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First Time Out in Months - Need Recommendations

Well, we finally did it! We got out of the house, just the two of us! Thank you to everyone who posted recommendations. We ended up choosing to go to Aziza for a few reasons. 1) the menu looked interesting 2) lots of you recommended it 3) it wasn't downtown so it would be closer to home so we could spend our time away in the restaurant rather than in the car.

We were sat in the back dining room, which seemed much more intimate than the other two, on a comfy pillow-filled banquette along the wall. It was nice to actually get to sit next to each other. We were both so giddy to be alone though, honestly, that they probably could have sat us in the kitchen and we would have been happy!

We started out with a watermelon salad - two types of watermelon, shaved pecorino, rosemary and arugula drizzled with honey. This was wonderful. Very different and light and perfect for a warm evening. Why can't I ever find watermelon that tastes this good?! Left me wanting more.. looking back on it now, it was probably my favorite part of the meal.

We moved on to two different appetizers:
one was fresh bodega goat cheese w/ cherry tomato & citrus jam, pistachios, and toast --> this was wonderful. The jam spread was amazing and a great accompaniment/ balance to the cheese.
the other was a selection of mediterranean spreads (eggplant, yogurt-cucumber-dill,. and something balsamic) w/ flatbread --> this one I could have done without. None of the spreads tasted inspired to me. They each left me feeling a little bored and wishing I had ordered something else. Don't get me wrong, they were good. It's just there were so many more exciting things we could have gotten! Ultimately, I found myself hogging all the goat cheese and jam.

Our entrees were amazing. We shared fennel crusted ahi w/ tahini and a really yummy salad of diced tomatoes and peppers (i believe), and rabbit with a cherry sauce and parsnip puree. The rabbit was to die for and the ahi melted in my mouth! The portion sizes were perfect and presentation was beautiful.

And dessert... OH it was wonderful. I had a chocolate cake with warm drizzled fudge sauce. But the best part was the fresh mint ice cream that came with it. The whole concoction together was BLISS! My husband had the apple galette, which i didn't even bother trying I was so enamored with my own. He said it wasn't the best he'd ever had, but he certainly cleaned his plate.

I would DEFINITELY recommend this as a date restaurant. It felt really special to be there, the service was good (if not forced at times) and the food exquisite. The crowd was eclectic - some were very dressed, others were wearing tshirts and jeans.

Thank you again everyone for helping make our first night out in ages memorable!

Sep 19, 2006
teerak in San Francisco Bay Area

First Time Out in Months - Need Recommendations

I'm not looking for "weird", just a bit discouraged by a couple of the menus i've looked at. No big deal. And I guess that is only because we are spoiled here with the usual suspects being great yet subtle items like seared day boat scallops, wild mushroom ravioli and slow cooked pork loin.

And yes, Coi does seem a bit out of the price range. Thanks though.

Sep 08, 2006
teerak in San Francisco Bay Area

First Time Out in Months - Need Recommendations

The Richmond does sound like a good neighborhood spot. The current menu doesn't wow me though. Actually, looking at most of the menus from the restaurants above, I don't feel very WOWed by any of them. Am I missing something or is there a lack of inventiveness these days? I'm assuming most are going for quality of ingredients rather than quality + originality.

Sep 08, 2006
teerak in San Francisco Bay Area

First Time Out in Months - Need Recommendations

I'm wondering: what is it about Incanto that is SO good. The reviews you list don't necessarily make me feel i NEED to eat there.

Sep 08, 2006
teerak in San Francisco Bay Area

First Time Out in Months - Need Recommendations

We don't mind where we eat. We live north of the Panhandle so we're pretty central and don't mind driving/taxiing wherever we're going.

Sep 07, 2006
teerak in San Francisco Bay Area

First Time Out in Months - Need Recommendations

My husband and I are planning our first night out in almost a year (we had twins awhile back and have had our hands full). We're dieing to have a great meal and some time to ourselves and we'd love some recommendations for new restaurants to try, or if you have ideas about old restaurants to try we're up for that too!

We're looking for a restaurant that is:

- in the city.
- not ridiculously expensive. With twins, all our money is going to diapers these days :)
- good about keeping to reservations. We don't want our few hours out to be wasted waiting for our table.
- all around good food. from appetizers to entrees to desserts. i want it all!

Any help you can give is very much appreciated! We're having trouble figuring out where to go - seems like a pretty momentous occasion to us since it's been so long!

Thanks in advance!

Sep 07, 2006
teerak in San Francisco Bay Area

SF - Bambino's on Cole... $12 Tuesday Rustic Italian dinners?

We are regulars for the Tuesday night special dinners at Bambinos. Delivery is free and the food is consistently great. This past month, I've had Tuscan Bean Stew, Gorgonzola Risotto, Lamb Stew and last week Chicken Pie. At only $12, it is a complete steal! You also get a salad (make sure to get the pomegranate dressing) and soup.

Their regular menu is good as well, but because we're on a strict budget we tend to stick to the Tuesday night dinners. We feel like we're really treating ourselves but are only paying as much as we would for a random take out!

Sep 07, 2006
teerak in San Francisco Bay Area