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Any good choucroute garni in Bay area

jason carey Nov 12, 2008 04:34 PM

Ok here it goes.. is there anywhere in the bay area to find a truly good (great is too much to ask ) choucroute garni in the Bay Area?
It is fall and I'm jonsing for it and don't feel like searching out all the ingredients.
PS I have done a search on the board and zilch.

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  1. wolfe RE: jason carey Nov 12, 2008 05:33 PM

    Le Club has it on their on line menu. I checked based on a comment I found about their beautiful choucroute garni. Check before you go.

    Le Club
    1250 Jones St Ste 100, San Francisco, CA 94109

    2 Replies
    1. re: wolfe
      jason carey RE: wolfe Nov 13, 2008 10:42 AM

      Oh and by the way that is just a tenderloin of pork with sauerkraut, not an actual choucroute garni.. it is traditionally served with many meats and sausages..

      1. re: jason carey
        wolfe RE: jason carey Nov 13, 2008 11:14 AM

        Have been so informed by my son, the bacon, sausage maker. However, neither is the bratwurst with sauerkraut mentioned below. They do describe it as Tenderloin of Pork a L'Alsacienne choucroute garnie. Perhaps a discussion with their chef or menu writer is in order.

    2. Xiao Yang RE: jason carey Nov 12, 2008 05:38 PM

      I recall a version I liked at L'Express but that was some 30 years ago...

      6 Replies
      1. re: Xiao Yang
        wolfe RE: Xiao Yang Nov 12, 2008 05:58 PM

        Are we going to start another one of those " the best choucroute garni I ever had was in Strasbourg in 1946, just after the war. I had it with a 1938 gewurztraminer. It was swell" threads?

        1. re: wolfe
          Xiao Yang RE: wolfe Nov 12, 2008 06:19 PM

          The best choucroute I ever had was La Choucroute aux Saucisses de Gibier at Les 3 Brasseurs, Rue St. Denis, Montreal circa 2005. It was accompanied by the the house bière ambrée.

          No, L'Express is in San Francisco. It still exists, and MAY be stil serving the same recipe choucroute., hence the suggestion.

          1. re: Xiao Yang
            wolfe RE: Xiao Yang Nov 12, 2008 08:17 PM

            Please link to place.

            1. re: wolfe
              Xiao Yang RE: wolfe Nov 12, 2008 08:54 PM

              OK, you got me. It was Le Central I meant, not L'Express (Montreal on the brain, I guess -- Choucroute = Les 3 Brasseurs = Rue St. Denis = L'Express)

              Le Central did indeed have a good choucroute garni depuis 30 ans and may still today:

              Le Central Bistro
              453 Bush St., San Francisco, CA 94108

              1. re: Xiao Yang
                wolfe RE: Xiao Yang Nov 13, 2008 07:15 AM

                Their on line menu still shows choucroute garni and their cassoulet has probably been simmering away on a back burner all those 30 years.

                1. re: wolfe
                  twocents RE: wolfe Nov 13, 2008 01:44 PM

                  I had it at Le Central last year I think. I thought it was a good rendition. The cassoulet here is okay, but Jeanty at Jack's has ruined me for cassoulet. I have also had choucroute garni in the past at Luka's in Oakland but they definitely do not have it all the time. I think I've had it one or two other places, but I can't remember and am not sure.

      2. d
        DavidT RE: jason carey Nov 13, 2008 09:44 AM

        The Irish Bank (on Mark Lane, off Bush St., downtown San Fran) has bratwurst & sauerkraut on the menu at both lunch and dinner. I have not had the dish, so I don't know if it is the real deal. The food there is usually hearty and good.


        1 Reply
        1. re: DavidT
          jason carey RE: DavidT Nov 13, 2008 10:35 AM

          thanks, I will try that , but I am really looking for the traditional real deal

        2. j
          Joan Kureczka RE: jason carey Nov 13, 2008 11:35 AM

          Le Central, already mentioned, is the one place I'm aware always has it. Haven't tried that one though. Chez Panisse does it once or twice each winter (downstairs), usually in Jan or Feb., and it's been excellent. But hard to know in advance when it might pop up.

          1. s
            Sisiutl RE: jason carey Nov 14, 2008 09:02 AM

            It's not quite the same thing, but Chopin in Pleasant Hill has a very good bigos that might scratch your itch if you're in the East Bay.

            1. b
              bcgSF RE: jason carey Nov 15, 2008 05:15 PM

              Jeanty at Jack's has had it on the menu in Decembers past - should it reappear (it is presently absent), they have historically produced a creditable rendition. (www.jeantyatjacks.com)

              For those inclined to ferret out all the ingredients (almost all of which are available at the SF Farmer's Market, for which Golden Gate Meats is a good first stop), Anne Willan's excellent "Country Cooking of France" has a fine recipe, although it helps to have a crowd to work through all of it. (Willan's book also has a good recipe for tarte flambee, if your Alsatian cravings extend that far - better than any Bay Area restaurant rendition I am aware of, though short of the real deal.)

              1. Xiao Yang RE: jason carey Nov 15, 2008 06:35 PM

                Not necessarily the final word, but a search for "choucroute garni" on foodiebytes.com lists Le Central as the only place with it on their menu for 15 miles around.


                2 Replies
                1. re: Xiao Yang
                  jason carey RE: Xiao Yang Nov 17, 2008 04:59 PM

                  Thanks, I guess i will have to put my own together.. I guess that german store in the Penninsula is the best place?

                  1. re: jason carey
                    anyhow RE: jason carey Nov 17, 2008 05:40 PM

                    If you decide to make your own, you might want to buy Alexander Valley Sauerkraut -- highly praised on this board -- now you will be able to buy it at Piazza's Fine Foods in Palo Alto. First shipment arrived today! If it sells well, maybe their San Mateo store will begin to offer it too.

                    Your posts inspired me to ask them to special order this 'kraut and I agree it is wonderful. Added smoked pork chops, weisswurst ... what a treat. Good luck.

                    Piazza's Fine Foods
                    3922 Middlefield Rd, Palo Alto, CA 94303

                2. hohokam RE: jason carey Nov 16, 2008 10:05 PM

                  A couple of winters ago, I had a very nice version at Luka's in downtown Oakland. I don't know if they are offering it now, as their current online menu was last updated in September.

                  Luka's Taproom
                  2221 Broadway, Oakland, CA 94612

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