Specchio - Page 2

Mirror, mirror: Specchio offers stylishly traditional north-Italian cooking in an ultra-modern Mission setting

Specchio offers stylishly traditional north-Italian cooking with dishes like mussels with fennel.
Guardian photo by Rory McNamara

Swordfish, as the meatiest of fish, needs no introduction and very little help — just some tabs of braised leek and grapefruit sections, say, atop a grilled steak (prix-fixe), itself seated atop a bed of roasted potato, zucchini, and red bell pepper. The leek and grapefruit made an unexpected and appealing combination: a fruity sharpness with an undertone of earth.

Complaining about tiramisù is almost as cliché as tiramisù itself, so I am pleased to report that Specchio's tiramisù was as good as could be: moist but not soggy, with a nice balance between the competing charges of espresso and liquor. (The great weakness of tiramisù is too much booze, which leads to sogginess and drunk-breath.) Equally impressive, in the Italian tradition of classic simplicity, was a pat of lightly sweetened ricotta cheese topped with a syrupy strawberry reduction that was more fruit than sweet. It was like a small piece of cheesecake, with no crust. Is there a Chef Boyardee take on this? I hope not.


Dinner: Tues.–Thurs., Sun., 5:30–10:30 p.m.;

Fri.–Sat., 5:30–11 p.m.

2331 Mission, SF

(415) 958-5528


Wine and beer,


Well-managed noise

Wheelchair accessible


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