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Nov 13, 2008 09:04 PM

Masa, Coi, or Michael Mina

My husband and I want to go out to a nice dinner for the first time (in 2 years) without kids. We haven't been to either Masa, Coi, or MM. Which one is better for something that's memorable, enjoyable, and relaxing. Food (taste/creativity), service, atmosphere are all important to us. Which one has a more selections for reasonably priced wines?

Valet Parking or easy parking is a must.


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  1. I'm sorry you haven't gotten more replies. I haven't eaten at any of the restaurants, but I have had desserts and drinks at the bar inside the restaurant at Michael Mina. While what I ate was delicious, I really disliked the space. It was large and cavernous, quite noisy, and the entire time I was eating I couldn't shake the fact that I was in a hotel lobby and people around me were paying over $100 for their meals. It just wasn't right. I wouldn't suggest it as a relaxing or romantic atmosphere. And the wines, while out of this world, are not priced for the faint of heart.

    Coi seems to get positive comments from peple who like very innovative cuisine bordering on molecular gastronomy, but complaints about tiny portions. Masa's is an older stand by, but I haven't heard anything particularly good or bad lately.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Pei

      My wife and I both agreed that Michale Mina's was horrible,
      the space, the noise, the food , the service, and particularly
      the price.

      Stay Away.

    2. The original comment has been removed
      1. I absolutely *hated* the dining room atmosphere at Coi, which I thought was claustrophobic and ugly in the extreme, and I am not prone to claustrophobia. (I actually ate in the bar and only went into the dining room to check it out, but it didn't take long to make that negative impression. No windows, low ceiling, very closed in feeling.) The bar area was pleasant but perhaps not what you are looking for, and honestly, the food wasn't amazing, service was very inconsistent. BTW, I didn't think portions were that tiny, per Pei's comments below; but I did expect the food to be very innovative and didn't think it really was so, at least not in terms of taste...perhaps somewhere other than in SF....(we tasted most of the menu). I am in no hurry to return. There was no valet when we were there, but street parking was easy, though I think I might have just gotten lucky.

        Haven't eaten at either Michael Mina or Masa. Have peeked into MM (it is very open to the hotel lobby so it is easy to go check out) and agree about the atmosphere there.

        373 Broadway, San Francisco, CA 94133

        1 Reply
        1. re: susancinsf

          Decades ago, my friend Judy opened a bar called The Paradise Cafe in the space that is now Coi. She grabbed the space because she thought it, like the name she chose, perfectly projected the banality she was looking for in for a post-Beat North Beach dive bar, and it worked. But for Judy's restlessness it might still be The Paradise Cafe. You can imagine how bemused I was when I dicovered that the space, without any evident major structural transformation now hosts the über-trendy (and probably very expensive) Coi.

          Hey, do they serve Rainier Ale in a bottle there?

        2. FWIW, here's a review of Masa's that I did some time back. It was definitely memorable, enjoyable and relaxing. I'm not sure why, but I think the restaurant is unfairly overlooked.

          1. There has been a lot of commentary here on Coi and Michael Mina. Masa's not so much. Use these place-links to look for recent threads with opinions galore...

            373 Broadway, San Francisco, CA 94133

            Michael Mina Restaurant
            252 California St, San Francisco, CA

            Masa's Restaurant
            648 Bush Street, San Francisco, CA 94108