A Millennial Pink Guide to San Francisco
Millennial pink…that color that has been trending since the Summer of 2016 and is not going anywhere, anytime soon. You would think that the colors Pantone releases each season would be the color of the moment and would knock millennial pink right off its high horse, but not so much. This pink is here to stay and just when you think it’s reached its peak it comes right back around for round #384357845728937492.
This is the time of Instagram, the time of gender-neutrality, and the time of being wide-eyed in wonder and FOMO (because that is still a thing, that has taken on a whole new meaning).
Millennial pink encompasses all of these ideas, and pink also happens to be one of my favorite colors. So I figured within the plethora of guides about "The City by the Bay,” I would look at it through a different lens…a rose colored lens.
Pink Dumplings from Dumpling Time
11 Division Street
If you don’t dumpling did you even do SF? Dumpling Time in the SoMa area San Francisco brings you twice the fun when it comes to pink dumplings. One is their Tom yum goong xiao long bao (soup dumpling) where the outer wrapping is made from beets, and the second is their Taro dessert bao, filled with creamy, taro deliciousness in a beet coloring outside. If the multiple mentions of beets freak you out, don’t worry! The plant is just used for coloring and you don’t taste anything, which is good because I also happen to be one of those people who thinks beets are disgusting.
Candy with a Vintage, French feel from Miette Cakes
449 Octavia Street
When was the last time you went to a candy shop? Was it when you were a kid? Now is the time to bring back some of that nostalgia by stopping into Miette in Hayes Valley. You will feel as though you walked right into the 40s or 50s with their cute décor and candy bins, but will immediately recognize that you’re in the 21st century from the prices and trendy gummies all over the place.
The best part about Miette is that it’s literally down the street from The Riddler (which is listed below) and features a bright pink wall on its exterior. Three shots for the price of one!
"Rosé All Day" Macaron Style at Sift Dessert Bar
2411 California Street
Anyone who knows me well knows that a) I LOVE macarons (as evidence by me taking multiple classes on how to make them in both the US and Paris) and that my go-to wine is rose. Sift in Fillmore has expertly taken my two loves and combined them into one tasty morsel in their completely Instagrammable space. Cheeky packaging? Check! Pinterestable décor accents? Check (they have a chandelier and stag head)! (Trendy) flavors on flavors? Check! I mean what else could you ask for?
If after visiting Sift you can’t get enough head on down to the Daly City area to Ketsourine for character inspired macarons to get your pink fix aka pink pineapples, Hello Kitty, unicorns, and Jiggly Puff (among others)!
Treats Marie Antoinette would approve of at Choux SF 248 Fillmore Street
What is a choux pastry you may ask? Well, also referred to as pâte à choux, simply put it’s a light pastry dough. More complexly you can use it to make a multitude of delicious French treats including profiteroles, éclairs, crullers, beignets, dumplings, churros and cream puffs. This time we are talking about the cream puffs, which is what you came to have at Choux SF.
Now their flavors do rotate so I can’t guarantee they are going to have something pink on the menu when you visit but I can tell you that from time to time they have pink flavored cream puffs like raspberry (which I tried), and they also feature a variety of meringues. I was able to try the strawberry basil meringue when I visited and it was awesome!
Frosé from The Dorian
2001 Chestnut Street
The Dorian is one of those places that was probably already on your San Francisco list.
It’s location near the marina and turn-of-the-century Victorian manor interior is reminiscent of an era many people dream about. Come for the happy hour (Tuesday-Friday: 4:30-6pm) and don’t leave until you try the Frosé. What is the Frosé exactly? A delicious frozen blend of watermelon, rosé, vodka, lemon, and mint. If you don’t leave feeling refreshed saying, “frosé all day,” I don’t know what to tell you.
Prickly Pear Slushy from Palm House
2032 Union Street
I think finding a Caribbean tiki bar in almost every major city is a US staple. For some reason Americans just love that tiki vibe. And right along with the tiki vibe are frozen, fruity, super alcoholic beverages.
If the vibe at Palm House seems slightly familiar that is because it is the sister restaurant of the place you just had your frosé, The Dorian. In the heat of the summer nothing sounds better than a slushy, and when the flavors rotate and you can add an extra shot of rum on top Palm House will cool you right down.
Staying on this pink theme is Palm House’s Prickly Pear Slushy, and in my opinion the best time to get this is during their happy hour as it’s priced at only $6. Not only that, you can beat those after work crowd as happy hour runs Tuesday through Friday starting at 4pm.
Strawberry Fields at The Tipsy Pig
2231 Chestnut Street
Patios and pink drinks, that is what warm weather is all about, and The Tipsy Pig has you covered from the afternoon until sundown.
Made with Russian Standard vodka, fresh strawberries, simple syrup, soda water & fresh lime it’s a refreshing take on the frozen beverages that may have given you brain freeze. Mason jars have been a hot kitchen item for years now, and I have this sneaking suspicion that The Tipsy Pig knew this, hence this being the glass of choice for the Strawberry Fields cocktail.
