Browsing Tag:

san francisco

brunch/ Hawaiian/ San Francisco

Aina: SF Gets Lei’ed

San Francisco has its fair share of the latest Hawaiian craze sweeping through our cities, and I am all for this. Hawaiian cuisine has a lot of flavors that I love – island food (e.g. seafood, fresh fruits, etc.) with an overlay of Japanese influence. What’s great about āina is that they’ve taken their love of Hawaiian cuisine – with its attitude and welcoming aurora – and made it oh-so-very-SF by using seasonal ingredients to match.

Let’s dive in by talking about their spam masubi “ssam style”, using Stone Valley Farms whole hog spam, boston bibb lettuce, house-made kimchi, and short grain rice with egg yolk furikake (the seaweed sesame topping you see above). This delicious bite – or in my case, few bites worth – is delicious and awfully satisfying. The spam is unlike anything you get out of that can.

Let us not forget about one of the most important brunch time items – their Bloody Mary – made with lemongrass infused soju, charred tomato mix, fresh horseradish, pink peppercorn, and tabasco sauce. Fairly spicy and lightly tart, this drink finished with a savory taste that satisfies any hungry stomach as it waits for the next dish.

Then there’s the Malasadas, which was the epitome of you could imagine to be a Hawaiian doughnut. These three Portuguese style doughnuts coated in coconut sugar and filled with guava custard were fairly dense. It’s a great dish to share with friends given how easy it is to get full off of this; gotta make room for more later!

Here’s a dish where it’s obvious where the Hawaiian comes from – French toast made from taro bread served with apple wood smoked bacon, macadamia nut crumble, salted coconut caramel, fresh strawberries, and vanilla whipped cream. This dish is basically giving you hugs and kisses every time you take a bite, it is that good and comforting to your soul.

There’s their take on the loco moco, which became the kalbi version – braised kalbi short rib, smoked honshimeji mushroom jus, sunny side up eggs, hearts of palm pico de gallo, cilantro, short grain rice, and pea tendrils. The short rib is very tender, and salty which is nicely paired with some rice and egg to balance it all out.

Lastly, but not least, the Chicken katsu made of mary’s chicken, rolled omelet, vadouvan carrot purée, udon noodles, aïoli, katsu jelly, and grilled seasonal greens. This “bento set” blew my mind away, mostly due to their version of the Japanese potato salad; instead they used udon noodles and made it taste like how the potato salad would be but lighter! The omelet also incorporated furikake, added the umami element to the mix. I wish I could have this everyday.

I find myself wanting to head over to āina as often as I can, even if there is a wait (my personal limit is 45 minutes; I’ve generally been seated quicker than that here). With their love of using the land around them aka local ingredients, they fit right into the SF food scene and all the while, making sure you feel right at home in Hawaii.

āina
900 22nd St, San Francisco, CA 94107
No online reservations

Chinese/ dinner/ San Francisco

Mister Jiu’s: An Emergence of “New Chinese”

Chinese food is one of my comfort foods – give me a meal full of dumplings, noodle soups and rice dishes, and it’ll satiate my hunger and subdue any feelings of anger, frustration, and woe. Mister Jiu’s is a bit different than your normal MSG-filled Chinese restaurant around the corner. Even though they are located in the heart of San Francisco’s Chinatown, they’re making a new version of Chinese food, one that’s worth trying out and waiting for.

The photos will showcase dishes from the banquet and a la carte menu, so make sure to check out their seasonal menu prior to dining if you’re looking to have the same exact dish.

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Rice noodle roll (腸粉) with uni was a luxurious update to the traditional shrimp or pork filled noodle roll that you find at dim sum restaurants. The crepe felt as if it was very delicately made – silky smooth, not too oily – and worked well with the bits of creamy uni as it would slosh in your mouth.

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The charcuterie plate made of: Devil’s Gulch Pig Head, Chilled Beef Tendon, and La Quercia Cured Ham with fried dough (油條) is worth tasting. Like the traditional cold plates, it was served as an assortment and each cut with great balance between salt, meat and fat. The fried dough was not oily either, and only made me wish I had a bowl of porridge to go with it. Note: I’m also a huge fan of anything Devil’s Gulch so this won over my heart easily.

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A simple vegetable dish of tendrils, greens and stems was topped with uni mousse and pieces of uni. It was easy to scarf down this dish, with tender bites of vegetables mixed with intense umami flavors that sloshed around in your mouth.

