Lumache pasta with ricotta – Barzotto

Lumache pasta with ricotta - Barzotto
Tomato sauce, parmesan. $13
Barzotto, San Francisco CA

Mmm, this pasta was SO delicious and comforting! I loved the simple tomato sauce combined with two types of cheeses. NOMS!

Wood fired oysters – Hog & Hominy

Wood fired oysters - Hog & Hominy
Parmesan, calabrian chile, butter, lemon. $14
Hog & Hominy, Memphis

Even though these oysters weren’t raw and fresh (my favorite way to have oysters), this preparation was really flavorful. I loved the texture of the wood fired oysters and its toppings. The calabrian chile was a great addition.

Cross-Town Fade cocktail - Hog & Hominy
Cross-Town Fade cocktail – Belle Meade bourbon, fernet branca, HH tonic, lemon, ananda ipa. $12

Duck bolognese – Volt

Duck bolognese - Volt
Braised duck legs, San Marzano tomatoes, garlic, whole wheat radiatore pasta, smoked parmesan, pepperoni bread crumbs. Tasting menu $95
Volt, Frederick MD

I thought that this was a very successful dish. I loved the combination of the duck, whole wheat pasta, smoked cheese, and breadcrumbs. It was a hearty pasta dish, but the flavors were great and you can’t get it anywhere else!

Baby arugula salad – Pesce

Baby arugula salad - Pesce
Rucoletta. Shaved fennel, parmesan, oil, lemon. $7
Pesce, San Francisco CA

Mmm, I love peppery arugula simply dressed and topped with parmesan shavings. These basic flavors are work perfectly together and whet the appetite for more to come.

Jeepney Gimlet cocktail - Pesce
Jeepney Gimlet: Swan’s Neck vodka, coconut water nectar, lime, Batavia. $10
Not too impressed with this cocktail – it was off tasting.

Butter basted eggs – Nopa

Butter basted eggs - Nopa
Broccoli de ciccio, green beans, soft polenta and parmesan. $14
Nopa, San Francisco CA

This was pretty tasty and I loved the smoky flavor of the roasted broccoli, but there really wasn’t much food in this little bowl. I was still hungry after eating this especially after the wait to get seated and then to receive the actual food. Perhaps they could considering adding a bit more food in the future because this wasn’t very satisfying.

Red-tipped echeveria

Red-tipped echeveria (Crassulaceae), West Field Road.

Tagliolini mare e monte – Cafe Renzo

Tagliolini mare e monte - Cafe Renzo
Homemade tagliolini noodles served with chanterelle mushrooms, tiger prawns, asparagus, parmesan in a light white wine garlic sauce. $19
Cafe Renzo, Palo Alto CA

Ugh, where were the chanterelles?! Either they completely forgot to add them or they slyly substituted a bunch of asparagus (which wasn’t indicated in the menu) instead. In either case, that was LAME! Overall, this was just ok anyway. The prawns were on the verge of being tough and the sauce wasn’t all that exciting.

Pacific starflower
Pacific starflower (Trientalis latifolia, Myrsinaceae), Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve.

Lobster mac and cheese – Grub

Lobster mac and cheese - Grub
Maine lobster, fusilli pasta, creamy blend of white and sharp cheddar topped with grana padana parmesan breadcrumbs. $13
Grub, San Francisco CA

The mac and cheese was ok, but I would have preferred larger chunks of lobster. The small pieces got lost in all that pasta and cheese.

Alcatraz Island
View of Alcatraz Island in the San Francisco Bay from Fisherman’s Wharf.

Mushroom tortellini and Duck confit – Bankers Hill

Housemade mushroom tortellini - Bankers Hill
Housemade mushroom tortellini, rapini, hedgehog mushrooms, truffled sherry sauce, parmesan cheese. $17.95
Bankers Hill, San Diego CA

Both these dishes were really tasty! Unfortunately, we didn’t plan our entrees very well though and weren’t ready for two super heavy and rich dishes. Sorry for the almost indistinguishable pics! 😦

Crispy skin duck confit - Bankers Hill
Crispy skin duck confit, andouille sausage, cassoulet, braised collard greens. $19.25

Lady slipper orchids
Lady slipper orchids (Paphiopedilum spp., Orchidaceae), Balboa Park Botanical Building.

