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Boulevard or Gary danko?

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I know it's a bit of a weird question --but for our Monday night in SF, which is the better choice? We've never been to either so we need some help! We'll be in San Francisco for just three nights and were planning on RN73 (late Saturday) and La Ciccia (Sunday) for the others. Thanks!

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La Ciccia
291 30th Street, San Francisco, CA 94131

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  1. I would pick Gary Danko in a heartbeat I was looking for a special evening.

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    Gary Danko
    800 N Point St, San Francisco, CA 94109

    1 Reply
    1. re: Civil Bear

      +1 Gary Danko in a heartbeat!

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      Gary Danko
      800 N Point St, San Francisco, CA 94109

      1. re: nocharge

        Yeah, exactly the same question, from November.

        1. re: Robert Lauriston

          No not the same thread. More like the same question, with a different answer.

          +1 more for Gary Danko

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          Gary Danko
          800 N Point St, San Francisco, CA 94109

          1. re: ikb

            It boggles my mind why anyone would want to go to such a generic high-end restaurant as Gary Danko when visiting San Francisco and ask for restaurant recommendations. You can find a half dozen Danko equivalents in pretty much any major city in the world. Boulevard, for all its faults, is way more San Francisco.

              1. re: zin1953

                A good starting point is to look at the list of other restaurants that have a single Michelin star. There are almost 40 of them in the area covered by the SF guide. Very few are more generic than Gary Danko.

                1. re: nocharge

                  Yes, that's VERY specific . . .thank you very much.

                  1. re: zin1953

                    Michelin stars aren't a very good way of finding the best food in SF, and nothing against the classic international French style of Gary Danko, but the menus at Acquerello, Ame, Aziza, Boulevard, Coi, Frances, La Folie, Quince, and Spruce are all far more driven by local, seasonal ingredients.

                    Ame, Aziza, Boulevard, La Folie, Quince, and Spruce are all open Mondays.

              2. re: nocharge

                I'm always amazed when folks call Gary Danko a non-San-Franciscan generic high-end restaurant that can be found in sextuplet in any big city in the world. Gary Danko takes advantage of the bounty of West Coast ingredients just as every high-end restaurant in the Bay Area does. Look at the menu. Current appetizers use Oysters, Salsify, Lettuce Cream, Osetra Caviar, Beets, Goat Cheese, Navel Oranges, Pecans, Dungeness Crab, Grapefruit, Fennel, Mint and Yuzu, Eggs, Polenta, Trumpet Mushrooms, Frisée, Pancetta, Treviso, Romaine, Anchovies, Parmigiano-Reggiano, Lobster, Asian Pear, Mango, Avocado, Cashews, Limes, Cilantro, Ahi Tuna, Avocado, Nori, Enoki Mushrooms, Rock Shrimp, Shimeji Mushrooms, Butternut Squash, Potatos, Leeks, Salmon, Bacon, Cipollini Onions, and Sage. There are only two ingredients in that long list that I am sure didn't come from California - the lobster, and the caviar. Everything else (okay maybe not the Nori) is undoubtedly local and goes into a menu steeped in the Northern California tradition of fresh local seasonal ingredients. How many people who come to San Francisco as tourists have a restaurant as good as Gary Danko in their home town? It's a small minority. My guess is that most visitors to SF would be delighted with dinner at GD.

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                Gary Danko
                800 N Point St, San Francisco, CA 94109

                Yuzu
                3347 Fillmore Street, San Francisco, CA 94123

                  1. re: Paul H

                    i think a lot of the criticism is more of the meats and fish - very little is known about their sourcing, other than that they use farmed salmon

                    1. re: Paul H

                      I don't think anyone is saying that Gary Danko isn't a good restaurant, just that it's not very interesting. And who could blame them? If you are going to cater to Fisherman's Wharf tourists looking for a high-end dining experience complete with caviar service and lobster, you want to be kind of generic. I'm sure that for a lot of tourists, that concept works a lot better than, say, Coi would. If you want to claim that Danko is the perfect high-end tourist trap, I won't argue with that.

                      1. re: nocharge

                        Everyone has their own personal tastes, but -- personally -- I would rather go to Gary Danko than Coi any day of the week . . . .

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                        Gary Danko
                        800 N Point St, San Francisco, CA 94109

                          1. re: zin1953

                            Exactly. An edgy restaurant like Coi probably has as many detractors as fans. A mainstream, high-end place like Gary Danko is likely to have a much broader appeal by virtue of playing it safe. I mean, what's there not to like? But maybe it's not that interesting.

