These 5 spots are new or under-the-radar and though you can sit down/eat-in at all of them — and Burma Love, in particular, has a cool dining room and bar — they have all been doing me right for take-out.
1. Korean: Jin Mi Korean
Near Civic Center on a rough-and-tumble block of Golden Gate Ave., Jin Mi Korean is my latest Korean go-to. $11-15 for many dishes may seem pricy until you realize there is often enough for two people (or leftovers). They turn out spicy, comforting classics like pajan (savory Korean pancakes), bulgogi beef and bibimbap, alongside juicy spicy or soy sauce chicken wings (pictured top), doused in sunflower seeds.
2. Rotisserie Chicken: Spinnerie
Tasty peri peri or Mediterranean rotisserie chicken and sides — love the roasted creamed corn quinoa fluffy with yogurt side — are on order at the new Spinnerie on Polk Street. Besides being tasty, it’s all organic, fresh and quality fast food (order-at-the-counter) fare.
3. Burmese: Burma Love
The Mission’s Burma Love is pricier than some Inner Richmond Burmese restaurants but the space is airy and hip, which translates to the modern Burmese food and strong dishes like Burmese chicken casserole ($18), a massive chicken leg over cardamom, peas, almonds and cinnamon-laced rice.
4. Vietnamese: DragonEats
While I like the format and modern style of brand new Mekong Kitchen in the Castro, I found the dishes tried a bit bland, making me crave my favorite Vietnamese hole-in-the-walls.
While both locations (FiDi and Hayes Valley) of Dragon Eats likewise aren’t as vibrant in flavor as many of the “old school” spots all over the city, they serve solid, cheap, fresh Vietnamese food, mainly bahn mi, spring rolls and noodle bowls.
5. Dim Sum: Xiao Long Bao
Another of the many great take out dim sum options on Clement Street (my long time favorite being Good Luck Dim Sum), Xiao Long Bao does right by XLB (xiao long bao – soup dumplings), curry buns and sesame paste buns made fresh each day. While you’re there, you might as well grab those tasty curry beef puffs next door at Clement Restaurant, despite the surly service.