Recently I was able to check out Lord Stanley in San Francisco with my +1. I first heard of Lord Stanley when the Michelin star restaurant list came out a few years ago. Then the San Francisco Chronicle gave the restaurant a 3.5 out of 4 star review. So it seems like a place worth checking out.
The restaurant offers both an a la carte menu and a tasting menu. As I'm quite lazy about selecting food, we selected the tasting menu. This is what we got.
Really good sourdough. We debated if it was better than Aster's, which is our favorite. It's really good, but we thought it was a pretty close second.
2) poached oyster with dungeness crab, sorrel and daikon radish
A great first course, a great combination of flavors.
3) warm cabbage, house buttermilk and uni bottarga
I was a little surprised when I saw this, as I mostly saw a pile of boiled cabbage. But I ended up really enjoying this dish. With the buttermilk, it gives it a much different flavor than I had anticipated. I especially appreciated the fact that it wasn't a typical "salad" course, it's just a bit different and mixes things up a bit.
4) foie gras confit in kombu with celery root and black olive, seaweed madeleines
This was a supplemental course on the menu. The foie gras was really good, although I wonder about the combination of the madeleines with it instead of a more average bread. The madeleines were just a bit too soft for spreading. But the madeleines were good by themselves.
5) hen consomme with confit yolk, trumpet mushrooms, english peas and bloomsdale spinach
Also included in this soup was also some lima beans. The egg yolk was cooked to a very creamy consistency. There was a little something in the soup that I couldn't quite pick up on. Something a little "sweet and sour", unsure what flavor was added, although you can see the red dots in the soup above.
At this point in the meal, I do want to say that I felt the meal was really healthy. It just felt like I was eating a lot more vegetables than most tasting menus.
6) mount lassen trout with barbecued leek, almonds, and curry
This trout was clearly sous vided and very soft and tender. I wasn't sure what the sauce on the upper left was, but there it appeared be some cream/mayo-ish sauce. Overall, quite good.
7) wagyu sirloin with braised salsify, horseradish and red wine jus
Not much to say about this dish, as its a more traditional dish.
8) apple and fennel sorbet with a cider float
The staff offered the cider for this float as an option, in case you don't want the alcohol from it. The sorbet was delicious.
9) mandarin pavlova with citrus gastrique
This was delicious, amongst the best desserts I can recall. Underneath this meringue shell was mandarin origin slices and citrus "gastrique". I didn't know that gastrique was, but online its a jam of sorts. We found a gelatin/gummy like products mixed in with the mandarin slices, which is what I assume was the gastrique. Overall, with the crunchy outside, this dessert was wonderful.
And finally mignardise, this was popcorn macaron and salted caramel chocolate. The popcorn macaron was interesting as I've never had that as a macaron flavor before.
Overall the meal was just over 2 hours long and I really enjoyed it. We decided it was certainly in the upper half of meals we've had.
One thing that amazes me is how cheap this tasting menu is. At only $97 (+ $17 for the foie gras), it has to be one of the cheaper tasting menus in the bay area.