Best Place to Find Asian Candy San Francisco 2006 - Clement Street
Among San Franciscans who have a strange fascination with the semi-fetishistic world of Asian-exported candy and packaged food, Clement from about Arguello to Park Presidio is ground zero. Patrons wander through a succession of stores like Super Tokio and Genki Crepes & Mini-Mart, browsing for "worm-green lovely mangoes," chocolate hamburgers, and saki ika (aka, squid jerky). The aisles are a sea of barely discernible English and Asian scripts and multicolored packaging, on which foods are anthropomorphized and images of young girls sexualized. It's particularly fascinating to see American consumer culture reflected back via Asian versions of characters like Mickey Mouse. While the flavors might be a little confusing to the untrained tongue, there's generally a lot of sugar, salt, and artificial flavoring. In the end it may not be all that different from the candy aisle at Safeway; it just looks cooler.