I stopped by Bar Tartine tonight. We already had dinner at hamano, so we just had dessert. But a few notes about the place:
* it was packed. We got there, we were asked if we had a reservation (for a place which opened yesterday!) We were told the wait would be one hour.
* they were trying hard: we asked if we could sit at the counter (full), if we could do take out. Eventually, they sat us at some counter in the entrance which separates the waiting area from the dining room, which was really great.
* food looks tempting. I would try the 'grilled monterey bay sardines with purslane, cranberry beans, and lemon confit' the 'celery root soup with roast apple, chestnut and bacon' or the 'terrine of duck rillettes with prosciutto and picked figs' for appetizer. The entree list is very short, they will expand but so far it has only 3 dishes: 'olive crusted cod with artichokes, salsify and meyer lemon' 'grilled beef tenderloin and short rib daube with pomme puree' and 'herb crusted duck breast with swiss chard, baby turnips and foie gras emulsion'. Apps I quoted were priced between $9 and $11 (goes up to $14 for a ahi tuna app); entrees are $17, $24 and $22 in the order I mentioned them.
* plus there is a nice selection of cheese and they bring some of that tartine bread with butter to start the meal.
What we got: two delicious desserts ($7 each), and a glass of banyuls ($8).
'fromage blanc bavarian with citrus salad and pistachios'. Citrus salad means confit bits of grapefruit and meyer lemon. This was a delicious mousse, very light, slightly sweet.
'steamed gingerbread pudding with whipped creme fraiche and poached pear'. This one was excellent as well, but did not really match the description. The pear was slightly poached, but still firm. It was a good pear, but it did not look like much had been done to it. The gingerbread pudding was more gingerbread than pudding, and a bit drier than I'd expect from the description. I had tartine's bread pudding in mind, and it was nothing like that at all. There was also a piece of candied ginger.
Noise level: high. Atmosphere: warm, and similar to that of the bakery (large wooden table in the front, green paint outside).
We'll be back soon enough to try the entrees.