Finished my third consecutive run in the San Fran Marathon with my third best time in my seven marathon runs (4:31). As usual, the city and marathon did not disappoint. The race conditions were perfect, 58 degrees, cloudy and a slight mist in the morning. I ran in wave 7 and started at 6:30 am. The highlight of this run is to venture over the Golden Gate Bridge both ways. It is always a reflective moment for a New Yorker to realize where you are - coast to coast. As it was my third SF marathon I anticipated all the sites and knew exactly how to pace myself. Again, the Haight is a "quad buster", at the 20 mile mark you really start to feel the pain. The finish is wonderful on the Embarcadero under the Bay Bridge. The support was excellent and the after race festivities were very comforting, especially the free beer garden sponsored by the local brand - Anchor (which was pretty good).
As far as culinary activities, the highlight was dining at Rocco's Cafe in the SOMA district. This place was featured on "Diners, Drive Ins, and Dives" and I had to try it on this visit. The place is pretty small and friendly. Not a fancy place, more of a "down home joint". I was seated at the counter directly in front of the two chefs who were turning out dishes in spectacular "Benihana" form. I told owner Don Dial that it was one of the most impressive cooking displays I have ever seen. I pasta loaded and the food was terrific. I highly recommend this place if you are visiting SF. It is not a tourist place, but a local restaurant that is a favorite for all. On Saturday I once again spent most of the day at the Ferry Terminal Marketplace sampling great foods. The standout of course is Roli-Roti roasted pork sandwich. For dinner I pasta loaded at Umbria across from the Marriott Courtyard on Second Street. Had two bowls of pasta ragu. I checked out Pier 23 Cafe on Sunday night, but it was very cold and most of the seating was outdoors. Even though they had those big space heaters, it really wasn't taming the cold bay breeze so I passed on this opportunity (this place was also featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives). I wanted the roasted crab at Pier 23 so I gave in and took a cab to the wharf and got a fantastic table at Alioto's with a perfect roasted crab and a spectacular view of the Golden Gate Bridge at sunset.