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Thursday, July 2, 2015

Manos Nouveau Is the Castro's Most Upscale Brunch

Posted By on Thu, Jul 2, 2015 at 2:30 PM

click to enlarge Grilled salmon - PETER LAWRENCE KANE
  • Peter Lawrence Kane
  • Grilled salmon


After taking over the space that Pica Pica vacated last year, Manos Nouveau in the Castro has quickly established itself as one of the better higher-end establishments in a neighborhood that’s been on a sustained rampage with better dining options over the last two years. Chef Gualberto Nic Camara and Sous Chef Francisco Morales churn out consistently excellent Central and South American food prepared with French techniques, and they manage to do so in a weird location next to a gas station on a quasi-dead-end block that sees a precipitous drop-off in foot traffic from nearby Castro and Market Streets.

And now there’s brunch.

click to enlarge Tacu-tacu - PETER LAWRENCE KANE
  • Peter Lawrence Kane
  • Tacu-tacu

The new brunch menu — which, it should be noted, uses all-inclusive tips — is heavy on the flourishes. The tacu tacu ($23), an Afro-Peruvian variation on rice and beans, balances sweet and savory with two eggs and sweet plantains. Although nothing is ever the worse for the inclusion of fried cheese, it really ties the entire dish together. A plate of grilled salmon (surprisingly inexpensive at $15) towers high above a bed of chimiole rice with pearl onions and bell peppers, cilantro chimichurri, and plentiful beech mushrooms.

If you’re looking for something smaller, you can pick among ahi deviled eggs ($16), a Latin French onion soup made with chorizo ($13), or a sweet egg pancake served with mango coulis, whipped cream, and a pear-infused red wine reduction (essentially a fancy Belgian waffle with the waffle swapped out for some huevos laid by a hen in Medellin.) Overall, vegetarian dishes abound, and even small, borderline-afterthought sides like country-fried carrots reflect the

Nothing says brunch in the Castro like mimosas, and in addition to a rotating tropical flavor, Manos Nouveau’s orange-mango mimosa will be available every weekend. On top of that, the atmosphere is art-filled and sophisticated, especially the upstairs section with its giant windows and drape-lined walls. The neighborhood has plenty of options for coffee-and-toast breakfasts already, but now there’s a serious contender for the crown.

Manos Nouveau, 3970 17th St., 415-872-5507.




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About The Author

Peter Lawrence Kane

Bio:
Peter Lawrence Kane is SF Weekly's Arts Editor. He has lived in San Francisco since 2008 and is two-thirds the way toward his goal of visiting all 59 national parks.

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