Flew up to the Bay Area today to attend the Junior Statesmen Foundation's Executive Committee meeting. Had some free time before the meeting began so I decided to go to San Francisco for lunch at one of my all-time favorite restaurants -- Max's Diner at Third and Folsom.
Upon pulling up I was saddened to see the restaurant, which I've been going to for at least 15 years, closed and boarded up. So I diverted to Max's on the Square -- a related restaurant near Union Square.
The waiter there told me Max's Diner closed on December 23. They'd been trying to get out of their lease for some time and finally succeeded. Business at that location had been declining...SBC had moved 1,110 employees out of the neighborhood....the expansion of the Moscone Convention Center had moved foot traffic a few blocks away, etc.
So I guess my visits once or twice a year weren't enough to keep them afloat.
After the meeting I met up with my sister, Andrea, for dinner at the Zuni Cafe on Market Street. It was great seeing her and hearing about her adventures as a young adult (23) in San Francisco working for a design firm.
I liked the restaurant but the menu was a little too weird for me. The Caesar Salad, however, was excellent.
It was also nice to see the restaurant was selling R.W. Apple Jr.'s book about travel to 40 cities in America. He must have good things to say about Zuni Cafe in the San Francisco section.