Four Barrel Coffee
While the legendary roastery’s flagship location is on Valencia, Four Barrel Coffee opened a second location in 2013, on a dead-end street adjacent to the 101 Freeway. Solar- and wind-powered, this minimalist beauty stands out amid the rest of working-class San Bruno Avenue, and does brisk business in such an under-caffeinated corner.
This plucky, impishly named burger-beer-and-brunch joint — it’s 420 in Roman numerals – made a bit of a splash by selling “croughnuts” when it opened in 2013. They’ve since added “wonuts” and “ponuts,” and the SF Bay Guardian took notice, awarding them Best New Restaurant of 2014. CDXX’s vibe is as conspicuously sustainable as any Valencia Street hot spot.
At 300 seats, San Francisco’s oldest theater might not be its largest, but the Bayview Opera House’s ear is closer to the ground than any other. Free and low-cost programming runs from after-school classes to film screenings to yoga, with a special emphasis on African-American culture. It’s a beautiful building too, listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Flora Grubb Gardens
Who knew that a neighborhood with a water treatment facility would be home to such an oasis? With its succulent wall and huge collection of air plants, Flora Grubb Gardens is an urban horticulturalist’s dream — even if you’re just browsing the date palms with little intention of buying.
A pop-up that went brick-and-mortar in 2012, Radio Africa is a powerhouse of California-Ethiopian cuisine and doubles as the Bayview dining scene’s spiritual home. Chef Eskender Aseged’s culinary pedigree is fierce, and his restaurant is one place where people actually clamor for communal dining. (His prices are shockingly reasonable, too.)
Speakeasy Ales & Lagers
The home of Prohibition Ale, Big Daddy IPA and others, San Francisco’s most stylish microbrewery is also party central. Apart from tours and other special events, Speakeasy’s tap room is a fine bar even on a Tuesday. Industrial neighborhood notwithstanding, this place can draw huge crowds.
The Old Clam House
San Francisco’s oldest restaurant in its original location, the recently remodeled Old Clam House is a beloved anachronism two miles from the shoreline. Best known for its outstanding cioppino (and the warm clam juice that accompanies the bread), it’s outlived every food trend in history. People will be eating calamari off these gingham tablecloths for decades to come.
Old Skool Café
San Francisco’s youth-run supper club, Old Skool, is a nonprofit establishment that just so happens to serve killer gumbo and blackened catfish. Staffed by at-risk youth, in natty attire, Old Skool cooks phenomenal Cajun food and fills the dining room with live jazz. It’s also the darling of local politicians and discriminating taste buds alike.