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Friday, December 3, 2010

Ryan Scott's 3-Sum Eats Debuts at Off the Grid

Posted By on Fri, Dec 3, 2010 at 4:00 PM

3-Sum's short-rib sandwich, $9. - JONATHAN KAUFFMAN
  • Jonathan Kauffman
  • 3-Sum's short-rib sandwich, $9.

Last night, 24 hours after some of his fellow Top Chef alumni made their return to Bravo to chase the fame dragon one more time, Ryan Scott returned to the public eye in another form: behind the windows of a food truck. Scott ― known locally for his stints at Myth and Mission Beach Cafe ― debuted his new truck, 3-Sum Eats at Thursday night's Off the Grid street-food rumble in the Upper Haight.

Like Hapa SF and the Taco Guys, 3-Sum Eats applies decades of formal kitchen training to simple, grab-and-eat food ― salads, soups, sandwiches, and cupcakes. (You can read a sample menu on his website). I picked up a short-rib sandwich with upland cress, caramelized shallot relish, and melted fontina ($9). The shallots defined the sandwich ― sweet and fragrant in the same measure, their flavor amplified with horseradish and a shower of fried shallots. They moistened up the shredded beef and heralded the bite of the cress.

Fried gnocchi with "dirty ranch" sauce. - JONATHAN KAUFFMAN
  • Jonathan Kauffman
  • Fried gnocchi with "dirty ranch" sauce.

Scott is aiming straight for the id with his take on tater tots ($4). He serves a basket of breaded, fried potato gnocchi with a plastic tub of "dirty ranch," which the ticket-taker told us referred to the black garlic in the sauce. (Given the truck's penchant for double-entendres, I fear there's a reference to a dirty sanchez as well ― you'll have to Google that term yourself, and please don't blame me for the trauma it causes).

The faux-tots are a work in progress: a great idea, but still a little dense and chewy for our tastes. Overall, though, I thought Scott's take on food-truck Americana is smartly done ― in step with what's appearing at bistros, and upscaled just enough to give good ingredients their due.

3-Sum Eats:; Twitter: @3sumeats.

Follow us on Twitter: @sfoodie. Follow me at @JonKauffman.

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