Foodbuzz Festival 2009 (Part I)


For my past two trips to San Francisco, my protocol has been to fly there via Virgin America at 6-argh-em. I arrive in the city at 8am and get to the Union Square area before 9am. I used to abhor early flights, but trust me when I say this: functioning on an hour of sleep to catch that flight is worth it when you go to SF. You simply do not want to waste time by arriving in the afternoon!

I took the Bart to Montgomery station and had just enough leftover credit from my ticket last September. I love that SF is a walking city, coming from another one myself. From the train station, I walked to Galleria Park Hotel (great value and service — highly recommended) and left my luggage there. I went straight to the Tully’s a hop away for my much anticipated coffee. It was a balmy weather for me (I say this because it was cold for some) and I enjoyed the soft mist in the air — it wasn’t even a drizzle.

I met up with Arnold (Mr. Inuyaki himself) a little later and we trekked down to the Ferry Building to catch Chrystal and Amir (the awesome DuoDishes who won the Bertolli contest), but they already left when we got there. We still wanted to get some food, but there were too many choices. I eventually settled for some bread from Acme Bread (I didn’t want to eat too much in anticipation of Delfina a few hours later) and Arnold got his beef bowl and roast beef sushi from Delica rf-1. That sushi tasted so good and it’s perfect for those who prefer their sushi without seafood (yes, yes, they do exist). The catch is that you have to put it in your mouth full, unless you have a knife to slice it with.

One thing that’s great about hanging out with someone local is your quick access to knowledge of places to go to. Guidebooks can’t talk to you if you’re not sure where you want to go. Ha ha. I was a mess that morning, running on almost no sleep, so I owe Arnold for navigating me through the streets and eats. Thank you! Not only did he tell me about Chef David Chang’s book signing the next day (more on that in the next installment), he also brought me to that chocolate place across Market Street from the Ferry Building called Fog City News — “San Francisco’s destination for the world’s information & chocolate.” It was a nice little shop full of magazines, newspapers, cards, and a corner full of chocolates from all over the world, including a couple from the Philippines. I was SO delighted! I immediately showed it to Arnold, who is also Filipino.

Davao, Philippines Askinosie chocolates

I found out about Askinosie Chocolate from Kristina’s ice cream post last September and made a huge mental note of it. Growing up in the Philippines and moving to North America over a decade ago, I knew that the Philippines wasn’t a source of artisan chocolates that made a dent in the international market — so it was a surprise and a source of pride to have these. us being food bloggers, we grabbed some to take home and test for ourselves. Yay! I’ve only been there for a few hours but I was already shopping. Heh.

At some point, the rain got ugly so we had to just cut our walk after I got my backup battery from the Apple store. More shopping.

I headed back to the hotel to dry up a bit and meet Gaby (, Sonja (Active Foodie) and her boyfriend, for a late lunch of yummy pizza at Pizzeria Delfina. We were already late when we skyrocketed to the Mission area. The cabs in SF are downright scary, but they do get you to your destination in a wink.

Pizzeria Delfina

We were greeted by fellow travelers Rachael (La Fuji Mama) and friend, Jessica (A Fete for Food), and locals Chef John (award-winning Food Wishes) and the dynamic duo Denise and Lenny (ChezUs). We were starved, but thanks to Chef John for plopping down an extra pizza on the table for us to eat while we decided what to get, before he sauntered off back to his place. After much chatter and deliberation (everything sounded good), we decided on some some funghi and four cheese pizza. I did say we were starving, right? In fact, no one took photos of the food. It was that bad! We remembered to take a photo of the frontage on the way back, though. Ha ha.

Bi-Rite Creamery

And what’s a Mission run without a visit to Bi-Rite Creamery?

Damn right, I got the Salted Caramel again and tried the Toasted Coconut with it. Heaven, my dears.

We walked to the train station at Mission and met up again at Hotel Vitale, after I picked up Dan from the train station. Whoa, hectic! We registered for the conference, met a few of the Foodbuzz staff, got our schedules and goodie bags, and headed up to the 8th floor patio for the Welcome Reception. We zoned in to the bar right away and things started to get blurry after drinking that fruity (apple?) drink from Skyy. Haha.

We made it to the other end of the patio where we enjoyed some stunning views of the street from the top:

Ferry Building at night

The Ferry Building at night

San Francisco

The Bay Bridge

The girls

Fuji Mama, Active Foodie, What's Gaby Cookin' and Gourmeted

And here we are kicking off the evening with drinks, appies, laughter and good conversation.

We had no clue what we were in for at the next building at this point.

After having too much fun talking, we eventually made our way out to the Ferry Building for Taste of SF Street Food Fare.

Oh, my word.

This was a life-changing burger for some:

Roasted pork sandwich with fingerling potatoes

Rotisserie pork burger with rosemary fingerling potatoes


I LOVED this pie from the The Pie Truck

Raw food

A raw/vegan fare with tomatoes and olives. It was pretty damn good.

Pizza Politana

One can never have too much pizza. never.



There were also melt-in-your mouth chicharonnes, tacos, cupcakes (they ran out!), ice cream from Straus Family Creamery (my FAVORITE milk), fresh oysters, yummy beets, and many more I can’t even remember!

It was quite a feast and I was too stuffed to try everything, really. I need to re-learn how to pace myself, as I used to do for Philippine Fiestas. One thing’s for sure: Foodbuzz sure know how to organize a feast for the senses! It was amazing. Thank you Foodbuzz!!!

