Fleur de lys – San Francisco

Beautiful napkin
Beautiful napkin

Stumbling in San Francisco with a reservation to Fleur De Lys was one of the highlights of my trip here.  Watching Top Chef in Thailand on cable made me gush, admire and crave to try his food or food inspired by him.  What to expect?  You choose between a 3, 4, 5 course tasting menu which choose from – Appetizers, Meat, Fish, Cheese and Dessert.  Thais dont eat cheese, well i do, and my companion didn’t so i skipped it.  Thais regard cheese slices and the stringy thing on pizza as cheese. Well that’s another story.  This is what you get.. (Trust me it’s as good as it gets)  Perfectly cooked food.  That’s all i can say.  Perfectly cooked food that tastes… well… perfect.  The pictures aren’t so clear due to the lighting in the restaurant is rather dim for that romantic feel but look at the pics and try to imagine the ultimate meal!

My Cocktail...
My Cocktail…
Norwegian water all the way in SF
Norwegian water all the way in SF

Get the Olive Bread and Baguette.  Try not to fill up on the bread.  It’s that good.

Bread was sooooo delish!
Bread was sooooo delish!
Pat of unsalted butter with coarse sea salt on the side
Pat of unsalted butter with coarse sea salt on the side

Canape – Artichoke Soup with speck and carrot salad on pea puree.   The soup was sourish, light on the tongue.  The tangy salad was cold, fresh, yummy, and the hit of saltiness from the speck was just right.  I wished it was on the menu. Definite 10

So Yum!
So Yum!

A great example of Hubert Keller’s Genius – Petrale Sole with sea urchin, caviar olive oil potato puree, dugeness crab served with a bacon brioche…  What you get?  Perfectly cooked fish with exploding salty caviar, combined with creamy sea urchin… Oh my God… The Bacon Brioche….. DIE DIE DIE

See the brioche on the side?
See the brioche on the side?

My friend got the Duck ham with mozzarella slider with faux liver mousse,chicken pate, asparagus, french potato salad with white anchovy.  I might not be quoting the menu exactly but you get the idea…  The pate was a bit too sour but everything else… Get this, my friend hates duck. Loathes it with a vengeance   He can’t take duck, he says it smells. Why did he choose duck?  He wanted to see how genius cooks.  He gobbled it up.  He took back his words…

Can you imagine someone hating duck and devouring this duck slider?
Can you imagine someone hating duck and devouring this duck slider?
Looks so pretty!
Looks so pretty!

Swordfish Loin with spicy aioli, almonds and romesco sauce and alot of other stuff.  The spicy aioli complemented the swordfish well, since it was a meaty fish it was a firm texture like a soft steak.  We dont have firm fish in Thailand so it was a bit strange at first since we are used to soft flaky fish usually served whole and steamed usually but it was yummy.  Interestingly yummy.

Yummy!
Yummy!
Perfect Perfect!
Perfect Perfect!

I had the Halibut which was perfectly cooked but i thought the sauce was a bit too sweet for my liking.  I prefer to separate my sweet with savory so it was again.. Interestingly good.

Beautiful and every bit as yummy!
Beautiful and every bit as yummy!

And…. Finally the meats!!!

I got the Fillet Mignon with the Lobster Mac and Cheese (en brioche) which was sooo famous on top chef.  You had to add 16 usd i think but yummy yummy.  The Mac and Cheese did NOT taste like a kraft, it was light, cheesy without being overpowering.  The macaroni was cooked perfectly, not too al dente and not too soft. AND THE BRIOCHE… WOW can they bake at Fleurs!!!  Very very rich dish, but sigh sigh sigh.

Just imagine how delicious it smells!
Just imagine how delicious it smells!

My Friend got the Kobe Beef Cheeks.  It was soft and melt in the mouth.  Yet it was able to stand up on the plate.  How did they do it?  The presentation was not too much like at some places.  All the garnishes tasted delicious.

Yum Yum
Yum Yum

Now, on to desserts:

Chocolate souffle and amaretto ice cream… How do you describe perfection?  Crunchy sides, soft middle, rich chocolaty warm souffle with the ice cold ice cream.  Sigh….

This is what a REAL souffle tastes and looks like!!!
This is what a REAL souffle tastes and looks like!!!
How can it be this good??
How can it be this good??

Complimentary petit fours from the chef…

So beautiful!
So beautiful!
Yummy brioche!
Yummy brioche!
Beautiful table setting
Beautiful!

Please make a reservation and enjoy one of the best meals of your life here.  Herbert Keller, from an admiring fan, now i’m groupie!  I bought his cookbook just to hold back home in Bangkok!!

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Delicious Seat food at the Swan Oyster Depot – San Francisco

Look at the que!
Look at the que!
Just look at all the yummy things on display!
Just look at all the yummy things on display!
Yum Yum Yum
Yum Yum Yum
Take a minute to gaze on the colorful menus on the wall!
Take a minute to gaze on the colorful menus on the wall!
Nice friendly owners!
Nice friendly owners!

Clearing out my picture files and i stumbled upon many records that i forgot to write about.  Coming from asia where we are surrounded by beautiful beaches and great seafood i never expected to experience one of the best seafood meals in SF.  After an hour in que (we were the last ones) we finally got a table.  It was a great experience, everyone sat at the counter bar and in front you can look at all the fresh seafood and drool and imagine what you would order when you finally got to sit down.  What we ordered:

Best Best UNI EVER!
Best Best UNI EVER!

1)  Sea Urchin – I was so lucky it was the last one and me and the last guy shared half of this humongous guy…. It was the best uni i ever tasted in my life… I still dream about it back in Thailand.

Can you see the amount of crab???
Can you see the amount of crab???

2)  Crab Salad – It was fresh veggies which is nothing new in a salad but the amount of crab meat stunned my friend into silence.  They just grabbed handfuls and placed it on the salad.  I mean it’s crab…..  It was fresh, sweet, firm chunks!  Delish… You cannot imagine…

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3) Clam Chowder – Very Rich, creamy and good for dipping in the bread. Bread was cold but oh well we were there for the seafood.

Whata big fella
Whata big fella

4) Half a Dungeness Crab – This crab was a huge guy, in Asia crabs are big but this guy was probably from giant land.  My friend who was a crab lover sat quiet after 2 weeks of complaining about western food finally shut up and just ate and ate.

All you need is a squeeze of lemon!
All you need is a squeeze of lemon!

5)  Half a dozen oysters – All mine.. All mine.  I forgot what i ordered but they were salty, juicy, and yum.

I dont think you can explain much about how seafood tastes like, i think it’s different from Thailand where everything is cooked and piping hot.  Eating cold fresh seafood really is a luxury and i appreciate just basic seafood and undressed.  Just enjoy it the way nature intended it.  Fresh and yum.  PS:  They open at 11am and last orders at 4.30pm if i’m not mistaken.