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August 26, 2007 10:59 AM   Subscribe

What's the most fun way to spend a Saturday in or around San Mateo, CA?

My knives need to be sharpened, and one in particular needs some serious TLC to fix a broken tip. All my chef friends say Perfect Edge in San Mateo is, bar none, the best place in the area to have this done. Alas, the drive from San Francisco is just long enough that I'd rather not go down to drop my knives off and come straight back.

So what's fun down there? How should I spend a Saturday in San Mateo? Extra points for great recommendations for places to lunch or dinner.
posted by mostlymartha to Travel & Transportation around San Mateo, CA (4 answers total)
I like Viognier for a good dinner. It's attached to Drager's, an excellent gourmet grocery. The little downtown area around there in San Mateo is probably good for an hour or two of shopping and strolling.
posted by Nelson at 11:15 AM on August 26, 2007

(Do call ahead to make sure that Perfect Edge can do all your knife repair in one day; I always have to drop my knives off and pick them up a few days later.)

I'd get a massage at Glow, which is about two seconds away from Perfect Edge. I like Debbie.

In my hazy post-massage stupor, I'd pick up a sandwich from Mr. Pickles or a bento box from Suruki Supermarket, and then I'd head to Central Park to eat lunch. Make sure you wander through the Japanese garden and the rose garden, especially since the roses will be starting their fall flush soon.

Next, I would walk back into downtown and browse the thoroughly awesome Ichiban Kan, where you can buy every single thing you want and still spend less than $20. (Unless what you want is that Hello Kitty waffle iron. Then you're going to have to shell out the big bucks.) Also, stop into the independent and always interesting M is for Mystery, two shops down.

Capping off the afternoon, I'd head across El Camino Real to the new library, where I'd check my email, then go upstairs to the third floor and get a latte and sit on the balcony reading poetry (more likely: women's magazines) till it's time for me to get my knives back.

- Drop your knives off and hop on to Highway 92 and go out to Half Moon Bay and eat fish tacos and drive north and poke around at Montara State Beach.
- Hop on 92, then south on 280 and visit Filoli, a beautiful historic home and gardens. (Really remarkable gardens.)

By the way, Burhanistan: All the oldest parts of San Mateo are on the west side of the highway, with the very oldest part being just north of downtown. That's where you'll find the Victorians. The east side of 101 was mostly built in the '50s.
posted by bisesi at 4:41 PM on August 26, 2007

Seconding Coyote Point Park. Check out the museum, and the new Magic Mountain playground.
posted by ottereroticist at 5:34 PM on August 26, 2007

For an excellent (albeit pricey) San Mateo meal, try 231 Ellsworth. I took my family there during a Bay Area visit last year and it was terrific.
posted by brain_drain at 7:36 PM on August 26, 2007

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