A San Francisco Treat

I’ve read that there are about three billion fortune cookies made each year. Of those, I’ve heard that about 30,000 per day are baked at the Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Factory in San Francisco’s Chinatown for distribution around the world.

"Woman making cookies at Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Factory in Chinatown San Francisco"

Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Factory

The Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Factory has been operating here since 1962. It’s located just off of Grant Avenue between Washington and Jackson Streets at 56 Ross Alley. It’s a real treat to watch the fortune cookies being made and smell the wonderful aromas. I enjoyed sampling one of the crispy wafers fresh off the griddle.

If you go, you can capture a photo much like this one, but be prepared to pay fifty cents for the opportunity!

This is my submission to this week’s Budget Travelers Sandbox Travel Photo Thursday series. Be sure to check out other photo and story entries on their website.

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62 thoughts on “A San Francisco Treat

  1. Laurel

    How fun, I have never thought about how or where fortune cookies are made before. Although when I saw this post title, I was sure it was going to be something about Rice Roni :).

    1. Cathy Post author

      Thanks, Sophie! The fortune cookie factory was on an organized tour I took that went through less-touristy parts of Chinatown. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have known where it was.

    1. Cathy Post author

      Actually, I came across something about them first being made in Japan and that you don’t find them anywhere in China. I’ve got some research to do. Does anyone else have some input?

  2. Jenna

    I was just teaching my students about the history of San Francisco (including Chinatown, of course), and I was thinking about how special Chinatown is. I agree with Michael– this photo tells quite a story. I will have to go there on one of my future visits to SF!

    1. Cathy Post author

      I like visiting Chinatown in other cities, too, but San Francisco’s is very special. It’s the oldest one in N. America & is the largest Chinese community outside of Asia.

    1. Cathy Post author

      Thanks, Angela. It was a nice peek into the place where such a familiar product is made. I would have guessed that all fortune cookies were mass-produced somewhere, not in a small location down a side alley in Chinatown!

    1. Cathy Post author

      Luckily for you, Emme, they sell them by the bag at the factory! No, I didn’t get a fortune with my sample cookie. Now that you mention it, they would have been a nice touch, don’t you think?

  3. ElizOF

    Marcia had mentioned your post on my blog and I stopped by to check it out… Terrific post! 🙂
    Next time I’m in San Francisco, I will stop in at that Fortune Cookie place and sample their goodies…
    I love them! 🙂

  4. Rosemarie John

    Fifty cents is not bad for a photo moment. 🙂 In Singapore, when most temples allow free photography, one temple in Chinatown charges USD$3 for photography. On another note…. I love fortune cookies… my last fortune cookie experience was maybe 20 years ago. 🙂 Surprisingly in Malaysia and Singapore, you don’t find that tradition around these days. 🙁

  5. Sabrina

    Ooh, I really like fortune cookies. I always used to think that they’re a Chinese thing until I went to China and was sorely disappointed when no restaurant served them 🙂

  6. Pingback: The Alleys of Chinatown San Francisco | Traveling with Sweeney

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