Skip to Navigation Skip to Content

Fog and Flog


Sparkly fingernails and spicy mabo tofu at Genki.

Come on—let’s not pretend it’s going to be sunny forever. This is what I suggest you do when the fog rolls in.

First sign up for a body scrub and massage ($80, includes access to the showers, steam room, sauna and hot and cold pool) at the very nice and clean Imperial Spa and Sauna (1875 Geary Blvd., 415-771-1114), a brand spanking new Korean spa set right on the cusp of Japantown. Although if you are in the least bit modest, wussy, or have an aversion to a strong, middle-aged woman scrubbing every inch of your naked body until it sparkles and then massaging it (i.e. performing an invigorating rubdown, which includes some serious pounding) and intermittently dousing you with warm water and warm milk and warm oil (this is the point where it starts to feel like you’re starring in your own private photo shoot done by the late Helmut Newton… or maybe I’ve just read too many issues of Vogue) and covering your entire face with a puree of fresh cucumber, I don’t recommend it. If you’re still with me though, make your reservation now.

Then, don’t even consider going to KFC, which is next door. Instead go to Genki Ramen (3944 Geary Blvd., 415-752-2663). I hope San Francisco, which has been sorely lacking in good ramen joints, embraces it. Although I’ve had better ramen in my life, what I had at this new restaurant was pretty good. The spicy mabo tofu ramen ($8.50 for a humongous bowl) was full of ground pork and topped with green onions and of course lots of soft tofu. The ramen wasn’t soggy and overcooked. Plus Genki’s open until 11 pm and there’s an attempt at some modern Japanese décor, which gives it  “atmo” as one of our editors likes to call it.

At this point, if you’re not warm from the inside out and ready to take on the world, I have nothing more to suggest.