tacos

Copita

Founded by award-winning chef and author Joanne Weir, Copita is a beacon for “Cali-Baja” dining. Behind the bar you’ll find 100 tequilas ready to be mixed into colourful cocktails; don’t miss the smokey Granny Smith apple margaritas (made with chilli tequila) or the homemade mescal. The menu is 100% gluten free with typical Mexican dishes joining more inventive options. Start with a sweet salsa made from roast tomatoes and orange juice followed by a crab empanada with a plantain “shell” – deliciously softer than a standard taco. While they hardly use any cheese, the messiest dishes are best here; think tortilla chips smothered in heavy guacamole rather than pretty ceviche plates. Finish with a blood-orange rice pudding and a lethal Mexican coffee spiked with cinnamon and tequila.

Cibo

This family-run bakery make everything on site and 90% of produce is bought from local farms. In winter, you’ll find mushrooms and greens incorporated into breakfast eggs; sticky homemade jams saved from summer for buttered toast; steel-cut oats and blackened pecan granola. Even the Costa Rican coffee is roasted on site at a speciality grade of 85%. The owner studied at art school and this transcends to immaculately presented plates of food. It’s no surprise that local chefs and restaurant critics return weekly to try the latest menu additions.

Fish

This no-frills eatery is located in an industrial part of the harbour just out of downtown. Once a bait shop, it’s a favourite among locals and tourists who have discovered it by digging deep, while you’ll often sailors grabbing a chowder before hopping back on board. The service is abrupt and customers perch on picnic benches in the sun, but the food speaks for itself. It’s not as cheap as you might as expect but the catches are as sustainable as can be; they only use a handful of local fisherman and “one crab guy”. Go for catch of the day with a side of brussels sprouts fried in fish oil or Tuscan salad with butter beans.

Sushi Ran

A block away from the seafront you’ll find Caledonia Street, a part of town filled with locals running errands rather than tourists taking pictures. Michelin-starred Sushi Ran is renowned across Marin County, with San Francisco residents venturing over in swathes. An open-plan kitchen sees chefs sharing a glass of saki with customers  – chase with a “Sausalito Sour” (a surprisingly refreshing mix of red wine and lemon juice). When it comes to food, the “crab crunch” maki alone is worth the trip over the bridge, while they also make their own wasabi. Portions are huge but prices are equally weighty.

Copita

Cibo

Fish

Sushi Ran

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