An occasional collection of bites. Have you eaten anything good or bad, or seen a good scene while you munched? Send in your short bites to Full names only.

Midwest cheese flight at Mission Cheese. It’s amazing how good something so simple can be. Every cheese perfectly chosen, and really lovely wine to accompany. If only they were open later! Closes at 8 p.m. every night? What is the reasoning behind that? — Hannah Chavez

Vegetarian tacos at El Metate. Unlike so many restaurants in the Mission, El Metate doesn’t want to punish you for not wanting to eat dead flesh all the time. Their veggie tacos are noteworthy for having actual vegetables — and by vegetable, we do not mean guacamole or salsa. Also a shout-out to the salsa bar, which seems to manage portion control by stocking salsas so spicy that tears stream out of your eyes. If you’re ever not feeling vegetarian, I would add that one carne asada and one al pastor taco is the way to go. — Heather Smith

Green salad at the Stable Cafe, 2128 Folsom St., reminds me once again that there is a huge opportunity in the Mission’s lack of salad offerings. Where, oh where can one get a dependably delicious salad? My latest at the Stable was green with a choice of toppings. I picked asparagus, cucumbers and tomatoes, all of which were fine and fresh, but the whole salad failed to come together and the problem may have been the extra, tasteless green chili that weighed the greens down, or simply a tasteless dressing. Can’t someone make a simple vinaigrette — olive oil, vinegar, salt, pepper and garlic? — Lydia Chávez (See below; apparently I should again try the Coffee Bar.)

Steak and frites at the Universal Cafe, and fresh linguine with ramps and bread crumbs. Mark reported that the steak and fries were fine, but the linguine was overcooked and the ramps were tasteless — a shame, because I had just had an amazing plate of ramps a week earlier. Too bad those were in another city. — Lydia Chávez

Cobb salad at Coffee Bar. I haven’t yet found a salad at Coffee Bar that I haven’t liked. Expect the cobb salad to fill you up — it has cheese, bacon, eggs and avocados. I’m sure it’s too good and rich to really count as a salad. What’s even better is that they have Anthony’s cookies, and there’s nothing like a simple chocolate chip cookie when you feel like ending on a sweet note. — Hélène Goupil

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  1. I’ve been trying to find a decent salad in the Mission for years, and the only place I can recommend that may not be on your radar is Cafe La Taza on Mission between 20th + 21st. They have a great Thai chicken salad. (Actually, everything I’ve had there has been pretty darn good — even the fish tacos!) Unfortunately they also close at 8pm.

    1. Thanks for the recommendation Sandy. I like La Taza but I haven’t tried their salads yet!

  2. Hi Helene,

    We’re glad you enjoyed your cheese flight! I wanted to respond to your question about our early closing time. Its an issue with the Alcoholic Beverage Control of CA — we were limited to 8pm for the first year before we could apply for a later time. We did that in April and are waiting to hear back. Hopefully we’ll soon be open until 10pm!


    1. Hi Oliver, that’s great to hear! Let us know when you find out. Best, Helene