Wednesday I left early in the morning from Flint’s airport, to a layover in Minneapolis, on my way to San Francisco airport. Travel went off without a hitch. When I arrived to SFO I took the Bart & Caltrain to Palo Alto. Straight from the Caltrain station I walked to grab lunch with a fellow venturer at Sprout Cafe. After lunch I checked into my Airbnb reservation on Forest Ave. I was kindly welcomed, put my stuff away, & went for a run to Stanford’s campus. There’s nothing like running through a tunnel of palm trees to the smell of eucalyptus. After my run I cleaned up & went to dinner with a longtime friend Kevin at Osteria Toscana.
I was in bed by 8:00 pm PCT. Lovely.
Early the next morning I met Marc & Kevin for breakfast at Il Fornio. This was the first time introducing the two of them, and it went well. Afterwards Marc & I went for a meeting with Glyde. When Marc left for another board meeting, I stuck around to work with Glyde. We went up to Berkeley that afternoon to see some of our marketing efforts in action. We enjoyed dinner at Cafe La Med & ice cream from Ici Ice Cream for dessert.
On the way back to Palo Alto we stopped at Treasure Island and saw magnificent views of the city. Though it was a late night, Friday morning I ran to a 7:00 am vinyasa yoga class at YogaSource downtown Palo Alto. It was just what I needed. After yoga I grabbed breakfast across the street at LYFE Kitchen. I got their mushroom & basil frittata. It really hit the spot! I packed up my things & checked out of my Airbnb, walked to Glyde, & spent the day there working on more marketing activities.
For lunch I went to Pluto’s with a Glyde team member. In the late afternoon I met up with a fellow entrepreneur at Cafe Venetia. He shared great wisdom & advice. One piece of wisdom: “partnerships with startups are dead ends”. He also shared with me the story of Ninfa Lorenzo. What an incredible story!
That evening a friend picked me up at Glyde & we drove to the city to grab a bite to eat. With another friend we ended up dining at Local: Mission. My vote: 2 stars. Bottom line: Slow service, nothing special about the food, & not priced to match the food & service.
The next morning my friend & went for a run from SOMA along the water to the Ferry Building area & back to SOMA. Then we bused to Swan Oyster Depot where we were welcomed by an incredibly long line. Considering we were really hungry, we decided to defer Swan Oyster & find something with a bit less wait associated with it. We stumbled upon Olea. Best unexpected brunch choice ever! We were welcomed right in (we arrived about 15 minutes before they closed), seated at a community table, ordered, & received our food within 15 minutes. Olea uses local, organic ingredients & the combinations were delicious! I ordered an omelette with butternut squash & crushed pumpkin seeds. My friend ordered clams with chorizo (listed on San Fran’s list of 100 things to try in the city).
After brunch we walked toward North Beach where we got gelato at Gelateria Naia and hopped in a few other stores. On the way, we went up to the Top of the Mark & checked out the Cable Car Museum. We stopped in Brioche & walked by Golden Gate Cafe. There was a super long line to get into GGC, so we continued on our journey to the Ferry Building. When we made it to the Ferry Building we decided to grab tea at Imperial Tea Court. I got Oolong & she got Chrysanthemum. We shared ginger almonds, which came in the shell. All pretty good & hit the spot after the gelato sugar rush & walking.
That night for dinner I went to State Bird Provisions with 2 friends & 3 new friends. It was a cool atmosphere & style of serving food (dim sum!) The dishes I remember trying are:
- Anchovie with golden beat, chicory, pumpkin seeds
- Trout with brown butter, hazelnuts, & tatsoi
- Roasted carrots, fennel, & greens with a tasty carrot/lemon juice over
- Curried lentils
- Grilled greens (I’m not sure of the exact greens) with dates & almonds
Other dishes recommended: World Peace (aka peanut milk), friend quail, pasta with crab.
On my cab ride back I learned that the cab driver makes more money than I do in a year. Interesting.
The next morning my friend & I jogged to brunch through the industrial part of SOMA. We got brunch at Mission Beach Cafe. We both enjoyed Dungeness Crab Benedict, 2 poached eggs over bay shrimp & crab, with roasted yukon gold potatoes. Very tasty, unique, & Californian! On our walk back to her apartment we stopped at the Rainbow Grocery Cooperative & I got some snacks for the plane ride back to Michigan & an avocado.
Before leaving I started making travel arrangements for my next trip to the Bay Area. It made it easier to leave. I was fortunate to grab a cab right away without needing to use Uber (saving $25). Though the cab driver repeatedly explained to me why he prefers getting paid in cash, it was a quick ride (which was good since I got a bit of a later departure to the airport than I originally planned). Fortunately there was no line at security, but the security people insisted on checking my backpack. I am such a dangerous character. Must’ve been the avocado in my bag.
Thanks Bay Area for some fun adventures. See you in a couple weeks.
MEL aka Venture Gal