The Great Plotnik

Saturday, September 14, 2013


If you look closely you'll see that Farallon Restaurant puts a lot of ammo into serving you two oysters each. It's not really the Plots' official Anniversary for almost two more weeks but last night was the night we could get into Farallon. Today is BZ's birthday with the 0 on the end, but since she's off galavanting on Kauai, we can talk about the Great Plotnik and Great Ducknik's night on the town last night.

Farallon is an old-fashioned fish house, wrapped up in Jules Verne jellyfish, subdued lighting and an attentive waitstaff with a person for every task. A beautifully dressed young woman does wine and drinks, a waiter in tie and jacket takes your order, several unsmiling busboys clear glasses and plates the second they are empty and bring extra servings of Acme Levain bread before you finish chewing. The fresh bar (called Jellyfish Bar, of course) is busy all night. Maybe it's not global warming that is chopping down the glaciers. Farallon uses a lot of ice.

Plot usualy poo-poohs 'atmosphere' in a restaurant, but he has to admit you feel like you've been somewhere special because of it. The reason is probably that the food is not secondary to the look. It is all delicious.

 Of course, you pay for all of this, even with a Living Social coupon. And everyone knows the best fish in the world is served on the beach where the fishermen bring it in. Given that, and despite the fact that the Half Pound Maine Lobster (Half Pound? Yes, Half Pound, including the shell.) appetizer yielded exactly two bites each, the two main courses were both as spectacular as any fish dishes either Plot or Duck has ever tasted.

One was a Thai Snapper, seared and served on a bed of leeks, and one was halibut in a smoky pimenton sauce, not quite soup but not quite not soup either. P and D split each main course and couldn't decide which was more delicious.

Oysters, lobster and tuna poke, snapper and halibut, and lemon cake and sassafras granita afterwards, plus an espresso to wash it all down, left the two Almost-Anniversary guests full as the whale after Jonah moved in.

It's good to try these places. You probably don't go twice, so sample it all. Maybe Farallon doesn't rank with Chez Panisse but it is certainly right up there with the great ones.

Of course, this led to conversation about the best fish dinners ever -- and both seemed to be in Mexico -- Plot's experience in Tehuantapec where they caught the huge rooster fish and smoked them overnight in a corn cob smoker, and Duck's snapper kabobs on the beach outside of Puerto Vallarta. But the kingclip and Mozambique shrimp in Capetown are on the list too. Don't forget those stupidly delicious lobster rolls in Deer Isle.

Incidentally, it sounded like just about everyone in Farallon had a coupon. And, channeling the Great Mushnik, we even found parking on the street. The coupon paid for the tax and 18% gratuity and 4% SF employee medical charge, and the free parking paid for a quarter bite of lobster.

The only people in the place wearing ties were the waiters. The manager wore the only visible suit.


At 4:46 PM, Blogger mary ann said...

wow, good for you! It looks beautiful and you two do too...


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