Long time Nancy Oakes fans underwhelmed
We used to live around the corner from both Pat O'Shea's and L'avenue and dined @ both on a regular basis(we still rmember the breakfast days at L'avenue). We also followed her to Boulevard and felt great she had "made it" but mourned our loss of our neighborhood favorites. Last night we tried Prospect and were rather underwhelmed. The prices are rather stiff and the servings relatively small. Highlights were the Chilled Market Vegetables and the hand picked crab salad. The green goddess salad was rather plain . We split the Dayboat scallops which were actually overcooked. Dessert was the Meyer Lemon-Caramel tart(ok not great and rather lackluster). The Ramsey Chard was good but @ $17 a glass(and a relatively small pour at that) . We found the dining room cold.Service was good not overpowering. We will probably not go back.
300 Spear St, San Francisco, CA 94105
Not to discount your Prospect experience, but comparing it to L'Avenue is not really fair. I can think of countless high profile chefs whose current grand venues couldn't compare to their original endeavors. At L'Avenue, Nancy was cooking on the line and had her hand in every plate, and it was indeed something special. Even at Boulevard (certainly in its later days) I'm sure Nancy did not do much actual line cooking; and while good, it never really measured up to what she was able to do on a smaller scale. As for the pricing, L'avenue existed in a totally different time. The cost of doing business in S.F. as well as the cost of ingredients were fractions of what they are today. I'd be surprised if the profit margins at Prospect were any greater (and I suspect much less) than at L'Avenue. I ate at prospect and thought it was pretty good and a decent value. I didn't love the space and the service had issues but the food was consistently good and precise for a restaurant of that scale. I remember eating at "Elka" when Tracy Des Jardin was doing most of the cooking and it was sublime. I don't think to would be fair to compare my experience at Acme Chop House 15 years later.
granted, i have only been for happy hour; but i was extremely disappointed; after rushing there to get there by 6, we got there at 5:57, and had to argue with them that it was still happy hour; we accidentally ordered something that had been removed from the happy hour menu, and after they tried to put the order in adn realized it wasn't on the menu anymore, they just removed it from our order, rather than asking if we wanted something else. not to mention tthat the food was overall trying too hard
I have been several times and each experience was worse than the previous. When they first opened the food was excellent (except dessert which was just fair) and the portions were quite small. On more recent visits the portions were bigger but the execution was missing the mark on more and more dishes. I never thought the desserts were very good. On my last visit the server was good but the hostess, bussers, etc were not very good. I stopped going because for the price point it was too uneven and it felt as though they didn't care.
I felt the same way, just underwhelmed. The food when we went was great if not a bit too boring, everything executed well but just not inspiring. The bar atmosphere in the front was a touch weird. It would seem that most people just order cocktails and not wine in the bar area as they weren't sure how to do wine service. They also sat us 15 mins late for our reservation even though we had come for drinks an hour early, and from what we saw, they sat tables before us that had just walked in the door. Would not go back...