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American Nouveau/ dinner/ San Francisco

Aster: It’s Magically Delicious

I generally stay away from anything that reminds me of “fusion”. An image of two foods singed together, unnaturally meshed, and creating a frankenstein dish makes me very uncomfortable. Why? Often times, I’ve actually pay a lot for this type of “cuisine” at restaurants and doesn’t taste good; it’s usually confusing and leaves my tastebuds in a disappointed state.

Aster seems to make the combination of Asian and Western come together seamlessly, like a perfect magic trick. They were awarded one Michelin star this year – which isn’t the end-all-be-all per se – but at the same time, it’s catching the eyes of some critics. With a four course menu at $59, it’s a reasonably affordable meal where you will encounter interesting textures and beautifully made dishes.

We started with house-made sourdough bread with butter. As someone who loves bread, this couldn’t be any better – the butter was creamy enough to stand up to a sourdough. At the same time, the bread wasn’t too sour and finished nicely. YUM.

The first dish was beets with pomegranate, pistachio, cultured cream and arugula. Beautiful? Yes. As delicious as it is pretty? Oh yes!

Soft-cooked egg with crispy potato, ikura, and bacon vinaigrette, everything melded together – with its various textures and flavors – to create an umami boost of flavor. Not only is it fun to have the ikura pop in your mouth, but the potato made it crunchy, while the egg bounded each ingredient altogether.

 

The pork shoulder was cooked for hours and assembled layer by layer, with a crispy layer of skin, to be surrounded by carrots and satsuma mandarins, and shiitake furikake. It was like a well-done magic trick. In this case I’m not sure how umami, fat, and citrus can be brought into one dish, but it DID happen…and tasted really good too.

Lastly, the pink lady apple with broiche, sunflower seed, and bay laurel was the perfect ending to the meal. It was the just the right amount of sweet (just from the apple), along with the crumble and seeds, you still get nice bite even though the apple is soft.

The menu changes with the seasons, so that just means another visit is necessary. I’m looking forward to seeing more of the “magic” that comes out of that restaurant. Hopefully more solid and interesting dishes to come!

Aster
1001 Guerrero St
San Francisco, CA 94110
Opentable

nyc/ San Francisco/ travels

Best Bites of 2015

As I reflect upon this year with big changes like moving to a new city (chime in “California love”), entering a new decade (“30s is the new 20s” according to Jay-Z), and starting a new job, I couldn’t help but come up with a list of my best bites for this year. It spans several cities and cuisines so take a nice scroll through, and enjoy!

San Francisco

  1. Stones Throw’s Puff Potato and Egg (Russian Hill)
  2. Nopa’s Cheeseburger (Hayes Valley)
  3. Hog Island Oyster’s Cioppino (Embarcadero)
  4. State Bird Provisions’s Burrata (Pac Heights)
  5. Liho Liho’s Tuna Poke (Tenderloin)
  6. Lazy Bear’s Whipped Scrambled Eggs (Mission)

New York

  1. Shuko’s Grilled Toro (East Village)
  2. O Ya’s Truffle and Potato Nigiri (Nomad)
  3. Upland’s Hen of Woods (Nomad)
  4. Tanoshi’s Uni and Ebi Sushi (Upper East Side)

Hawaii/Japan/Taiwan

  1. Izakaya Torae Torae’s Negi Otoro Ikura Don
  2. Yakiniku Champion’s Wagyu Beef with Egg 
  3. とんかつ まい泉’s Tonkatsu Set
  4. 8% ice Cream’s Strawberry Balsamic Cheese Soft Serve

Looking forward to more bites in the new year! (^_^)v

American Nouveau/ dinner/ San Francisco

Lord Stanley: Not My Neighborhood Joint

As someone who is passionate about food (aka one who constantly thinks about their next meal as they are eating their current one), I have been assessing the SF food scene and comparing it to what I know – New York. Friends from the East and West coast want to know where I stand, and I am always so torn. It’s as if I need to choose between Biggie or Tupac, and we all know that is a really tough choice. Then I see this article from Bon Appetit, “San Francisco Is the Best Food City in the Country Right Now” pop up on my Facebook feed. HOLY CRAP, someone answered for me! Thank you Andrew Knowlton!

This is the best gif I could find to represent my excitement…

Luckily, I have friends who are as excited about food as I am (see my foodie definition above) and want to check out these spots. Glancing through the list of restaurants in the article, there are restaurants that I have thoroughly enjoyed listed – Lazy Bear, Mourad, The Progress – alongside ones I’m not familiar with. I figured these unknown restaurants are potential gems, and I will be an early adopter! In under a day that I re-posted this article on my Facebook feed, reservations were made (thank you friends). We are going to Lord Stanley.

