During a day of what seemed like endless 5-yards sprints, overripe plaintains that turned to mush when I fried them, and a freak May hailstorm that nearly ruined two wedding ceremonies, we decided to update the lounge menu to the tune of SIX new items. Changing that many dishes on Saturday afternoon: gonzo cooking, another instance of learning to fly while falling, just like John Besh pulled almost every weekend and I swore I’d never inflict on my own kitchen. (But I have a short and selective memory, as anyone to whom I’ve promised a free meal or a raise will tell you.)
So here’s the lineup:
softshell crab po’boy (dressed and best west of Tchoupitoulas)
char siu bao, our steamed pork buns made with mesquite-smoked pork shoulder
asparagus tempura, replacing the baby fava beans that are now too tough to eat whole
pork pie our swineophile pizza with bacon, smoked ham, pepperoni, and sage-garlic sausage
sea bass and scotch bonnet pepper ceviche with avocado and patacones, which are twice-fried green plaintains–cut and cook them once, smack them with the bottom of a bottle of Imperial (at least when you’re on the beach at Manzanillo), then fry them again at high temperature
salmon rillettes with a hot homemade pretzel and pickles
I think six is plenty of reasons to drink Champagne.
Also on tonight’s menu but currently SOLD OUT:
black pepper pappardelle with hugebutter-poached morels, red wine braised lamb shank, sweet peas, and creme fraiche, a surprise hit that turned out a lot better than I thought it would.
monterey bay sardines with fava bean stuffing, chorizo, and preserved lemon, Ryder’s new dish that pulls off four or five full-flavored somersaults, and only in the Bay Area can you sell out of sardines.
And added by Zach to the solbar lunch menu:
snake river farms flatiron steak salad with chili-lime vinaigrette, chiccharones, jicama, and avocado puree
three bean salad with fresh marjoram, tomato confit, and bibb lettuce
I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that the babyback ribs are back on there as well.