Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Eating vegetarian

San Francisco is home to Greens, one of the best vegetarian restaurants in the United States (perhaps the world).  We are talking Chez Panisse quality, but in a vegetarian sort of way.  It has been here since 1979, but I hadn't been there in years, so we recently celebrated a special occasion with a dinner there.

The restaurant is located in Fort Mason, in S.F.'s Marina district.  It was a typical cool evening in SF, and of course we had not dressed for it, coming over in the convertible from the hot East Bay.  But once we were seated, with a beautiful view of San Francisco Bay and the Golden Gate Bridge, that hardly mattered.

It is hard to describe how good Greens really is.  I'll just tell you what I had.

First, an Andante Dairy Crottin, with Mediterranean cucumber, radish and frisee salad and olives.  Accompanied by Acme pain epi with Strauss butter.  Here's a look (it is better if you click on each picture -they look much better when they are larger):

(Side note - Acme bread is the best in the world, and Strauss Creamery makes perfect butter.  We ate too much of those.)

For my appetizer, I had a wilted spinach salad with mutsu apples, goat cheese, slow roasted almonds, roasted torpedo onions, cider vinegar, and hot olive oil.  A compilation of tastes that balanced each other out very well.

The entree, not surprisingly, was the best part of the meal.  Mine was a Masa harina crepe with corn, grilled onions, poblano chilies, chedder, marjoram, sage, tomatillo sauce and fire roasted salsa.  It was served with grilled cousa squash, Green Gulch rainbow chard, beet greens, and lacinato kale.  You'd have to taste this to believe how good it was:

(I don't even know what many of those items are, but the entree was incredible).

Dessert for me was simple - blackberry, raspberry, and strawberry sorbets, with lavendar shortbread cookies.  Sorry, no picture.  But here's one of the sunset looking at the bridge:

If every meal was like this one, I would, indeed, become a vegetarian.

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