Address: 3111 24th Street at Folsom, Mission District, SF
Phone Number: (415) 655-3422
Dining Partner: Keaton
Date Last Visited: March 25, 2012
I had this gift certificate in my wallet for the past 4 months. It actually wasn't mine. It was Keaton's. He received it from his Godparents J and B for his birthday. It was a generous $$ amount for dinner. Because Keat now works the night shift, we don't venture out for dinner in SF like before. It's something to get used to, but at least we have the [guaranteed] weekends together. It didn't hurt to ask if we could use it for Sunday brunch and luckily for us, they accepted it. Score.
This would be our first time eating at Local Mission Eatery. Knead Bakery is located at the rear of the restaurant. We have visited Knead a few times before (the pomme d'amour is that dreams are made of), but never sat for a meal. What I noticed right away were the communal table, the counter lining the length of their wall, as well as the counter seats directly by the kitchen. Then I saw the bookcases filled with cookbooks and food literature. I loved it. If you have not noticed already the name of the restaurant is "LOCAL" Mission Eatery. Their goal is to only use fresh ingredients and products from purveyors close to the Bay Area - from their teas, cheese, and produce. Among them: Marin Roots Farm, Sutton Cellers, Fully Belly Farms, and many many more.
Now the hard part was what to order. After snatching some fresh out-of-the oven twists and pomme d'amour at Knead, we approached the cashier with wide eyes and salivating mouths. The chefs were directly behind her working in an organized/chaotic dance which was mesmerizing to watch. When choosing where to sit, it was a given to sit at the counter facing the chefs.
Goat Gouda - Paso Robles, Central Coast Creamery, Goat
Big Rock Blue - Paso Robles, Central Coast Creamery, Cow
Red Hawk - Point Reyes, Cowgirl Creamery, Cow
Nectarine-Thyme Preserve (below) - this was a perfect accompaniment with the cheese. I am not too much of a blue cheese girl, but the fruit from the preserve cut the funkiness. Loved it. Unfortunately, I neglected to ask where this awesome condiment came from or if they made it in-house. If I find out, I'll let you know.
When it comes to getting your dishes, the chef actually comes out of the kitchen and delivers the food to you. Ours in particular said we were getting the "pork trifecta."
He was right about that.
Keaton devoured this sandwich. What I liked was that the pork patty was very tender and went deliciously with the lightly dressed and slightly bitter greens. I appreciate there is always a balance when they think up their dishes. Not one quality overrides others on the plate.
Farm Eggs, Asparagus & Pickled Vegetable Salad
Scrapple. This is my first time having this Dutch dish. It's basically a mush of pork, flour, etc. atbp. Doesn't sound too appetizing right? The texture of the scrapple is very soft, but pair it with the refreshing shaved asparagus salad and it's a melange of richness with a bit of crispness.
Polenta, Farm Eggs, Spicy Braised Greens
My dish was divine. When I have something with pancetta with it, it's usually in small dice or cubes. I have never eaten a piece this big. Pancetta is essentially Italian bacon without the smokey quality. The pork belly is cured and then dried. This reconstituted version still lets the spices from the cure come through. It almost reminded me of a corned beef brisket. I needed something to distract me from the lovely yet rich fat so the braised greens were perfect lending a nice kick to every mouthful. The poached eggs which were nestled on top of the creamy grits were decadent but were neutral enough to not weight down the plate.
I wish Local Mission Eatery was closer to my home. The menu will constantly change with every new season and inspiration. Not only are dishes lovely on the palate, but they are wholesome with quality ingredients created by good vendors. The flavors burst at you and often times I thought, "oh, THIS is how (fill in the blank) is supposed to taste like." Often times the processed foods clouds our taste and makes us forget what fresh food tastes like. I am glad that we have a restaurant in our community that makes it a goal to support our local purveyors and economy. In addition to that, I thoroughly enjoyed watching the chefs do their craft. It looks hectic behind the counter, but they come out with fantastic plates that look too good to eat.