To be continued…

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  • November 11, 2009 5:48 pm

    Oh my word, you’ve made me so hungry with this fantastic post! Your night pics of the Ferry Building and the Bay Bridge are gorgeous. Still a little bummed that I missed it, but so glad to see it through your eyes :) Looking forward to the next post!
    .-= Danielle´s last blog ..Food Styling & Photography Weekend (Part 1) =-.

    • joy
      November 11, 2009 5:57 pm

      Thank you! The more events pop up, the harder it is to pick which ones to go to. Haha. I will see you next time. :)

  • November 11, 2009 5:49 pm

    I am SOOOO glad you got to try the Askinosie chocolate! And it looks like you got the dark milk which was my favorite. It’s it amazing?
    I’m also insanely jealous you’ve been able to go to two great food events in SF. I swear, I’m coming to the next one!
    BTW, was that pork sandwich from the Roli Roti truck? If so, I’ve had that. It was one of the best EVER.
    .-= Kristina´s last blog ..Restaurants in Rome; Sora Margherita and Dar Poeta Pizzaria =-.

    • joy
      November 11, 2009 6:00 pm

      Me, too! I clapped in glee when I saw the chocolate. SO GOOD!

      You better go next time! Both events have been incredibly fun and meeting people we ‘know’ online is the best part. :)

      Yes, that’s it! The Roli Roti truck! I want to go back for the street food.

  • Wendy R
    November 11, 2009 6:57 pm

    fabulous pictures, as always! I remember reading an article about dark milk chocolate a while ago, but I’ve never tried it and seem to have forgotten about it. Quelle horreur!!! Thanks for re-jump-starting my hunt. ;-)

    • joy
      November 13, 2009 12:37 pm

      Thanks, Wendy! I know, it’s kind of hard to find.

  • November 11, 2009 7:08 pm

    Nice writeup! That rotisserie pork sandwich is calling my name.

    Hopefully FoodBuzz will still be doing these festivals by the time we get back to Cali.
    .-= Nate´s last blog ..Ayam Pong Teh (Nyonya-style Braised Chicken with Potatoes) =-.

    • joy
      November 13, 2009 12:39 pm

      Thanks, Nate! The pork sandwich was amazing. :) When are you headed back and where from?

      • November 13, 2009 4:36 pm

        We are in Kuching, Sarawak, East Malaysia and will be here for at least 2 years. Missing all the foods from back home but also having a lot of fun discovering the different foods here.
        .-= Nate´s last blog ..Bread Pudding Recipe =-.

  • November 11, 2009 8:08 pm

    This looks incredibly exciting! I am so jealous – the food and people must have been amazing!
    .-= Lauren´s last blog ..Lighter than Air Pumpkin Pancakes =-.

    • joy
      November 13, 2009 12:39 pm

      Lauren, it really was! After two food blogging events, I’m kind of addicted. Haha. It’s so fun and meeting everyone was such a treat!

  • November 11, 2009 8:16 pm

    Too bad we couldn’t meet up that Friday, but it’s good we saw each other for a minute the next day. Gotta put Delfina on the list for our next visit!
    .-= The Duo Dishes´s last blog ..This Is It: Foodbuzz Bloggers Take Over San Fran =-.

    • joy
      November 13, 2009 1:01 pm

      I know! But I’m glad I got a glimpse of you. LOL. Next time we’ll see each other more. :)

  • November 11, 2009 9:08 pm

    Great pictures! I love it.

    • joy
      November 13, 2009 1:02 pm

      Thanks, Jay!

  • November 11, 2009 11:09 pm

    It looks that you all had a great time enjoying the food, making new friends & enjoying the atmosphere!
    .-= Sophie´s last blog ..Caramelised onions & Brussels sprouts soup =-.

    • joy
      November 13, 2009 1:03 pm

      I really did have such a great time! Definitely a weekend to remember.

  • November 12, 2009 12:05 pm

    Next time I am getting in early so I can play too! I am so bummed I missed that visit to Bi-Rite!
    .-= Esi´s last blog ..Rye-Crusted Pork Medallions =-.

    • joy
      November 13, 2009 1:04 pm

      You know it! Can’t wait for our next food blogging trip. lol.

  • November 12, 2009 12:39 pm

    You had such a fun time. I lived vicariously through your Tweets! Great pictures and write-up.
    .-= Wendy´s last blog ..Southwestern Sweet Potato and Quinoa Salad =-.

    • joy
      November 13, 2009 1:04 pm

      We missed you! It was fun and I just wish everybody was there!

  • November 12, 2009 3:25 pm

    That salted caramel at bi-rite is so painfully delicious! I favor it with fudge on top..
    .-= Sam (The Second Lunch)´s last blog ..Phipp‚Äôs Red Lentil and Barley Soup =-.

    • joy
      November 13, 2009 1:05 pm

      I want to include that in my last meal. It’s so good. I’ve never had it with fudge…too afraid to taint it. Ha ha.

  • November 13, 2009 4:29 am

    Love the pictures Joy! Look like y’all had a lot of fun. Wish I had a “Ferry Building” close by.

    • joy
      November 13, 2009 1:06 pm

      Thanks, Amy! We did! Wish you were there! Gosh, remember our short trip at the ferry building? That alone was dangerous. I can’t imagine being so close. :p

  • November 13, 2009 7:54 am

    I still cannot believe I never met you :-( Next year!

    • joy
      November 13, 2009 1:06 pm

      I know!!!! Gah…next year, we will meet! :)

  • November 14, 2009 11:07 pm

    so sad I didn’t get in earlier to meet up for some pizza and ice-cream so jealous! we should plan a blogger trip and all meet up again it was too fun and so wonderful meeting you!
    .-= Nastassia´s last blog ..Fun Filled Foodbuzz Festival! =-.

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