Sons & daughters, San Francisco -02/8/2020
Sons & Daughters is a 1 Michelin restaurant located in San Francisco in the Nob Hill/Russian Hill neighborhood. Chef ownerTeague Moriaty opened this tiny restaurant in 2010 with only 28 seats and they have kept their Michelin star for 8 consecutive years.
This the description from the Michelin Guide:
"Everyone at this inviting space is warmly professional, including the eager, well-paced staff. Add in the mature, stylish crowd, architecturally detailed dining room—a hybrid between your grandmother’s home and an art gallery with its black-and-cream palette, leather banquettes, and vintage chandeliers—and you’ll be counting down the days until your next visit. Small but mighty, this kitchen under the guidance of Chef Teague Moriarty, turns out a seasonal, nine-course fixed menu that consistently pleases."
- Michelin Guide
The outside of the restaurant is very simple and if you do not look up for the sign you will probably miss it.
Potted plants and opaque windows for privacy with a clear bottom so that people can still see the outside.
Panoramic view of the store front of Sons & daughters.
Basically, the front of the restaurant is really small, so they put us in a private room. This room is located between the front and the private room in the back.
This is their only private room that can only seat 6 people maximum because they need room to serve the food and to walk back an forth.
Tonight we are celebrating Phuc's and mine Birthday.
Right away, we like the coziness of the restaurant.
The happy campers...
Cheers! The staff is very friendly and make us feel like home right away.
Cheers and we are really looking forward a great meal
Sons & daughters is definitely a special-occasion spot but it is not stuffy at all. Great relaxing atmosphere...that's my kind of vibe!
Julianna the front house manager consulted with Phuc on what wine to serve for the evening. We bought four bottles but she was kind enough to let us have 3 bottles for the evening. Their policy is 2 bottles per table.
Per Phuc's recommendation Hoa brought 2 bottles of Pahlmeyer 2016 Proprietary red and Phuc brought the Clos L'eglise Pomeral 1998 (Spencer's birth year) to this special occasion and we ended up drinking 2 bottles of Pahmeyer and the Clos L'eglise Pomeral. Phuc will save the Chateau Pontet Carnet for an other occasion
Since the Clos L'eglise Pomeral 1998 is an 22 old year bottle, and it might be tricky to open. Phuc told her to be really careful and he recommended the use of a Durand opener and without skipping a beat she said: "yes this is what I am using". None of us have ever heard of Durand opener but Phuc knew and for her to use it, we knew we were in good hands.
Sons & Daughters 9 course menu is influenced by the seasons and unique element of local farms in the surround bay area. Their approach to the food is thoughtful, delicate and displays clarity of ingredients.
Course # 1: Black garlic and quail egg custard with salted daikon.
WOW, WOW, and WOW, beautiful arrangement, so pretty and the tartlet blends in with nature...
The tartlet is really small with a crunchy and buttery crust, filled with quail egg custard. The black dots you see on top of the tartlet is black garlic puree.
This amuse bouche went down so easily and it was wonderful with champagne.
Multigrain sourdough with culture butter
I also like the rustic presentation with the use of stone and wood.
Course # 2: Hearts or romaine dressed with kiwi, sprinkled with sprouted and fried grains.
Beautiful presentation. The taste is also very interesting and something I did not expect.
For me it tasted like a Larb neua, a Thai dish made with raw beef but here there is no meat since this is a vegetarian dish. It is a bit spicy, acidic, sweet, salty, crunchy, all in one bite.
It definitely has a umami taste.
Course # 3: Sea scallop crudo with local seaweeds and yuzu granita, dressed in squid ink and tomatillo
Very unusual dish but so delicious, tasty with layers of textures such as shave ice that melt in your mouth, the crunchiness of the seaweed, the saltiness of the squid ink, the sweetness of the scallop and smelling like the sea...
Course # 4:Seaweed tapioca chip with brown butter squid and bagna cauda
Not much to stay except that is was delicious.
Course # 5: Grilled kusshi oysters with fermented broccoli and Bohemian Creamery's Boho Belle espuma
Bohemian Creamery is Hand-crafted cheeses from Sebastopol California
and Boho Belle espuma is made with organic Jersey cow milk and aged for about 2
and Boho Belle espuma is made with organic Jersey cow milk and aged for about 2 months.
