San Francisco: Restaurant Week 2016

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San Francisco Restaurant week – definitely one of my favorite weeks food related.  It’s actually longer than a week, but that’s no matter.  I had a great time going out to eat with friends (new and old) and even by myself. It’s definitely one of my favorite things to do since I’m able to try restaurants that looked good and especially the ones with a great deals.

I initially decided on going to 4 different places; initially 2 by myself one weekend, and then another 2 with friends another weekend. Then a couple of friends wanted to do two places on a Sunday brunch so I ended up going to a total of 6 places in 2 weeks. One of my resolutions this year was to eat out less since I spent a bit too much money last year on food and those kinds of experiences; however, restaurant week is too much to say not to. So onward to the food and my experiences.

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Restaurant Week at Nostra

The first restaurant was Nostra. I actually didn’t plan on coming here with anyone, but I did come with a first date. I told the guy I was planning on coming here for a self-date and invited him to it since I didn’t really care either way.  The starter (sausage crispy polenta) was a great starter and the DIY pasta (I decided to go with gnocchi with pesto and calamari). I love the pasta, but it was a bit salty. It could be a disaster since a person could choose a bad combination of foods.  My dessert – which was the chocolate lava cake was definitely oozy and delicious. Always up for some chocolate cake!

 

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Restaurant Week at Garcon

The second restaurant was Garcon. This was the one I went to by myself. I had a decent time and food was great, but admittedly, I was a little offended. They sat me in probably the worst seat in the house – right next to where they cut the bread, and where they had their POS system. The gnocchi was fried and slightly greasy for my tastes, but delicious. The bacon part of it and the softness of the gnocchi was great. The beef cheek bourguignon was amazing, especially with the free bread. The beef cheeks were so tender. The profiteroles covered in chocolate and ice cream! If you can’t tell, I love ice cream and chocolate!

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Restaurant Week at Myriad

The first of two brunches I had was at Myriad. I loved the fact they gave us some popcorn and biscuits to start with. The popcorn was slightly stale at some points, but the little bit of cheese on top made it worthwhile. Biscuits were delicious with the butter and cranberry compote. We went with two RW dishes and one extra dish. The two dishes were the Mayan pork and potato hash and the shakshuka. The global inspired food was great and it was definitely an adventure to try new things. Honestly, the American dish of them all (grits, kale, and a poached egg – not on the RW menu) was the table’s favorite.

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Restaurant Week at Mathilde

After a quick pit stop for some coffee at Ritual, the second brunch was at Mathilde. I had actually walked into Mathilde and realized I had been there before – back when it was called Le Charm. I had a great first date there…but that’s a story for a different time. Brunch was…alright. We decided to share a RW meal and get one other dish among the three of us. It was probably a bit strange to the restaurant, but we were eating our second meal within 3 hours. The two items we got – the steak and the salmon benedict – were not amazing or mind-blowing in any way. They were average at best.

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Restaurant Week at Cafe du Nord

Since one of my best girlfriends and I both love food in the Castro (which is where we live), we decided to go to a restaurant that we had never been to – Cafe du Nord. Honestly, the place is a bit confusing since we were sitting in the Viking room for dinner, but since the place is so dark, I walked in and out of that place a few times before I found the room. The music was loud, almost a bit too loud since I couldn’t hear myself talk. The food was amazing though. I loved the oysters and the main dish – braised short ribs. The short ribs were tender and the sauce that came with it – there needed to be more! Overall, decent experience, but great drinks!

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Restaurant Week at Les Clos

 

The last restaurant I ended up going to I had been before for brunch, Les Clos. It’s mostly known as a wine bar, but the French inspired food there is pretty decent. Definitely not the best food I had during RW but a great deal! Three dishes, each with a wine pairing (so about 1 glass since each was a small pour). I even got my best guy friend to try some things he’s never had before – foie gras and duck confit. I kind of wish the foie was a bit more mousse like because that’s easier to eat than a slab of foie gras trying to spread on a piece of bread. Duck was tender and flavors were delicious. Ending with some more chocolate and ice cream!

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I appreciate restaurant week for everything it’s worth, but 6 restaurants in 5 days is a bit much. I do wish it was at a different time of the year when I could eat out more often. Busy season at work just kills any possibility of that. It was still a lot of fun and I can’t wait for next year!

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