Dolores and Valencia Corridor
San Francisco’s Valencia Street has shed its reputation for Latino car repair shops and down trodden dives bars. Like many of the city’s neighborhoods, the Dolores and Valencia Corridor has become deeply gentrified.
The neighborhood itself consist of two parallel streets that exist balance each other out. On the one hand you have the busy Valencia Street and, just a couple blocks away, the quiet, hilly and palm tree lined Dolores Street and its famous Victorian mansions.
Dolores Park remains a popular retreat for those seeking refuge from the non-stop bustle of the surrounding Mission area.
Where it’s At
Between Valencia and Dolores streets.
What to See
The old adobe Mission Dolores is one of the two original missions left in San Francisco – and the city’s oldest standing building. The ornate chapel ceiling and peaceful cemetery are worth a visit (corner of 16th and Dolores streets). The nearby Women’s Building Mural is one of the city’s finest public murals, located on the wall running on 18th Street between Valencia and Guerrero streets. The previously mentioned Dolores Park offers plenty of recreational options, including tennis, along with excellent cityscape views.
Where to Eat
Bruno’s is bringing back the classic supper club. It specializes in Southern-inspired food, including New Orleans barbeque shrimp, fried grits, watermelon gazpacho and French bread gnocchi (2389 Mission St.). The always popular Cha Cha Cha recently opened its second location in the neighborhood. The menu features Caribbean tapas such as black beans and plantains – all washed down with some fresh sangria (2839 Mission St.).
Don’t be fooled by the name, the Foreign Cinema is all about great food – enjoyed while watching a nightly foreign film shown on the patio’s wall (2534 Mission St.). On a sunny afternoon try grabbing a sidewalk table at Revolution Café. The café is known for its excellent Sangria enjoyed in European like surroundings (and perfect for people watching) (3248 22nd St.).
Lovers of baked goods will want to make their way to French inspired Tartine. Besides the freshly baked croissants and cookies, the café serves up quiche and cheese plates (600 Guerrero St.).