Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Chinatown Walking Tour

On the first day after we arrived in San Francisco we had booked a walking tour in Chinatown, with an optional Dim Sum lunch, as neither of us had really had Dim Sum before.

The tour met outside Old St Mary’s Cathedral, and it was literally just myself, M, a lady from Louisiana, and the guide – so nice and small! The guide was excellent, very friendly, interesting, and the tour was well-paced with no hanging around waiting. It was intended to give us a look at the culture and lifestyle of the people living in Chinatown, so it included Chinese medicine, grocery shopping, a visit to a Buddhist temple, and of course, food!


Below is a prescription in a Chinese ‘pharmacy’.


And here is the tea resulting from one of these prescriptions – a huge pile of leaves and twigs!


There are also pre-packaged remedies available


I’ve always really liked the architecture of the Far East (not that I’ve seen much of it in person) and it was great to see it in the middle of a Western city – in London the Chinatown is much more about colours and signs than architecture!


I was surprised we were allowed to take photographs inside the temple, but we were. It was beautiful, and peaceful.


And then we ate Dim Sum!

I can’t now remember what each dish was, if anyone reading is an expert on Dim Sum you might be able to fill in the gaps for me?


I know this (below) is a steamed pork bun)


Stir fried pak choi


Chicken chow mein, and some other things…


Prawns in some kind of ‘nest’


And I believe these were sesame balls.


It was all delicious!

The tour was definitely worth doing, and if we’d stayed longer in San Francisco I would have gone back for more Dim Sum – sadly, there weren’t enough meals in the day!!!

In the evening we were very, very lucky (and it cost us a fortune to be so lucky…) we ate in one of the best restaurants in the USA, and generally considered to be THE best in San Francisco. We didn’t have a booking, but checked on the day in case they’d had a cancellation – and they had! The restaurant is called Gary Danko’s, and we’d tried to book a table before leaving the UK but been unable to. It was packed!

The amuse bouche was a sorrel soup – it was heavenly!!!


I then had a seafood risotto – delicious


And then a thai curry – also amazing


Followed by a trio of creme brulee and cookies.


My meal was excellent but M’s was even better – he chose a tasting menu. However, it was ‘reassuringly expensive’ so it should have been!!!

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1 comment:

  1. Yay! I'm so excited to be reading about your travels. I've never had dim sum, either. I'll know what to expect, thanks to you.