Kitchenette — Sammies in an Unlikely Locale

Forget your cute little cafes with the chic, outdoor tables to take a load off at lunchtime.

Some of the best al fresco dining in San Francisco can be had at an actual concrete loading dock, where you might find yourself digging into your gourmet sammy as an exhaust-spewing UPS or Fed-Ex truck pulls up right beside you.

Of course, I can only be talking about the offbeat and charming, Kitchenette in San Francisco’s Dogpatch neighborhood, a short drive from the W Hotel.

You gotta love its slogan: “Spontaneous organic covert nourishment.”

That about sums up this cash-only, tucked away spot that’s only open 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. weekdays.

It was opened last year by a group of chefs that have worked at some of the Bay Area’s top establishments, including Chez Panisse, Ad Hoc, Incanto,  and Betelnut. With that kind of pedigree, you know you’re not getting some slapped together cold cuts.

Nope, the limited menu changes daily and features primo artisan, organic ingredients.

The  menu is posted daily on Kitchenette’s Web site, and usually includes a choice of two or three different sandwiches such as a fig wood-smoked pastrami one or fried eggplant on anchovy-garlic bread; possibly a salad; house-baked cookies; and a creative, house-made beverage such as lemon verbena-chrysanthemum Arnold Palmer.

Recently, when the hubster, aka Meat Boy, had a day off from work, we drove to this industrial part of the city to snag one of these much-talked-about sandwiches. Walk up a couple stairs and through the steel door to place your order at the makeshift counter. Then, take a seat — if you’re lucky — at one of the couple of benches by the doorway, until your order is called and handed down to you from the yawning garage doorway.

We shared a very fine Tuscan-style beef bolito ($8.50). The tender, thinly sliced boiled beef was smeared with a pungent salsa verde and sweet, caramelized grilled onions. This is one of those fine sandwiches, in which filling and crusty bread meld to become one juicy, drippy wonderful messy mouthful.

The beverage of the day was a citrusy tangerine-cardamom-honey refresher ($5) that arrived in a quite generous size, and sported a pleasing palate warmth from the earthy spice. With a splash of vodka, it could have transformed into one lip-smacking cocktail, too.

On the side, we noshed on a bag of those addicting, shatteringly crispy 4505 chicharrones ($3) and a crunchy, double chocolate mint cookie (75 cents).

As delivery trucks pulled in and out all around us, we took our last bites, and savored one of those great, quintessential San Francisco moments.

More: San Francisco’s Sentinel — Another Sandwich Find

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Date: Tuesday, 22. June 2010 5:26
Trackback: Trackback-URL Category: General, Great Finds, Restaurants

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  1. 1

    I wish this would be open on weekends so I can check it out since I work on the East Bay. I wonder what kind of crowd they draw in the Dogpatch for lunch? Boy, Food Gal, you’ve been making the rounds in San Francisco lately, huh?

  2. 2

    What an unusual place! The food looks delicious!



  3. 3

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by CarolynJung, Robyn Eckhardt. Robyn Eckhardt said: My, that beef bollito sandwich does look mighty fine –> RT @CarolynJung Awesome sandwiches from a SanFran loading dock […]

  4. 4

    Fried eggplant on anchovy-garlic bread with lemon verbena-chrysanthemum Arnold Palmer sounds perfect to me right now! :)

  5. 5

    My own ‘meat boy’ hubby would love that beef bolito sandwich! But I’d head straight for the chicharrones :)

  6. 6

    I’m pretty sure I’m in love with this place already and I’ve never been! Everything sounds delicious.

  7. 7

    The website to the storefront looks different from the usual. The sandwich must be differently delicious too.

  8. 8

    Those sandwiches would turn any low carber! I love the quote from Liz lemon on 30 Rock “I believe that all anyone really wants in this life is to sit in peace and eat a sandwich” :D

  9. 9

    wow this is so awesome! my eyes gone huge with a stare! an interesting place to eat! :)

  10. 10

    I love these photos! I’m a real primary colours girl and they just pop…This looks like just the kind of place I miss from living in Auckland; you’d think Europe = cafes but they’re more like coffee shops.

  11. 11

    a lemon verbena-chrysanthemum arnold palmer? wowza. and any place that serves chicharrones on the side is a-okay with me. :)

  12. 12

    Sandwiches are one of my FAVORITE foods in the world. I always look for that section when I look at a menu! Juicy and messy is how I like them, too…so that Bolito just sounds SO good right now! I like your descriptions, too. “shattering crisp”? Perfect.

  13. 13

    Looks like some great food. I think some of the best foods are found in the most unlikely of places, and that’s what really makes them gems.

  14. 14

    Oh my, that looks like a lunch time destination spot. SO amazing! I need to get me to the Dogpatch – now!

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