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Super Bowl City Showdown!

We see which city comes out on top (when you take away the football element).

Baltimore, best known for Old Bay, crabs, and a TV show that described every important municipal institution as hopelessly incapable of fighting an incredibly complex war on drugs (and the socioeconomic consequences of said war). San Francisco, home to the Golden Gate Bridge, those cool trollies that go over those crazy hills (they’re steep!), and several devastating earthquakes and fires. Both cities have teams fighting it out in the most important annual event in the universe: The Super Bowl. On Sunday, the Raven and 49ers will figure out on the field who’s the better team, but we’re going to figure out who’s got the better city…right now!


When measuring the quality of a berg, you could rate things like air quality, employment opportunities, access to clean water, and rates of cholera. But that would be a snooze fest, so here’s how San Fran and Bmore rate in drinking and partying dens. Shots!



A search for “Strip clubs near Baltimore, MD” reveals 736 results on Google Maps. And with a population of 620,000 that’s about 172 people per strip club - pretty great numbers even considering that we’re counting a lot of babies, elderly, and others who probably don’t have a lot of interest in going to a strip club. But there are 2,902 results for “sports bar,” there’s prohibition-era speakeasy The Owl (once frequented by famous Chinese nationalist Chiang Kai-shek), and the city hosts a Bill Cosby Sweater bar crawl, so all in all, it’s looking pretty good.

San Francisco
Though it has a population just shy of a million, San Fran actually has fewer hits for strip clubs and sports bars than its competitor city. And while it’s much easier to find artisanal cocktails, gastropubs, and eloquent hobos in Frisco, the gritty party scene in Baltimore is more our style (shanks!).

Winner: Baltimore


Local cuisine can elevate any city from “post-apocalyptic hellscape” to “decent pit stop on a poorly thought-out road trip.”

Places like Mr. Bill’s Terrace Inn and the Costas Inn (they really like inns) will make you think about crab as a transcendentally delicious meal instead of just a scary crustacean that creates great Alaskan television. But unless you really love Old Bay seasoning, Baltimore is a one-trick food city.

San Francisco

Mission Chinese, Del Popolo, Wise Sons, Tacolicious, Bourbon and Branch…the list of great San Fran restaurants across a host of culinary disciplines is pretty endless.

Winner: San Francisco


What, you need us to explain the importance of this category?

Model Mayhem lists 1,807 models within five miles of the Baltimore region, and 52 percent of the population is female, according to the census.

San Francisco

San Francisco features 2,944 models, but just 49 percent of the total population is ladies. Yet at a reported 15 percent, the city has the highest percentage of gay residents in the nation. So, if you’re a straight guy, your competition was just significantly reduced! And if you’re a gay guy—jackpot!

Winner: San Francisco


While winning the Super Bowl will tip this metric in favor of any team’s city, nothing’s been decided yet. So before Baltimore or San Francisco take home the Stanley Cup of football (the Vince Lombardi trophy), let’s take a look at the state of sports in each berg right now.

The Orioles just secured their first winning season since 1997! Of course, the Yankees proceeded to rip their hearts out like merciless baseball robots in the playoffs. And you like lacrosse, right? Of course you do! Because the John’s Hopkins men’s lacrosse team has 44 national championships. 44! And not a single huge rape scandal that we could come across in our research…Oh, wait. God. Damn. It.

San Francisco
The San Francisco Giants franchise has seven World Series titles (just two of which were won in San Fran, however), and the team’s recent success definitely defeats the Orioles' single great season. After the Giants, there’s not much. But as San Fran sits in California, home to 16 other professional sports teams, there’s plenty left to root for outside the city, while Maryland is home to the Bay Area Shuckers, an Atlantic Coast Professional Basketball League team. So…there’s that.

Winner: San Francisco



Yeah, so Baltimore “technically” lost three out of four categories, but we consider bars super important. Also, we really hate walking up hills. Go Ravens! 

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