San Francisco, July 6, 2012—DOWN TO THE BIG City, with its capital "C," as we Berkeleyans always were taught to call it, here to see Mozart's The Magic Flute with a friend, and first to enjoy a Martini and an early supper at a favorite spot, too long neglected.
I first came here shortly after it opened, back in the 1980s I think. Since then, and for quite a while now, it's been under different management, shared by our old friends Judy Rodgers and Gilbert Pilgram. But it remains friendly, open, well lit, and a little bit eccentric; and I do like it.
The Martini was fine, just as I'd ordered it, three to one with a twist. Then I went on to in-house cured anchovies with celery, Parmigiano, and olives, a standby here; and then this delicious pork chop accompanied by slow-roasted onion, kale salad, and breadcrumbs. Caramel ice cream's on the list? Fine: make me an affogato of that, please, and I'll be awake all through the opera!
Vermentino di Gallura, Piero Mancini (Sardinia), 2010: clean, bright, accurate• Zuni Café, 1658 Market Street, San Francisco; 415-552-2522