Mar 21

San Francisco: Ferry Building

This post originally appeared on Crazy for Crust.

If you’re ever in San Francisco you MUST go and eat your way through the Ferry Building. This is my guide to doing just that!

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A Food Blogger's Guide to the San Francisco Ferry Building

I am absolutely obsessed with San Francisco. I grew up not far from there but didn’t appreciate it much until I left back in 2002. Now I say that I live outside Sacramento but my heart is still in that foggy city by the bay. Some day I will live there again, but for now I have to placate myself with lots of day and weekend trips. I’ve decided that I want to share these ideas with you so you can love my city too.

If you’re planning a trip to San Francisco, or maybe you live nearby and haven’t played tourist in awhile, my Crazy for San Francisco series is for you. First up I’m detailing what I love to eat in the Ferry Building.

San Francisco Ferry Building

First, a little bit of history. The Ferry Building is located on the Embarcadero at the foot of Market Street. It’s a central hub of all things quintessentially San Francisco. The Embarcadero is a long stretch of road that runs along the bay and is dotted with restaurants, ferry docks, Pier 39, AT&T Park, and the Exploratorium. The Ferry Building is, literally, at the center of it all.

The Ferry Building was originally built back in the 1800s as a ferry hub for all the visitors coming to San Francisco. Before the bridges you could only reach the city by boat (unless you were coming from the Peninsula). Once the Bay Bridge and Golden Gate were completed, there was no need for boats and the area fell into decline. It was then that a double-decker freeway was built, running up and down the street, dividing the waterfront and Ferry Building from downtown San Francisco.

When I was young, the Embarcadero was kind of a gross area. The freeway, and all that came with it, made the area undesirable. Then, in 1989, the Loma Pieta Earthquake happened and changed the face of the Ferry Building forever. The freeway collapsed during the quake and was removed. Years later, AT&T Park was built and the area started to revitalize itself.

Now, the Ferry Building once again stands in all it’s magnificent glory, gorgeous to they eye AND the stomach. Why? Because it’s FULL OF FOOD. That’s right, my friends. The entire building is full of restaurants, food stores, and pop-up food stands. On weekends, they have a farmers market in front that reaches across the street and up Market, selling everything from fresh and local produce to photography and knitted beanie hats.

One of my favorite things to do is to stand in front of the building, close my eyes, and breathe in the smell of my yoga pants getting tight in the waist.

There are countless numbers of food options in the Ferry Building. It would be impossible for me to list them all (or even eat at them all). I’m going to give you MY tour of the marketplace. This is what we do every time we visit, adding a doughnut here or a cookie there, depending on what pop-up stands are in place that day.

Get ready to EAT!