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In a state of hibernation. My backlog has long become unsustainable. Will probably tweet more and write less full-length stuff.


Entries in French (36)


Edouard Artzner

Sitting at home in SF was a jar of goose rillettes from Edouard Artzner, courtesy of I believe Auntie Margie. Actually, I feel horrible that I don't remember for sure who gave it to us - if you happen to be the one who gave this to my mom a while ago, please do remind me! Anyway, rillettes are shredded dried meat slowly cooked with fat. It's sort of like a meaty p�t�, if that makes any sense. And as you might imagine, this type of thing sits all by its lonesome in the fridge until I get home, since my vegetarian mom doesn't give it quite the love it deserves.

Edouard Artzner goose rillettes

rillettes on sliced baguette from Il Fornaio Baguette from Il Fornaio, you ask. Well, I was kind of desperate and Il Fornaio was close by. I actually wasn't very confident going in that they even made a baguette, but it turns out they do. It was mediocre, but alright. The rillettes, on the other hand, were delicious! Probably a little too oily and fatty for a lot of people out there, but this stuff is right up my alley. It has just the right combination of saltiness, meat, and fat to turn a piece of bread into a nice little meal. Apparently, you can actually order the stuff off of their website. Rillettes are usually not very expensive.

La Suite

Only had one real dinner in SF before I went to Vancouver, and it was at a new place called La Suite. It took over the old Slanted Door location (the middle one along Embarcadero, not the Mission one), and serves brasserie-style French Provencal cuisine. The space is very large, with a dark wood interior.

kobe beef tartare with mustard, piment d'espelette, and croutons - $12

wood-grilled niman ranch entrecote au herbes de provence, with bearnaise sauce and pomme frites - $28 The beef tartare was great. They bring the various ingredients (beef, egg, mustard, capers, onions, etc.) and mix it tableside. The croutons (not pictured) were garlicky and crisp. Kobe beef works well with tartare, as you might expect. The marbled fattiness adds a wonderful soft texture to the dish. I ate a lot of beef at this meal. The entrecote (bearnaise sauce not pictured) was also very well done. I consider the steak frites a barometer for any bistro or brasserie and La Suite executes it well. The beef was very tender and flavorful, and nice and fatty like it should be. It was grilled just enough to give it a hint of that hot charred taste, but still very medium rare. The fries were well-seasoned and crispy. La Suite has a huge and interesting menu. There were probably over 10 dishes in the appetizer list that I'd like to try. Certainly not the cheapest place for bistro-type fare, but I think I'll probably go back in the future. Let me also note that the service was very friendly. I went with Keith and my dad - Keith had a flight to catch, and we were late because of traffic, leaving us very little time to eat (less than an hour). The service was very quick and accommodating, and we got out of there quick.

Baker Street Bistro

Ahrie visited the bay area for a little bit during the weeks before school, and I met up with her and Danielle for a day. Here's a dinner at Baker Street Bistro.

potato leek soup potato leek soup

beef cheek with parsnip puree beef cheek with parsnip puree

chocolate mousse chocolate mousse I hadn't been to this place for probably a couple years (before I went to college). Baker Street Bistro is the definition of a small neighborhood French joint: friendly, laid-back, reliable, and consistent. It's been around for a long time, and I must say it is probably one of the best values in the city. The 3 items I had were part of a prix fixe special for a mere $14.50. For a good proper 3 course dinner and excellent food, that kind of price is hard to beat. The soup was very solid, and I pretty much licked the bowl clean using some bread. The beef cheek was amazingly tender and flavorful, and the parsnip definitely added some kick. I kinda forgot what a parsnip was when I saw it. It must have been a long time since I've had it, but the horseradishy taste was a nice complement to the beef. The chocolate mousse was okay, but a little too sweet for my taste. Do note that the place is a great deal even when you order a la carte - most of the mains are around $11 or $12. For lunch, it's an even more amazing deal.


Just got back to San Francisco. Trip to Asia was great and there is a lot of food coming... I promise. Still going through some SF entries though - here's one of my SF staples, Galette.

galette with potatoes, onions, and brie - $9 galette with potatoes, onions, and brie - $9

galette with ham, cheese, and egg - $8 galette with ham, cheese, and egg - $8

galette with salted butter and vanilla sugar - $4 galette with salted butter and vanilla sugar - $4 The brie one usually has pancetta too but my mom ordered it without. I almost always order the ham/cheese/egg one, but after trying my mom's I may go with the brie one (pancetta included) next time. It was really tasty. I also prefer the simple butter/sugar one to the sweeter and more complicated ones with more toppings. Galette is really a great place, and I urge everyone to try it. Even the side salads are yummy.

Chez Nous

Despite our apartment move, my mom and I still hit a lot of the places back by our old house. Here's a lunch from Chez Nous, a French-Mediterranean small plates place affiliated with the Bay Bread Boulangerie around the corner.

pommes frites with harissa aioli pommes frites with harissa aioli

heirloom tomato salad with manouri cheese and basil oil heirloom tomato salad with manouri cheese and basil oil

peynirli borek-phyllo turnovers with feta, leek, and spinach peynirli borek-phyllo turnovers with feta, leek, and spinach

sauteed haricots verts with cashews and lemon sauteed haricots verts with cashews and lemon

pan-seared scallops, sweet corn, cherry tomatoes, chorizo pan-seared scallops, sweet corn, cherry tomatoes, chorizo The place seems to be doing less business than in the past (it was impossible to get a table for a while), but the food is still great. Pommes frites are addictive and the accompanying aioli is delicious. Heirloom tomatoes were simple but also great - I guess every restaurant is doing them now. Phyllo turnovers were nothing special but still good. Haricots verts were so-so, due I think more to the quality of the beans than anything about the preparation. The scallop dish was awesome. Scallops were cooked perfectly, and the pile of corn/tomato/chorizo was delicious.
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