The biggest sporting event of the year has culinary roots that run deep. With this year’s final game being played in San Francisco, one of the hottest cities for food in the world, food is just as important as the big game. Even if you aren’t going to this year’s Super Bowl 50, try these five restaurants on your next trip to the Bay Area.
- Salt House. Set in an 80-year-old downtown warehouse, Salt House is a seafood lover’s dream. Executive chef Vernon Morales gets high marks for his carefully curated, wide selection of shellfish and his tuna crudo. salthousesf.com
- Stone’s Throw. Named San Francisco’s Chef of the Year by San Francisco Eater, Jason Halverson, a Michael Mina protégé, presides over downtown-worthy cuisine at what used to be considered a neighborhood spot in Russian Hill. Stone Throw’s duck breast gets raves, and many consider Halverson’s burger, “Da Burga,” without peer. stonesthrowsf.com
- Pabu. Michael Mina’s Japanese concept in the financial district is fashioned as an izakaya, Japanese for “small plates.” Chef Ken Tominaga’s Ken’s Roll (shrimp tempura, avocado, spicy tuna and furikake) is among San Francisco’s best. pabuizakaya.com
- Harvest Table. St Helena Charlie Palmer’s Wine Country Kitchen in Napa combines local ingredients with an appropriately indigenous wine list. Admittedly, he’s biased, but Palmer says he makes the drive to Napa just for the Truffle Chicken for Two. harvesttablenapa.com
- The Slanted Door. Make reservations now for the next Super Bowl, we were informed, before being told that it would also be worth the wait. Must-haves at owner/executive chef Charles Phan’s modern Vietnamese eatery in the Ferry Building on the Embarcadero include spring rolls, green papaya salad and ginger-flavored halibut. slanteddoor.com