Your essential guide to SoMa
SoMa may be most known for housing several tech companies such as Twitter and Airbnb. However, its variety of cuisines, many up-and-coming music venues, nightlife options, and great architecture should equally be highlights to be known. Here is your essential guide to one of San Francisco’s most exciting neighborhoods.
A great lunch spot to hit up during the week for a large and hearty salad is RT Rotisserie, the sister restaurant to the famed Rich Table. The RTR chicken salad with herbs, pickled onions, seeds, and cotija cheese will not disappoint, no matter how many times you’ve had it. Other items such as the roasted cauliflower are highly recommended as well. If you have any room leftover, their soft serve topped with candied almonds will satisfy as a low-guilt treat.
Want one of the best burgers in the city? Walking distance from SoMa, ABV isn’t your typical bar. No only do they offer an extensive menu of tasty cocktails, but they also offer adventurous eats, including their 1/3-pound beef burger on a Japanese sweet potato bun, octopus a la plancha (grilled octopus over fries), and foie gras stuffed olives. The neighborhood vibe and friendly staff make ABV a candidate for a casual hangout or date spot.
Ever dream of having 15 types of nut butter to choose from? Rainbow Grocery will make those dreams come true. This massive health food co-op has seemingly endless rows of the healthiest local produce and grains Northern California has to offer, from various plant oils, granolas, dried fruits, and local honey to a kimchi bar. Bring your own vessels to fill or buy the empty bottles there to stock up in bulk!
For dessert, you can get custom nitrogen ice cream at Smitten, one of the city’s most frequented ice cream chains (4 locations in total). Head to the Hayes Valley location, pick your flavor, and watch them churn through a liquid nitrogen machine for your own personalized scoop of watermelon cream, mint chip, or chocolate chip cookie dough with pretzels. They also have vegan pops made of coconut milk!
Welcome Stranger is the one-stop shop for menswear and city ware in Hayes Valley. Carrying a variety of mid- to high-end brands — A.P.C., Life After Denim, etc. — as well as local ones, this boutique men’s clothing and accessories shops caters to all the men in your life. They also have lifestyle and homeware goods, if you need to pick some nice ones out.
If you’re looking for a place to get some work done, Foodhall has great coffee, ample seating, lots of outlets, and natural sunlight for you to charge up and plop down for a productive afternoon. The gourmet market also has a selection of easy grab-and-go lunches, Italian frozen yogurt on tap, and unique wine and spirits to pick up after.
Don’t miss happy hour at Bar Agricole. On Mondays to Saturdays from 5 to 6 p.m., they’ve got $2 oysters, aperitif cocktails, and small tasty bites that you can enjoy on the beautiful outdoor patio or within the chic, wood-clad interior walls. After happy hour, you can enjoy the farm-to-table dinner menu made with the fresh produce from the outdoor vegetable garden. Consider this a perfect fancy date night spot.
This guide scratches the surface of the great aspects of SoMa. Explore these go-to spots and the neighborhood from our coliving homes in the Bay Area.
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