Foreign Cinema in San Francisco, CA

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After seeing all of the beautiful lights, open roof seating, fantastic food, and films they project every night; Foreign Cinema moved to the top of my list of places to eat in San Francisco. So, on the ultimate “Treat Yo Self” day – my birthday – I decided to be fancy and treat myself to an awesome Saturday brunch meal at Foreign Cinema!

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Foreign Cinema
2534 Mission Street, San Francisco CA 94110
https://www.foreigncinema.com

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They have “outdoor” seating with a high skylight, airy tents with lights and indoor seating with a rustic vibe. During dinner, Foreign Cinema plays different films, that change rotation monthly. My initial plan was to come during dinner, so I most definitely intend to come back in the evening! Our server was nice and friendly – she made it a welcoming experience! Since my sister and I shared a bunch of dishes, our waitress said she would be honored to throw down with us one of these days. We ate a lot, and we ate well.

For drinks, we kept it simple. My sister ordered the Navarro Pinot Noir Grape Juice, and I ordered the Housemade Sparkling Rose Lemonade. The grape juice was fresh and sweet. The lemonade, which was good, was incredibly rosy for me – it became too strong after a few sips. I loved the way it looked so I got for the aesthetics, heh.

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First and foremost, I had to get the organic pop tarts. I mean, It’s one of the 100 THINGS TO EAT IN SAN FRANCISCO BY 7X7. I’ve heard so many good things about them, and I was not disappointed at all! We decided to get one of each: strawberry and peach. The peach was so good – it was nice, light, and not too sweet. The strawberry seemed to be little more burnt compared to the peach, and it had a smokey flavor as a result. It’s so light and flakey – I would totally want this every morning for breakfast!

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I ordered the Baguette French Toast with caramelized Asian pears, huckleberries, and brown sugar-orange butter. The brown butter is what made the dish for me. The baguette wasn’t too hard, thankfully, and the butter is what brought out all of the flavors. It balanced well with the caramelized pears. I could’ve done without the huckleberries since they tasted a little bitter to me, and not in a way that balanced the sweetness of the dish.

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My sister ordered the Beef Sirloin Carpaccio, horseradish creme fraiche, farm egg, waffled potatoes, fried rosemary watercress. She enjoyed the thinly sliced pieces of meat. I focused on eating the waffled potatoes dipped in the creme fraiche, which was basically like eating potato chips! We also split the lavender baked goat cheese, with a fig leaf, olivada, fingerling potatoes, Early Girl tomatoes served with baguette toasts.  The goat cheese was fantastic on the baguettes; I’m salivating just thinking about it. It was seasoned perfectly and the potatoes and tomatoes paired well with the tang of the cheese.

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And of course, aside from the pop tarts, my favorite was the Persian Breakfast: labneh, feta, preserves, cucumber, fresh herbs, mint, Za’atar, extra virgin olive oil with focaccia. It was such an easy dish to eat with the thick and fluffy focaccia bread with the various cheeses and herbs. I would also eat this every day for breakfast – and I have.

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Going to Foreign Cinema is an experience that I think every Bay Area native (or visitor) should have! They’re friendly, it’s welcoming, and anything you order on the menu is seriously amazing. It may be a little pricey, but I think sometimes you just have to treat yo self. 😉

Iman

I’m Bay Area born and bred, and hella proud of it. I grew up in the middle of the Bay Area near the Peninsula, spent the first half of my college years in the South Bay, and the latter in the East Bay. Living in the Bay Area has given me the opportunities to meet people from all backgrounds, and try their amazing and unique foods, too. Growing up in a Pakistani family, food is an essential part of our culture. Whether it’s making sure to have a fresh pot of Chai ready to serve guests or ensuring that they have had seconds so they eat thirds, food is central to our family and social lives. With immigrant parents, that extended to trying out new and unknown cuisines that simply aren’t in Pakistan. While I remember trying to copy my mom as a kid, trying to make my own perfectly round little rotis, I never became interested in cooking. I was more interested in reading, graphic design, and making my own websites. I originally started Bay Food in 2010 simply as a way for me to dump all of my food photos during my first year in college. This was before Instagram became a thing and everyone would constantly share what they’re eating on Facebook. It evolved into writing reviews, showcasing other people’s photos, and my own food experiments and recipes while still exploring what the vast Bay Area has to offer. Three weeks before I was set to graduate from college, I went into cardiac arrest in April 2013, which sped up my process to putting myself onto the heart transplant list. I’ve dealt with a heart condition for my whole life, after going into heart failure at seven months old. As a result of that incident, I had a pacemaker for a year while I waited to improve my physical condition to be the strongest I could be for the transplant process. This also meant lifestyle changes, including my diet. This is reflected in how I focus on home cooking more than I used to. I try to make lower sodium and heart healthy foods that still maintain bold and bright flavors that I’m used to from my Pakistani upbringing. Thankfully, I received a heart in April 2014 at the age of 23, just a short four and a half months after being placed on the list. Onward to becoming a functioning adult that can stay healthy and enjoy a lifetime of burritos! When I’m not eating delicious food, I watch far too much TV for my own good, spend too many hours on the internet looking at clothes and Wikipedia, laugh a little too hard at celebrity gossip, and sleep at the worst times possible. I’m looking forward to showcasing the wide array of food the whole Bay Area has to offer, and some of my own creations too!

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