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JJL SF 2011 (report as I go)


Restaurants & Bars 15

JJL SF 2011 (report as I go)

j.jessica.lee | Mar 22, 2011 03:05 PM

Hello everyone,

I've gotten a running start so far and there's much more eating to come. I thought I might report on this thread as I go, so it won't be a massive project all at once.

Just a note: I'm having a blast! :)

HUMPHREY SLOCOMBE: I took a nap after I arrived and then decided to walk around the Mission a bit before dinner. I stopped by and tried a taste of Black Sesame and also their Vietnamese Coffee, but decided on a scoop of Secret Breakfast. I really liked the strength of the bourbon flavor as well as the crunch from the cornflakes, but I must say that, as many others have pointed out, the texture of the ice cream itself isn't as good as BiRite. It's a tad icy, not quite as rich-tasting, and perhaps served a bit too cold. But I enjoyed it nonetheless.

PIZZERIA DELFINA: My friends decided they wanted to go to PD as it was closest to us. I went 45 minutes early and our table opened up 5 minutes after my friends arrived. Perfect timing. My friends being also vegetarian, I was unable to order any of the meaty options. We got the Insalata Tricolore, Burrata, Broccoli Raab Pizza (with ), and a Margherita Pizza. I did not have the highest expectations going in, but it was really great! The freshness of the salad was amazing. The burrata was burrata - how can you go wrong? It wasn't the best burrata I've had, though. Both the pies were really great, flavorwise, and the crust was really nice. I think I prefer Motorino's crust (NYC), but all these arguments about the crust and what's "authentic" (I have no idea what is really authentic anyway) all come down to what an individual likes. Regardless, it was great - I would return!

Afterwards, we went to BIRITE CREAMERY: I got a scoop of ricciacanella (cinnamon with snickerdoodles inside) and Vanilla with PB and something else. I got bananas and a cookie with it as well. :) Delicious as usual. Perfect, creamy texture, so rich, delicious. Ricciacanella has been a choice every single time - I think it may be one of my favorite flavors there, trumping even the salted caramel!

TARTINE BAKERY: I went on Sunday at noon and we waited about fifteen minutes. We got the frangipane croissant (wonderful as always, but this one was a few seconds past done - the first time I've experienced this and now I understand comments where this puts people off), currant scone (not my favorite scone, but very good), and a slice of the new dulce de leche cake - DELICIOUS! Perfect cake texture as usual and wonderful flavor profile. Nothing challenging, but just pure, cozy goodness. I went again the next morning and got the pain au chocolat (perfectly cooked, not too dark, and I got it straight out of the oven - the dark chocolate was melted and just bitter enough - pure perfection!), gougere (delicious! so savory, so decadent, so happy I tried this), and a plain croissant for my friend (again - just out of the oven, perfectly cooked, beautiful butter flavor - the quality of the ingredients really shines here). I returned later that day to pick up a loaf of their Sesame Bread (and preordered my country loaf for pickup later!). That bread is probably my favorite bread of all time, and I have eaten loaves and loaves of all sorts of breads and baguettes in France and Germany. This is so special. I had the country loaf last year and this sesame may be even better. There are sesame seeds within and scattered on top and the nuttiness of the sesame just adds a whole new dimension to the already wonderful flavor profile of the bread. And there is NOTHING like getting a fresh, still-warm loaf and having that strong crackle of the outer crust give way to the springy, almost wet and hearty crumb of the inside. GO get it! If you don't want to wait in line (yes, I'm a NYer, but I REFUSE to say "on line"), order at least three days in advance and pre pay.

PERBACCO: I had a solo dinner here last night. I adore pasta and in NY, my favorites include Scarpetta, the now sadly shuttered Alto, Marea's fusilli with bone marrow, and Maialino. I got a glass of wine and the "tris" - tasting of three pastas. I got TORTELLI DI CIAPINABE PASTA FILLED WITH ROASTED SUNCHOKES SAGE BUTTER HEDGEHOG MUSHROOMS RADICCHIO,
FUSILLI DI ORTICHE – HAND ROLLED NETTLE PASTA / HOLLANDER FARM SQUAB RAGU / BLACK CHANTERELLES, and PAPPARDELLE – WIDE PASTA RIBBONS / SLOW COOKED LAMB SHOULDER RAGU / ARTICHOKES / BLACK OLIVES / MINT. Out of the three, I liked the tortelli the least - nothing about the flavors popped to me and they seemed a little flat. The Ortiche was nicely done, but perhaps a little overcooked for my taste. I liked the squab ragu, though. The Pappardelle was probably my favorite, pasta-wise. The texture was really good. The lamb ragu was too salty, however, and I detected absolutely no mint. Overall, it was a very good meal and a great value at $18 for the three tastes. I wouldn't run back, but I would eat there again.

ANTHONY'S COOKIES: I picked up an oatmeal-cranberry and a chocolate-walnut on the way home. They were nice, but nothing to write home about. The oatmeal, especially, was flat on flavor and didn't have that nice nuttiness that makes an oatmeal cookie so good.

I'm headed to Farallon tonight - a friend is taking me out. Tomorrow will be dinner with friends at Terzo. Thursday is dinner at Incanto. I'm hoping to go to Canteen for brunch on either Saturday or Sunday for that souffle pancake. I wanted to go to Canteen tonight, but my friend really wanted to use his certificate at Farallon. Next week includes a group dinner at both La Ciccia and Atelier Crenn! I also want to try to make time for Dynamo Donuts, Bob's Donuts, and maybe one more visit to both Tartine and BiRite. Any suggestions? Both meals and sweets related?

Any ordering advice for the restaurants on my schedule would be GREATLY appreciated!

Thank you so much as always!!

La Ciccia
291 30th Street, San Francisco, CA 94131

450 Post Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

3011 Steiner St., San Francisco, CA 94123

Atelier Crenn
3127 Fillmore St, San Francisco, CA 94123

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