Mission Beach Cafe open -- any reports?
Very nice-looking cafe opened at 14th and Guerrero two weeks ago. I walked by tonight and got some info (didn't eat anything since I had just finished dinner).
Morning pastries begin at 7 am, followed by a lunch menu of sandwiches and dinners of small plates and modestly priced ($8-15) comfort-ish food. The pastries looked quite good, especially the ginger blueberry muffin. All pastries are made in-house, and the pastry chef (Alan) used to make the pies and other baked goods at Chow.
We went for dinner the other night and it was quite good. It was peopled, but not crowded, and the service was ridiculously kind and attentive - they were out of something that we tried to order, and brought us a plate of gnocchi on the house in apology. The dinner menu is a bit misleading - they are not entrees, but large-ish small plates (a 3 oz. burger with a handful of fries, a small dollop of great sweet potato puree with some nicely seared tuna). the value is excellent, but if you're hungry, three dishes for two people is probably a more sound way to go.
I went there for dinner tonight. The desserts are very good. A friend's daughter had the apple cranberry pie and the crust was flaky. My friend and I shared brownie points with a toffee type sauce and fresh whipped cream. Also very good. They had strawberry rhubarb pie which was tempting so might have to make a point to go back.
I had the tuna tartar and the mini-burger. The tuna tartar was good. Tuna was cut bigger than I'm used to, but seasoned well, and it worked. I liked the size of the burger. Perfect. And the meat was high quality, tasty. It came with sauteed onions, and roasted tomatoes, so it's a fancy type mini burger.
Restaurant was mosty full at 7:30.
I stopped in the morning--the space is open and bright, particularly on this sunny day. I agree that locals may find this misleading and expect it to be a coffee house--there were a couple of customers reading papers and drinking coffee at tables, but this is definitely not a Ritual-type Wifi-offering office away from the office.
There were a number of pastry selections, including the canneles and some nice-looking croissants. I opted for the ginger-blueberry muffin, a dark little guy sprinkled with powdered sugar. I liked the blueberries but could have used more ginger throughout--it tastes like there are little chopped bits of candied ginger instead of ginger spice sprinkled throughout. The muffin was not too sweet, which I liked, but was very oily. I got mine to go and the paper bag was soaked through by the time I got to the office.
The clerks were very friendly, the space was nice, and the prices were fair ($2 for my muffin). I would return and probably get a pastry based on croissant dough--those looked superb.
I am so glad to see this place finally open. I went by this morning. Everything in the display case was beautiful.
I bought two canneles. They were perfect. Crunchy on the outside, creamy on the inside.
The man behind the counter was very warm and friendly and it wasn't a mob scene. In my book, this makes it much better than Tartine.
Impressive that the pastries are made on site.
I'm looking forward to going back and trying more items.
Pastries are both good and varied. We had a ginger blueberry muffin (not that gingery but nicely springy) and an almond croissant that was very oozy (not a criticism from me). Alan came out a few times beaming.
The name's a little misleading, at least if you're expecting another coffee house. This is a restaurant with attentive table service. Fries were crisp if a bit salty. My fish tacos were okay; I didn't like the flour tortilla. Stick to drip coffee over espresso drinks.