Magnolia on Haight
It was getting late on Monday evening and I felt like relaxing, eating some solid, satisfying food, and coping with the fact that there were still 4 days left till the weekend. Crepes on Cole sounded good, but after searching 20 minutes for parking, my dinner companion and I decided to head down to Haight knowing there must be something there that would satisfy our hunger. As it turns out, we found it at the Magnolia Pub & Brewery. That night was "New Orleans Night" and I took advantage of this and ordered the special: crawfish with fusilli in a creamy, garlic sauce with Cajun spices. My friend ordered the fusilli with toulouse sausage, tiger shrimp and chicken tossed in a garlic aurora sauce. Neither one of us was disappointed, although I did prefer his to mine.
My quick disclosure will be that I'm not a big fan of very spicy food (I decided to take the waiters word that the Cajun spices weren't overly spicy) and was very pleased to discover that they were just perfect. They added a rush to my tastebuds but didn't prevent me from knowing what else was in my dish.
This isn't necessarily a place I would go for a special evening, but with very reasonable prices, a mouthwatering menu (for example: chicken coq au vin, apricot bourbon pork tenderloin, three bean vegan cassoulet - for those who chose to consume no animal - and shepherd pie with Niman ranch beef) and a decent wine list (all good selections and no bottled priced over $26.00) I wouldn't hesitate to return when I just want yummy, comfort food to fill me up. This speaks volumes since living in San Francisco makes it terribly difficult to return to the same restaurant time and again when you know there are so many wonderful places waiting to be discovered.
Another plus, for me, is that on the weekdays and Saturday it stays open until 1:00am.
I'd be interested in hearing what other people have to say about this place. Did my hunger and parking angst cause me to be overly enthusiastic, or is this really what I think it to be: a place with above average food, good wine, good service and great hours.
first of all if you're in the hood and can't find parking you're welcome to use my driveway as long as i know where you'll be-parking around here can be absolutely miserable i know all too well.
steve and i ate at magnolia just after it opened a couple years ago and i really, really wanted to like it. it just seemed like the kind of place to go a couple times a month. unfortunately our experience there was quite different from yours. but now with new input we would definately try it again.
another place around here you might want to try along the same kind of great homemade real food kitchen is kezar. they even make the onion hamburger buns they serve, great ceasar, spiced peanuts at the bar, yummy french fries, delicious chicken. but it can be hard to get a table there as it fills up with people from the hood early.
i was suprized to see you'd headed out for crepes on cole. i must have seriously misordered the times i've been there. i'd be interested to know what you have there. maybe i'm missing a gem in my own neighborhood because of rye toast not wheat!
i am serious about the driveway. just give a call.