I saw this place having a lot of potential. I could become a regular if this was really good since it’s located about 4 blocks away from my apartment. The waitstaff would know me by first name, the host would seat me before people who had reservations, and I could order dishes only OLD-TIMERS would know about; as you can see, my imagination runs wild. Lord Stanley describes itself as serving European influence cuisine in a casual environment. They are so European where they adopted their way of billing – service is included in the final bill. No need to do math after you’ve stuffed yourself silly. Check, check and check!

Excited and hungry, we all ordered the tasting menu while two friends added the wine pairing. It was about six courses for $83. Not horribly expensive but not cheap.

Food Breakdown

Poached oyster, horseradish and buttermilk – Overly garnished with herbs, oysters fell by the wayside.

Chilled squash with ricotta and mint – Delicious house-made ricotta, and the squash had a good bite – refreshing.

Sea bass with bouillabaisse jus – The fish was nicely cooked, though the roasted red pepper felt a bit random. Any chance we could get more jus in there?

Grilled Wagyu beef with Matsutake mushrooms – Beef was cooked medium-rare and juicy, with mushrooms that added a nice earthy and spicy flavor.

Strawberry “Eton Mess” – Crispy and light piece of meringue served with fresh seasonal strawberries made a great combination.

I had the same feeling walking out of this restaurant as I did after watching Avengers: Age of Ultron – continuously disappointed and frustrated. I wanted to like the storyline, the characters, but nothing really made sense. Same goes for Lord Stanley: the food was everywhere, with no central theme or taste that combines it together; the service missed details that were hard to ignore – not explaining what the first wine was, not asking which type of water that’s in your cup before filling it incorrectly, double charging a credit card, etc.; the pace of the meal was confusing, first items coming out quickly and the last parts coming out very slowly where the entire meal ended up being three hours.

Why have you failed me Bon Appetit? I raise my fists to the heavens in rage. Looks like my search for my dream local restaurant ensues (SIGH).

Lord Stanley
2065 Polk St (and Broadway)
San Francisco, CA 94109

American Nouveau/ dinner/ San Francisco

The MINA Test Kitchen: Tasty Experiments, Sign Me Up!

People are big fans of Michael Mina, and I totally get it. He started his culinary empire in San Francisco and has played a major role in building the restaurant scene to where it is today. Think Pablo Escobar, and replace the cocaine with food and power hungry vengeance for zen-like philosophies (Warning: There may be many references in this post to this highly addictive Netflix show – I am obsessed). There is no doubt that his restaurants do insanely well (see here for awards, it will take you a solid 2 minutes to scroll through the page) and his restaurant group extends across the US with 20 restaurants. There’s barely enough room on the website to list them all:

MINATESTKITCHEN_COMOkay so he’s pretty badass. Pablo Escobar level badass. However, the more accolades one chef or restaurant receives, the more side-eye skeptical I get…which doesn’t really make much sense but bear with me here. It becomes a personal mission to figure it out – if the food is actually delicious, and restaurant worth going to – in addition to having the perfect excuse to eat out (“See Mom, there’s a reason bigger than me that requires me to eat out and spend money for it. I need to make sure people know if the restaurant IS really good or not...”)

For my friend’s birthday (Happy Birthday HARRY), we all went to the latest Michael Mina venture – Mina’s Test Kitchen, located in the Marina. He pairs up with chefs to create a pop-up kitchen; essentially, they can cook whatever they want. Successful dishes move on and graduate to his other restaurants. What’s great is that the cuisine is themed (the current one being Eastern Mediterranean) and changes every few months (next one being Italian). You buy tickets to secure your seat and payment of the meal. Easy peasy.

His philosophy to cooking – to focus on achieving balance and harmony – is in-line with what I look for in food, so we are starting on a good foot here. Tip: There were many terms I have to look up looking at the menu, so you might be interested in brushing up on your Mediterranean / Greek, or just have your iPhone handy.

The Greet

We started off with the palette cleanser, a limonata popsicle with basil, sea salt and peach with olive oil drizzled on top. Refreshing and a cute bite to begin the meal.

Laffa

This course was so good, to the point where I could be happy eating a few more and call it a night. What made is particularly tasty was the laffa; it was soft, doughy, warm, and perfectly encased everything else (berbere-spiced ahi tuna, baba ghanoush, crispy spring onions, and pickled hot peppers). It tasted as good as it sounds, trust me.

