Saturday night – San Francisco
We did not get on the road from Los Angeles as early as we had hoped, so it was just after 5:00 when we checked into our small B&B. I chose The Inn at Union Square for the location. It sits only a couple of doors down from the main square and around the corner from the St Francis Hotel.
In the 1970’s I worked for the now defunct Western Airlines. Some of you may remember the old commercials with the bird sitting on the tail of the airplane. But for you youngsters, at one time they were a good regional airline that primarily serviced the western part of the USA including Alaska, Hawaii and Mexico. After I left them, they merged with Delta Airlines and ceased to exist. (I would like to assume that my leaving had nothing to do with their demise).
One of the positions I held during that time was as a sales representative. Our office was located on the second floor, right on Union Square in San Francisco. What a location! I walked past Macy’s, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Neiman Marcus daily when making my rounds to call on my accounts. The grand St Francis Hotel held court and still dominates the scene.
Arriving at the hotel, we were immediately invited to attend a complimentary wine tasting that was just beginning on the second floor. After leaving our luggage in the room, we decided to check it out.
Our hotel room is small but a reasonable size. Real estate is at a premium in this neighborhood, so larger rooms would be a luxury. We got a AAA rate which came to $170/night and includes a free breakfast and wifi. There were also bowls of fresh fruit available and a station on each floor where we could help ourselves to coffee, tea, hot chocolate or hot cider.
One downside to staying in the heart of the city is the parking. It is expensive at $39 per day.
We asked for a dining recommendation and are so happy we did. Just two blocks up Post Street from our hotel is a wonderful find. (It is actually at the end of an alley off of Post Street.)
The restaurant is Le Colonial and they serve French Vietnamese cuisine.
We arrived on a Saturday night at prime meal time without a reservation and they managed to find us an out of the way table. Not being overly hungry Tim and I decided to order a salad, entree and a desert and split each dish.
The salad we ordered was Goi Ga, which is shaved brussels sprouts, shredded Mary’s chicken, rau ram, cucumber noodles, carrots, crispy shallots and ngo om vinaigrette. It was good, but not a wow. ($13.00)
The entree on the other-hand was wonderful. We choose one of Le Colonial’s specialties, Ca Hap La Chuoi, which is steamed Chilian Sea Bass wrapped in banana leaves with sweet potato noodles, oven roasted tomatoes, shiitake mushrooms, ginger and black-bean coconut sauce. ($31.00)
And for desert Lemongrass Panna Cotta ($8) which was refreshing and without being too heavy, a nice finish to the meal.
After dinner and a short walk back to our hotel, we are now settled in for the evening. Tomorrow we are going to check out the Hop-on Hop-off buses and play tourist.
Time to get some rest. I just wandered down the hall to get some ice and found fresh-baked cookies. A nice surprise.
Gratitude Moment: Tonight I am grateful to have the opportunity to visit a favorite city that holds a lot of wonderful memories from days gone by. Sometimes a trip down memory lane is as delightful as a trip to a foreign land – just different.
How about you – have you returned to a city that holds memories from years ago? What was it like to relive those memories?