Food Michelin restaurants

Mishella

Member
Jan 26, 2022
104
312
Oh gosh, thank you for starting this. Out of all the M-rated we've been to and risk of getting flack....
Liked: Septime, Bar Crenn, Benu, Arpège
Disliked: Noma, Eleven Madison, The French Laundry (can't have a bad meal here however our service experience was just not great)

We've gotten lucky by stalking Tock/reservation website of restaurant. We did take a risk booking for 4 at Noma but luckily found 2 people from the Noma reddit thread to join DH and I. Hope to try Alinea and Alchemist one day:happydance:
Why you didn’t like Noma?
I wonder how they decide what restaurant will be named the best in the world.
 

meemosas

Member
Mar 4, 2022
25
150
Why you didn’t like Noma?
I wonder how they decide what restaurant will be named the best in the world.
There were more dishes I disliked vs liked. I remember one plate tasted like I was eating spiced potpourri, another was a concentrated floral-y taste, and the last dish I recall tasted similar to a fermented apple soup with cubed apples. The wow-moment stemmed from never having it before: reindeer brain and its private part.
Although I was the only one who didn't enjoy Noma. I've accepted my palate isn't refined:lol:
I wonder that as well and how much of it is influenced by technique and innovation.
 

Mishella

Member
Jan 26, 2022
104
312
Angler in SF is a nice spot for casual dinner, not too fancy, great food.

Protege in Palo Alto - same as the above.

Saison in SF - I didn’t really like the food. It was either too savory, or of a weird consistency, or both. Service was good.

Selby’s in Atherton - didn’t get why it has a Michelin star. The food was like in every other upscale steakhouse you would visit. But the interior - especially the bar - looks very nice.

Chez TJ in Mountain View - the worst experience in my life. Crazy slow service - 1 hour wait to get our first drink and food, and we both came there hungry, my husband was getting really angry Only one restroom to serve the whole restaurant and you have to ask the waiter prior to using it, very cold inside, food was mediocre or bad.

Abac in Barcelona - amazing, blew my mind. It’s a 3 star one. But it was about 5 years ago, not really relevant for today, I guess.

Plumed horse in Saratoga - good experience overall, but the food was not impressive.

Mugen in Honolulu doesn’t have a Michelin star yet, but I’m pretty sure will soon have it. Great food and overall experience.

Planning on visiting Guy Savoy in Las Vegas next month, will share the experience.
 

bisousx

O.G.
Jan 3, 2008
12,632
11,857
Barcelona, Spain - Vivanda

This was a cute Bib Gourmand restaurant with a very good veal/pork cannelloni.

52310F56-7951-43B8-99AF-BDB71C81CB76.jpeg



0553A021-8F8D-4846-9397-1FC850010300.jpeg

My absolute favorite in Barcelona however is Bar Cañete (non-Michelin). I must have tried everything on their menu during the 3x I went and every item had a hearty, satisfying taste. There’s a foie gras topped steak, bellota jamon with crispy coca bread, and their tiramisu is tdf. Ordered their tiramisu twice in one night ;)
 

PANda_USC

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Aug 5, 2009
10,101
2,537
YAYAYAY, going to echo folx' sentiments of gratitude for starting this thread! I LIVE to eat! Unfortunately, now the threshold for getting me excited by a restaurant is terribly high and unrealistic to achieve during every dining experience; for me, at least one of the menu items needs to make me change my perception of a specific ingredient/dish forever. I optimize for novel, exciting and bold flavors and an unconventional ambiance. And apologies in advance for the super text-heavy post.

