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Another Last Meal at Bizou

Rod Williams | Mar 26, 200504:41 PM

I joined the parade of weeping pilgrims crawling down to Fourth & Brannan on their hands and knees to bid farewell to Bizou. Two of us had lunch there on Friday. I should start out by admitting that there's nothing in the world I like better than a leisurely two-hour lunch with my better-not-say-hubby in pleasant surroundings on a sunny day. The overall experience is always paramount to me and, when good, will usually compensate for food that doesn't quite reach stellar heights. This was the case at Bizou yesterday, but we had a wonderful time anyway.

Two glasses of Roederer Estate sparkling wine got us off to a good start. We had the Batter Fried Green Beans with dipping sauce, and the Sizzling Shrimp with Stewed Garlic and Arbol Chilies. Both were delicious, and I was prompted to flag down a passing bus-boy to get some as-yet-undelivered bread to soak up the yummy shrimp liquid before it was whisked away.

For main courses, T. had the special Pizza Of The Day -- an excellent lamb sausage and arugula mixture on a lovely salty, olive-oil-laden, bready crust. I had asked for the Roast Chicken Breast with Fava Beans, having a real jones for Favas, but sadly, it was no longer available. The nice waiter offered to ask Chef Keller if she'd countenance putting the Steelhead Trout together with the existing Fava Bean, Baby Artichoke, Nasturtiums and Pecorino appetizer for me, instead of whatever was supposed to come with the trout (I forget -- endive maybe). Bless her heart, she countenanced. It may not have been the most appropriate combination, but all of the components were very satisfying, the artichokes perhaps even more so than the favas. We both had glasses of a nice red Cote-du-Rhone. The selection of wines by the glass was pretty limited.

Food-wise, it all fell apart at dessert time. My pear and blackberry crisp with vanilla ice-cream was all crisp and little fruit. T.'s Chocolate Sin Cake was mostly a sin of omission, flavor-wise, and was somewhat stale with a rancid pecan crust to boot. But a fine espresso and yummy vin santo redeemed things.

So, hail and farewell to Bizou.

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