Flower cocktails (& delicious sausage) from Coqueta
Pier 5 The Embarcadero
If you can’t get to a flower field this summer, no worries! Head on over to Coqueta at Pier 5 on the Embarcadero for one of their many flower cocktails.
Confused? It is almost exactly what it sounds like…. expertly crafted cocktails with various types of flowers floating in them. Yes, the cocktails are super inspiring but the food, oh the food. Let’s just say Coqueta knows how to do Spanish tapas and raciones right, with a little touch of California infused in them!
I had the sausage platter which featured a Putifora (Basque sausage), Margues (spicy lamb) sausage, and Lingusa (chorizo). At first I wasn’t sure if it was going to be enough but those three sausages filled me up, and were soooo delicious. Pictured as well is my cocktail of choice, the Galleon, which featured lime, gin, and strawberry shrub.
Elevate your favorite childhood Snow Cone at The Riddler
528 Laguna Street
Brunch… the meal of the people and the meal all chefs hate. In general, I can see where they are coming from – it’s a way from the most basic of humans to go out and eat mediocre food and get shit faced on bottomless drinks, turning into complete morons (guilty as charged btw). But when you find a gem of a place it’s a little hard to relate to that chef mentality.
Located just down the street from Miette (mentioned earlier) in Hayes Valley, wine bar The Riddler features a “brunch-ish” service on the weekends which includes their much coveted
Rosé snow cone. Made with That’s Ramona, a Sicilian canned wine, and grapefruit, served over shaved ice, this is the drink you plan your weekends around. Unfortunately, I wasn’t in San Francisco on a weekend so I wasn’t able to stop by, but I’ll be saving this Instagram post until I do.
Now that we’ve got the food and drink out of the way time to do some walking and exploring. Even though I was in San Francisco for almost a week I surprisingly ran out of time to truly explore the city by foot and find all of the tucked away gems.
That being said I stopped by two locations during my trip, but I’m 100% sure there are more pink walls and street art to be found!
(around the corner from Miette)
Miette is just all over this guide, the reason why is because it just checks off all of the pink boxes, so I can’t complain!
You may not have walked by the wall when you first arrived at the confectionary but make sure that when you exit you make a left on Linden Street – which is the street The Riddler is at the end of.
There is no street art or patterns on the wall, it’s simply one color. But the fact that the color is a perfectly awesome millennial pink means it doesn’t need anything extra. Pose until the cows come home and put it up in the middle of the week so The Plastics would be proud - #OnWednesdaysWeWearPink.
Media Noche wall
3465 19th Street
Ok so Media Noche has amazing Cuban food and Agua Fresca del Dia (aka the drink of the day), but they also happen to have the cutest interior décor, flooring and a brightly colored (Instagrammable) mural on their exterior.
The mural does change periodically (previously there were the cutest flamingos), but as of this summer the wall was sprouting the prettiest pink flowers. When you’re done outside, head inside to grab some of that delicious Agua Fresca and take a photo against the pink-and-green floral tiles. This is Media Noche’s visual anchor which should not be missed.
One of the best things for millennial pink lovers is the fact you can walk all over San Francisco and come across a multitude of homes with pink façades. Now if like me, you don’t have time to walk all over the city trying to find these place I have listed a couple that I came across that will either mix in with the other places on this list, or will be near a landmark you’re already checking out.
(near Coit Tower)
You’re probably already in this area because you wanted to check out the architecture and the views from Coit Tower. If not, you should probably head up there and take in the city from 360 degrees.
As you wander up and down the streets you can adjust your route so you walk by this pink stunner! It was probably one of the more vibrant homes I saw and I support that decision 100%.
(across the park from the Painted Ladies)
If you’ve seen Full House, and even if you haven’t (like me), you’re probably going to make your way to Alamo Square. Why? Because of those famous row houses aptly named the ‘Painted Ladies’. They’re cute, they’re colorful, and they’re hella expensive, aka you’ll probably be sitting on the hill looking at them with everyone else wondering what the people inside do for a living.
But these are not the houses I am talking about for this guide. So yes, take a quick peak and then head to the other side of the part for the cutest gingerbread gem known to man! I have no idea if this house has a name attached to it, but what I do know is that it’s a must see for any pink lover!
(a neighborhood full of pink accents)
Most likely you are going to be in the Mission neighborhood anyways during your visit. Dolores Park is a must see and there are so many good food options in this area they are hard to list out!
I mentioned Media Noche earlier, for their street art wall, interior design and their pink agua Fresca. After you take in all this Cuban restaurant has to offer don’t just leave, head a little farther down the street to check out another cute house!
In general, the houses in this area a packed together but offer great curb appeal. This being one of them and the other being below.
The perfect home decor is flowers
(find them in The Mission)
Not going to lie this house was a complete afterthought. I didn’t even notice it when I initially walked down the street, but I’m glad I made a U-turn and went back the way I came. Even though this house is not pink the mass of pink flowers on the outside make it completely worthy of this guide!
The flowers reminded me of the ones I saw all over Greece and it was refreshing to get some gorgeous foliage in the mass of concrete buildings.
Phew! We made it to the end! Even though this guide may not seem as robust as some, I can assure you getting around to these places will be an effort in itself. :)