Exploring Clement Street: San Francisco’s hidden gem

December 12, 2021

Nestled in San Francisco’s Richmond District sits the beloved and culturally diverse Clement Street. Known for its Sunday farmers market, grab-and-go dim sum restaurants and variety of small shops, the street attracts a mix of both tourists and locals. Clement Street’s lively couple blocks can be somewhat intimidating due to the large selection of establishments, so here is the perfect Sunday itinerary for a first-timer!

Lining up on the corner of Clement Street, the Sunday morning crowd awaits their pastries from Arsicault Bakery.

Arsicault Bakery:

From flaky croissants to sweet and savory scones, Arsicault Bakery, located on the corner of Clement Street and Arguello Boulevard, is an alluring stop with a vibrant energy. While the lines may seem long to some, the bakery serves its pastries at a fast pace, ensuring that every customer leaves quickly with a decadent treat in hand. The chocolate croissant is buttery and full of mouthwatering milk chocolate that oozes from the middle. In addition, their weekly scone is always exemplary, providing either savory or sweet flavors that tantalize your taste buds with every bite. My favorite spotlighted flavor is the bacon, egg and cheese scone with its hard shell and soft, creamy inside.

The Clement Street Farmers Market takes place between Arguello Boulevard and 4th Avenue every Sunday from 9 a.m to 2 p.m..

Farmers Market:

The second stop on your journey through Clement Street should be at the farmers market. The Sunday farmers market takes place from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., beginning on the corner of Arguello Boulevard and spanning three blocks west. The diverse stands emit a strong, mixed aroma of fruits, vegetables, empanadas, burritos, seafood and more. Many of the visitors even bring their dogs to take a short stroll down the street. Additionally, the closed streets allow for a safe space to bring the whole family without the worry of busy traffic. Bikers are also often spotted along the street, as the neighborhood is a popular biking destination. This market should be a stop on any trip to Clement Street!

The grab-and-go dim sum restaurants along Clement Street sell delicious food at very reasonable prices.

Grab and Go Dim Sum:

My favorite part about Clement Street is the grab-and-go dim sum restaurants. They not only offer delectable Chinese cuisine but also sell their food at reasonable prices. On my latest visit to Clement Street, I ordered three spring rolls and three potstickers from Good Luck Dim Sum which amounted to a total of only $6.60. The spring rolls were fried perfectly golden-brown with a vegetable-filled inside and served with a sauce that was a balance of sweet and savory. The potstickers are seasoned just right and their filling of chicken and vegetables worked together immaculately well. In addition to the spring rolls and potstickers, the barbeque beef bao is a must try and only added $2.00 to my total. Clement Street has always been known for its large selection of bao ranging from chicken to pork and beyond, with every restaurant featuring steaming baskets upon entry. The bao I bought was soft and doughy, and the tangy barbeque sauce balanced well with the bao bun. Each grab-and-go restaurant features similar foods with different flavors, so take a stroll down the street to try a couple and find your favorite one.

Holding up a bag from the Sunday Bag Lot at 6th Avenue Aquarium and Flowers, a woman chooses a fish to take home.

One-of-a-kind Aquarium:

Entering the 6th Avenue Aquarium and Flowers on Clement Street, one is greeted with tanks upon tanks of fish. The blue luminescent lights that shine throughout the store radiate a colorful glow which is a unique aspect of the store. Off to the sides of the aquarium sits every type of fish, from goldfish to guppies to angelfish and everything in between. In the back, bags of fish are sold separately, and their glistening water makes the store feel even more vibrant. On Sundays, the aquarium hosts a bag lot where fish are placed in bags ready to be taken home with a new owner. The store also sells their fish up to half off, attracting large numbers of soon to be fish-parents. Furthermore, the store’s center shelves are filled from top to bottom with supplies for all types of marine pets. This aquarium is guaranteed to capture your attention and who knows, you might even come out with a new aquatic friend like I did.

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