Starters and sides – Wayfare Tavern

Wayfare caesar - Wayfare Tavern
Wayfare Caesar: soft egg, boquerones, garlic confit, herbed breadcrumbs. $13
Wayfare Tavern, San Francisco CA

This was a very yummy deconstructed version of a caesar salad. I loved all the different components.

Steamed Prince Edward Island mussels - Wayfare Tavern
Steamed Prince Edward Island Mussels: shaved Buddha’s hand, bay leaf, creme fraiche, uni butter. $15

The description of this dish sounded way better than what it was. The dish fell a little flat in my eyes and didn’t deliver all the flavor that the ingredients promised.

Baked macaroni and cheese - Wayfare Tavern
Baked Macaroni and Cheese: Vella dry jack, smoked olive oil. $9

Another ok dish. This wasn’t special or exciting.

Crispy brussels sprouts - Wayfare Tavern
Crispy Brussels Sprouts: garlic, pine nuts, parmesan. $8

These were delicious! I loved the texture of the brussels sprouts and they tasted amazing.

Roasted veggie omelette – Island Lava Java

Roasted veggie omelette - Island Lava Java
A generous whole-egg omelette filled with roasted veggies, Big Island goat cheese, macadamia nut pesto, avocado and parmesan cheese. Served with fresh fruit. $13.25
Island Lava Java, Kailua-Kona HI

Mmm, this omeltte was great and the ingredients were very tasty. I loved the macadamia nut pesto and the large portion. And orchid blossoms in your fruit are always a nice touch! 🙂

Iced Kona coffee - Island Lava Java

100% extra fancy Kona coffee, full city roast, over ice. $3.25

Local musician
We sat outside where they had a local musician serenading us with some Hawaiian flare. He was actually really good and we tipped him accordingly.

Roasted chicken and potato gnocchi – Briscola

Roasted chicken and potato gnocchi - Briscola
House made potato gnocchi served with braised chicken, summer corn, roasted red peppers, green beans and finished with parmesan cheese. $18
Briscola, Reno NV

Is it just me or does this look like barf on a plate? The presentation is a joke! I should have known not to order this when the the title and description of the dish had contradicting information – roasted or braised chicken? I didn’t enjoy this dish one bit. The sauce was disgusting and tasted like it was out of a can. For some reason I imagined a substantial piece of chicken, not mutilated bits thrown in with the random veggies and gummy gnocchi. They should advertise this dish as their buffet leftovers gnocchi plate, seriously.

As a whole, this meal was a disaster and I would not recommend this place to anyone. The service was horrible and the food was marginal. Argh!

Red wines - Briscola

Rodney Strong, cabernet sauvignon, Sonoma 2010. $10
Columbia Crest “Les Cheveaux”, Washington 2010. $8
These wines were decent, but honestly their wine menu is definitely lacking for a “high end” restaurant.

Focaccia - Briscola
Focaccia. Complimentary

Chopped tree trunks
Chopped tree trunks, Mount Rose Summit Trail.

The devil’s chicken – Beast and the Hare

The devil's chicken - Beast and the Hare
With shiitake/parmesan bread pudding, dandelion greens and leeks. $17
Beast and the Hare, San Francisco CA

Wow, the time between charcuterie and entree was super long. I mean SUPER long! We had time to order another glass of wine and pretty much drink it all between courses. Kinda weird. I enjoyed the space and service otherwise.

The devil's chicken - Beast and the Hare
This chicken tasted like Thanksgiving, and the bread pudding was AMAZING!

Golden Gate Bridge mural
Golden Gate Bridge mural, 19th Street.