San Francisco's legion of food bloggers represented well this week, hitting a good number of the recently-opened spots that have the town talking, from newcomers Sens and Bar Bambino to the mysterious Sozai in the Sunset. Strap in.
Bar Bambino: the best Italian newcomer? [Photo: Flickr/San Fran Annie]
1) Kicking things off, we have A Few Reservations at the Mission's Bar Bambino. While bigger names (Farina, SPQR, Ducca) steal the trendy Italian spotlight, the semi-sketchy locale on 16th just may be winning the most hearts:
Bar Bambino proved to be every bit as adorable as its name. If the restaurant had cheeks, you'd want to squeeze them as you grit your teeth. I love the scale of it—narrow and intimate without being claustrophobic.The olive oil cake, complete with sea salt sprinklings, puts the Bar Bambino experience into the "phenomenal" category. [AFR]
2) Meanwhile, the case of Sens, just opened this Monday after a weekend of friends and family, is a most curious one:
It's an odd place for a restaurant, but the cityviews from its windows -- of the Ferry Building, beautifully lit at night, and the Bay Bridge beyond -- are stunning. I hope the location will work for it, rather than against it. The large interior has the feel of an elegant hunting lodge, with stone walls original to the restaurant, wooden beams, and cocoa brown leather armchairs at every place.No one doubts the pedigree of the kitchen run by Chef Michael Dotson and Pastry Chef Shuna Lydon, but nearly everyone is wondering about the location. Yes, the Eater eye has been cast upon Sens. [BAB]
3) Not much has been written about Sozai, the brand-new izakaya on Irving Street and 16th Avenue in the Sunset, but that doesn't mean it should be ignored:
This sake tavern serves small bites of food, including a kushiyaki, sashimi, Edamame hummus with wonton chips, potato croquettes and ginger chocolate cake.Sozai is run by a husband-and-wife team, and in the tradition of the genre, the food prices seem pretty cheap and the sake list is long. More reactions wanted on this one. [Vagablond]
ELSEWHERE, we've got Vin Divine loving the "big ASS bar" and pub grub at Pete's Tavern, Bits + Bites gets fishy in a trip to Woodhouse Fish Company, and NTF checks in with the "other" Philz Coffee. Finally, we'd be remiss if we didn't give a hat-tip to Confessions of a Restaurant Whore, whose blog turned three years old this week.