Food Adventure Team

Exploring San Francisco, one restaurant at a time.

Archive for July, 2008

Bissap Baobab

Bissap Baobab

2323 Mission St.
SF, CA 94110

Suggested by Josh O.

In attendance:

I never got around to writing a detailed review of Bissap Baobab, unfortunately. Here’s the short review: Delicious food. Everything that was ordered was wonderful, especially the fish. Was a little disappointed about the meat to veggie ratio (too much meat, very little veggie), but I was told it’s not usually like that. Loved the hot ginger juice after dinner. Cocktails looked wonderful, though I did not partake. Service during the meal was a little slow, but that’s probably because they were very busy. Service before the meal was upsetting: I had made a reservation for 8, but then a couple of people bailed last-minute. I called about an hour ahead to let them know. Then one more person bailed, which I didn’t find out till I got to the restaurant. The owner was very rude and made us wait 45 minutes for our table because of the changes; apparently changing your reservation nullifies it? The host was extremely nice, though of course he didn’t have any power over the owner. The experience set the tone for the night, so even though the food and drink was delicious, I felt kind of “eh” about the place. I’d go back though, with a smaller party.

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1075 Sutter Street
San Francisco , CA

Suggested by Brendan

In attendance:

Yemenese cuisine — new to me! It was more in the realm of “creative” Yemenese food rather than “traditional”, but no complaints here. We were seated right away and the service was excellent. We ordered several small plates and a few appetizers too. And then some desserts to top it all off.

Small plates:

  • Stuffed Avocado — Technically a salad rather than a small plate, it was described as, “Knaffe coated & lightly fried avocado stuffed with Couscous tabouleh and served with semi-soy marinated tofu and raspberry reduction”. I’d never had cooked avocado before, and was highly impressed with what they presented us with. The half-avocado was warm and perfectly ripe, with a light crispy crust of shredded phyllo. I normally do not like tabouleh but the tabouleh that they put in the avocado’s seed-hole was to die for. One of my favorite dishes. I could eat the whole thing by myself!
  • Hummus & pita — gone in about 1 minute. Very earthy and irresistable.
  • Ahi Knaffe — “Ahi tuna crusted with shredded phyllo then lightly fried and served with carrot & roasted red pepper salad and prune reduction.” Pretty much just that! Perfection! Though I have concluded that I prefer my tuna raw, rather than seared.
  • Kofta — “Yemeni meatballs of ground lamb & beef marinated with allspice, cumin, mint, cilantro, onion, and olive oil. Served with zahaweg.” Probably the most traditional small plate we got. Great flavors, but I found it not to be the most exciting thing in the world.
  • Saha’s Signature Ravioli — Wow, so good! “Shiitake mushroom ravioli in sauce of fresh mango,
    red pepper flakes, fresh mint, and touch of cream.” Couldn’t get enough of these.
  • Bastilla — savory-sweet chicken phyllo dish. A bit too sweet for me, but extremely delicate and tasty nonetheless.


  • Orange chicken — “Free range Chicken breast marinated with orange juice, cinnamon, sage, honey and lime then pan seared and roasted. Served with couscous cake and orange-cinnamon sauce.” This was one of my favorite entrees. Usually orange chicken type dishes are too sweet for my liking, but this one was just right. And the chicken wasn’t dry, which can be difficult to accomplish.
  • Zahara — “Wild mushrooms, heirloom carrots, and fennel with ginger-orange sauce and farina cake” Not my cup of tea, but others liked it.
  • Sage duck — “Duck breast marinated with honey, sage and mustard then grilled and served with roasted pears, mashed sweet potatoes , and cinnamonorange reduction. Cooked Med Rare.” This was my favorite dish, hands down! I normally don’t like duck because it tastes “ducky”, but this, wow, this was amazing!! Comparisons were made to filet mignon. When I return, I will be ordering this as my entree.
  • Mansaf — “Classic Middle Eastern Dish of Tender Cubed lamb stewed with Arabic yogurt, allspice, cauliflower and mint then served with Arabic rice.” Very flavorful and tender; I loved the hot sauce it was served with!
  • Lamb Tagine — “A tender lamb cube stew with saffron, ginger, cinnamon, prunes, carrots, and pearl onions. Served with Maftoul.” Also flavorful and tender, this seemed like a more traditional dish.


  • Chocopear — “Chocolate & Pear mousse with poached pear” Yum, just yum. Gone within a few seconds.
  • Slap ya mama — “Roasted fruit, date & almond marzipan, and chocolate wrapped in phyllo and baked” Wow! This was crazy! It was kind of too rich and sweet for me, but one bite was delicious.
  • Bisbusa — “Yemeni cake with syrup and gelato (we got cardamom)” – Tasty but kind of boring. I wasn’t a huge fan of how crumbly the cake was, but I certainly wouldn’t turn it away were it offered to me! The gelato was fantastic.
  • Something that’s not on their online menu. It was a white/milk chocolate pyramid shell filled with a kind of pastry, dulce de leche, and other good stuff. By far my favorite dessert!
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Our first adventure: Beretta


1199 Valencia St.
San Francisco, CA 94110

Suggested by Icka

In attendance:

Neo-sortof-Italian place in the Mission. Incredibly tasty & worth the wait (though the 45 minute wait was frustrating, given that we had a reservation and it was freezing out).

Top-notch artisan cocktails (which caused me to break my “no drinking” rule). I got the agricole mule, and enjoyed it most out of all the drinks I tried (dolores park swizzle – delicious but SO STRONG; gaby de lys – DO NOT WANT; nuestra paloma – really fresh and yummy but also somewhat odd-tasting)

We ordered a bunch of appetizers for the table:

  • cauliflower with pangratatto, capers & sage — loved the pangratatto, capers, & sage, but found the cauliflower just too much like something mom would cook (as an ingredient)
  • bruschette of robiola & broccoli rabe (ok, that one was on the house for how long they kept us waiting even with the reservation) — not bad but not exciting either
  • chicken liver crostini alla toscana — I’m not much of a liver person, but those who are were delighted by this one.
  • gnocchi, fresh porcini mushrooms & guanciale — Holy crap delicious. Just delicious.
  • herb bread with extra virgin olive oil — so soft and fresh and cheesy and herby and yuuuuuum.

My favorites were definitely the gnocchi and the herb bread.

Among the entrees that were ordered that I tried were:

  • prosciutto di parma, tomato, arugala & mozzarella pizza — My entree. Quite tasty but not actually as exciting as I’d hoped)
  • potato, rosemary, raddichio & gorgonzola piccante pizza — Very, very interesting, sharp flavors. Extremely rich. Wouldn’t be able to eat more than one piece.
  • mozzarella, fontina & pecorino with garlic oil pizza — Had it for leftovers the next day. Was tasty but not amazing, but then again, it’d been refrigerated and reheated at that point.
  • pork saltimbocca alla romana — Quite tasty! But only had a single small bite
  • squid ink risotto with calamari Amazing! Being black from the squid ink, I expected it to be heavy, but it was very light and lemony — such an unexpected and awesome flavor/appearance clash)
  • saffron risotto with osso buco — also extremely yummy!

Conclusion: TASTY! Would definitely go back, again, and again, and again.

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Welcome to the Food Adventure Team blog!

A crack team of San Francisco foodies is taking on a challenge: eat at a new delicious restaurant every Wednesday! This blog documents their adventures.

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