Monday, December 25, 2017

State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA

State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: Entrance

State Bird Provisions is an "adventurous, inventive, delicious, thoughtful contemporary American restaurant" that has received major praise, and happens to be one of the hottest spots for dinner in San Francisco. So when I found out we could secure a late night reservation here on a recent trip, I put it on our to-do list.



State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: Menu

State Bird Provisions has pioneered a small plate, multi-pronged approach to service. The first comes via a set menu for the evening, where diners can order individual items. The second comes from employees serving items (also known as provisions) dim-sum style, going around tables with plates labeled with price tag, describing the item, and allowing patrons to obtain said item with approval, or ignore the item by saying no. They log how many of these items you order in the open boxes below the set menu, and to calculate one's bill, they aggregate both data points together and a per person service charge.

This allows for flexibility on their end, and for the diners, a unique dining experience as you get to see in person all the different provisions being cooked up for the evening--quite the educational experience. The varied pricing for all items--from 3 USD to 30 USD-- allows one to try many items while not hitting too hard on the wallet.

State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: Beef Tartare

After providing us an initial introduction to the menu and some recommendations, our dining experience began with some items served dim-sum style. This Steak Tartare (12 USD) was an Asian-inspired dish, with sesame, scallion, mushroom, and soy notes accompanied with crisp nori crackers. The bits of arugula leaves and scallion helped to counter the beef and savoriness of the dish.

State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: Liberty Duck Breast with Beet Kimchi Puree, Mini Cucumbers

The Liberty Duck Breast with Beet Kimchi Puree, Mini Cucumbers (8 USD) looked and sounded quite interesting, and tasted the part too. The lightly gamey, tender slices of duck breast were cut by the slightly spicy beet kimchi puree and those especially cute looking cucumbers. 

State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: Hog Island Oysters

The Hog Island Oysters (3 USD per oyster), already prepared and placed copiously on a large platter on the cart, were topped with spicy kohlrabi kraut and toasted sesame. The toppings didn't over accentuate the oyster, which was briny and smooth.

State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: Duck Liver Mousse with Cheddar Biscuits

We especially liked the Duck Liver Mousse with Cheddar Biscuits (8 USD). The smooth, rich mousse went well with the soft, warm, savory, and pillowy biscuits and the sprinkle of salt and pepper made things ever so more enjoyable.

We also ordered a Garlic Sourdough Bread with Buratta Cheese (11 USD) from the roving trays. The crunchy, fried exterior and soft, chewy interior went well with the seasoned, rich cheese. It was a pleasant combination of simple ingredients and varied textures coming together, but I wished for more garlic.

State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: Shishito Peppers with Goat Cheese and Garlic Aioli

For some vegetables, we added the Shishito Peppers with Goat Cheese and Garlic Aioli (7 USD). These were lightly charred, with a smattering of sesame and the creamy, garlicy sauce on the bottom that paired well with the peppers. 


State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: Chanterelle-Yuba 'All'Amatriciana' With Jowl Bacon, Percorino, and Basil


The Chanterelle-Yuba 'All'Amatriciana' With Jowl Bacon, Percorino, and Basil (18 USD), which was one of the commandables from the main menu, was quite the inventive and fun dish. Yuba, an asian ingredient also known tofu/bean curd skin/sheets, is commonly used in braised dishes or to wrap other ingredients. But here, the pliant, tender sheets, generated from the surface of soymilk, were used like italian noodles, with acidic, woody, savory, salty, and verdant notes coming in from the other ingredients. It came recommended by our waitress and it was quite a good decision.


State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: Cumin Lamb 'Stir-Fry' With Dates, Squid and Shishito Peppers

The creativity of the kitchen continued to shine in the Cumin Lamb 'Stir-Fry' With Dates, Squid and Shishito Peppers (28 USD), also from commandables section of the regular menu. More commonly seen in Sichuan cuisine and with very thin slices of lamb, State Bird Provisions' version came with meaty slices of lamb paired with fried squid, shishitos, and dates. A mild, peppery cumin and soy based sauce tied everything together. It was quite a pleasant and balanced take on a traditionally spicy dish.

State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: Fried Pork Belly with Pluot

From the provisions side of the menu, the Fried Pork Belly with Pluot (9 USD) had a pleasant combination of richness and brightness. The crispy on the outside, fork tender and melting on the inside pork belly was decadent and was nicely offset by the greenery and tangy pluot. 

State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: Sweet Corn Polenta with Tomatoes and Tomato Jam

Likewise, the Sweet Corn Polenta (7 USD) paired differing flavor and texture profiles, with the sweet and rich polenta being contrasted with black sesame tahini, sweet tomatoes, and a tangy tomato jam. 

State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: CA State Bird with Provisions (Large)

Closing off our savory part of the meal were two items from the main menu. First was the CA State Bird with Provisions (Large, 30 USD), which came with a bed of lightly carmelized onions and topped with pecorino cheese. These were juicy, crispy, and delightful bites of fried quail, with the cheese providing some extra saltiness and the onions some sweetness.

State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: Red Trout with Toasted Hazelnut-Mandarin-Garum Vinaigrette

Meanwhile, the Red Trout with Toasted Hazelnut-Mandarin-Garum Vinaigrette (18 USD) continued the balance of savory and tangy flavors. The trout had an extra crisp skin, and was very soft, tender and flaky, and the vinaigrette, greens, and citrus providing sweetness and acidity. 

State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: Olive Oil 'Ice Cream' Sandwich, Anise Seed Macaron, Blackberries, Manchego
State Bird Provisions- Fillmore District, San Francisco, CA: Olive Oil 'Ice Cream' Sandwich, Anise Seed Macaron, Blackberries, Manchego


We closed off the meal with the Olive Oil 'Ice Cream' Sandwich, Anise Seed Macaron, Blackberries, Manchego (11 USD), which was strikingly presented and quite unique. Sweet and salty met yet again, with the rich ice cream being offset by the anise, blackberry, cheese, and lightly crisp macaron. I could have easily had the whole plate!

State Bird Provisions bills itself as a  "adventurous, inventive, delicious, thoughtful contemporary American restaurant", and I would agree with that statement. With enjoyable flavor and texture combinations and plenty of creativity mixed with quality ingredients, we had a worthwhile dining experience.



1529 Fillmore St
San Francisco, CA 94115
Tel: (415) 795-1272


State Bird Provisions Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

2 comments:

KirkK said...

Merry Christmas! It's really nice to see a new post.

EatTravelEat said...

Hello Kirk!

Merry Christmas to you too! Hope you enjoyed the post, and all is well with you!