San Franciscans are already well aware that we live in the nation's best food city, but our hometown pride has been proven out by Washington Post food critic Tom Sietsema, who recently went on an SF-centric eating tour as part of his nationwide effort to rank America's 10 best food cities by the end of 2015. (Clever idea, huh?) In Sietsema's estimation, SF is a place where diners can enjoy "fashions that haven't yet made their way back East, let alone to flyover country," from the Chinese-food-free dim-sum carts at State Bird Provisions to the Hawaiian-influenced fare at Liholiho Yacht Club. And according to one of his interviewees, Food & Wine's Kate Krader, we're also "doing fine-dining better than any other city in the country."
Sietsema dug all the stuff SF is best known for, including the Ferry Building ("one of the country's finest food halls"), Bi-Rite Market ("stellar") and Tadich Grill ("make[s] you smile.") He also had plenty of praise for the "elegant" tasting menus at Quince, Thai "gem" Kin Khao, and cocktails that are "worth the price" at Bar Agricole. His main complaints: "Although a diner can find a lot of places for Chinese, few are great...Examples of Middle Eastern cooking are in short supply, too. Good luck finding family-friendly places or establishments catering to mixed ages, a problem some attribute to housing costs that make San Francisco a tough sell for families. And the NOISE!" But it's all worth it to dine here: "[SF] remains, for me, more important than Paris in terms of tracking trends and watching the seasons go by on one's plate."