found something that they like to order at Belly.
If you still have trouble, the friendly staff are certainly a blessing. The best part is that they give recommendations based on the info you give them, so it’s not just some general advertisement of what the most people have been ordering that day. It’s almost like a search bar for food within the menu. My favorite things to order from here are the surf & turf and the pork belly, and I would strongly recommend ordering them if you are a newcomer. If you are curious to learn more about the menu or other people’s opinions, then do not hesitate to check out some of Belly’s great online reviews.
Next up, an ethnic restaurant that I think deserves the spotlight. Khamsa is a Moroccan restaurant, and the first one that I have been to. If this is what all Moroccan food tastes like, then I will absolutely look forward to the next time that I can have it. Again, you will find all of the important aspects of a restaurant in Khamsa. Khamsa is located in the Mission District of San Francisco, so there is a decent amount of competition.
But even without other Moroccan food to compare this to, I guarantee that Khamsa is amazing. My favorite dish to order at this Bay Area restaurant is their Kunafeh. Admittedly, I was a little hesitant at first because ethnic foods have a bad rap with my gastrointestinal system. After discussing the ingredients with my server, I decided it was worth the risk. At first I thought it was Indian food, but I was wrong. Just shows that you should never judge a book by its cover.
All of the ingredients just taste really good, and never give off the impression of preservatives or anything like that. Each time I eat at this San Francisco restaurant there are people around me who are in the process of writing positive online reviews, so that is always a good sign. I guess you could say that this one counts as mine.
The last restaurant that I want to suggest for you guys is La Mediterranee. Can you guess what kind of food that they serve here? If you guessed French food, then you would be wrong. This time around, you will be eating right next to the Alta Plaza Park in San Francisco. Good Mediterranean food isn’t as common in the Bay Area as you would think, even if there are a couple of restaurants.
La Mediterranee does a lot of things very well, but one issue that I haven’t put under the spotlight very much is sanitation in restaurants. It can be the difference between owning a restaurant and not owning one, after all. Any restaurant in the Bay Area is within range of an amazing hood cleaning company that I know, so there is no harm in contacting them through their website or phone number.
Better safe than sorry. I have communicated with a lot of restaurant owners in San Francisco about hood cleaning, and every time they remind me of the importance. How are you going to scoop up those many amazing reviews if your location has been burnt to a crisp?