With a vibrant city like San Francisco and national parks like Lake Tahoe and Yosemite, a single post on San Francisco just doesn’t cut it. So we’re definitely not done with San Francisco yet and are giving it more love with a part II. Looking through my iPhoto, there are a few more pictures of San Francisco I just have to share with you guys.
Let’s start with In-N-Out Burger! I’ve heard lots of wonderful things about In-N-Out, a fast food chain that might as well be a hipster, farm-to-table burger joint. They do so many things ‘right’ – they don’t freeze their patties, their produce is local-grown and they cut their fries from whole potatoes in store right before frying (so none of that pre-fried frozen fries nastiness). Their menu is limited to a few burger variations, fries and soft drinks, a good thing because they specialise in making those few items awesome and can control the quality much better than if they spread themselves too thinly.
Because their patties are made fresh and delivered to the stores, In-N-Out restaurants are located mostly in California, and a few locations in Nevada, Utah, Arizona and Texas. That meant that despite living in the states for so long, I never got to try it as I lived on the east coast (although I did pull a Harold & Kumar and went to White Castle in New Jersey, for what it’s worth). So thanks to all the hype and hysteria, imagine how excited all of us got whenever we drove past crossed palm trees like this, which heralded an In-N-Out restaurant.
We weren’t let down at all as the burgers were truly amazing. To an extent, you can customise your burger by declaring the number of patties and cheese slices your heart desires. For example, you can say 4 x 4, which gets you 4 patties and 4 slices of cheese. Or, if you dare, you can also say 100 x 100 (it’s been done before). Animal style is the way to go, the burger is greasy but so tasty with melted American cheese, tomato, lettuce, grilled onions, pickles and a thousand island-like sauce. After going to In-N-Out for the first time, I’m a fan and can see what the fuss is all about. I hope to spend another cheat day there sometime.
We did see a few last minute sights in San Francisco like the Painted Ladies at Alamo Square Park. It’s this row of quaint Victorian houses that seem strangely out of place in an uber-modern city. That day, there was a full on party going on at Alamo Square Park with many young people wasted by midday. That meant that unfortunately for us, many of our photos kept getting photobombed so this is the only picture I have of the Painted Ladies.
For lunch, my sister wanted to return to the Ferry Building for round 2 of bread bowl clam chowder. But instead, we ended up at Hog Island Oyster Company at the Ferry Building for a round of fresh oysters and smoky clam chowder with crusty sourdough.
The clam chowder was light and savoury, and very different from the clam chowder we had in bread bowls just a few days before. I doubt this clam chowder would cut it in a bread bowl, the consistency of the broth is too thin so it’d be more like soggy bread clam chowder.
And like I mentioned, we spent a day at Yosemite National Park and have a few more pictures of our time there. Whenever a ranger asked visitors what wildlife they saw, people always got most excited about seeing a bear. We weren’t having any luck with bears for much of the day and had more or less resigned ourselves that a bear would not be in the cards for us.
But on our way out, I spotted a row of cars pulled up by the side of the road and the busybody in me wanted to see what the fuss was all about. Lo and behold, there was a bear – can you see it? I don’t own any paparazzi long lens, so the bear looks tiny and even rather harmlessly grazing like a cow.
We did see some other wildlife at Yosemite, including this adorable woodchuck (at least that’s what I think it is).
We saw this very well-nourished squirrel, which I probably wouldn’t consider Yosemite “wildlife” as squirrels are found all over. My college campus was even littered with bacon-eating squirrels.
But one more thing, someone please tell me what this strange animal is, hiding in a hollowed out tree…