Salatim

The Saganaki-style helloumi (which sounds Japanese, but in fact is a Greek dish) reminded me of paneer, except this was pan-fried and was saltier. The marinated heirloom tomatoes, toasted sesame seeds, madjool dates, and watercress all played nice, contributing to the simultaneously sweet, tart, and nutty flavors. Taste explosions? YES OH MY.

For all the avocado lovers out there, this dish was made for you. No toast needed to show you what this avocado is all about *insert feisty sideways snap*; served with pickled hot peppers and summer vegetables, fried walnuts, kataifi (those crispy-looking things on top), schug (a chile relish) it made for a very well spiced, crunchy and creamy dish.

The grilled stone fruit fattoush, shaved cauliflower, radish persian cucumber, crunchy pita, chilies, and mint oil was a crunch-fest, and delicious to boot. Easy to eat, light, and just a solid tasting dish. Let those vegetables and fruit shine!

Hummus

Want some more oomph? Oh yes, there’s more. Hummus made of spicy lamb ragu, toasted pine nuts, pomegranate, crispy zucchini, and espelette pepper served with WARM was delightful. Yes, the pita was warm. They had a small heat device underneath the basket to ensure it arrives warm to you. Now if every place can serve warm pitas, the world would be a happier place.

Mains and Veggies

If you can’t tell, this harissa-marinated roasted chicken was tendy, juicy, and flavorful. It came with smashed and fried fingerling potatoes, soaking up any oils from the chicken and the fryer. YUM-MY.

Sides included swiss chard with oil-cured black olives, toasted garlic, red grapes and a slow-cooked brisket with yemenite-spiced basmati, chick peas, and lentils (supplement of $10). The brisket was good but, I would venture to say, okay missing out on and saving yourself the extra moo-lah.

Anything with corn will win me over and this is no exception. Moroccan street corn with chemoula yogurt, feta, cayenne pepper, orange zest, mint, and green onions reminded me of New York Cafe Havana’s grilled corn (but just a tad fit “fancier), as it has similar and basic elements: corn, cheese, spice.

Sweets

Rounding out the meal was the watermelon granita that sat above rose water cream, toasted pistachio, and basil. After a full meal of spice and intense flavors, this was refreshing and slightly sweet, closing the night perfectly.

The restaurant is well thought-out; the waitstaff is attentive, food is tasty down to the smallest components, and runs like a well oiled machine…just like Pablo Escobar’s crack business. Whatever Michael Mina and his team are putting into their dishes, I definitely want and need some more; it is THAT good.

The MINA Test Kitchen
2120 Greenwich St.
San Francisco, CA 94123
minatestkitchen.com

American Nouveau/ dinner/ San Francisco

Stones Throw: Let’s Keep Talking

Stones Throw is not a restaurant that has an identity crisis. They know exactly who they are, head-to-toe: from each table to each dish to each guest. Stones Throw is a thoughtful, playful and comfortable restaurant; it’s like kind of boyfriend you wish you can be around with all the time.

This is a place where they notice the small things. Diners are not overlooked. Each staff member understands their role and how it plays into making a great dining experience for you. Baby, it’s all about you – they let you take your drink back if you don’t like it; they write you a message if you’re celebrating a special occasion; they even let you provide ideas for dessert and invite you back if they make it. These are the little twists define Stones Throw as an establishment that goes above and beyond.

They make the meal a dialogue, starting with them, and what they want you to understand about California and its great produce.

They started with a big “HEY” – their puffed potatoes were amazing. Every bite came with a pleasant surprise of an egg so the yolk oozed out when I pierced it with my fork. OOZED. The cauliflower mousse, chives and crispy chicken skin added textural elements that created one holistic delicious bite. It had me wanting more so there’s a good chance I would go have a seat at their bar JUST to have this dish.

The Five Peas in a Pod felt as though it was springtime on a plate, as you can see from above, it looked as if greens were growing out of the piece of brioche. Personally, I had a hard time eating the dish. Aside from munching through fibrous vegetable, the drops of preserved lemon and ricotta couldn’t helped subdue the leafy greens and strong mint flavor.

You’ve heard me be particular about my pastas, and this one sits in the upper-middle range of what I like; each component of the Squid Ink Conchiglie (seashell) pasta was cooked well. It was served with spicy capers, clams, calamari, shrimp and tender greens.

