Lunch at the Farley Bar at Cavallo Point
- The Librarian Jun 27, 2008 09:25 AM
I had lunch with my mother and daughter there on Tuesday. We chose to have lunch in the Bar rather than the restaurant which looked a little too formal. The Bar is pretty, with two fireplaces and comfortable chairs and couches. It doesn't have a lot of tables, and our server said it gets jammed at night. The menu is limited with very few options for my vegetarian daughter. She ended up having the kid's lunch (even though she's not a kid) with macaroni and cheese, grilled cheese sandwich, mixed berry salad, and chocolate pudding (unbelievably rich and dark!). I had the streamed Marin mussels in smoked pimenton butter which was fine. The mussels were huge and tasty, but the liquid seemed rather watery. I also got the Little Gem salad with parmesan and anchovies (which I couldn't locate) which was ok, not great. My mother had the burger with cheddar which was huge and came with a small amount of salty crispy fries. The service was ridiculously pretentious and formal. When our entrees arrived, each was carried by a different server and placed on our small table simultaneously. Come on - I know that's a style of serving, but in a bar (although a fancy one)?! Rolls were brought around and served with tongs. We assumed they would be hot, but they were as chilly as the butter that came with them. When they brought my daughter's chocolate pudding, the busboy came back with three spoons on a plate covered by a napkin. Please! You have to request salt and pepper which is something I find intensely irritating. Everyone who took care of us was very nice, but the whole place seems kind of phony and corporate. The best part was going outside and sitting on incredibly comfortable couches on the porch and admiring the view. I would go back and have a glass of wine on the porch, but that's all.
In reviewing the menus on the website, it actually appears that there are more vegetarian options (a number of vegetable dishes, and a vegetarian tasting menu) in the restaurant than in the bar. Moreover, prices do not appear to be significantly higher in the restaurant if one doesn't go for the tasting menu (there are a few cheaper dishes in the bar, especially at dinner, but prices definitely do overlap). For example, local sand dabs, which would probably be my choice for lunch if I were dining there, are $15 for lunch in both the bar and the restaurant.
Assuming those prices are correct, and given what OP says about the bar getting jammed at night and the bar service (which btw is contrary to the website description of the bar as 'casual' and 'informal'), I am wondering if the restaurant isn't a better dining option than the bar.
Was there a soft opening that you were a part of? The articles in the media about this place, and IIRC the website when I checked it back in early June, said that the opening was mid-June (obviously less than a month ago).
I went there last Sunday for brunch and ate at the bar - asides from having trouble to catch our server's eye (they were busy putting bottles away) we had a really nice time. for brunch i had the goat's cheese quiche which was rather small for the price but did hit the spot. my friend had an omelette with morel mushroom and some kind of cheese i believe - looked rather lonely on the plate as it came with nothing else but she did enjoy it. we then split a bowl of pureed pea soup with fennel citrus granita - absolutely delicious. I will go back but this time for dinner. love the setting.
No ... last month was the soft opening for the restaurant. The grand opening was Monday June 23rd.
There is currently no tasting menu at the restaurant. They are slowly working out the kinks. There is also a tea bar at the spa in a separate building. The server said that it only opened today.
I loved the place
The seats to snag are the couches on the veranda. Fantabulous atmosphere. The restaurant has a side patio.
It is surprising how few tables there are in the bar given the large space. There are also some rocking chairs on the porch so you can bring your drink out there.
I'm going to ask at brunch tommorrow, but I don't think the restaurant is booking every table until they get the service down. They said that they were totally book, but there were lots of empty tables.
Yes, the service is ... leisurely ... but I was expecting that after reading some of the yelp reviews. But the staff is pleasant. And really ... sitting on that porch with two of the towers of the golden gate soring over the hill, while enjoying the water traffic on the bay ... I could have sat there all night without a problem.
They've been officially open a week, so if anyone goes now, go expecting to have a few glitches. However, if I have a few more nice meals like today, I'm thinking this might be the place I book for Thanksgiving if I'm still in the Bay Area.