                            1. re: nocharge

                              nocharge -- edgy restaurants are my favorites. I just had a bad meal at coi.

                              1. re: pauliface

                                Ditto. I love (what I presume "nocharge" means by) "edgy" restaurants, and I had a bad meal at Coi . . .

                                1. re: zin1953

                                  We are in the minority, Zin.
                                  Same with me for Frances.
                                  Everytime someone is coming from out of town and the gang recommends those two, I want to respond with a warning, but it makes me feel like such a wet blanket and people seem to love them so...

                                  1. re: pauliface

                                    I guess you can add DH to the minority. DH just had a private dining experience recently at Coi* & wasn't impressed. He preferred his business dinner last year at Fleur De Lys over this one. Been trying, to no avail, to get reservations at GD.

                                    Given the cost & "edginess" of menu, I thought perhaps this type of restaurant may not be full on a weeknight but he assured me of the contrary! And apparently not a great location either (?).

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                                    Fleur De Lys
                                    777 Sutter St., San Francisco, CA 94109

                                      1. re: pauliface

                                        I think Coi is probably disappointing more people than most other high-end restaurants because of its relatively unique nature that, clearly, is not going to appeal to everyone. If it had been, say, a sushi place or a steakhouse, people who don't like sushi or red meat wouldn't go there and if they had to go there for social reasons, they would have very low expectations. In either case, they wouldn't be disappointed. But Coi is harder to figure out beforehand in terms of traditional labels. So the place probably gets quite a few people who go there with sky-high expectations based on the restaurant's ratings only to discover that the food is not their cup of tea.

                                        1. re: nocharge

                                          You seem to miss my point, and have now twice categorized me as perhaps someone who doesn't understand what Coi is trying to do.

                                          To be clear:
                                          I love food like they are trying to do. I just feel they failed.
                                          The closest to what they are after in my experience is L'Astrance in Paris, which basically throws Coi in the mud and marches over it in 10" heels.
                                          Another place that Coi might aspire to be like (foodwise), but fails in comparison: Momofuku Ko,

                                          Coi *should* have been a favorite for me. But they failed.
                                          To be honest, so many people praise them that I'm almost tempted to go back in the hopes that I got them on an off night. However, it was so expensive that I would not take that gamble.

                                          1. re: pauliface

                                            I've been really impressed by the food at Plum, which I think is the same style of food as Coi, but without the high-end trappings, steep price, or fixed menu.

                                            1. re: Robert Lauriston

                                              I suppose this is a way to give him a second chance.
                                              How is Plum priced? I see no info on their website, no menu no prices, only address and reservation system.

                                                1. re: Robert Lauriston

                                                  All right then. the prices are within "giving a second chance" range....

                                                  I'll give it a try sometime soon...

                                2. re: nocharge

                                  Gary Danko as a tourist trap? Interesting. You make it sound like tourists can pop in off the street after a long day visiting the wharf.

                                  For me, GD is where you want to go to experience a slow paced special meal, whereas Boulevard is where you take your client on an expense account.

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                                  Gary Danko
                                  800 N Point St, San Francisco, CA 94109

                                  1. re: Civil Bear

                                    I think it's more that Gary Danko is "touristy" is the sense that it's the place that visitors to SF get steered to as "the best" in SF by Zagat and other guides.

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                                    Gary Danko
                                    800 N Point St, San Francisco, CA 94109

                                3. re: Paul H

                                  Gary Danko's current menu includes Black Sea caviar, eggplant, Asian pear, mango, cucumbers, grapes, passion fruit, raspberry, and bananas.

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                                  Gary Danko
                                  800 N Point St, San Francisco, CA 94109

                              2. re: ikb

                                The question in the linked topic was, "Boulevard or Gary Danko?"

                          2. note that boulevard is a la carte, whereas gary danko is fixed price

                            1. gary danko for sure!!! good food!

                              1. Other high-end places open on Monday include Ame, La Folie, and Quince.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: Robert Lauriston

                                  Thanks, all. Sounds like I may have posed the wrong question: so, for a memorable meal on a Monday night, and given a late Saturday at RN74 and Sunday at La Ciccia or Range, where to????
                                  Ps -- you guys are great!

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                                  La Ciccia
                                  291 30th Street, San Francisco, CA 94131

                                  RN74
                                  301 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                  1. re: ejr

                                    Robert's list is very nice. I actually haven't tried any of them, but looking at your list, would choose Ame.