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Sep 3, 2007 05:04 PM

Cafe Majestic or Acquerello for 50th Anniversary?

My parents will be spending their 50th with us in SF and we're taking them out to a really nice dinner. Unfortunately it has to be in SF proper otherwise we'd take them to Manresa. My husband and I have been to the Dining Room at the Ritz Carlton and would rather not take them there. They prefer restaurants on the quieter side, so I thought maybe Cafe Majestic or Acquerello. I've never been to either, so wasn't sure if one or the other would have the advantage. Thanks for any advice!

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  1. I was a bit underwhelmed by my dinner at Cafe Majestic 2 Fridays ago. The best thing I had was the amuse bouche of heirloom tomato soup. That was fantastic.

    The heirloom tomato salad with burrata and olive tapenade really needed the other ingredients to make it work; the tomatoes were pretty bland which is a shame in the height of tomato season.

    My entree of scallops was essentially a plate swimming in butter with some capers pooled into a corner, 2 scallops just a hair past done, and an island of cauliflower puree with fried sage on top. Tasted fine, not great (did like the puree though) and sloppily presented.

    Pretty room, sure to be quiet as it was almost empty. Our waitress was way more casual and unpolished then one would expect at a place with these price points. Someone you would be really happy to have at a diner. However, I am happy to say that the other waiters seemed very smooth. The door staff seem to be trying hard but it just seems they have never worked in a formal restaurant.

    All that said, I would give it one more shot. My friend liked his ono very much and there does seem to be promise here.

    1. I'm a big fan of the Restaurant at the Ritz Carlton and I'm not sure how much quieter you can get. It is true that Aquerello pretty much sets the standard for quiet. In my opinion a little too much so, although the food is great.

      1. I'd go with Acquerello. Its very classy and I've never been there on a noisy night. A dinner I had there with my mother and grandmother rates as one of their favorite meals of all time.

        I'd recommend the tasting menu with the optional wine pairings, which tend to be quite good. But be warned that the pours are very generous, so you'd better plan on taking a cab home.

        1. I've only been to Cafe Majestic once - the food was very good and the restaurant was quiet, but I think I would choose something different for a 50th. We had the same overly friendly and casual waitress thing someone else mentioned, and the entire place, while very newly re-done, doesn't really say "elegant" to me. Maybe I'm just not a Victorian type of person. I would definitely go to the Dining Room at the Ritz above Cafe Majestic. I've not been to Acquerello, but from what I've read here about it, I would be inclined to go there before Cafe Majestic.

          1. Acquerello has been consistently excellent for years. Quiet, great food, good service.