Monday, April 29, 2013

// Koi Palace - Dim Sum //

suckling pig - roast pork. skin was super crispy!

chicken feet

pork buns

lamb buns - looked better than they tasted

taro puffs

peking duck, duh

On my recent trip to San Fran to visit family. My cousins took me to Koi Palace in Daly City. Everything was delicious and the place was packed for a weekday late lunch. We went around 1:30 or 2:00 and it was a full house. Definitely make reservations if you go. The funny part was that my cousin was like "Order whatever you want!" and at the end of the meal, he used his Koi Palace credit card. It was literally restaurant credit because he had booked this place as a wedding venue, put down a deposit, and ended up just eloping. So then he was stuck with a no refund policy and they just gave him a ton of restaurant credit. He said they had gone there for numerous dinners that cost up to $500 because of some specialty seafood dishes. Even after our meal, he still had a couple hundred left! I thought that was a pretty good "problem" to have. ;]

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

// State Bird Provisions //


duck liver mousse + almond biscuit

oysters with kohlrabi kraut & sesame  

garlic bread/knot

hands down our favorite. fried seaweed (tasted more like a shrimp chip) w/fresh avocado + hamachi

the state bird (fried quail) w/provisions

uni pancake

deep-fried pork belly w/citrus and mint

red ruby grapefruit & lime granita, rhubarb, yogurt

I've noticed now that I'm older, that all my travels are planned by where I want to eat. On this particular trip to San Fran, State Bird Provisions was the top of my list. I had an ATL friend recommend it since he had gone there for work the week before and sat at the chef's counter (as did I). It was listed as one of Bon Appetit's "Best New Restaurant" in 2012. You basically have to book reservations months in advance, but there's a line that forms outside the restaurant starting at 4:45 (they open at 5:30). Luckily, my friend was able to get there at 4:30 and we were the 1st in line. The line outside quickly became about 30 ppl after us and it's basically getting in line to get on the waiting list. If you're in the back, they'll put your name down and you'll have to come back at a later time. We got sat at the chef's counter right at opening.

The kitchen is pretty open and you can see how efficiently everyone works together and how much the staff loves their job. It's a super casual atmosphere where you can just wear jeans and a tee or come dressed up and still fit in. The place itself isn't that big, but is cozy and comfortable. They serve the food dim-sum style in that they're all basically small plates and the servers/chefs present each dish and describe it, then they state the price and you tell them "yes" or  "no" and they mark the item on your tab. There's also set things on the menu that you can order that are bigger main dishes as well as desserts. We had three people in our group and we split a bottle of wine and it came to $60/person. Not bad at all for all the variety of dishes!  Everything was soooo fresh. If you're in the area, it should be on the top of your list, too.