As restaurant critics go, I don’t mind The Chron’s Michael Bauer. More often than not, while there is no way I can afford most of the places he rates, the ones that I can, I do agree with him on. I don’t know how anyone else feels, but his “turd index” is quite low in my book. Mick LaSalle is another case altogether though…
This article about where to eat by yourself got me thinking though in that the Loin is really quite good if you want to eat by yourself. I assume it has something to do with the fact that there have been a lot of diners in the Loin historically as well as the fact that a great many of us are loners (scurvy, you know I’m looking in your direction.)
So, when reading the article, I immediately thought of such places as Brenda’s and Canteen where there is a counter and you can eat at all by your lonesome with little fear of shame. Chutney & Naan n’Curry, while not having counters, are so fast in serving you that you needn’t worry about trying to look busy. Pearl’s is pretty good in this regard as well. For Mexican, I like Tesoro and have eaten there solo many a time while sitting there alone at one of those high tables in the front (I doubt I do much for their business when I do.). I have yet to check out Show Dogs, but I would hope it’s good for solo eating as well given that they’re hot dogs. As for a wine bar, back when Hidden Vine used to be good, I would sometimes hit up their small bar which was quite nice for having a glass after a long day of people hating you (worked in IT for two years.)
This list is puny, incomplete, and based in a large part on the year I spent single in the Loin, often eating alone no matter how many offers for “dates” I received. If anyone has more to add, I’d love to hear it as while I’m still out of the country, I am looking forward to hitting up as many of these places as I can, hopefully with evarels, although things are getting busy where she is at the moment.