Pork belly, pig’s ears, rilettes – it was all in one dish, and served with charred onion and sunflower seeds. Every main component was pork, but they were able to make the dish interesting. It showcased all the different textures that can come from the same animal – crunchy, soft, and smooth. My favorite of them all? The crispy pig ears.

Utter comfort is now I would describe this sweet corn soup. Alongside many other corn soups that I have had – it was warm, not creamy and silky. What is there not to love about a soup like this?

In a similar vein of the pork dish, the duo of beef ribeye and braised short rib was a great juxtaposition of the same meat cooked in two different ways. The short rib meat fell off the bone – I love it when that happens. However it was the fava croquettes to me stood out for me. They were lightly fried, creamy, and had a mellow flavor which merged nicely together with the beef.

Liberty Farms duck breast tasted as good as it looked, and to me was my favorite main entree. It was tender, juicy, and had just the right amount of fat. Hidden in that pile of delicious corn is a tamale filled with duck confit meat. The cherries gave the dish a nice touch of sweet tartness to every bite I took of the meat.

The conversation wasn’t one-way; Stones Throw invites you to “talk” back, or in this case write, about where you want to be taken back to with this question. MMM…indeed. As I thought through this prompt, I looked more carefully at the dessert menu. Now this gets even more interesting. Dessert was a mini history lesson where there weren’t descriptions on the menu; rather they provided a brief history lesson (i.e. “In 1901 the Boston Cooking School Magazine first referenced peanut butter paired with jelly on bread”).

I went on to notice how each dessert listed was a childhood staple such as Funfetti or key lime pie. My mind was intrigued – how can you remake these to being just as good or better? Reinvention of these items that we place so closely to our hearts requires distilling what make these desserts great, and reinterpret it in a different way so that it’s both new and old.

Their key lime pie dessert was delicious, and not just because of the pie. First off, the pie itself was not too sweet nor tart, and a great pie to crust ratio. Secondly, the sorbet brought in a cold element without being overbearing on being able to taste the lime from the pie. Let’s not forget the meringue which provided that touch of cream (without the flavor of anything else but light cream), and was what you looked for to round out a fulfilling slice of key lime pie.

They broke down the elements of an Oreo – chocolate cookie and cream – that included strawberry, white chocolate, and even fruit roll-up. I gasped, knowing that all of these components were “homemade” in a way – at least not made by Nabisco. Everything on that plate was delicious, apart and together, and similar to the key lime pie, was sweet but not overly so. Reinvention success here? YES.

I was sad to end this meal, this conversation that I was having with them, but then I realized that I could always come back. I can have more! Just like that great boyfriend who shares who they are, what inspires them, and wants to know know you more, Stones Throw fills those shoes and will happily have you back.

Stones Throw
1896 Hyde St
San Francisco, CA 94109
(415) 796-2901
Reservations

dinner/ Japanese/ Seafood/ Uncategorized

Kusakabe: A Deliciously Harmonious Omakase

I want to be a regular. This may be aspirational, since it seems as though everyone also feels the same way. With one Michelin star under the belt, Kusakabe seems to churn out fans – not only with its high-quality fish but its natural and comforting service. Nothing seems to be out of place, and all is harmonious with the extra focus on what’s most important – the fish.

There is only one menu – the omakase (chef’s menu) – where eight central courses are all centered around fish, and several sushi pieces sewn throughout the meal.

Sushi Prelude

The first piece was a great opener and set the tone for the rest of the meal. The Zuke Chutoro – a lightly seared bluefin medium fatty tuna cured in soy sauce – was awfully delicious. The tuna was flavorful; the saltiness from the soy with tuna melded harmoniously and ended with a faint char at the end. Chef Ken mentioned this was their signature piece, and I can totally understand why.

Unlike its previous counterpart, the hirame (fluke) served with shiso was light and refreshing. Nice way to follow the zuke chutoro.

The katsuo (skipjack tuna) followed suit. Served with some green onion, it was delicious as it encapsulated umami flavor.

Sashimi

Tuna and hotate (scallop) sashimi served on top of shaved ice with fresh wasabi and yuzu onion sauce. Each piece was definitely very fresh. Surprisingly I also enjoyed eating the radish as it provided a complementary refreshing taste and crispy texture against the fish.

Soup

The Ushio-jiru (seafood soup) was made from Japanese tai snapper, and had somen noodles with fresh yuba. At first I wasn’t expecting much, but after the first slurp I was under a food trance. All I could keep doing was slurp to much of my pleasure. The soup had depth, with meshing umami and citrus flavors, and lightened with dashes of cilantro.