San Francisco/Bay Area
+ Atelier Crenn***: Artistic and creative presentation, playful and poetic food. Would recommend.
+ Quince***: Food was good, presentation was fine, but I don't recall much from the dining experience so would not recommend.
+ Benu***: Was not a fan of the flavors in the dishes. I think there was too much hype/anticipation on my end. Would not recommend.
+ Saison**: Been here twice. First time, flavor was underwhelming but presentation was beautiful. Second time (during pandemic), friendly and fun service, great flavors. Would recommend.
+ Lazybear**: Fun, communal dining and just felt like a party. Food presentation was playful, and dishes were prepared well. Super whimsical and creative. Open kitchen so you can see what's going on and ask questions. Other than Thomas Keller's Per Se, one of my top Michelin experiences. Would highly recommend.
+ Manresa***: Went when it had 2-stars. Nice ambiance, good service, food was fine but not memorable. Would not recommend.
+ Californios**: Went when it had 1-star and was at old location. Cool ambiance, food was fine but not amazing. Would not recommend.
+ Coi** (shuttered closed this year?): Gave this place two tries (second time, a friend invited me) but was never really excited by any of the dishes. Not super relevant since they closed but would not recommend.
+ Commis**: Good but not memorable. Would not recommend.
+ Acquerello**: Not sure if was just the service that night (8+ years ago), but the server came off very...uhm..stuffy? This was years ago, but my partner and I felt like the food was underwhelming and the atmosphere was meh. Would not recommend.
+ Sons and Daughters*: Have been here twice (years ago), and both times, the food was interesting, the flavors were creative, and the price point was always a pleasant surprise given the quality and quantity of food provided. Would recommend.
+ State Bird Provisions*: Have been here thrice (my friends and relatives really like this restaurant). I appreciate the dim sum-style format, but the dishes have been just okay. Given how much most folx enjoy this place, I would recommend.
+ The Progress*: sister restaurant to State Bird Provisions. Same experience as at State Bird but this spot has a higher price point if I recall correctly. Would not recommend.
+ Gary Danko*: Never understood the hype around this place. Food was fine, presentation was lackluster. Would not recommend.
+ Spruce*: Traditional formal dining ambiance, prices seemed very high for the amount of food you get. Have been here 4x (various friends have invited me), but not a place I'd generally make reservations for myself. Would not recommend.
+ SPQR*: Another spot friends invited me to, so got to try it twice. Lots of pasta, good, but not great. Would not recommend.
+ Barndiva*: Trendy ambiance, presentation was nice, some dishes were hit or miss. Would not recommend.
+ Niku Steakhouse*: Trendy ambiance, great flavors and service. Sat at the bar so we got to see the chefs in action (best seats in the house!). Would recommend.
+Wako Japanese Restaurant*: Intimate, good presentation, but not an amazing, blow-my-mind experience. Would not recommend.
+ AL's Place*: Visited here three times (various friends wanted to check it out). Food was fine, appreciated the casual ambiance. Service was great, but given the food wasn't knock-your-socks amazing, I would not recommend.
+ Ju-Ni*: Tasty flavors, great presentation. Had to order supplemental wagyu because I wasn't full after the set omakase (which was unfortunate). Regardless, I would recommend.
+ Omakase*: Fresh fish but small portions, friends and I left hungry. Would not recommend.
+ Wakuriya*: Food was good but nothing terrible memorable. Would not recommend.
+ Kin Khao*: Low-key vibe, spicy and fragrant Thai flavors. Price point was agreeable for the quality and amount of food. Would recommend.

NYC
+ Per Se***: Traditional formal restaurant setting, tasty food (90% of dishes were YUM), great service. I celebrated my birthday at Per Se each year that I lived in NYC. One of my top Michelin-restaurant experiences. Would highly recommend.
+ Eleven Madison Park***: I really tried to give this place a chance, and even tried it twice. I was intrigued by the food presentation, but the flavors didn't really sing to me. I think if you're in NYC and able to, it's worth checking out Eleven Madison Park. Would recommend.
+ Le Bernardin***: Food was fine but not super memorable. Would not recommend.
+ Jungsik**: Tasty food, well-cooked proteins and lovely presentation. Trendy ambiance. Would recommend.
+ Atera**: Intimately-sized restaurant (when I went), fun, playful and surprising dishes. One of my top food experiences. Would highly recommend.
+ Daniel**: Not sure if it was an off night, but I recall the dishes being very salty. Would not recommend.
+ Jean-Georges**: Stuffy environment, food was fine but nothing to write home about. Would not recommend.
+ Blue Hill at Stone Barns**: Fresh flavors, food presentation, overall fine but would probably not return to this spot. Would not recommend.
+ Momofuku Ko**: Good but not super memorable. Not a huge fan of David Chang's restaurants in general. Would not recommend.
+ Marea*: Food was fine but overall unmemorable. Would not recommend.
+ Gramercy Tavern*: Proteins cooked well but overall unmemorable. Would not recommend.

