Tuesday, October 18, 2005

The Park Chalet - Ocean Beach - San Francisco

Indian Summer

1000 Great Highway @ Ocean Beach, San Francisco 415 386 8439
photograph picture of a rare sunny day at Ocean Beach in San Francisco

When the groom told me everyone would be meeting at the Park Chalet on Sunday for the post wedding brunch, I thought he was crazy. Not only had I eaten two of my worst ever San Francisco meals, a few years ago in its upstairs, sister restaurant, The Beach Chalet, but everyone around here knows that Ocean Beach is just about the coldest place earth. I have a friend who didn't even realise San Francisco had its own wide sandy beach, stretching for miles, until she had been living here six months. It's hardly surprising - you can't usually see it for all the fog!

photograph picture of Park Chalet San francisco photograph picture of Park Chalet San francisco

Perhaps luck always shines on the bride and groom. As chance would have it, when we arrived at the chalet, with vistas of the ocean on one side, and views of Golden Gate Park on the other, the temperature was absolutely sweltering. Mid October shows off San Francisco in its best light and the 40 or so other guests from as far away as Germany, France and Texas were all hoodwinked in to believing we must live in a perpetually sunny California. Park Chalet was the perfect setting for a casual brunch with the group spread over several muddled tables. We listened to live jazz whilst munching on a selection from the menu including burgers, the most delicious tower of crispy onion rings and an ok-enough hot crab and artichoke dip with toasted housemade beer bread.

photograph picture of Onion Rings Park Chalet San francisco photograph picture of crab artichoke dip Park Chalet San francisco

It's no surprise they make their bread with beer here. The Chalet is also home to a brewery where they make their own beers like the West End Wheat I enjoyed. When things hot up in this city, obviously everyone has the same idea about where to chill out. Not only did I bump into my lovely hairdresser, Hang, who had given me beautiful messy curls (as requested) for the wedding the day before, we spied at least three different people from work as well. I guess the Park Chalet is the place to see and be seen on a lazy, sunny, fogless Sunday afternoon in San Francisco.

PS. This review was a

Archive Alert! On this day in 2004, I was publishing photos, like this delicious-looking dessert, from the Chowhound Picnic.

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The Park Chalet - Ocean Beach - San Francisco


  • At 18/10/05 10:46, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    hi sam! i love that you are going through wedding week, but yours sounds quite fun. not as painful as being the airport supershuttle and such. :)

  • At 18/10/05 11:56, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    i'm glad you like park chalet. it's one of my brunch favorites. have you been to the metro for brunch lately? fantastic...

  • At 18/10/05 15:27, Blogger Guy said…

    Yay, a positive dining experience. Nothing finer.
    What's for dinner?

  • At 18/10/05 16:42, Anonymous Anonymous said…


    Hang is your hairdresser?? She used to do my hair, oh, 4 years ago when she was at Cinta!

    Such a small freaking world.

  • At 18/10/05 18:55, Blogger Rose said…

    I've been to the Beach Chalet during my first (and to this point, only) visit to San Fransico. I really liked the Beach Chalet (I will have to try the Park Chalet on my next eventual visit), but I have to say that my whole trip was great there and it was sunny the whole time (which I realized even then was not the norm).

    I remember my beer was excellent and my burger was good (but not over the top great). But it was the view and the jovial atmosphere (at a loss of words to describe the mood of the place when I was there) that I really liked the most.

    I'm glad to see that you enjoyed this visit (I'm sure the company and the celebration had a lot to do with it too). Sounds like a really great weekend.

  • At 24/10/05 07:42, Blogger Sam said…

    sarah - it wasn't really painful at all (apart from the dress saga) - the French know how to have fun, that's for sure!

    anon - haven't been to the metro lately, used to go quite a bit, must try it out - are they open on weekdays?

    Jennifer - they were a cut above average onion rings. More veggie and less batter and, as you say, a magical day!

    Dr Bsometimes it's the people more than the food that makes the experience so good.

    Fatemeh I can't believe you know Hang. Well I can. It's not a small world - it's just that San Francisco is a small town.

    Rose - Glad you had a great time in SF, esp at the Beach Chalet. You should come back - but I think, maybe, the weather has already taken it's turn for the worse.


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