Sink into soft cushions beneath honeycomb chandeliers as you slip into the Sunday morning feastival. Menu selections include a prawn salad with chicories and tangerines ($15) or house-made brioche french toast with spiced apples and maple syrup fraiche ($11). Well past noon, gingerly ease into the day as you would with a too-warm hot tub with a sparkling pinot noir ($5) and goat cheese semifreddo with melon granite and peppercorn meringue ($9). Nectar Wine Lounge carries more than 600 bottles of wine, along with standard brunch sips such as mimosas ($7). Eating, sipping, and socializing all take place within a cozy, coolly lit lounge atmosphere with a drizzling of natural light from an overhead skylight.
La Bohème handcrafts each meal using only seasonal, local ingredients from organic farms to perfect each Francified bite. This upscale, Paris-inspired café and full patisserie serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner to discerning taste buds, adding new pirouettes to classic dishes. Try beginning an evening with the Assiette de la Marée, a grouping of six local oysters with a tangy mignonette sauce ($12), or lunch elegantly on the popular Salade de Crabe, a fresh herb and organic lettuce salad with dungeness crab and an herby-citrus vinaigrette drizzled atop ($11). Crustacean lovers can order La Bohème's beloved lobster bisque ($8) and delve deeply into a glass of Tangent sauvignon blanc ($9), whereas terrestrial tasters can sink teeth into the Jarret de Veau et Son Gratin—veal osso bucco nestled up to delicate au gratin potatoes and ratatouille ($27).
It makes sense that a chef as mobile as Matias Bordaverri would take his chops on the road. Over more than 15 years in the culinary field, he has cooked his way through South and Central America, the Caribbean, and, now, the United States. He works out of a black food truck, his road-ready eatery’s name emblazoned in red on the side—Whisk on Wheels—stacking customer favorites such as the turkey and Angus burgers with beefsteak tomatoes, provolone, and smoked pepper mayo. “This was one of the juiciest burgers we’ve had in a long time,” said Luis Chong, a writer for SF Weekly’s Street Eats blog. “We couldn’t discern the secret ingredients in the meat patty…. Whatever it was, it was delicious.” The menu shows its South American roots with hand-rolled empanadas stuffed with spinach and ricotta, ground beef, or shredded chicken, which Chong said were “every bit as good as the empanadas we’ve found while traveling in South America.” Whisk on Wheels regularly updates its Facebook and Twitter pages to divulge their location to diners, share specials, and give the truck a place to put its feelings into words.
After losing a sizeable amount of weight with his kitchen-made juices, Sal had the idea to open a café coupling his love of French culture with his new appreciation for the role of food in health. With the help of his son, he opened Deja Vu, where painted ivy sneaks around the edges of menus on walls the color of rich buttercream. On the menu, Sal’s original French inspiration shines through in crepes, and fruit and veggie smoothies made from organic ingredients stay true to his nutritional vision.
Low in sugar and ideal for cleansing, the drinks can also be amplified with multiple types of protein. Blenders purr, full of smoothies and juices made with kale, green apples, ginger, oranges, and even hints of parsley, all delivered fresh daily. Crepes are also a Deja Vu specialty, whether filled with bananas and chocolate-hazelnut spread, or ham, veggies, or warm chicken and pesto. Conversation about the weather or the weatherman’s constant weeping drift over warm corned-beef sandwiches, and shoots of steam blossom from fresh-brewed organic coffee.
Every day, San Francisco Soup Company?s chefs craft crunchy salads and approximately 12 soups from scratch, keeping an eye on sustainability and seasonality. Both salads and soups showcase organic and locally sourced ingredients such as cage-free eggs from Glaum Egg Ranch and organic milk from Clover Stornetta, and soups cast tendrils of steam from biodegradable containers. San Francisco Soup Company?s commitment to conscious dining extends to the nutritional realms: each recipe comes with nutrition stats, and the menu even designates which soups are gluten-, meat- and dairy-free, and which soup spoons best shield noses from affectionate pinches.
On Mother’s Day, Fandorin dazzles taste buds with a five-course feast of fresh caviar, lobster soup, foie gras, and a bottle of champagne for each table. Palates warm up with lobster bisque and a savory shrimp puff before munching mixed greens sprinkled with fried brie and poached pears. Sturgeon caviar, smoked salmon, and Chilean sea bass arrive atop silver-dollar pancakes. Next up is a regal foie gras in pinot-noir raiment and a brioche roll crowned with juicy grilled peach. Crab cakes tango with a vivacious avocado aioli as filet-mignon stroganoff whispers sweet nothings to his porcini-polenta darling. The main course presents a plot twist, making guests choose between rack of lamb with rosemary-cabernet reduction or king salmon with dungenes crab crust, beurre blanc, and lobster mashed potatoes. Before the taste journey concludes, guests must sample tiramisu, napoleon cake, and sweet berry sabayon or else walk a plank made of bad report cards and embarrassing baby photos.