Sotto Mare and Crab Overdose

Sotto Mare and Crab Overdose

My diet officially starts today. I have eaten my body weight in crab and other fabulous food for the entire week that my daughter has been visiting. We did squeeze in some shopping between meals…lots of it… but the food is what’s showing it’s mark on my waistline.Soto Mare review on A Well Styled Life

Last Thursday we had amazing Italian food at Sotto Mare in the heart of North Beach. It’s a little neighborhood eatery with a nautical decor that serves delicious seafood.

The restaurant was packed and just one table wide so when 2 seats came available we sat at the counter. We had ringside seat to watch all the food being prepared which made it really hard to choose.

We started with the Crab Salad and Benita’s Baccala. They were beyond fabulous! Baccala was new to me and I will be trying to make a version at home. 

We followed that with Seafood Risotto.I’m not a food photographer so you’ll have to trust me when I tell you this food was out of this world. It was so good that we decided to go back for lunch the following day:)We arrived just as they opened and decided to sit at the counter again. I was hoping to pick up some ideas for how I could copy these foods at home.This is how they do table napkins at Sotto Mare! Everyone gets a roll of paper towels, which we needed:)

We had the Benita’s Baccalla again because it was that good and followed it with their famous Cioppino.

We suited up and dug in.

After lunch, we spotted the owner, Richard. I was glad I got a chance to meet him. He was as friendly as the Sotto Mare atmosphere and very gracious. They don’t serve meat or dessert which suited us fine because Vanessa and I left there both times, very full.

My daughter went home yesterday and I miss her already. I’m cutting out carbs for a while and planning to lengthen my walks to take some of this amazing food off my waistline.

If you get to San Francisco, you need to eat at Sotto Mare. It is amazing.

Thanks for reading and have a great day!


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  1. Rose
    March 15, 2018 / 3:41 am

    Hi Jennifer—the food sounds and looks fabulous. I’ve never heard of Baccalla. Please explain the dish.

    • March 15, 2018 / 9:16 pm

      It’s made with salt cod, capers and spicey tomato. I’m on a hunt for the recipe.

  2. Janet
    March 15, 2018 / 4:09 am

    It’s 7:00 am and I’m already drooling! I would love to go! Sounds like you had a great time!

  3. March 15, 2018 / 4:17 am

    Thank you for sharing your great dining experience. I hope to eat there next time we visit San Fran. Great photos of you and your daughter. I love trips with my Mother.

    • March 15, 2018 / 7:41 am

      We do have so much fun together. Do try it if you get a chance.

  4. March 15, 2018 / 4:26 am

    I was thinking that the downfall with crab is the butter. But these dishes are so much more. That risotto got me. Looks fantastic.

    • March 15, 2018 / 7:41 am

      We skipped butter in everything because she has a dairy allergy. I was surprised to not miss it one bit!

  5. Cindy
    March 15, 2018 / 4:40 am

    The food looks amazing!! But I just started a diet last week, so I’m just going to enjoy the photos! 🙂
    Looks like you’re wearing the cute jean jacket that I just bought. I’m wondering – does it shrink much when washed?

    • March 15, 2018 / 7:39 am

      I am wearing that denim jacket :). I can’t speak to skrinage because I haven’t washed it yet. When I do it will be in cold and warm dryer, not hot

      • Cindy
        March 17, 2018 / 5:01 am

        Thanks Jennifer!

  6. Vivien
    March 15, 2018 / 4:45 am

    I have eaten there-I agree the food is awesome-great atmosphere!

  7. Kathy
    March 15, 2018 / 5:08 am

    Lovely post of visit with your daughter. Mother-daughter trips are a treasure.

    • March 15, 2018 / 9:17 pm

      I adore spending time with her

  8. Evelyn
    March 15, 2018 / 5:46 am

    A fun read. I wondered about the denim shrinkage too.

  9. JoAnne Myers
    March 15, 2018 / 6:33 am

    Heading to a conference in SanFran the end of this month–will make sure we find our way to Sotto Mare! We do make it a habit to go down coast to Duarte’s in Pescadero for calamari.

    Great post with your daughter. Now: Walk Walk Walk!

    • March 15, 2018 / 7:35 am

      It’s amaxing. You’ll enjoy it

  10. March 15, 2018 / 6:42 am

    Looks like a great time – of course it was! Delicious seafood and mother/daughter time. How fun!

