Tuesday, December 17, 2013

saison - san francisco, ca

178 townsend street
san francisco, ca 94107

there is nothing i can say about our meal at saison that could even begin to do it justice. from the complimentary champagne at the bar prior to being seated to the handshake i received from our captain as he put us in a cab at meals end, everything about our experience was superlative. we opted for the extended tasting menu, and while my expectations for the meal were sky high, i will admit that i was somewhat uneasy as the cost of the meal was considerably higher than i had ever paid before. this tinge of uncertainty vanished almost immediately as it was clear from the first bite that we were in good hands. i am not going to comment much on the food as the pics/ingredients really speak for themselves, but i do want to note that i enjoyed chef skenes' caviar dish more than the famous 'oysters and pearls'. with regard to the staff, everyone from the bartender to the gm was very friendly and genuine. i really enjoyed talking restaurants with our captain (matt i believe), and was thrilled that he took the time (unprompted) to write down some lesser known bay area suggestions for me. i have a hard time officially declaring my all time favorite meal, but it is easy for me to say that saison is in that conversation, and i will be stunned if the restaurant does not receive the third michelin star this year.
sake cocktail to begin

custard, grilled turnip, sea urchin

caviar, potato, pickles, potato peel gelee

scallop, fennel nage, pear
coal kissed fish, cherry blossom

trout roe, ember preserved tomato

mackerel, vinegar of its bones

sea cucumber skin, sauce of its innards

abalone, roasted over embers

cardoon royale, white truffles

dungeness crab, brain gelee, chrysanthemum

parker house rolls

rutabaga, slowly grilled overnight, sweetwater oyster, caviar

duck liver toffee, bread, milk, beer

wood pigeon, tourte, pruneaux

beef, slowly grilled in a bed of hay

sorbet, pear, yuzu, pain d'epices

black walnut, soufflée and ice cream
white truffle ice cream
grilled buckwheat tea
tartlets and liquid truffles

canele de bordeaux

souvenir menu and take home treat

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