If you have a healthy appetite for good food and good drink, then visiting San Francisco is probably a great plan for you. While you are visiting, there are several places that you really should check out. Not only do these great places offer tours that will explain how they make their goodies, but many of them also offer samples. Even better, some of the tours are absolutely free.
While not every good thing in life is free, there is no doubt that some of the best things are. Among those outstanding freebies is a tour of the Scharffen Berger Chocolate Factory. I love dark chocolate and while I won't go so far as to say they have the best dark chocolate (can't do that as I haven't tried all the dark chocolate there is to have in the world), I will say that there dark chocolate is definitely among the best. The only drawbacks I have found is that children must be at least 10 years old to attend, you must make reservations and you have to wear close-toed shoes (I live in Birkenstock's so this is a minus for me). I really believe that their chocolate is worth the sacrifice however and will gladly send the husband off with the kids to the arcade for an afternoon while I enjoy learning more about this awesome chocolate, err, chocolate company. The tours are free which means if you don't have young children it isn't too difficult to talk your traveling companion into going with you. If for some odd reason there is resistance you can always use the divide and conquer rule. Let them do an activity that you don't relish while you enjoy yours.
Second on my list is Takara Sake. Another freebie, I can't seem to help myself. The Takara Sake Company has a museum that is free of charge and opened daily from noon until 6:00 pm. This museum contains historic implements for making sake as well as a history of sake making in the USA. This is the only museum of its kind in the USA and is well worth taking a look. While you are there, you should consider participating in a sake tasting, which is free as well.
Another must see freebie on my list is the Jelly Belly Factory. See how these renowned beans are made and have a nice relaxing lunch at the café. This is a great way to beat the heat and have a nice relaxing and educational afternoon. Your kids will love you for it.
If you like beer or just know someone who does, the tour of the Anheuser-Bush Brewery will surely be a highlight of your trip. This is another great freebie that will educate and entertain guests of all ages. All ages are welcome and the tour is wheelchair accessible. Samples are available to those who are legally old enough to partake. The tour lasts about 45 minutes and definitely worth checking out.
If these tours aren't enough to keep you happy and full, there are plenty of restaurants in and around San Francisco in addition to a many wineries that will be sure to satisfy your thirsts. San Francisco is a city that definitely wants its visitors to leave well fed and content with drink. The really great thing about visiting any of these places is the fact that most of them have stores where you can purchase plenty of their products to bring home with you.