LA
Providence**: Solid presentation, good flavor profile, trendy romantic atmosphere, worth a visit but I would not revisit given the price point and my overall enjoyment of the meal. Would recommend.

Paris

Guy Savoy***: Traditional formal restaurant vibe, presentation was fine, went during truffle season and the whole menu was truffle so I was initially very excited to try the restaurant. Ultimately, food was a bit underwhelming and uninteresting in flavor profile. Partner did propose to me at the restaurant though, :biggrin: ---> ring was served in a dish, cloaked by dry ice smoke. I was very surprised! Would not recommend.

Hope this was helpful! And thanks for providing me and my tummy with the opportunity to go down memory lane! It was a bit bittersweet because upon checking the current Michelin-guide, I realized that ten or so Michelin-starred restaurants I had visited over the past 14 years were no longer in the guide because they had shuttered closed.
 
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PANda_USC

O.G.
Aug 5, 2009
10,101
2,537
^ supplement to previous post, San Francisco spots that made the Michelin guide's bib gourmand (hopefully this helps folx who live in the Bay Area or who are planning on visiting the Bay):

+ Outerlands: Brunch was fine. Outdoor seating on a nice day by the ocean was probably the best part of the experience. Would not recommend.
+ Um.ma: Have been here about six times? Have brought friends here and they've all thoroughly enjoyed it..but it could have been the soju too, lol. Tasty food, casual vibe with cute back patio, price point somewhat high but service is great and food is consistent. Would highly recommend the Rock n' Roe and Kalbi. Would highly recommend.
+ Sociale: Cute, cozy and intimate atmosphere. Food was fine but not memorable. Would not recommend.
+ Anchor Oyster Bar: Seafood-forward. Food was good but not memorable. Would not recommend.
+ Flour + Water Pizzeria: Don't really understand the hype around this place, but I also visited it within the first two months that it had opened, so maybe they have found their groove since then. Had tried the bone marrow pizza. Would not recommend.
+ Nari: Sister restaurant to Michelin-starred Kin Khao. Food and presentation were very good, but since I can't eat spicy food, wasn't for me. That being said, I would recommend.
+ Izakaya Rintaro: Have been here twice but it's been years. Cool and trendy ambiance, dishes were overall good and service was great. Would recommend.
+ Flores: Have been here multiple times (I believe there's a location in Corte Madera/Marin County, too). Very trendy and busy, good cocktails, vibrant and flavorful foods with a reasonable price point so that you and your friends can try lots of different dishes. Will not leave hungry. Would highly recommend.
+ Berber: Mysterious/alluring, trendy and upscale ambiance, great food and presentation. Flavors were vibrant and intriguing, and proteins were cooked well. Would highly recommend.
+ Trestle: Have been here four times, three times at their old location in North Beach/FiDi area (which I preferred). Good quality food and presentation for the price point. Was pleasantly surprised each time. I think they used to have a prix fixe menu at $40-50/person which felt like a steal in SF. Would recommend.
+ Cotogna: Sister restaurant to Michelin-starred Quince. Overall good experience. Service great. Some dishes were hit or miss. Highly recommend the gnocchi, soft, melty pillows. :biggrin:. Would recommend if you find yourself in that area but wouldn't go out of way for it.
+ Yank Sing: Dim sum here is fine, but I'd rather go to Dragon Beaux for dim sum. Would not recommend.

Not in the Michelin-guide but probably vying for a star is Merchant Roots. Intimate setting, lots of fun and innovative presentations and themes. It's almost like an art experience and keeps you on your toes. I love food and theater, and this restaurant is a marriage of the two. Went for the Elements Series (below is a pic of "fire," represented by charred steak on charred wood), and the Mad Tea Party Series (pie in an ornate clock):

IMG_7672.jpg 37FAD268-E375-4773-9B82-3B38B209AFF7.JPG
 
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meemosas

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My favorite restaurant is the Ledbury in London (Notting Hill). They closed indefinitely during the pandemic, but recently reopened (hurrah!) with reportedly the same staff and a new head chef. The Ledbury has the perfect balance of impeccable service and informality -- you can joke around with the sommelier or have the servers be invisible if you choose. It's about the only restaurant that I could happily stay in for a 4+ hour meal. The food is consistently excellent.

