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Bar Tartine or Bar Jules for dinner before symphony????

d
debrasarokin May 6, 2011 09:08 AM

Taking my son for dinner and the symphony. Thinking of Bar Tartine or Jules so we can walk. His FAVORITE restaurant is Chez Panisse which we will do the night before. Which would you pick? Any recent chef changes at either spot? Webby

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Chez Panisse
1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

Bar Tartine
561 Valencia Street, San Francisco, CA 94110

Bar Jules
609 Hayes St, San Francisco, CA 94102

  1. m
    mdg May 6, 2011 09:12 AM

    I don't think of Bar Tartine as walking distance from Symphony. There's another place called Tartine in the Symphony neighborhood but that's not the same!

    I just had dinner at Bar Jules before the symphony last weekend and it was as good as ever, especially my skirt steak entree.

    Michael

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    Bar Jules
    609 Hayes St, San Francisco, CA 94102

    1. Robert Lauriston May 6, 2011 09:13 AM

      Bar Tartine's menu has changed radically, it now has a decidedly Hungarian slant. I'm eager to try it, but the food sounds too heavy for before a concert.

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      Bar Tartine
      561 Valencia Street, San Francisco, CA 94110

      1. farmersdaughter May 6, 2011 09:24 AM

        Bar Tartine is in the Mission District, which is very far from the symphony. I love Bar Jules. You also may want to consider Absinthe or Zuni as alternatives. Absinthe has a new-ish chef, maybe in the past year, and I haven't been since the change, but perhaps others can chime in.

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        Zuni Cafe
        1658 Market Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

        Bar Tartine
        561 Valencia Street, San Francisco, CA 94110

        Bar Jules
        609 Hayes St, San Francisco, CA 94102

        4 Replies
        1. re: farmersdaughter
          pane May 6, 2011 09:27 AM

          The food is much better than it used to be--not that it was ever bad, just unexciting, especially for the price. I live in the neighborhood and we used to drop by only for a well-made cocktail, but the new chef has really improved the menu. I'd vote either Bar Jules or Absinthe.

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          Bar Jules
          609 Hayes St, San Francisco, CA 94102

          1. re: pane
            farmersdaughter May 6, 2011 09:31 AM

            Any dishes at Absinthe that you can particularly recommend? I'd love to stop by for a drink and a bite.

            1. re: farmersdaughter
              pane May 6, 2011 10:27 AM

              I like the pretzel on the bar snacks menu and the shellfish stew and beef tartare on the dinner menu. I think I once had a house-made sausage that was great, too.

              1. re: farmersdaughter
                d
                dordogne May 6, 2011 12:35 PM

                Absinthe does a well-prepared classic onion soup (sometimes a bit thick, requiring fork rather than spoon), great to have at the bar with a glass of red.

          2. wolfe May 6, 2011 11:14 AM

            The confusion is due to similar names. The spot nearby is Tartine Cafe Francais.

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            Tartine Cafe Francais
            244 Gough St, San Francisco, CA 94102

            1. flamingo510 May 6, 2011 01:53 PM

              Haven't been to Jules, but my last experience at Bar Tartine was not good. The food was kind of greasy and underseasoned. Granted this was about a year ago, and it sounds like the menu has changed. Also as others have pointed out, it's far from the symphony. I would recommend Suppenkuche (a little bit of a walk, but worth it!) or Absinthe. Jardiniere is pricier, but good too.

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              Suppenkuche
              525 Laguna St, San Francisco, CA 94102

              Bar Tartine
              561 Valencia Street, San Francisco, CA 94110

              1 Reply
              1. re: flamingo510
                Robert Lauriston May 6, 2011 02:20 PM

                Bar Tartine got a new chef in March and the menu is totally different.

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                Bar Tartine
                561 Valencia Street, San Francisco, CA 94110

              2. m
                mdg May 6, 2011 06:51 PM

                There are some good alternative suggestions here, but if you're going before the symphony you need a reservation for nearly all of them. Bar Jules is an exception, but don't get there much later than 6:00 pm. Suppenkuche doesn't take reservations except for large parties, but it's usually mobbed on a weekend before symphony.

                Michael

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                Suppenkuche
                525 Laguna St, San Francisco, CA 94102

                Bar Jules
                609 Hayes St, San Francisco, CA 94102

                1 Reply
                1. re: mdg
                  m
                  mdg Dec 8, 2011 12:19 AM

                  Bar Jules now opens at 5:30 for easier pre-symphony dining. There was no problem getting in at 6:00 pm on Wednesday before a concert. The sand dabs were the best I've ever had; my few previous experiences left me unconvinced about this fish, but now I'm a believer. The chickpea soup was really good too, with a nice touch of smoked paprika. What a gem!

                  Michael

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