Explore San Francisco's SoMa neighborhood with chef Corey Lee and see what his local favorites are.

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October 23, 2018

5 Places Chef Corey Lee Loves Within Walking Distance of Benu

Corey Lee, the Seoul-born chef and the man behind the three Michelin-starred Benu, encapsulates the vibrance and diversity of San Francisco through his food. Chef Lee's masterpieces at Benu are inspired by blending traditional and authentic flavors with new and delicious opportunities that come from being open-minded.


Although you might not be able to eat the tasting menu at Benu (it's a hard-to-get-reservation), you can still experience San Francisco's SoMa neighborhood through Chef Corey's eyes. Here are five of Corey Lee's favorite places within walking distance of Benu.

It's not necessarily about doing traditional things, but it's about finding new, delicious opportunities that come from being open-minded and looking at things in a modern way. - Chef Corey Lee

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) (151 Third St.)

One of the largest modern and contemporary art museums in the United States, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) is a sight to see. To Corey, SFMOMA is "a world-class cultural institution that San Francisco is lucky to have." SFMOMA also houses his latest fine dining restaurant, In Situ, where he showcases his version of art through food. It's just across the street from Yerba Buena Gardens and a short walk away from Union Square.

AT&T Park (24 Willie Mays Plaza)

Stroll through the heart of SoMa along the waterfront and you'll find AT&T Park, the home of San Francisco Giants baseball. "Win or lose, you have a beautiful view of the bay," Corey says. "There's not a bad seat in the stadium." While the San Francisco Giants are the main attraction, there's more than just baseball at AT&T Park. The park hosts numerous events throughout the year, such as 2018's Bacon & Beer Classic, Cirque du Soleil, and Topgolf Crush.

The Ferry Building (1 Embarcadero)

Not only is the Ferry Building an iconic San Francisco landmark, but it's also a place to dine, shop, and support local merchants. Corey describes it as "a hub for San Francisco's food community that showcases regional products and hosts an amazing farmer's market." The Ferry Building's farmer's market is renowned as one of the country's best because of its quality fresh products. Many of San Francisco's top chefs can often be seen purchasing their ingredients here. Also nearby is Pier 15's Exploratorium, a place that welcomes the curiosity of art and science lovers.

Yank Sing (101 Spear St.)

Yank Sing is "a third-generation, family-owned restaurant that keeps the tradition of dim sum carts alive with an army of people in the kitchen hand-rolling dumplings," says Corey. Their award-winning Peking Duck is a crowd pleaser, along with their variety of signature dumplings. Expect to find over a hundred types of dim sum that are steamed, baked, grilled, stir-fried, and deep-fried to perfection. Come with an empty belly!

Sightglass Coffee (270 Seventh St.)

What began as a service cart in San Francisco's SoMa district quickly became its own warehouse for roasting and gathering. Enjoy a cup of their original blends, or customize your drink inside Sightglass' Affogato Bar, where you can discover the best pairing of espresso and ice cream. Corey describes it as "one of the great San Francisco-born roasteries. Besides serving great coffee, the space exudes modern San Francisco warmth." Interested in learning about the art of coffee roasting? Sightglass facilitates barista trainings, educational labs, and coffee tasting open to the public.

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