This week in San Francisco lended itself to a few dining experiences and some sightseeing. Strolling up some massive hills on Fillmore Street into Japan town the first visit was to the Peace Pagoda. There is a “quasi” mall next door filled with about 8 different Japanese restaurants. During the week a nice dinner at Green’s. Every seat in the house has a spectacular view of the Golden Gate Bridge. On Sunday, Thrifty Rental made available a supped up ride, so headed an hour north to Muir Woods to visit the Red Woods. There is another park in Gearnsville that has trees three times the size of the ones in this park. It was nice to walk around in the forest, surrounded by these enormous trees, listening to the stream, and birds. My ears still haven’t gotten used to spaces of silence since leaving NY. Heading east to Napa-Downtown, for reservations at Ubuntu. The chef’s wife was a vegetarian and saw that she was always getting served carbs when they ate out, so came up with the idea of this restaurant of just serving vegetables. The only so-called protein on the menu is an egg. Since going to cooking school my critique on food, presentation, taste, etc. has gotten….I don’t know…snobby. But whatever… presentation this place got an A+. Decor A+. Taste….sad to say but D-. They tried a lot of inventive tastes, it was really just too many crazy flavors going on at once. Between elaborate plating and my tongue freaking out, I was left confused as a diner. On the extreme opposite end, breakfast was served up at Lori’s Diner at 336 Mason Street. A fantastic omelet made by a minimum-wage paid worker served up at the counter. This guy was totally in his zone-it was quite a sight to see him whipping up breakfast a mile a minute. After a few errands were run, next stop was Vesuvio’s. For all you Soprano fans, no this is not the one. Vesuvio is an very well known bar in the North Beach area. My seconda Mama Linda’s daughter (did you follow that ???) owns the place. She was really nice, gave us a little history of the joint, and three restaurants recommendations as well. I had one more stop at Kara’s cupcakes and have been bombarded by the Girl Scouts selling Do Si Dos. Check out the site..I know there are some closet Thin Mint lovers out there!!! The last picture is of the Exploratorium Palace of Fine Arts a few blocks away.