Superb cocktails and eclectic, well-paired dishes at this new destination restaurant in Lower Haight
The only dish I wasn't as taken with is still well-executed: seared arctic char ($23) swimming in smoked fume broth with carrots and turnips. There's nothing wrong with the soft white fish — it just lacked the flavor punch found in its accompanying pickled PEI mussels. Its match was one of the best cocktails on the menu, Hibiki Highball ($12), showcasing Japanese whisky — Hibiki 12-year in this case — with a giant ice cube, house ginger syrup, bitters, and soda water. Wine and beer pairings are likewise thoughtful: Hennepin, Ommegang's farmhouse saison beer, with a mushroom tart, or Poco a Poco's funky, fun Chardonnay with the arctic char.
Dessert could easily be Beach & Hyde, an off-menu cocktail named after the cross streets of legendary bar Buena Vista. Inspired by Buena Vista's famed Irish coffees, the drink is Evan Williams bourbon, coffee brewed with cocoa nibs and vanilla, plus egg white and orange zest. If you want to actually eat dessert, you won't suffer with dark Mayan chocolate in brownie-reminiscent slices, accented by black cardamom ice cream.
In fact, you won't suffer here at all.
598 Haight, SF.
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