Rich and airy at the same time, the oyster, and everything around it was so well balanced.... ate it all!
Course # 6: Main lobster with last summer tomatoes, tofu and Perigord black truffle
Of course the pasta is made in house and has a very nice al dente texture.
This is the first time I had so many Perigord black truffle on my plate. So decadent and so good...
Thinking about this dish again, just make me want to go back for an encore.
Course # 7: Boudin Noir and Dijonnaise tartine
This is an amuse bouche between courses. I am a sucker for Blood sausage (boudin) so of course I like it. It is served on a toasted brioche, sage and Dijonnaise sauce (mayo & Dijon mustard).
Course # 8: Pork Belly with roasted cabbage, pineapple beurre blanc, and sesame lavash.
Love the pork belly, perfectly braised and interesting that they paired it with a pineapple beurre blanc.
I asked our waiter what is the inspiration for the sauce to be a pineapple beurre blanc because it is so unusual.
He told me that one night the chef the cuisine did not want to cook for the employees so they ordered a bunch of pizza including a Hawaiian pizza with Pineapple. The chef the cuisine really like the taste of the pineapple on savory dish so here he is incorporating the pineapple but of course he is elevating it to anothe lever but that is where the inspiration come from.
In this picture you can see that each time they come into the room to serve a dish there are 3 servers. Each of them will put a dish on the table (in unison, just like at the French Laundry). As you can see there is just enough room for 3 people to walk around the table and that's is why the maximum capacity is 6 people.
Course # 9: Bone in short rib with kohlrabi, sauce vierge and blood orange adobo
Oxtail tail consommé alongside koji-glazed beef and fried shallot and beef fat powder(on top)
Out of all the dishes, this one is the one I like the least.
The meat is not braised as the inside is still pink and it is kind of chewy. Short ribs are not meant to be cooked like a steak as it is too tough, it needs to be braised so that the meat can fall apart, that my 2 cents anyway.
Along side of the Short ribs a small bowl of Oxtail tail consommé alongside a skewer of koji-glazed beef and fried shallot and beef fat powder.
Unfortunately, the koji-glazed beef and fried shallot and beef fat powder was over cooked.
Out of the 3, the only thing I like is the broth.
Desserts #1: Yogurt mousse pomelo marmalade and tarragon
I love this! nice combination of sweetness and tartness and the tarragon gave a nice bright boost of flavor.
Desserts #2: Coffee and cream with cherimoya sorbet and mint
Excellent, not everyday that you see Cherimoya on a dessert list.
Coffee with our desserts!
Desserts #3:Persimmon and milk coffee tart with pomegranate
We thought we were done with our desserts but then they brought out these little tartlets specially for us for our birthday!
We have come full circle now, starting with a savory tartlet and ending with a sweet tartlet served in the same flower arrangement bowl.
Since the restaurant contacted me and knew we were celebrating 2 birthdays, they personalized the menu with our names and a celebratory message.
They gave each couple a small bag and in there is a grey envelope with the menu inside and sealed with an S&D logo, chocolate, and butter to take home.
The menu to take home...
Here is the header and the celebratory message!
We definitely feel special!
The minute we walk in Sons & Daughters, we immediately like the ambiance. Julianna the store manager greeted us behind the counter. I told her we were a bit early but she took us in right away and led us to a private room in the back. The staff, servers are very professional, friendly, and they pay a lot of attention to little details to ensure we are having a great dinning experience.
It seems that the chef is having a lot of fun in the kitchen with interesting combination and flavors. I don't mind molecular gastronomy but I don't like it when it is over the top and you can recognized any of the ingredients. Here the dishes do not get too crazy or over the top with the emulsion, foams, powders, etc... you will find they are there just to enhance the food.
The next time you have a special occasion to celebrate come here and you will not be disappointed. The 9-course tasting menu is $145 and by the time you are done the cost is a around $220. Worth every cents for such a memorable evening and dining experience. I highly recommend this restaurant for a special occasion since it is on a higher end.
Sons & Daughters
708 Bush Street,
San Francisco, California 94108
Phone: 415 391 8311
Filed under: Restaurants