Bake Sale Betty and Heaven’s Dog

Dolin Blanc set to a backdrop of San Francisco

My Saturday started off with a two mile walk to buy a fried chicken sandwich. This stretch is very important to navigate by foot, or the slothful heap you become after eating at Bake Sale Betty will be tagged and left to fester in the sun. Picking out out our destination was easy – look for the block-long line dotted with already served patrons greedily eating pastries and chicken sandwiches off rickety metal ironing boards outside. Moving along quickly, I got a glimpse of what treasure awaited us inside, and it was menacingly inviting – scones of every sort, nobbled oatmeal cookies, brownies, and the most perfect ginger cookies I’ve ever seen. At the back, two guys worked the chicken sandwich station like hurried gnomes, and before I knew it we were sitting at our own ironing board, sipping frozen lemonade that tasted like someone juiced 100 lemons into my mouth.

fried chicken sandwich

Pictured directly above is the most lovely fried chicken sandwich I’ve ever eaten. Two layers of breaded heaven jammed into a baguette-like roll and every crack filled deep with a vinegary slaw. When I finished the sandwich, I declared that I could happily eat another, but all of the treats I got jostled my attention. (The ginger cookie was the best, btw)

Heaven’s Dog

Adam and I met up with Michele (BonzoGal) and Eric (her husband) at Heaven’s Dog, which is a short walk from the Civic Center BART stop. I heard more than once that this was a seedy part of town, but such comments were lost on me. Then again, I was dressed as Batman. The inside of Heaven’s Dog is unassumingly modern with a bar that stretches nearly the length of the building. But you probably don’t want to hear about the architecture when there is food and drink to be had!

We each ordered different drinks so we could to sample as much of the menu as possible.

  • Pisco Apricot Tropical (Marion Farms Pisco, Small Hands Foods pineapple gum, apricot brandy, lime, and Angostura)
  • Biarritz Monk Buck (Tarriquet 8yr Armagnac, yellow Chartreuse, ginger, lemon, soda
  • Cap Haitian Rum and Honey (Barbancourt 15yr rhum, honey, Angostura bitters, on a hand cut ice cube)
  • Gin Fizz Tropical (Plymouth gin, pineapple gum, orgeat, lime, egg white, mint, soda)
  • Remember the Maine (Rye, Italian vermouth, cherry brandy, absinthe)
  • Bittered Sling (Terriquet 8yr Armagnac, sugar, bitters, water, nutmeg)

Eric and I asked for two “Freedom from Choice” cocktails. Eric requested gin, and I happily suggested one with Fernet Branca. For that round, three cocktails came back, with Eric’s being a Corpse Reviver #2. The waiter apologized and said the bartenders were a little stumped and would be back soon with my Fernet potion. The wait wasn’t a problem, especially since they returned with a Hanky Panky.

Hanky Panky

  • 2 dashes Fernet Branca
  • 1 1/2oz sweet vermouth
  • 1 1/2oz gin
  • orange peel, for garnish

Stir with cracked ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

Savoy Cocktail Book

The food was familiar yet mysterious. And since we pretty much ordered the whole menu (note, they just updated it, so this isn’t the most recent), I won’t go into detail on what face stuffing route we chose.

The Rest

We stopped at Water Bar and Tres Agaves, the first of which left something to be desired in three of our four drinks and the latter which knows how to pump tequila into tasty beverages but could use a noise damper.

Our last stop, Clock Bar, was exactly what we were looking for. And Camper was there. Amazing that. We had some tipply treats and were all-around happy with the results.

  • Cunningham (Johnny Walker black, Benedictine, cherry brandy, lemon, blood orange juice, burnt orange peel)
  • Sage Advice (Rittenhouse 80, Averna, orange juice, black tea honey syrup, Peychaud’s bitters)
  • Snap (Canton, Hennessey, lime juice, pineapple juice, St. Elizabeth allspice dram, nutmeg)

What’s that picture at the top?

For those of you wondering what the glass iss filled with at the top of this post, it’s Dolin Blanc. Purchased at Cask Spirits and consumed looking outside my Nikko hotel window while writing this post. More on Cast tomorrow. Cheers!

11 Responses to “Bake Sale Betty and Heaven’s Dog”

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11 Comments to “ Bake Sale Betty and Heaven’s Dog”
  1. BonzoGalNo Gravatar says:

    At Clock Bar I had the Paddington, which was like a pisco gimlet with honey syrup… I think.

    The tastiest drink of the evening was Adam’s Pisco Apricot Tropical at Heaven’s Dog. I also liked that they matched the drinks to some lovely and appropriately sized glasses, and did the hand-cut ice thing.

    Best line of the evening, from Camper, regarding Tres Agaves: “I support this bar in theory.”

  2. RickNo Gravatar says:

    Yes, the hand-cut ice was quite cool. Didn’t seem to slow the drinks down too much, though I was slightly sad to not see perfect spheres of ice… ok, now I’m being picky.

  3. Oh man, first you beat me to Gitane, now the fried chicken sandwich at Bakesale Betty’s.


  4. NathanNo Gravatar says:

    Thanks for posting these, Rick. I’m getting lots of ideas for my next trip to SF.

  5. NatNo Gravatar says:

    I live less than a mile away from Bake Sale Betty and I still haven’t been there–I need to get out more. But I did just get a tiny bottle of Fernet Branca and now I know what to do with it.

  6. AndrewNo Gravatar says:

    This trip and your blogging about it is making me very jealous. Also, pineapple gum syrup appears to be one of those things that I didn’t know existed five minutes ago but now can’t live without.

  7. Carolyn JungNo Gravatar says:

    I have always wanted to try the famous fried chicken sandwich, but have yet to make the trek from the South Bay. Your photo makes me want to get in a car NOW to do so immediately. ;)

  8. BonzoGalNo Gravatar says:

    The neighborhood around Bakesale Betty is a good one: Dona Tomas is right down the block (excellent Mexican food) and the old-school Italian deli Genova is across the street.

    Dang, Rick is making me realize how freaking lucky I am to live in the Bay Area.

  9. I soooooo have to get to Bake Sale Betty’s!

  10. Dog WalkersNo Gravatar says:

    That chicken sandwich looks delicious. I can see why you would want to walk too and from though to work some of that yummy food off.

  11. BeefeaterNo Gravatar says:

    Loving the hanky panky. One of my personal favourites. My recipe of choice looks something like this.

    2 PARTS Beefeater London Dry Gin

    2 PARTS Italian vermouth

    2 DASH Fernet Branca

    SHAKE All ingredients over ice

    STRAIN Into a chilled cocktail glass

    SQUEEZE A freshly cut orange peel on top

    Awesome Video Tutorial on the cocktail:

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Kaiser Penguin is a cocktail blog featuring original recipes, homemade ingredients, classic cocktails, and tiki drinks.

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