The Bauer Memoir decides to visit another old fave in Jackson Fillmore. Things start off unpleasantly: "I can't remember when I've had lazier waiters." And continue: "That same sloppiness, I'm sorry to say, could also be seen in the open kitchen." The food's not great, as in "medicinal" meatballs, the server forgets Bauer's spaghetti carbonara and even though dessert is "much better," it's still a 1.5 star experience. [Chron]
On the other side of the coin, Kauff starts his review of Hayes Valley's Nojo by complimenting the Japanese service style: "like being raised by collective mothers." Then he leaps right into the squid and potato dish: "really effing good." In the current sea of izakayas, Nojo feels "less self-consciously Japanese and more Hayes Valley." While the menu's "not on a stick" items remind of dishes at nearby Zuni and Bar Jules (in a good way), the "on a stick" section "definitely seems the lesser half." Yes there are duds, but their blows are lessened by "exquisite" things like white-miso brushed trout and chicken wings that "prickle the tongue." [SF Weekly]
Reidinger trips to Morph in the Outer Richmond and delights in the "up-to-date and clever" design elements at once. "Luckily, the food provides considerable cheer." Coconut milk curries are "lovely," a soft shell crab is "meltingly tender within," crispy fried rainbow trout is "arresting," but sadly desserts are "less distinctive." [Guardian]
The Elsewhere: Marin IJ doesn't find any standouts at Novato's new Southern Pacific Smokehouse, EBX enjoys a reinvented Baltic, The Merc delights in Union City's Federicos, Bargain Bite finds some differences at the Cha Cha Cha in San Mateo and the second Chron review today is of Cafe Oliveto: 1.5 stars. Ooof.
Jackson Fillmore on Fillmore St.. [Photo: San Francisco Days]