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The interior of this trendy tapas place exudes the golden glow of a South American sunset. The food inspires a similar warm glow. Beneath the impressive brass chandelier, you will find empanadas, plates of different kinds of olives with complementary flavors, and ceviche among the many selections that change daily. There's also a Sunday brunch menu to satiate your morning hunger pangs after a long Saturday night. The crowd is youngish but chill and the atmosphere is unhurried. All the better to linger over a few more tiny plates and a bottle of Argentinian wine.
The food here can be summed up in six words: really big, really good, really cheap. That is why Pancho Villa is so popular. The place is huge, offering plenty of room to sit and savor your meal. Enjoy the local artwork displays as you eat your taco, quesedilla, burrito, nachos, torta or special platter. Chicken, beef, beans, tofu, pork, chile verde, chili colorado, tongue, seafood, cheese, vegetables are your options. Take your pick of fillings for your entrees. Toppings include sour cream, guacamole, lettuce, and a variety of home made salsas. The service is friendly and quick.
The savory smell of roasting meat fills the air as the overhead salsa music makes passersby want to stop and check out this Mission District restaurant. The food is traditional Caribbean, which means spicy and flavorful and served in huge portions by a friendly staff. Items include the classic fried plantains and green chilies stuffed with cheese. The restaurant is named for its specialty, a fresh tropical fruit shake.
Voted as one of San Francisco's top 100 restaurants, Limon Rotisserie has been satisfying hungry souls of the Mission district with their pollo a la brasa and Peruvian cuisine. The only chicken you will get here is the most tender, well-seasoned and crispy kind, served with mouth-watering Peruvian sauces on the side. Apart from the popular chicken dishes, Limon Rotisserie also features some of the tastiest ceviches and Peru's traditional foods like saltado, jalea and carne a La parrilla. The restaurant is usually frequented by a refined crowd and offers a high-end dining experience in a very sophisticated atmosphere.
Fresca restaurant makes a strong bid for educating the public to the culinary wonders of Peruvian dining. Wooden tables and a slate floor are visually pleasing, creating such a country feel that one half expects the waiters to draw their water pitchers from a backyard well. An open kitchen adds to the ambiance. The menu features a mix of meat and seafood dishes, highlighted by the soy roasted trout and the seafood stew. Latin beers are plenty, compensating for the absence of mixed drinks. It has branches at various corners of the city.
Velvet Cantina serves excellent Mexican specialties in a young and trendy urban setting. The young staff is friendly and welcoming as is the venue itself with cozy booths, dim lighting and the newest tunes playing in the background. The restaurant's Caesar Salad, Chile Con Queso and White Tortilla Soup are a must try. The bar serves some exotic cocktails, offering pitchers full of fresh lime margaritas. Complete your meal with delicious and tempting desserts like s'more nachos served with Mexican chocolate sauce to end your dinner perfectly.
At Cha Cha Cha, do not be discouraged when the host announces it will be an hour for a table. It is worth the wait. Authentic Santeria altars and strange artifacts adorn the walls. World music transports you to a foreign land. The calamari with garlic aioli, spicy roasted potatoes, and grilled plantains are highly recommended.
Located in the Haight Ashbury neighborhood, Parada 22 is an authentic cozy Puerto Rican restaurant know for its delicious fare. All of their entrees are served with the traditional rice, beans and salad, so the meals can be quite filling. Notable dishes include sweet plantains with spicy ground beef, marinated boneless chicken with sauteed onions and their coconut flan. The restaurant only has 10 tables and doesn't accept reservations, so be prepared to wait or choose the takeout option.
La Mar Cebicheria Peruana sits on San Francisco's Ferry Building-adjacent Pier 1 1/2, offering diners exceptional views of the bay and Bay Bridge as well as a taste of the best seafood available in this seaside metropolis. Executive Chef Diego Oka fuses his Peruvian and Japanese heritage with his years of experience in fine cuisine preparation, preparing perfectly balanced executions of the timeless regional treasure cebiche (more commonly known as ceviche) alongside interpretive takes on fusion cuisine. Most highlights of Peruvian cuisine are presented on the menu, each featuring fresh local ingredients assembled according to time-honored traditions or tweaked into contemporary California cuisine that sneaks in more modern elements. An eclectic menu of cocktails is on offer as well, in particular pisco, the national liquor of Peru. Beautiful bay views and ingredients pulled right from the water makes La Mar Cebicheria Peruana the perfect destination for travelers wanting a California spin on regional cuisine.
While the decor at this Peruvian restaurant, Mi Lindo Peru, is in no way stunning, the food is certainly something to talk about. Many claim it's the best they've come across in San Francisco, others claim it's the best they've ever come across for such affordable prices. Either way you win. The Japanese chef ensures that the Japanese feel to Peruvian cuisine is even more pronounced. While there are mixed reviews on the entrees, you can't go wrong with the tapas. Get a variety of things to try and see what Peru really has to offer.