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It's October and It's 75! Go Eat Outside in the Mission


Bar Bambino is heating up the patio.

San Francisco is a city that I find myself neurotically falling in and out of love with about this time of year. Come mid-July—after a month of fog that rains and wind that slices through me—my patience wears thin and I’m  ready to break up, move out, and forgo my (most likely imagined) urban edge in order to sink into the undemanding comfort of consistently hot, swimming-pool driven suburbia where the sprinkler-controlled grass is definitely greener, the housing is cheaper and the parking doesn’t involve twelve-point parallel turns—on a hill. Give me the religious right, even. Modesto is for lovers.

But then, the sun comes out. And [dramatic sigh], I’m in love all over again. And with the same greedy fervor I feel about a short fruit season, I want to consume as much of it as I can. There's nothing better than a city that's warm, especially if it's this one.

I guess you could go running or sailing or something, but eating is what I like to do, and right now, the Mission is offering some great outdoor options. The sidewalks in front of Pizzeria Delfina and Delfina are always full of people more than happy to huddle under the heaters all year long (hey, a seat at Delfina is a seat at Delfina). Spork has a schnazzy new deck and Bar Bambino has recently added a real, “stiletto-friendly” granite floor for their cozy back patio. Starting this weekend, every Saturday (except this one, which is sold out), they’ll be offering “Italian pop Saturdays” from 11 to 4 pm, playing all the Italian pop music you can eat to.

But here’s something you might not know: Beretta’s sidewalk seating is available at night, even when it looks closed, which it often does. Co-owner Deborah Blum says that they usually don’t find people asking to sit out there in the evening (the stretch has the tendency to become a “wind tunnel,”), but it’s popular for their weekend brunch. Still, would you rather be chilly and eat or wait an hour (which is standard at Beretta)? I vote for not starving to death.

But on days like today (I’m writing this on Wednesday with our office windows wide open at 5 pm), chilly is not an issue. The sun is out. Now go and get it. It won’t last forever.