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Thursday, August 20, 2009

New Chef at Bar Tartine to Oversee an Accessible, Classic Cali Menu

Posted By on Thu, Aug 20, 2009 at 2:19 PM

click to enlarge kronner_thumb_280x185.jpg
Chris Kronner: Incorporating dishes from the recent Bruno's pop-ups.

A tweaked Bar Tartine (561 Valencia at 16th St.) reopens for dinner next Tuesday with an entirely revamped menu steeped in classic Northern California comfort cooking and with an emphasis on shared entrees. New executive chef Chris Kronner told SFoodie the menu is a collaboration with proprietors Chad Robertson and Elisabeth Prueitt, owners also of Tartine Bakery & Café (600 Guerrero at 18th St.).


Kronner said many dishes have been tested over the past few weeks at Robertson and Prueitt's house. "We're just tying to make the food more reflective of the style of the bakery, sophisticated but very approachable," said the 26-year-old chef, who's known Robertson and Prueitt since he was 19 and living in an apartment above Tartine Bakery. "It's just kind of a menu that we would all be very interested in going out and paying for."

Under Jason Fox, whose last night was Saturday, Bar Tartine offered moderate portions with finely hewn flavors and a sort of miniaturist's eye for detail. Kronner has a more straightforward style that would seem to fit diners' current interest in value and fundamental comfort cooking. The former chef of Serpentine and Slow Club recently ran the kitchen at Good Evening Thursdays at Bruno's, a weekly pop-up restaurant that ended July 30. Bar Tartine's new menu includes a couple of dishes from the Good Evening dinners, including a Prather Ranch burger and filet mignon with bone marrow.

The burger will be on a brioche bun from Tartine Bakery, part of a greater collaboration between the two Tartines. The menu will also include a few recipes from Robertson's soon-to-publish bread book, including a walnut-fig anchoïade. There'll be what Kronner called "large-format entrees," too, dishes designed to share, such as a chicken cooked in cast iron and a large grilled rib-eye. "We got some really gorgeous rib racks from Marin Sun Farms that we're dry-aging ourselves," the chef said.

There'll be an emphasis on the micro-local, too, courtesy of some 30 varieties of salad greens and herbs grown in a backyard at 18th Street and Guerrero by urban gardener Brooke Budner.

Prices keep to the moderate range, with most entrees clocking in between $16 and $24. The filet with bone marrow is priced at $28. Bar Tartine will be open for dinner Tues. through Sun. (closed Mon.), with brunch on Sat. and Sun.

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