Friday, March 21, 2008


When Kara and Ryan, our two wonderful friends from Portland, invited us to spend a weekend eating and drinking in San Francisco, we knew it was just what we needed to make it through the rest of a very cold winter.

Time spent with Kara and Ryan is far too precious to fuss with taking pictures of our food, but we did have some incredible eats with them: cellophane noodles with fresh dungeness crab meat at The Slanted Door, rose macaroons from Miette Patisserie, roasted pumpkin gnocchi at Fish & Farm, chilled shellfish at Bar Crudo, red wine braised octopus at Quince, and a lazy, sparkling Rosé induced brunch at Zuni Cafe.

In fact, it was at Zuni Cafe where, in between raw oysters and delicately poached eggs, Kara and Ryan introduced us to their pal Otto, a wine-distributor who graciously invited us back to his loft, where many bottles of Chateauneuf du pape were consumed on his rooftop patio. As we basked in the sun hitting our face and enjoyed the view of Jack London Square, Otto told us that before departing the city we must make our way to Piperade, a Basque restaurant near the financial district. And so on our last day, with Kara and Ryan tucked in a cab on their way to the airport, we strolled over to Piperade, camera in hand, for what would turn out to be one incredible lunch.

Piperade Exterior.JPG

House Cured Bacalo.JPG
House cured bacalao with oyster tartare and lemon crème fraîche - $12

This is up there on the list of dishes that make me want to cry with joy. I wanted to order another, but alas, there were a few other selections we needed to try...

Marinated Mussels.JPG
Marinated mussels with croutons, shallots and grenache vinaigrette - $10

Calamari “a la plancha” with fennel, olive, caper and coriander salpicon - $13

Quite possibly the best calamari we've ever had.

Sheeps Milk Ham & Cheese Terrine
Warm sheep's milk ham and cheese terrine - $12

Rich and hearty, this one put us into a food coma.

With a commitment to using the freshest ingredients, Piperade's menu changes with the seasons. The small plates make it easy to try a variety of dishes without breaking the bank, and with more than 200 wines to choose from, it would simply be rude not to have a glass with lunch. (Or at least that's how we chose to justify it.)

- Katie

1015 Battery Street
San Francisco, CA 94111