I also enjoyed dining at Daalder in Amsterdam -- more than at RIJKS, which was good as well.

I am tired of excessive innovations like foam and dry ice il bulli style
Agree. At one point everyone was serving ash, it got on my nerves.

When you are tired of eating complicated food but want to be coddled and pampered
Scotts in London (although a bit expense acct & business clientele) lobster; bakewell pudding and Paris Brest

i don’t recommend the acclaimed restaurant Heston Blumenthal in the mandarin oriental London unless you want a delicious, but very heavy meal
They don't coddle or pamper, but service is good and food is always excellent at Lyle's in Shoreditch. They let the ingredients do the work. I've flown to London primarily to have their pumpkin with whey butter dish. Next time I'm in London, Brat is on my list to try.

I agree with you about Dinner (I've probably had every dish on regular offer), the last time I was there, I just ordered the meat fruit appetizer (extra grilled bread) and a side of triple cooked chips. Heavy carbs but so comforting. Have you tried Hide near Green Park? (That sculpted staircase is amazing!) They serve a many of the dishes from Dabbous, which is understandable.
Disliked: Noma, Eleven Madison, The French Laundry (can't have a bad meal here however our service experience was just not great)

...Hope to try Alinea and Alchemist one day:happydance:
I've tried all the various iteration of EMP (the grid, the performative tasting menu with the carrot tartare, the less involved tasting menu) except the most recent vegan incarnation (not yet) and pretty much all of them got on my nerves after a while. I just wanted a pleasant meal; I will forgo the "experience".

Worst meal I traveled for was at Alinea, another "experience" restaurant (when they were selling tickets). We were probably unlucky with the week's menu - but I didn't really want to pick my meal from a moss strewn tree branch (do I eat the moss??). One thing I like was the non-alcoholic drink flight, so I wasn't stuck with iced tea all night [although the blueberry and mushroom extract or some such took some getting used to]. I am very grateful that many restaurants cater to non-drinkers now.

Another let down was Story in London - too theatrical and not enough flavour. Service was a bit patronising too. Guy Savoy in Paris, again I didn’t feel like the food or experience lived up to the expectation.
Agree about Restaurant Story. The tallow candle was interesting, but nearly flavorless. Then we had the seafood plate with all this dry ice fog, rock, and kelp -- we couldn't find anything :lol:

There are lots of restaurants that we lost during the pandemic. One that I'm particularly sorry to see close (because I had plans to return) was The Greenhouse. The service was very formal (not in a good way) but the food was sooo good!
 
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Oct 20, 2008
4,304
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YAYAYAY, going to echo folx' sentiments of gratitude for starting this thread! I LIVE to eat! Unfortunately, now the threshold for getting me excited by a restaurant is terribly high and unrealistic to achieve during every dining experience; for me, at least one of the menu items needs to make me change my perception of a specific ingredient/dish forever. I optimize for novel, exciting and bold flavors and an unconventional ambiance. And apologies in advance for the super text-heavy post.