Hassun

The beautiful plate of the chef’s petit fours and a Shiguko oyster served with French Daurenki caviar well represents what’s in season. What I got was, not surprisingly, all very tasty – some examples include a shrimp with a dusting of freeze-dried egg yolk or a crab claw with a puffed rice cracker.

Warm Dish

The Sansho Teriyaki Monkfish and its liver with “Soba” buckwheat and Nameko mushroom risotto was finely cooked. There wasn’t much risotto and I would say, mainly focused on the monkfish. Nothing wrong with that in my book!

Sushi Chic

The shima aji (striped jack) was nice, with some good fattiness to it.

Kamasu (Japanese Barracuda) was so delicious too. It was lightly torched which brought out the light char flavor but went so well with the fish itself.

I easily gulped down the buri (yellowtail) – it was very fresh and had some good fattiness to it. Yum.

Sushi Finale

The omakase officially ends with your choice of toro or wagyu beef sushi, which I chose the former. You can never go wrong with toro (fatty tuna). After all, it’s meant to melt in your mouth and that it did.

Obviously I couldn’t stop there so I ordered two more pieces to see what was on the a la carte menu.

I decided to pick a piece where it required a bit of preparation versus being a fresh piece of fish, so this was the Ji Kinmedai (Golden Eye Snapper) that has been lightly smoked with cherry wood. It was delicious, though I think I tasted more of the smoke from the char than the cherry wood.

Last, but certainly one of the more memorable pieces of sushi to me, was the Gyoku. It was made from fresh lobster and organic eggs. Essentially it was a fluffy egg cake, and provided a perfect sweet savory ending to the meal.

I found my entire meal to be nicely paced. Chef Ken was incredible and knowledgeable about his craft and fish. Nothing there felt pretentious and just a restaurant that aims to serve delicious sushi and dishes. Good thing I’ve already made my next reservation.

Kusakabe
584 Washington St
San Francisco, CA 94111
(415) 757-0155
kusakabe-sf.com
Opentable

American Traditional/ dinner/ San Francisco

Nopa: Hearty American SF Dining

I have moved to San Francisco from New York City, and am making my way through the dining scene. It’s exciting, and so far I find it notably different than New York (there’s good and bad to that). Overall, I want to focus on the great meals I have here so that whoever ends up coming to this city will know where to go for some delicious food!

As you see pictured above is a picture from Nopa, and word on the street is that this is THE place for brunch. I haven’t had the opportunity to go there yet for that meal, but if dinner was anything close, then I’m going to have another tasty meal ahead.

Starting out, we ordered fried broccoli di ciccio with sunchokes, spiced chickpeas and green olive aioli. I really enjoyed this dish since it was lightly fried and well seasoned. The spiced chickpeas gave the dish a good kick and sunchoke chips provided another layer of crispiness. The aioli tied it all together without overpowering the broccoli di ciccio. This was a big thumbs up for me.

The second appetizer we ordered was the poached egg served with Tasso ham, potatoes, bok choy rabe and chermoula. This dish was delicious; everything merged together harmoniously – aside from the obvious delicious combination of egg and ham, the potatoes nicely soaked up the yolk, the boy choy rabe provided a nice crispy green juxtaposed against the juicy fatty pieces of ham. Another thumbs up.

Pictured above as a main entree was their country pork chop with roasted asparagus, leeks, potatoes and mustard. It was a pretty sizable piece of meat, a bit fatty but overall cooked very well. I really enjoyed the dish. Similarly with how the other dishes were, I felt like all the ingredients were well-matched and nicely flavored.

Their wood grilled burger was one of the best I’ve had thus far here. The meat was cooked to a perfect medium rare, nicely toasted bun that held and soaked up the juices oozing out, and topped with a perfectly melted piece of cheddar cheese. The picked onions, lettuce and tomato were added and helped cut the fat texture. In my opinion, what more can you ask for?

We had to end the meal with dessert. Their lemon semifreddo was delicious, served with mascarpone, pistachio cookie, citrus honey compote and strawberries. It was good, and not too sweet. If anything, I wasn’t sure if I should have eaten this with a fork or spoon because it was a bit too frozen.

I’m keeping my fingers crossed for more delicious food in this city! If Nopa is any indication of the food here, I’m in for a great ride.

Nopa
560 Divisadero St (at Hayes)
San Francisco, CA 94117
(415) 864-8643
Opentable Reservation Link