We dipped the rings in the companion ramekin of plain ketchup, which was fine, though not quite as fine as the rings themselves.
Monterey calamari ($12) was a more typical item, with the rings and tentacles swaddled in a heavy golden coat of bread crumbs. Despite the slightly lurid look, the seafood itself was tender and gently sweet-briny, with a colorful salad of frisée and slivered carrot and lime aioli on the side for balance.
Comparably golden, though not as heavy, were crab cakes ($16), a matched pair of plump pucks made with a generous amount of actual crab meat (filler is a perennial problem for crab cake aficionados) and plated with a fabulously tart little salad of apple threads and tendrils of watercress. Lemon-caper aioli provided a final zest kicker.
Yes, the Long Bar kitchen has a flair for salads, of all things. Even the caesar ($9) was excellent, despite a lack of anchovies. The croutons were crunchy and plentiful, the Parmesan shavings were piled up like drifts in a blizzard, the dressing was notably lemony, and the romaine spears were immaculate and crisp. I did wonder why, given the considerable scale of the caesar, why no grilled-chicken upgrade is offered. With a little protein, this salad could easily pass as a light main course.
Desserts, we were told, are due for an upgrade, from a pastry chef whose arrival is imminent. In the meantime, the choices are a bit TGI Friday's but perfectly serviceable: mud pie ($8), a fluffy chocolate mousse under a glossy cap of dark chocolate; and mango cheesecake ($8), also fluffy, in a graham-cracker crust that's worth its weight in ... well, graham crackers, at least.
Dinner: Sun., Tues.Thurs, 510 p.m.;
Fri.Sat., 510:30 p.m.
2298 Fillmore, SF
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