San Francisco/Bay Area
+ Atelier Crenn***: Artistic and creative presentation, playful and poetic food. Would recommend.
+ Quince***: Food was good, presentation was fine, but I don't recall much from the dining experience so would not recommend.
+ Benu***: Was not a fan of the flavors in the dishes. I think there was too much hype/anticipation on my end. Would not recommend.
+ Saison**: Been here twice. First time, flavor was underwhelming but presentation was beautiful. Second time (during pandemic), friendly and fun service, great flavors. Would recommend.
+ Lazybear**: Fun, communal dining and just felt like a party. Food presentation was playful, and dishes were prepared well. Super whimsical and creative. Open kitchen so you can see what's going on and ask questions. Other than Thomas Keller's Per Se, one of my top Michelin experiences. Would highly recommend.
+ Manresa***: Went when it had 2-stars. Nice ambiance, good service, food was fine but not memorable. Would not recommend.
+ Californios**: Went when it had 1-star and was at old location. Cool ambiance, food was fine but not amazing. Would not recommend.
+ Coi** (shuttered closed this year?): Gave this place two tries (second time, a friend invited me) but was never really excited by any of the dishes. Not super relevant since they closed but would not recommend.
+ Commis**: Good but not memorable. Would not recommend.
+ Acquerello**: Not sure if was just the service that night (8+ years ago), but the server came off very...uhm..stuffy? This was years ago, but my partner and I felt like the food was underwhelming and the atmosphere was meh. Would not recommend.
+ Sons and Daughters*: Have been here twice (years ago), and both times, the food was interesting, the flavors were creative, and the price point was always a pleasant surprise given the quality and quantity of food provided. Would recommend.
+ State Bird Provisions*: Have been here thrice (my friends and relatives really like this restaurant). I appreciate the dim sum-style format, but the dishes have been just okay. Given how much most folx enjoy this place, I would recommend.
+ The Progress*: sister restaurant to State Bird Provisions. Same experience as at State Bird but this spot has a higher price point if I recall correctly. Would not recommend.
+ Gary Danko*: Never understood the hype around this place. Food was fine, presentation was lackluster. Would not recommend.
+ Spruce*: Traditional formal dining ambiance, prices seemed very high for the amount of food you get. Have been here 4x (various friends have invited me), but not a place I'd generally make reservations for myself. Would not recommend.
+ SPQR*: Another spot friends invited me to, so got to try it twice. Lots of pasta, good, but not great. Would not recommend.
+ Barndiva*: Trendy ambiance, presentation was nice, some dishes were hit or miss. Would not recommend.
+ Niku Steakhouse*: Trendy ambiance, great flavors and service. Sat at the bar so we got to see the chefs in action (best seats in the house!). Would recommend.
+Wako Japanese Restaurant*: Intimate, good presentation, but not an amazing, blow-my-mind experience. Would not recommend.
+ AL's Place*: Visited here three times (various friends wanted to check it out). Food was fine, appreciated the casual ambiance. Service was great, but given the food wasn't knock-your-socks amazing, I would not recommend.
+ Ju-Ni*: Tasty flavors, great presentation. Had to order supplemental wagyu because I wasn't full after the set omakase (which was unfortunate). Regardless, I would recommend.
+ Omakase*: Fresh fish but small portions, friends and I left hungry. Would not recommend.
+ Wakuriya*: Food was good but nothing terrible memorable. Would not recommend.
+ Kin Khao*: Low-key vibe, spicy and fragrant Thai flavors. Price point was agreeable for the quality and amount of food. Would recommend.

NYC
+ Per Se***: Traditional formal restaurant setting, tasty food (90% of dishes were YUM), great service. I celebrated my birthday at Per Se each year that I lived in NYC. One of my top Michelin-restaurant experiences. Would highly recommend.
+ Eleven Madison Park***: I really tried to give this place a chance, and even tried it twice. I was intrigued by the food presentation, but the flavors didn't really sing to me. I think if you're in NYC and able to, it's worth checking out Eleven Madison Park. Would recommend.
+ Le Bernardin***: Food was fine but not super memorable. Would not recommend.
+ Jungsik**: Tasty food, well-cooked proteins and lovely presentation. Trendy ambiance. Would recommend.
+ Atera**: Intimately-sized restaurant (when I went), fun, playful and surprising dishes. One of my top food experiences. Would highly recommend.
+ Daniel**: Not sure if it was an off night, but I recall the dishes being very salty. Would not recommend.
+ Jean-Georges**: Stuffy environment, food was fine but nothing to write home about. Would not recommend.
+ Blue Hill at Stone Barns**: Fresh flavors, food presentation, overall fine but would probably not return to this spot. Would not recommend.
+ Momofuku Ko**: Good but not super memorable. Not a huge fan of David Chang's restaurants in general. Would not recommend.
+ Marea*: Food was fine but overall unmemorable. Would not recommend.
+ Gramercy Tavern*: Proteins cooked well but overall unmemorable. Would not recommend.

LA
Providence**: Solid presentation, good flavor profile, trendy romantic atmosphere, worth a visit but I would not revisit given the price point and my overall enjoyment of the meal. Would recommend.

Paris

Guy Savoy***: Traditional formal restaurant vibe, presentation was fine, went during truffle season and the whole menu was truffle so I was initially very excited to try the restaurant. Ultimately, food was a bit underwhelming and uninteresting in flavor profile. Partner did propose to me at the restaurant though, :biggrin: ---> ring was served in a dish, cloaked by dry ice smoke. I was very surprised! Would not recommend.

