Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Spanish Tapas and A Mission Walk

My birthday this year fell on a Saturday. While I never celebrate my birthdays with parties, I do go out to eat. It's a good excuse to try out restaurants.

This year I chose to have a late lunch (2 pm) at Esperpento in the Mission District. I first heard of the restaurant from a local foodie show. I am already a big fan of Spanish tapas so this was a wise choice.

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The restaurant is named Esperpento - which later after a google translate session I found to mean EYESORE in Spanish.
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It is anything but an eyesore. The aim of the restaurant in my mind is to put you in a Spanish frame of mind. There is one clock on the wall that tells the current time in Spain.
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And now for the food.
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The bread and butter basket that comes for free.
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I got a glass of sangria while it was Spanish beer for the hubs.
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I was really excited to taste ESTOFADO DE CONEJO, rabbit stew. First time to taste rabbit. And yes, it does taste like chicken. The seasoning was perfectly balanced.
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A must when going to tapas place is the patatas brava or spicy potatoes. This would be the first tapas place where they cut the potatoes chunky.
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Gambas ala plancha or grilled shrimps. Very good, but not even close to the one in Barcelona :)
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Now this one's very interesting. ESCALIVADA is its name. It's roasted eggplants, pepper, and onion and really tasty.
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The jamon serrano canape is another must have when going to a tapas place. However, this one's not my very fave.
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The CAZUELA DE PESCADO CON ALMEJAS or snapper and clams cooked in spanish sauce was really good.
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We ended up getting a side of rice to eat all those tapas, which in the end turned out one whole big meal.

After the meal we thought we'd walk off a bit of the calories and see Mission by foot. Mission District is one of the funnest places to go visit in San Francisco. If you drive by Mission Street you would feel like you are anywhere but San Francisco.

We were limited to a few blocks of Mission because the weather was getting chillier and little drops of rain start to come. We managed to enter a few shops to browse and also for my camera to work a little bit.
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Part of the Mission Street.
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This very nice building is a parking lot?
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I find this funny, interesting and so San Francisco - different cuisines coexisting happily.
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There is an alley in the Mission that's filled with graffiti, it has been covered by many blogs. I wanted to see it for myself, but this ain't it.
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As we were walking back to the car, I noticed that CHARANGA is here. It's a Costa Rican, Cuban and Puerto Rican restaurant. Will wait for another birthday to come here :)
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Couldn't help but take another pic of restaurant as we were rounding the block to get to the car.
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When we left the Mission we drove to Chinatown to buy something. I thought it was only right to go inside OLD ST. MARY'S in Chinatown to say a little Thanksgiving prayer for another birthday.
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Foggy August day in the city, what else is new.
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When our errand was completed I felt the call of nature. But you know Chinatown, they have no public restrooms. All establishments have this sign that restrooms are only for customers. So we went inside this bar and while I went to the little ladies' room my husband ordered me a drink.
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This drink.

And then we went home. The End.

12 comments:

  1. wow, first time kita nakita! =)
    happy birthday dear! you must always try out new resto, may excuse ka man o wala. hihi

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  2. chyng: that's not me :) she's the bartender :)

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  3. what a wonderful way to celebrate your birthday. i'd love to taste rabbit stew. it looks delicious.

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  4. Belated Happy Birthday, Maria! I too thought the lady in red was you :-)

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  5. So, belated Happy Birthday. That was really a big meal and i love all aside from the rabbit as I don't eat ruminants! Chinatown looks the same everywhere, but those red lanterns make it more beautiful. I also smiled at the comments above thinking that lady is you! It's time you post a profile post, or a post with your photo from one of your travels. I also always see your comments in my local friend's blogs.

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  6. Belated Happy Birthday :D I simply love the ambiance of Spanish cuisine restaurants. They are so quaint!

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  7. A little late my friend, but I wish you have had a great day, a nice birthday. I can see it was a special day with delicious food. Hugs from this part fo the world.

    Valery

    Barcelona Daily Photo

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  8. Fantastic set of food shots! And I love Spanish Tapas. Great post!

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  9. You've so well celebrated your birthday!
    Belated Happy Birthday :-)
    Beautiful post indeed!

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  10. Belated happy birthday Maria! Given how it translates into English, that's a weird name for a Spanish restaurant. I see they even have a picture of the eccentric painter Salvador Dali!

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  11. HAHAHA! There's more than one way to get what you want or need, Maria. Have a birthday and go celebrate. Go to the restroom and order your drink of choice. :) I love it. HAPPY BIRTHDAY.

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  12. I hope you had a great birthday. I like this trip through these streets including the tasty looking shots of food. Now I'm really hungry. Fine post.

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