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Restaurants & Bars 5

Brazen Head (SF)

Melanie Wong | May 23, 200404:43 AM

Friday night I joined friends for some light snacks and libations among the packing boxes at their soon to be vacated apartment. They're leaving Cow Hollow to return to the Midwest. With the recent mention of Brazen Head at top of mind, I asked them if they'd been there. Turns out they hadn't and had always wondered if the sign-less establishment were a private club or if they'd be welcomed there. When the wine bottles (2003 Lascaux rosé, 2001 Maximin Grunhauser Abtsberg Spätlese, NV Champagne Bricout Brut, 1996 J Swan "Wolfspierre" Pinot Noir, 1987 Domaine Tempier "Tourtine" magnum, 2000 Quinta do Noval "Silval", 1998 Churchill "Quinta da Agua Alta", and Commandaria St. John) ran dry, I suggested we walk over to Brazen Head to continue the party.

Standing outside the shuttered facade on this quiet residential street, one can see or hear little that hints of what lies inside. When we opened the door, we were surprised to find the lively bar packed to the gills and a full dining room at midnight. The host asked if we were interested in eating, and amazingly the seven of us were seated at an oval table within 5 minutes.

We shared an order of roasted garlic for the table. I had the tasty seafood chowder (offered on Friday and Saturday), a milky stock infused with savory herbs, chunks of firm fish, and carmelized onions. I also had a bite of the beef carpaccio, which was good too.

Oh, and I asked our waitress if they still served Planters-type cheese balls in the bar. No, she said, but that sure sounded like a fun thing. With our food, we were served a couple baskets of warm cheese bread.

Sara said it was too bad she hadn't discovered Brazen Head earlier. She would have taken her parents here when they visited. I asked Spence how he'd characterize the crowd. He described it as older (30+) and more sedate than the Triangle. He also said that Aileen and I were the only women in the room with naturally colored hair. I told him my hairdresser would appreciate the compliment. (g)

The Brazen Head Restaurant
3166 Buchanan @ Greenwich
San Francisco
Bar: 4pm-2am
Dinner: 5pm-1am


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