|Nancy Felz (left) and co-owner Chelsea Torres|
|Red and yellow beet, open-faced sandwich with blue cheese and chips.|
...And that birdie was right! Little Bird Coffeehouse in San Francisco's Tenderloin District is a welcome diamond in the rough for those who would like to have a light and fluffy, whole wheat waffle with fruit and nuts for brunch with a loved one; like to pass some casual time with friends eating a yellow and red beet, open-faced sandwich with a secret-recipe blue cheese spread and house-pickled, red onions; or dunk a donut from either the famous Bob's, or a vegan version from Peeble's, into an individual, drip-brewed cup of coffee from Ritual or De La Paz roasters while doing homework on their laptop.
This cafe is among several other gems on an otherwise energetic, yet slightly seedy and nondescript street lined with buildings (a Goodwill store doors down from the decadently ornate Alhambra Apartments that copy the palace of the same name built by the Moors in Spain, for example) that seem to have a neighborhood identity crisis. Luckily for me, the food at Little Bird had a much clearer idea of how it wanted to present itself to the world: cleanly plated dishes made from colorful and healthy, yet un-pretentious ingredients that highlight what's really important - flavor.
|Whole wheat waffle with fruit, berries and nuts.|
The cafe is also located conveniently along the 38 Geary bus line and next door to a fabulous dive bar called Whiskey Thieves that just so happens to be owned by the husband of one of Little Bird's owners (Chelsea Torres; the other co-owner is Dave Blood - yes, that's his real name and not just his stage name at Slayer concerts). So if you need a shot of Jameson to wind-down after all that studying, you're covered, though I recommend first getting some sustenance in your belly from the likes of say a smoked tofu "Reuben" sandwich bursting at the seams with Pepperjack cheese, farmer's-market avocado, vegan 1000 Island dressing, and quality, fresh sauerkraut).
*Special thanks to Mark and Angelo for letting me photograph their lunch*