A well-regarded, two-year-old, high-end restaurant that focuses on globally inspired tapas style small plates.
New Chef, Carl Foronda, has overhauled the restaurant’s entire menu with dishes that include influences from his Filipino heritage.
Lower Nob Hill On Polk Street
1760 Polk St, San Francisco, CA 94109
Perfect for a date night or dinner with your parents.
How It Was:
In general, this is a great restaurant with plenty of options that can cater to picky and adventurous eaters alike. Though expensive, the cocktails were particularly inventive and excellent. Some dishes were more memorable than others though all platings we especially beautiful. Dining and drinking doesn’t come cheap, but for a special night out in the neighborhood, it’s a great option to keep in your back pocket.
What We Drank:
Frothy from whipped egg whites, bright and herbal from the basil, and smoky from the mezcal. This cocktail was bold and boozy, just how I like it.
Fruit and tequila is a classic combination, but the surprising twist is the addition of cracked black pepper. Fruit-forward, but still very strong and enjoyable.
This was really interesting and the flavors were hard to pin down or put your finger on. Very unusual combination of peach flavor with bourbon, bitters, and wintry spices like star anise and nutmeg.
What We Ate:
Apple-Beet Amuse Bouche
A free, automatically provided amuse bouche. Crisp apple texture with a bold, tangy beet and apple cider vinegar topping.
SRF Beef Tartare
A very clean tasting tartare that allowed the cubes of high-quality raw beef to shine. Not too complex, flavorwise. Just a touch of excitement from the fiery red pepper rings and nutty Marcona almond slivers
This was a really pretty dish. The white fish itself was very clean and fresh, but mild in flavor. The beautifully delicate, but bright combination of white soy vinaigrette, grapefruit gelee, and yuzu kosho paired well.
An outstanding rendition, and I’ve had a lot of pretty killer sprouts this year. The crispy and tender texture was spot on, but the nutty pepitas and funky fish sauce emulsion that soaked into every layer made them truly irresistible.
This was really quite extraordinary. These ravioli incredibly came filled with a Thai-inflected broth that burst in my mouth when I bit in. And outside, the creamy coconutty, lemongrass infused curry sauce added even more excitement. We all agreed that this was our favorite dish of the meal.
As a strategic stomach-filler, we went for another pasta. This one involved big rolled up pieces of chewy, al dente paccheri pasta in a tomato sauce that included some cauliflower, bits of salty olive, and hunks of super-tender octopus. The textures were nice and the sauce was quite bright, but this dish didn’t seem particularly special or memorable to any of us.
Fried Duck Sandwich
Though this thing looks kind of like a big hamburger, the patty was actually more like a croquet. It involved pulled duck meat that had been reformed into a patty to be deep-fried. Texturally, it reminded me a lot of a crab cake, which I’m not sure is necessarily a compliment. The slaw, pickles, and spicy aioli were a nice touch, but it the sandwich struck us all as a little strange. Not bad, but I don’t think I’d order it again.
This was the one dish I knew I had to order off the new Filipino-influenced menu. I’m a big fan of real Filipino food and meaty sisigs, so I went in with fairly high expectations. It was an interesting take on the dish, elevating it and transforming it to a more familiar fine-dining form. It wasn’t as much of a funky umami-bomb as I had hoped for, but the fatty, crispy texture and egginess fell in line with my idea of a sisig. I wish there was more unctuous liver flavor in there.
Grilled Pork Ribs
Definitely one of the best dishes we ordered. They were super-tender and juicy and really took on that desirable char-grilled flavor. The hoisin BBQ sauce definitely leaned sticky, sweet, and Asian which suited the fall-apart meat well.