Bizou this week have introduced a new tastes menu with small appetizer (or big amuse) items. Each taste will set you back $3.50. For my late dinner the other night, I tried four of the seven tastes offered and was surprised and pleased by how good they were.
I started with Cauliflower soup with caviar. It was served in a very small soup cup. It was very rich, and I ate it slowly to savor it. There was enough caviar to provide bursts of fish egg flavor for the entire serving.
Next came a plate of Halibut stuffed sweet pequilla peppers. The Halibut had be pureed and mixed with various mysterious ingredients (crème cheese, maybe, among other things) and then stuffed into some beautiful deep-red pequilla peppers. They were served vertically, and looked like tongues of fire on the plate. Also delicious.
The final course of tastes was served on a single plate. On one end was the Spicy chorizo and Hog Island Sweetwater Oyster with a toothpick handle. Both the Oyster and the slice of chorizo had been sautéed and were smoky, spicy and luscious. The Grilled Spanish Mackerel inhabited the other end of the plate. Two pieces of grilled mackerel were adorned with grilled endives and leeks and dressed with multiple sauces, which were sweet, hot, and sour. Also quite good.
With a glass of wine, my light dinner was $24, plus tip. Without the wine, it would have been $15, plus tip.
The other tastes currently being offered are: Grilled skirt steak with sauce romesco, Pickled organic beets, and Fried risotto telephone lines (including hot balls of cheese pulled to form the telephone lines)
Bizou is consistently good in coming up with creative and interesting items on their ever-changing menu, and seem to especially well with the appetizers. They favor creativity over consistency, which is just fine with me. Sometimes they dont quite hit it (a recent spinach sautéed with meyer lemons appetizer falls into that category), but often they just amaze me with simple but delicious new items.
Here are three appetizers (two old and one current) that I found to be especially good:
The old ones were 1) Ahi Tuna Carpaccio with Yellow Heirloom Tomatoes This was VERY thinly sliced tuna and tomatos (1/16), dressed with a ginger vinagrette, shallots and Fleur du Sol. And 2) Calamari stuffed with Chorizo, served on a bed of green lentils
The current one is Grilled Asparagus with Bacon and a Poached Egg. A bed of sautéed lardons is dressed with a buttery vinagrette, then topped with grilled thin slices of French bread, which in turn is topped with smoky grilled asparagus and a poached egg. This is REALLY good.
Bizou is at the corner of 4th and Brannan and is open Monday through Saturday.