June 5, 2010

HLFD in SF: Chapeau!

Though my husband is not always keen on early bird specials (he thinks we're too young for them - I never pass up a deal!), I managed to convince him to try the menu out at Chapeau!, a well-received neighborhood French restaurant in San Francisco.  After all, we were still on NYC-time, so dinner at 5:30 PST would feel much later for us.  So we hopped on a bus and headed out for our $28 three course meal.
My hubby ordered a glass of 2008 Sean Minor "Carneros" Pinot Noir ($9), which was a simple, fruity red wine.  Our amuse bouche was a salty smoked trout with creamy fingerling potatoes.
We started off with the Traditional Escargots de Bourgogne.  Because snails themselves have little flavor, it is often drenched (as seen above) in butter, parsley, and garlic.  The dish was rich but we loved it - as we soaked our crusty bread in the tasty remainder of the sauce.
Our other appetizer was the Trio of Salmon which was a salmon tartare wrapped in smoked salmon with a sprinkling of salmon caviar.  The micro herbs and light potato chip added some nice texture, while the egg and capers on the plate added a rich saltiness to the dish.
I opted for the Pan Seared Duck Breast with creamy truffled polenta, salsifis, pears, grapes, and green peppercorn sauce.  Though I found this dish to be a tad too salty, the portion size was large and the meat was tender. 
My husband's Pork Bacon Wrapped Pork Tenderloin was incredibly juicy.  The
Gratin Dauphinois (scalloped potatoes with cheese), spinach soubise (spinach with a rich French onion sauce), and apple-calvados sauce (sauce made with apple brandy) made the dish so much richer, like something Juila Child would make!
Though my husband lacks a sweet tooth, he did enjoy his Basil Napoleon which was like a gourmet fruit salad.  With pineapple, mango, banana, kiwi, and strawberries, every bite reminded us of the tropics while the basil, champagne-citrus pastry cream, and paper-thin Feuille de Brique brought us back to France.
I have a weak spot for creme brulee (i.e. if I see it on the menu, there's a 90% chance I will order it!) so I chose the classic Tahitian Vanilla Crème Brûlée.  I love cracking the top layer to reveal the smooth, creamy interior.  This dessert was exactly as I expected it to be: traditional and sweet.

According to their website, "chapeau" means "hat" and "chapeau!" means "wow".  Though the meal was not extra-ordinary (this isn't The French Laundry!), it was a solid French offering at an exceptional price.

Chapeau! is located at126 Clement St. in San Francisco, CA.

Chapeau! on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

  1. That is an incredible meal for 28 dollars. The escargot looks absolutely succulent. All I can say, girl, and I have said it before... you are living the life! (and you DO get around!)
    I am sending this link to my daughter living in Palo Alto. Hopefully, she can get here, too!
    :)
    Valerie

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