The folks behind the glorious glutton-fest known as the SF Street Food Festival invited various members of the press down to Fort Mason for a preview of what's to come at this year's Mission District takeover. Although it wasn't a full-on onslaught of the 70-something vendors who will be offering their eats on August 20, we still managed to stuff our faces with everything from piroshkis to shrimp po' boys to cake pops and ice cream. Needless to say, I immediately went home and passed out from one of the most epic food comas of my life.
Here are some of the bites I fully suggest you get your hands on this year:
Strawberry Ricotta Bruschetta from Mission Tortilla
Crispy, multigrain tortillas drizzled with a balsamic glaze, sliced strawberries and arugula.
Tostaditas de Mole Verde from El Buen Comer
Tender shredded chicken swimming in spicy mole verde drenched over handheld tostadas.
Brazilian Cheese Bread from Kika's Treats
When these are warm, they're better than the cheddar biscuits from Red Lobster.
Shrimp Po' Boy from Zella's Soulful Kitchen
The key here is the remoulade slaw, which has a bright and citrusy flavor to counteract the succulent fried shrimp and crusty bread.
Alfajores from Sabores Del Sur
These mini melt-in-your-mouth discs of heaven made our Big Sweet list for a reason.
Handmade Tequila Jello Shots from Sweets Collection
The prettiest, classiest jello shots you will ever see that pack quite the punch, each set with different gorgeous, handmade designs.
Decidedly not part of the street food scene (but they'll be there anyway!), these more traditional offerings also added to my state of bliss: mini steamed chicken buns from The Slanted Door; crunchy, spicy Jambalaya croquettes from 15 Romolo; pumpkin curry from Osha Thai; and Lemon Cookie and Strawberry Je Ne Sais Quoi ice creams from Three Twins.
What is the SF Street Food Festival all about, exactly? Put on by kitchen incubator La Cocina and dozens of sponsors, it celebrates the entrepreneurial spirit of San Francisco's vibrant, soulful food scene and aims to raise awareness to help make it easier for these people to do what they love.
It all goes down August 20 from 11 a.m.–7 p.m. It spans Folsom Street between 22nd and 26th. Lines can be long, so patience is necessary. Cash and an empty stomach are your friends.