Finding good sushi in the City is difficult. Add in the words “affordable” and “sustainable” and it becomes nearly impossible. Enter: Tataki.
First and foremost, what really sets Tataki apart from almost every other restaurant in San Francisco is their commitment to sustainable seafood. Ask yourself, and be honest, if you can tell the difference in taste between Yellowtail Tuna and Albacore Tuna? Or, for that matter, Yellowtail Tuna and Mackerel? If you’re anything like me, the answer is probably no. My sushi knowledge goes as far as knowing that I prefer firmer fish to buttery fish, shrimp tempura is magically delicious, and my rolls need to be dunked in wasabi-spiced soy sauce for ultimate satisfaction. Novice at best. So when I don’t see “traditional” sushi selections, like Bluefin Tuna, and am instead greeted with a list of Pole-Caught Skipjack Tuna (katsuo), Closed-Containment Farmed Striped Bass (Suzuki), and McFarland Springs Trout, I’m not disappointed….Continue Reading
Tags: japanese cuisine, Noe Valley, seafood, sf examiner review, sushi
2) Big Daddy Bowl, Hapa Ramen
This dish opened my eyes not only to how delicious real ramen is, but also to how thoughtful and complex it can be. Hapa Ramen’s Big Daddy Bowl goes beyond flavorful broth and perfectly-cooked noodles – it brings in a variety of ingredients that add subtle nuances, richness, and seasonality. Of all of the dishes on this list, this is the one that I have gone back to eat the most. There’s just something about the combination of the warmth, the spice, creamy slow-cooked egg, sweet squash, and fried fatty meat that keeps me coming back for more. You can read all of the details in my review of Hapa Ramen.
Tags: cheap food, embarcadero, ferry building, japanese cuisine, ramen, Top 10 of 2010
After my first time experiencing what a real bowl of ramen is supposed to taste like, I was left feeling utterly perplexed. How in the world did Nissan foods take something so rich and complex in flavor, and create a replica that is totally overloaded with sodium and tastes like absolutely nothing? Who did a side by side comparison and decided, “Hey! Our instant Cup of Noodles can totally pass as ramen! It’s close enough to the real thing, I bet hardly anyone will be able to tell the difference!” It would be like saying an M&M could pass as a fresh cream truffle from Jean-Charles Rochoux, one of the best chocolatiers in Paris. It simply makes no sense…Continue Reading
Tags: cheap food, embarcadero, ferry bulding, food cart, japanese cuisine, lunch, ramen
If someone would’ve told me five months ago that, by October, I’d be craving a chilled suimono salad once a week, I would’ve looked that person right in the eye and said, “What the hell a chilled suimono salad?” After hearing that it’s made with sea bean, cucumber, squash blossom, wakame seaweed, tofu, and served in a dashi broth ($14), I would’ve politely explained that I’m not the biggest fan of cucumber, seaweed, tofu, or dashi broth and proceeded to laugh at such a ridiculous prediction. Ah, silly, silly girl.
This unique salad, the ultimate expression of freshness, is one of many reasons why in a very short span of time Nombe has become one of my favorite restaurants. It was in the spring when Nombe first impressed me with its California-inspired take on traditional Japanese izakaya fare, offering both a fixed selection of dishes, as well as many that evolve with the season. Now five months later, even with the summer’s proliferation of much-hyped restaurants, Nombe has continued to stand out from the crowd…Continue Reading
Tags: california cuisine, japanese cuisine, sf examiner review, the mission
In my opinion, Nombe (pronounced “nom-bay”) has been the best addition to the Mission’s dining scene in the last year (in fact, I included it in the May edition of my Examiner series “Restaurants to Impress.” The spirit of the area is completely embodied in the restaurant’s concept: no-frills, relatively inexpensive, open late, a hip-without-trying-to-be vibe on the inside, and a unique menu (well close to it, as there are almost no izakaya-style restaurants in SF), that proves seasonal, sustainable, local, Japanese diner food has a place in this city…
Tags: 100 best of the bay, japanese cuisine, sf examiner review, small plates, the mission