Mike and I are taking a long weekend in Northern California next week and we need your help! Where should we eat? True blue food geeks can’t possibly visit this culinary mecca without a restaurant game plan. We already have a couple reservations but there are wide open spaces, too.  I haven’t lived in the Bay Area since college and my expertise is limited to greasy not-so-great Chinese delivery (Hang Chow) and late night garlicky pizza (North Beach Pizza). What are some food can’t-miss opportunities we should definitely try?

We’ll be enjoying the good life in wine country (Healdsburg, specifically) for a few days. We already have reservations at Dry Creek Kitchen (lunch) and Cyrus (dinner). What else should we try? Any good breakfast places where we can lay down a nice pre-wine tasting base?

After wine country, we’re heading due south to Carmel (afternoon)and we’re staying in the Marina/Montery area. Suggestions?

After that, we have about two days in San Francisco. We have reservations at The Slanted Door (lunch) and plan to hit up the Ferry Building food stalls and Tartine. Other than that we’re wide open. I’d be especially interested in recommendations in the Mission and SoMa – two neighborhoods I don’t know very well and would like to explore. We’re staying in the Union Square area so any non-touristy, reasonably priced options in that neighborhood are also welcome.

We promise to write up our best experiences when we get back. Thanks in advance for your help.