Get SF Weekly Newsletters

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Hot Meal: Bar Tartine

Posted By on Wed, Sep 9, 2009 at 3:22 PM

The rib steak for two: Challenging. - J. BIRDSALL
  • J. Birdsall
  • The rib steak for two: Challenging.
Bar Tartine's been reborn. Well, reshaped. When the Valencia Street restaurant reopened two weeks ago, its menu had morphed from the meticulously etched cooking of former chef Jason Fox to the more low-slung, classic Northern California style of Chris Kronner.
click to enlarge Fig-walnut anchoiade: Alice-y. - J. BIRDSALL
  • J. Birdsall
  • Fig-walnut anchoiade: Alice-y.

But simplicity isn't always easy to pull off. Sure, the kitchen nailed it with an appetizer of fig-walnut anchoïade ($8) served with leafy radishes. You couldn't devise a more ardent homage to Chez Panisse: the soft, mashy dip, softly radiating anchovy, above a dark, sweet shadow of fruit. And a little munchie of cheddar crackers ($3) were as tasty as the browned, frazzled ooze from a grilled cheese sandwich.

Other dishes cried out for more polish. An app of potted foie gras ($14), encased in congealed duck fat, offered up a livery nub all but lost in its unctuous insulation. A rib steak for two ($48) had the intense animal throb of nicely aged beef, but -- webbed with fat and sinew -- it was difficult to cut and, when it came to some of the muscle fibers running through the steak, chew. A side of corn pudding ($6) had a one-dimensional sweetness and soft, pappy texture.

Still, we'd be fools to give up on the new Bar Tartine after a single dinner. If Kronner can make the simplicity of the menu approach the dark elegance of Tartine's narrow dining room -- brooding as a Dutch painting -- he'll have achieved something worthy of the reshaping.

Bar Tartine 561 Valencia (at 16th St.), 487-1600

  • Pin It

Tags: , , ,


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed

Like us on Facebook


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"