Posted by: Hungry Korean | September 22, 2011

Commonwealth Restaurant

In San Fran, we got to meet up with my old friend Minnow and her husband.  There was much to celebrate: she is pregnant with her first child (yay!) and Cookie Monster and I had recently gotten married. I asked them to pick the place to dine as they are foodies too and I trust their opinions. At their suggestion, we met at Commonwealth Restaurant in the Mission District.

Minnow’s husband, who I will dub “Skinny Jeans” in my blog, was so thoughtful to have rose champagne ready and waiting for us when we arrived.  The restaurant also gave us complimentary glass of champagne when they found out Minnow was pregnant (which now that I think about it is weird kinda cuz she can’t drink?).  So this is how we started our meal – double fisting champers. lol

The table decided to go for the 6 course chef’s tasting ……with wine pairings.  Yes we got intoxicated, except for the pregnant lady. Anyways, the 6 course tasting is priced at $65 of which $10 goes to a local charity. Love that!

The amuse bouche arrived – melon with crispy proscuitto:

First course was albacore sashimi with toasted hazelnuts, scallion, white soy and ginger snow:

Very fresh fish with delicate flavors. The avocado crema(?) didn’t overpower the fish at all but enhanced the meatiness of it.  Hazelnuts added a nutty crunch. Close up:

I thought the presentation was lovely – like flower buds.

Next course was chilled summer squash soup with crispy zucchini blossom:

It was ok. I am not a fan of cold soups generally and found it a bit bland but I did love the crispy zucchini blossoms. Light as air.

Sea urchin course with egg mouse and clam dashi (I got double the sea urchin because Minnow can’t eat raw fish and they gave it to me! HURRAH!)

How pretty! The sea urchin was very small and a bright orange but incredibly sweet. I loved the presentation of this plate, especially that small tiny flower. It was not enough to satiate my love for sea urchin but a wonderful tasting.

My favorite course was the sweetbreads with brown butter, yuzu and corn pudding:

The sweetbreads were lightly breaded and so tender. Not a hint of gamey taste.  It was delicate and satisfying all at once.

Next two courses were dessert:  first came the peach sorbet with basil granita:

The peach sorbet was refreshing and a great palate cleanser but in my opinion did not work with the basil granita at the bottom. I felt the combination was so strange. Basil with peach?  I wasn’t a fan. This was my least favorite course and I gave mine to the table.

The last and final course was delicious! It was peanut butter semifreddo with chocolate ganache and frozen popcorn:

As you can tell the portions are small but beautifully presented. It was gourmet dining with hints of molecular gastronomy.  I was impressed….and we were all drunk.  A bottle of rose champagne and several glasses of wine? Woah. But I digress..

So if what you are looking for is larger portions that are more home cooking, this isn’t where you want to go. But if you are looking for a special meal with details paid to every aspect of the plate, Commonwealth is for you.  The meal was wonderful and Minnow and Skinny Jean paid the bill which was so sweet of them! Thank you guys for the wonderful company AND the delightful meal!

Commonwealth Restaurant, 2224 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA

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