Hope this was helpful! And thanks for providing me and my tummy with the opportunity to go down memory lane! It was a bit bittersweet because upon checking the current Michelin-guide, I realized that ten or so Michelin-starred restaurants I had visited over the past 14 years were no longer in the guide because they had shuttered closed.

I tried Quince when it opened and it did change my perception of tripe. Their Roman style tripe was so tender, savory, and moreish...I remember it vividly and fondly (only place that came close was a restaurant in Rome!) Coi was a little contrived -- totally different from Daniel Patterson's previous restaurant, Elizabeth Daniel, which I loved and was our go-to place for birthdays. Gary Danko was really good when it opened. Sad to hear it has slipped.

I think you have to order the right dish at La Bernardin -- the dishes are not all good. During one visit, I ordered something I ended up not liking. The waiter noticed I wasn't making much progress and he offered to change it for me. I had a similar experience at Per Se that you had at Daniel...I just thought the courses I had were too salty and the kitchen adjusted when I told our server. It's the kind of service we pay for, right? (I do enjoy Daniel's freshly baked madeleines at the end...)
 

Searno29

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Nov 2, 2018
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@apey_grapey Brat is really good. Very informal place, lots of character, beautiful food done well. I would totally go back. It’s not a 3h+ tasting menu type of place though. I’ve also heard great things about Frog, that’s where I wanna go next. And I agree with Hide’s staircase, the whole place is stunning. I’ve only eaten in their ground floor and it was great for a quick lunch, still need to try upstairs
 
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@apey_grapey Brat is really good. Very informal place, lots of character, beautiful food done well. I would totally go back. It’s not a 3h+ tasting menu type of place though. I’ve also heard great things about Frog, that’s where I wanna go next. And I agree with Hide’s staircase, the whole place is stunning. I’ve only eaten in their ground floor and it was great for a quick lunch, still need to try upstairs

I’m over the 3+ hours tasting menu, specially if it requires active participation. (I went to a restaurant that had us going to the garden, then to the kitchen, etc…I just want a meal, not pick tomatoes!). Good food and attentive service are the only requirements for me.

I like Hide downstairs because you can drop in all day - I mostly go for breakfast - and those giant windows is great for people watching. The Upstairs is at the right elevation to look into the double decker busses.
 

880

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My favorite restaurant is the Ledbury in London (Notting Hill). They closed indefinitely during the pandemic, but recently reopened (hurrah!) with reportedly the same staff and a new head chef. The Ledbury has the perfect balance of impeccable service and informality -- you can joke around with the sommelier or have the servers be invisible if you choose. It's about the only restaurant that I could happily stay in for a 4+ hour meal. The food is consistently excellent.

I also enjoyed dining at Daalder in Amsterdam -- more than at RIJKS, which was good as well.


Agree. At one point everyone was serving ash, it got on my nerves.


They don't coddle or pamper, but service is good and food is always excellent at Lyle's in Shoreditch. They let the ingredients do the work. I've flown to London primarily to have their pumpkin with whey butter dish. Next time I'm in London, Brat is on my list to try.

I agree with you about Dinner (I've probably had every dish on regular offer), the last time I was there, I just ordered the meat fruit appetizer (extra grilled bread) and a side of triple cooked chips. Heavy carbs but so comforting. Have you tried Hide near Green Park? (That sculpted staircase is amazing!) They serve a many of the dishes from Dabbous, which is understandable.

I've tried all the various iteration of EMP (the grid, the performative tasting menu with the carrot tartare, the less involved tasting menu) except the most recent vegan incarnation (not yet) and pretty much all of them got on my nerves after a while. I just wanted a pleasant meal; I will forgo the "experience".

Worst meal I traveled for was at Alinea, another "experience" restaurant (when they were selling tickets). We were probably unlucky with the week's menu - but I didn't really want to pick my meal from a moss strewn tree branch (do I eat the moss??). One thing I like was the non-alcoholic drink flight, so I wasn't stuck with iced tea all night [although the blueberry and mushroom extract or some such took some getting used to]. I am very grateful that many restaurants cater to non-drinkers now.


