Get SF Weekly Newsletters

Friday, April 6, 2012

Number 27: The Jewish-Style Artichoke from Locanda

Posted By on Fri, Apr 6, 2012 at 1:15 PM

Locanda's carciofi alla giudia. - KIMBERLY SANDIE
  • Kimberly Sandie
  • Locanda's carciofi alla giudia.

SFoodie's countdown of our favorite 50 things to eat and drink, 2012 edition


Artichokes were originally a Jewish specialty in Italy, writes Cucina Ebraica author Joyce Goldstein, but now carciofi alla giudia are considered a Roman specialty as well. Considering that we live less than 100 miles away from the nation's artichoke capital, it's not surprising that Jewish-style fried artichokes are a standard at Locanda, the Stoll family's newest bistro, which steers by two culinary pole stars: Rome and San Francisco.

It can be easy, snacking your way through a jar of pickled artichoke hearts, to forget that artichokes are a flower. But not with the carciofi alla giudia. Chef Anthony Strong dips an entire artichoke, stem-side up, into hot oil, over and over again until its leaves flare out, radiating from a choke-free heart. (Does it look like a boutonniere for a zombie wedding? Maybe a little.) The brown, stiff petals, each curled in at their edges, are showered in salt and a fine chiffonade of mint, then finished with a spray of lemon juice. Simultaneously crisp and creamy, earthy and flashily herbed, the artichoke is more than a snack. It's a mission statement.

Locanda: 557 Valencia (at 16th St.), 863-6800.

Other favorites in this series:

28: Local: Mission Eatery's asparagus-egg sandwich

29: Memphis Minnie's 18-hour brisket

30: Custard buns from City View

31: Mission Chinese Food's kung pao pastrami

32: Panisse frites from Frances

33: Izakaya Yuzuki's chawanmushi

34: Fatted Calf's chorizo

35: Silvanas from House of Silvanas

36: Linden Street Brewery's black lager

37: Aged oolongs from Red Blossom Tea Company

38: Broken Record's crawfish grits

39: Cebiche mixto from La Mar 

40: Nutella-hazelnut hand pie from Black Jet Baking Co.
41: Fifth Floor's burger
42: Perbacco's agnolotti dal plin
43: Iced coffee from Sightglass
44: Cypress Grove's Purple Haze Chevre
45: Lechon from Tastebuds Cuisine
46: Duck with beets from AQ
47: Tai nigiri at ICHI Sushi
48: Fish with explosive chiles from Spices! 
49: Baker & Banker Bakery's blueberry cream cheese muffin
50: Kufta tajine from Cafe Zitouna

Follow us on Twitter: @sfoodie, and like us on Facebook.
Follow me at @JonKauffman.

  • Pin It

Tags: , , , ,

About The Author

Jonathan Kauffman


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.'"