  11. Roxanne
    March 15, 2018 / 7:04 am

    Just the word risotto makes me swoon! I think we are all like bears coming out of hibernation. Before my accident I loved going to the gym every day, it was my me time. Since Christmas I have mentally fought it though and found every excuse in the book. But 2 weeks ago I weighed and looked in the mirror. Not happy! So I made a two week commitment to get my act together and get back in the habit. It worked…yesterday I was on a spin bike and realized I was smiling and having fun!! Feeling incredibly blessed that all my fractures healed and I am able to do this.

    • March 15, 2018 / 7:32 am

      I’m so happy you’re recovered. That was a nasty accident.

  12. Susan
    March 15, 2018 / 7:16 am

    The bacala I had in Spain was a cod dish with a spicy tomato sauce, capers, and oregano. It was made with a chile pepper infused olive oil. Does that sound like what you had? If so, Google Bacala Denver Post and you will find the recipe I have used since we got back–it’s a pretty amazing dish and my husband would eat it every week if I would make it!

    • March 15, 2018 / 7:31 am

      That sounds like it!! Thank you

  13. Donna B Oliphint
    March 15, 2018 / 7:52 am

    Your daughter is your clone! So pretty. I never put my denim in the dryer because I can’t afford any vertical shrinkage. And for the jackets I send them to the dry cleaners.

    • March 15, 2018 / 10:29 am

      You’re sweet. She’s the best. She lives in Vancouver, BC so won’t be closer initially.

  14. Val
    March 15, 2018 / 9:03 am

    Hi Susan. You two always look so happy when you’re together! Being with our kids is the best, isn’t it? We’re in the PNW and have one of our precious sons here while his twin brother lives in NY. We miss him every day and love the times we get to be together. I was thinking that you had said in a recent post that you would be closer to your daughter when you moved to the condo. Not so?

    • March 15, 2018 / 10:31 am

      I’m always so happy spending time with her. She’s the best. I understand totally how much you must miss your son. It’s tough when they live so far away.

  15. Val
    March 15, 2018 / 9:04 am

    Good grief!!! I meant Jennifer ????????‍♀️ Please forgive.

    • March 15, 2018 / 10:32 am

      No problem. I’ve been called much worse ????

  16. Leslie
    March 15, 2018 / 9:05 am

    Thumbs up on the grranny. pants! You two should be modeling…… maybe you already are!

  17. Julie,Melbourne,Australia
    March 15, 2018 / 1:04 pm

    Life is too short not to indulge every now and again.I love your photos and the joy they convey,and I don’t just mean the food!Thanks for sharing your photos and get those walking shoes on 🙂

    • March 15, 2018 / 9:19 pm

      I’ll have to walk to Florida to make up for this food but it was worth it.

  18. Renee
    March 15, 2018 / 3:41 pm

    That food looks de…lish! I plan to head to this restaurant when I reach my goal of a 10 pound weight loss…only 6 more to go! What a great way to reward myself or blow my diet….It will be worth it, lol!! Thanks for the recommendation!! Your photos are terrific!!

    • March 15, 2018 / 9:20 pm

      It will be worth it. I’m promising myself another visit when I take off a few myself.

  19. March 15, 2018 / 4:39 pm

    Oh that food looks divine…am salivating here and I am totally with you in shedding weight. My mid section is expanding rapidly and I have been bathing suit shopping which is not my favourite thing to do…the mirrors don’t lie!

    • March 15, 2018 / 9:22 pm

      Oh heavens Leslie! The thought of bathing suits makes me slightly ill. Mirrors don’t lie which is a tough but good thing.

  20. March 17, 2018 / 10:04 am

    Oh my! Even after more than 40 years living on the prairie, I’m a coastal girl at heart and there is absolutely nothing better than fresh seafood. What a mouth watering menu and the Seafood Risotto looks to die for!

  21. Barbara
    March 21, 2018 / 11:07 pm

    When living in New Jersey, we ate baccala because it was easy to find the dry salted cod in the market. Being close to New York City helped because it has one of the largest Italian communities outside of Italy. You’ll have to find yourself a good Italian grocery store…another trip back to North Beach! The dish isn’t hard to make, you just have to be diligent in soaking much of the salt out of the fish.
    Thanks for the restaurant review 🙂

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