When my sister was in town helping me settle into my new apartment, I had to take her to Bar Tartine for her last dinner. Choosing the tasting menu (pictured to the left) over the a la carte menu was a must for us first timers. Located in Mission, this quaint restaurant has all the charm you expect from a farm to table local foraging restaurant. The reclaimed wood tables and bar give it that rustic feel that also reflects onto their menu. I say rustic but I more so mean very much put together. The rustic style is more so the earthiness in their choice of ingredients. Although we did a tasting for the table they do cater to food sensitivities since my sister has one to lactose. That’s the beauty of San Francisco, rather than turning their noses up to gluten, vegan, and lactose substitutions I find that every place in the city embraces it.
We started dinner with drinks that are all hand crafted with ingredients made in house like infused vodkas and speciality homemade vegetable and fruit juices as mixers. The first round of drinks we both had the Rhubarb anise cocktail (pictured on the left) and the second round I tried the Candied beet and sparkling reisling (picture in the champagne glass) and Sue tried the Carrot orange blossom cocktail (pictured on the right.) All cocktails were made with one large ice cube that is so novel I love it! My only fear was sipping it and it coming down and chipping my tooth, so I always had my finger on it while sipping. The cocktails were delicious and all of them were really fresh and really smooth and easy drinking.
The menu is more so tapas style with smaller portions so you definitely have to order multiple portions. Don’t get me wrong though, the tasting menu was a lot of food! When our server brought out the starters (pictured to the right) we thought that was the majority of the food so we pretty much peaked too early. By the time the third course came, we were stuffed. We definitely didn’t let it go to waste though, we tried every bit of each dish just to complete the whole experience.
This restaurant will take you out of your comfort zone and what you thought you knew of farm to table food. You have to appreciate their techniques of foraging with ingredients like nettle and borage and how they incorporate them in dishes that just make sense after trying it. The morel mushrooms with bone marrow and chicken liver pate are some of the starters that stood out to me as one of our favorites. The menu changes daily which is another reason to never get tired of eating here and everything is made in house including their breads. You also feel good about yourself after eating here, like you did your body a great service as well as the earth. Weird I know. This is a great place for either a date night or hanging out with a group of friends that are middle of the road adventurous foodies, you’re not eating tongue or anything crazy like that.
You can check out the rest of our day in San Francisco and where we went to lunch earlier here:
San Francisco: A Day at the Ferry Building & Lunch at The Slanted Door