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Jul 9, 2009 05:27 AM

Returning to SF: New American Favorites?

I'm a former SF 'hound returning to the city next month for a wedding. While I love my new city (Philadelphia), I'm excited to be returning home. I have two free dinners while I'm in town. One of them is a lock for Delfina (it, more than any other place, made me fall in love with food), but the other one is open. I'm hoping for new American food (if that's not too vague). Reading reviews on the board, I've more-or-less narrowed the choices to:


To give you a sense of my preferences, some of my favorites while I lived here were Delfina, A16, Quince, Oliveto, Chez Panisse, Zuni, etc. I've got Chinese and Mexican covered elsewhere on the trip, and I can do fancy dining in NYC, so I'm hoping for fresh American/SF food.

Conditional on those parameters, which of the above would you recommend? Feel free to suggest others as well.

Thanks in advance!

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  1. New American? . . .

    I really love Spruce. . .particularly the charcuterie selections (if you go, you MUST order the duck liver mousse. . .seriously delicious) - preparations are simple but perfectly executed - details matter here - it's sumptuous without being stuffy. I am not a fan of Range - price point vs. quality vs. ambiance just leave me cold. Beretta is too much of a "scene" for me. . .loud, uncomfortable and the front of house situation is frustrating and the food is good but not great. Have not been to Luce so cannot comment.

    Nopa might fit the bill for you as well. I am not mad for the place but many others are.

    1. Of your list, I do like Spruce, I don't care for Beretta, and Range is fine. Consider Bar Tartine, or as suggested above, Nopa.

      1 Reply
      1. re: SteveG

        2nd the vote for Bar Tartine!!!

      2. Beretta's Italian, not New American.

        1. I'd throw Flour + Water into the mix (with the added bonus of H. Slocombes down the street).