#175 - Tropisueno Mexican Kitchen, San Francisco CA

My Association of Luxury Suite Directors conference was held in San Francisco the first week of July. We go to a different city each year, and I was really excited for this one because I had only ever been to San Fran one other time about 20 years ago, for one day for a job interview.  I arrived very early the day before the conference began so I could spend the entire day doing touristy stuff.

We didn't have an official conference lunch on Wednesday  We originally tried to grab something quick between sessions, but it was during the height of the lunch rush so everywhere was packed and we would have had to race to finish our food.  We went to one more session, and then tried again.  Our hotel was the San Francisco Marriott Marquis, in the heart of downtown. When you walk out the back door of the hotel there's a walkway with a few restaurants, one of which was Tropisueno Mexican Kitchen. We had seen it on our first walk through, and the line was about 20 deep out the door. With so many restaurants in close proximity I knew that had to be a good sign. There was no line when we went back, and we also ran into a couple from the conference and they gave it the thumbs-up. 

There's an outdoor patio in front, seating about 25.  As you enter the restaurant, there's a huge menu on the wall to the left. The open kitchen is along the left wall, there's a long tall table to the right of that, and then the bar is next to that.  The main dining room is to the right as you walk into the restaurant.  

You order at the counter, and then sit and they bring food to you. Even though it was after 1:30 when we arrived, the restaurant was still very crowded and the main dining room was nearly full, so we sat at the bar. I really like how they created built-in shelving at the bar

I had ordered chips & guacamole, and you get that order right when you pay

Hands-down some of the best guacamole I've ever had.  No question. The avocados are so much better in California than anywhere else.  The chips were excellent as well.  Warm, homemade, and very crispy. 

At the end of the bar was a salsa bar

Clearly this was after the lunch rush. But I did try a couple of the salsas and they were really delicious.

Scott had the shrimp tacos

Shrimp tacos with salsa verde, sour cream, house slaw
I can't remember what kind of taco Reg got, and he had started devouring them before I could get a complete picture. He got the super taco, with crema and cheese

I got a barbacoa taco and an al pastor taco, and just did mine regular style with cilantro and onions
Al Pastor: grilled marinated pork loin with pineapple
Barbacoa: braised shredded beef
The al pastor was very good. The meat wasn't as tender as I would like, but it did have great flavor, and the pineapple added a wonderful sweetness. The barbacoa was amazing. The meat was so tender, and the sauce was extremely flavorful. When the tacos first got delivered I didn't think it would be nearly enough food. But combined with the guacamole it was plenty.

The only down side is that we didn't get to enjoy a truly relaxing lunch. Although the sessions were over for the day, we had to get ready to leave for our final venue tour of the conference. So by the time our food was delivered we had to eat and go. 

I strongly considered going back for guacamole and a margarita the next afternoon, but sadly it didn't work out.  On my next trip to San Francisco I'm making a point of going there for happy hour. Or a leisurely lunch/dinner. So yes, of course I will be going back.