Top Tastes

Nostra Spaghetteria's raviolo burger

September’s Top 10 Dishes & New Openings

As I await the opening of the likes of NINEBARK in Napa (a preview that yielded stellar tastes from chef Matthew Lightner formerly of 2 Michelin-starred Atera in NYC, Mugaritz in Spain and Noma in Copenhagen), I’ve also enjoyed healthy, high tech, cheap eats at the new eatsa. Here are my top 10 September dishes and new openings, some from… Read more →

Salsipuedes' roasted corn

August’s Top 10 Dishes & New Openings

August was quite a month for notable new openings from Oakland to SF, including restaurants like The Keystone in the Mosser Hotel (my Zagat feature on the opening here). I also visited months-old spots, like the solid-though-not-overwhelming Buttermilk Southern Kitchen, or savored old school torta comfort (a steal with massive tortas) at Tortas Boos Voni. On the cheap eats front,… Read more →

Hokkaido uni at the new Omakase

Top 10 Dishes & New Openings of July

In addition to plates from the Mugaritz chef from Spain cooking at Coi for one night only, here are my top 10 July dishes and new openings, some newcomers, some established spots. 1. Omakase’s Omakase Just open in June, Omakase is another in that blessedly growing category of Japan-esque sushi experiences in SF: tasting menus prepared with reverent precision, heavy… Read more →

Saison 8-Virginia Miller

Top 10 Dishes & New Openings of June

Here are my top 10 June dishes and new openings, some newcomers, some established spots. 1. Saison’s Special Nigiri Menu Joshua Skenes’ Saison is known the world over for endless accolades and some of the priciest meals in the nation. Now, there is a restaurant-within-a-restaurant, a hidden dining room that is a collaboration between Skenes and Chef Jiro Lin. Lin… Read more →

Trestle's polenta ravioli (see Top Tastes)

Top 10 Dishes & New Openings of May

Here are my top 10 dishes for May, from new openings and established spots. 1. Montesacro’s Margherita Pinsa Open in April, the new Montesacro is like a quick flight to Italy, transported to Rome itself from the moment one walks through the door off of rough-and-tumble Stevenson Street and is greeted by the Italian owner and staff. As I detail… Read more →

Jin Mi Korean-Virginia Miller

5 New Take-Out Options

These 5 spots are new or under-the-radar and though you can sit down/eat-in at all of them — and Burma Love, in particular, has a cool dining room and bar — they have all been doing me right for take-out.  1. Korean: Jin Mi Korean Near Civic Center on a rough-and-tumble block of Golden Gate Ave., Jin Mi Korean is… Read more →

ICHI Kakiya scallop crudo

Top 5 Dishes & New Openings of April

When not enjoying cheap eats from hole-in-the-wall favorites like Mexico-authentic chilaquiles from Dona Mago or fantastic xiao long bao, sesame balls and dumplings from Dim Sum Club, I am out exploring new openings, new chef’s menus and returning to places, most recently Amoura, Schroeder’s and Boxing Room. These two low-key newcomers work well for takeout, though no one dish initially… Read more →

Kitchen Istanbul's back wall

3 Affordable New Standouts In Turkish, Vegan & Mexican Food

Here are three newcomers I’m loving, whether for a quick lunch or take-out, each with some notable dishes. KITCHEN ISTANBUL, Inner Richmond Just open in December 2014 in the former Troya space (the Fillmore Troya location is thankfully still going strong), Kitchen Istanbul is my new, go-to Turkish spot, ideal for eat-in or take-out. As with my longtime Iraqi favorite,… Read more →