Agree about Restaurant Story. The tallow candle was interesting, but nearly flavorless. Then we had the seafood plate with all this dry ice fog, rock, and kelp -- we couldn't find anything :lol:

There are lots of restaurants that we lost during the pandemic. One that I'm particularly sorry to see close (because I had plans to return) was The Greenhouse. The service was very formal (not in a good way) but the food was sooo good!
Am taking notes thank you. Sometimes I just want to eat not see performance art :smile: aAgree re EMP in all its incarnations though I have not tried vegan
 
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880

30th anniversary cuff
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Aug 31, 2008
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^ supplement to previous post, San Francisco spots that made the Michelin guide's bib gourmand (hopefully this helps folx who live in the Bay Area or who are planning on visiting the Bay):

+ Outerlands: Brunch was fine. Outdoor seating on a nice day by the ocean was probably the best part of the experience. Would not recommend.
+ Um.ma: Have been here about six times? Have brought friends here and they've all thoroughly enjoyed it..but it could have been the soju too, lol. Tasty food, casual vibe with cute back patio, price point somewhat high but service is great and food is consistent. Would highly recommend the Rock n' Roe and Kalbi. Would highly recommend.
+ Sociale: Cute, cozy and intimate atmosphere. Food was fine but not memorable. Would not recommend.
+ Anchor Oyster Bar: Seafood-forward. Food was good but not memorable. Would not recommend.
+ Flour + Water Pizzeria: Don't really understand the hype around this place, but I also visited it within the first two months that it had opened, so maybe they have found their groove since then. Had tried the bone marrow pizza. Would not recommend.
+ Nari: Sister restaurant to Michelin-starred Kin Khao. Food and presentation were very good, but since I can't eat spicy food, wasn't for me. That being said, I would recommend.
+ Izakaya Rintaro: Have been here twice but it's been years. Cool and trendy ambiance, dishes were overall good and service was great. Would recommend.
+ Flores: Have been here multiple times (I believe there's a location in Corte Madera/Marin County, too). Very trendy and busy, good cocktails, vibrant and flavorful foods with a reasonable price point so that you and your friends can try lots of different dishes. Will not leave hungry. Would highly recommend.
+ Berber: Mysterious/alluring, trendy and upscale ambiance, great food and presentation. Flavors were vibrant and intriguing, and proteins were cooked well. Would highly recommend.
+ Trestle: Have been here four times, three times at their old location in North Beach/FiDi area (which I preferred). Good quality food and presentation for the price point. Was pleasantly surprised each time. I think they used to have a prix fixe menu at $40-50/person which felt like a steal in SF. Would recommend.
+ Cotogna: Sister restaurant to Michelin-starred Quince. Overall good experience. Service great. Some dishes were hit or miss. Highly recommend the gnocchi, soft, melty pillows. :biggrin:. Would recommend if you find yourself in that area but wouldn't go out of way for it.
+ Yank Sing: Dim sum here is fine, but I'd rather go to Dragon Beaux for dim sum. Would not recommend.

Not in the Michelin-guide but probably vying for a star is Merchant Roots. Intimate setting, lots of fun and innovative presentations and themes. It's almost like an art experience and keeps you on your toes. I love food and theater, and this restaurant is a marriage of the two. Went for the Elements Series (below is a pic of "fire," represented by charred steak on charred wood), and the Mad Tea Party Series (pie in an ornate clock):

View attachment 5367686 View attachment 5367685
will be in San Francisco in a July, so this is very helpful. Would love your list for Santa Barbara if you have one :smile:
Re NYC, I love how we’ve all had such different experiences with Per Se, Blue Hill, Daniel et al; jean George’s and Marea. For the most part, I tend to go to great restaurants that aren’t on the Michelin radar. And i like some restaurants that others probably think are a bit oberrated Like Avra UES.

Am with @limom in that I’m tired of foam :smile: and just want to eat
now that I’m older, lunches are better than dinners.
 
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limom

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will be in San Francisco in a July, so this is very helpful. Re NYC, I love how we’ve all had such different experiences
with Per Se, Blue Hill, Daniel et al; jean George’s and Marea.

Am with @limom in that I’m tired of foam :smile: and just want to eat
now that I’m older, lunches are better than dinners.
Same here. And no to performance unless it is from an attentive waiter and a well read and patient sommelier.
 
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