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SF Mission District Food Tour

Updated: Jul 23, 2022

The Mission District in San Francisco is a vibrant, predominantly Hispanic neighborhood known for its beautiful murals and diverse cuisine. With so much food to try, we decided to do a food tour of the Mission in order to eat at as many different places as possible. A majority of the popular restaurants are located along Valencia Street and Mission Street. We found it easiest to park on the neighboring streets and walk between restaurants, as most of them were only located a few blocks away from each other.


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We first stopped by this Cuban restaurant to pick up some classic Cuban coffee. We had fallen in love with Cuban coffee during our last trip to Miami and were excited to try it again. Unfortunately, the Cuban cafe con leche we ordered here could not compare with what we previously tasted. The coffee here was decent but not as sweet and flavorful as what we expected.

Cuban coffee - Caffe con leche

Our next stop was a bakery called Craftsman and Wolves, famous for their Rebel Within pastry. This pastry is a muffin lightly flavored with cheese, green onion, and sausage (there is a vegetarian version without) and at the center of the muffin is a soft boiled egg. When you cut in to the muffin, the jammy yolk begins to ooze out and the soft center of the egg is revealed. It is served with pickled carrots and pink Himalayan salt that compliments the pastry very well. While we were initially very excited to try this muffin, as many articles have written about how much local San Franciscans love this dish, we were ultimately disappointed. The muffin was overall fairly bland and certain parts of the muffin did not seem to be fully baked through. While this is definitely an Instagrammable pastry, it is not worth the hype.

Rebel Within

When researching places to eat in the Mission, Panchita's was at the top of the list. This restaurant makes authentic El Savadorian pupusas, with an array of filling available. A pupusa is a thick flatbread made of cornmeal and stuffed with cheese and a filling of your choice. We opted for a spinach filling and it was served with salsa for dipping and a cabbage slaw. The pupusa was pretty flavorful and we enjoyed eating it, however the restaurant had a very long wait. Though we ordered only one dish, we had to wait around 15-20 minutes. While you could tell that the food was being made fresh to order, we were disappointed by how long the food took to come out.

Spinach and cheese filled pupusa

No trip to San Francisco is complete without stopping by Tartine Bakery, and the original location of this now-famous chain is in the Mission. We went later in the afternoon so a lot of the pastries and desserts had sold out, but everything that was still there looked finger-licking good. There was a line to get inside to order, but the wait was worth it. We settled on a berry crumb cake that had just the right balance of sweetness and butter. This award-winning baker is definitely worth stopping by, if only to try their flaky croissants and their beautiful desserts.

Berry Crumb Cake

We stopped by Souvla for their frozen greek yogurt, as it has been listed as one of the"100 Things to Eat Before You Die". While this restaurant served Greek food for lunch and dinner, the line that stretched out of the door of this small cafe was predominantly for the frozen Greek yogurt. We opted for their most popular combination, frozen Greek yogurt topped with baklava and honey. The tart flavor of the yogurt paired nicely with the sweet, sticky crumbled Baklava and created an interesting flavor we had never tried before. It is hard to find anything like this elsewhere and is definitely worth tasting.

Frozen Greek yogurt topped with Baklava and honey

The Mission district bursts with taquerias galore, and we had a hard time deciding on which one we should visit. La Taqueria had the best reviews and even touts the title of Best Burrito in America from multiple news sources. Their menu is fairly straightforward with a meat and vegetarian option available for their tacos, burritos, and quesadillas. We were reassured that we had chosen the right taqueria by the long line we saw on the street outside, and this place seemed to be more popular than any of the other taquerias we had passed. We ordered the super vegetarian burrito and were overall fairly indifferent to the burrito. It was stuffed with pinto beans, cheese, pico de Gallo, and guacamole and came with a salsa on the side that was seriously spicy. While the burrito was definitely flavorful and delicious, we were not blown away by it and were slightly confused as to what could make this the best burrito in America. Maybe meat-eaters have a different experience here but we were left wanting more.

Super veggie burrito at La Taqueria

Overall our Mission Food Tour did not have as many gems as our SF Ferry Building Food Tour, but was still an interesting experience. There are so many restaurants in the Mission that we still need to try, so maybe we will do a Part 2 in the future!


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