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25th Anniversary Dinner

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My wife and I will be celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary next month - and have decided to spend a weekend in SF as a part of the celebration. So I am looking for over the top dinner places for that once in a lifetime meal. Thoughts? Suggestions?

We will be staying at the St Regis so SF, Berkeley, Marin would all be great - just not down the Peninsula as we live in the Monterey area and have done the Peninsula many time over.

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  1. The Dining Room at the Ritz-Carlton. Or Coi.

    1. I would go to La Folie. Iwrote a very critical review of it two days ago, but my overall experience was wonderful, I just wanted to be honest about all the little missteps they made, but overall, the experience was wonderful. Here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/639677

      1. The Dining Room at the Ritz is great if you like traditional fine dining. Coi is fun if you are a fan of alternative/molecular gastronomy. La Folie, although very tasty, is a little less formal. I would add Gary Danko as my favorite SF special occasion place for the food and the service. Fleur de Lys is a nice spot for a romantic dinner.

        1. Here is a recent thread on the same subject. Be sure to follow the embedded links.

          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/636859

          1. My wife and I celebrated our 25th at Fleur de Lys four years ago. It was great. We'd go back. Wherever you go, congratulations to you and your wife on your Silver Anniversary, and best wishes for many more years of married bliss.

            1. Thank you for the good wishes, suggestions and the links - my wife and I are reviewing, discussing and generally salivating over each and every one. Please keep them coming - I won't say who is in the lead right now so as not to cut off discussion - but I promise to come back both with our decision and then the review following the dinner.

              3 Replies
              1. re: MRYfoodie

                A few comments about the other places mentioned. I *loved* Fleur de Lys and the dining room is SO romantic and the service sublime. I've not been back in about 4 years and the reason I sisn't reccomend it is that in the past couple of years, since Hubert Keller opened a Fleur de Lys in Las Vegas, the "word on the street" is that it has slipped a bit and isn't as good as it once was. I can neither confirm nor deny this as I haven't been there in about 4 years, but that is what other people I generally trust have said.

                Coi is FANTASTIC, despite 11 courses, you don't leave stuffed -- some have even complained that despite 11 courses you don't leave full. As other posters have said, it is molecular gastronomy -- I think it is far more intellectual than hedonistic and I'm not certain that is what I would want for an anniversary, which is why I didn't reccomend that.

                The Dining Room at the Ritz Carlton is phenomenal as well. My problem ith it is that it is either only 3 courses, or else a set tasting menu with no options. I like the Fleur de Lys, La Folie, Gary Danko style menus where you can choose 5 courses and have lots of available options for each course.

                I love Danko but I think the food is very standard NorCal food. He might be one of the pioneers of CA-French cooking, but at this point I just don't find the food (nor room) too exciting.

                Whether you go there for you anniversary dinner or not (it isn't the most romantic restaurant in the world, and may not *quite* be up to snuff relative to the other restaurants mentioned) since you are staying in the St. Regis, you should try to check out Ame (located off the lobby). It is one of my very favorite restaurants in the city and has truly creative cooking that satisfies both the intellect as well as the soul.

                1. re: whiner

                  I ate at both Gary Danko and La Folie recently and have to say that the food at La Folie was much more impressive and the execution superior to Danko. The pancetta wrapped frog legs I ordered at Danko were an incredible disappointment-dry and overcooked.

                  The meal I had at La Folie was one of the best I've had in a very long time. And I think it would be great for an anniversary-especially since the food I had was great enough to act as an aphrodisiac. It was a truly sensual experience.

                  I am always careful to judge any restaurant based on one visit alone-but it was a damn good one at La Folie. My companion and I ordered the tasting menu with wine pairings (which were also phenomenal, mmmm, still dreaming about that 89' demi-sec Vouvray), and I thought it was a STEAL for under $400 US.

                  SWS

                  1. re: whiner

                    The last time my wife and I had dinner at the (The?) Dining Room at the Ritz-Carlton we lamented the disappearance of the smaller tasting menu to the server. He said (I paraphrase) "No problem; pick some starters and main courses and the chef will adjust the sizes of the portions." And that's just what happened. We shared four starters, two mains, lots of amusees before and after, and walked away very happy.
                    The wine list is marvelous.