Lord Stanley (San Francisco, CA)
2065 Polk St
San Francisco, CA 94109
Dining date: 7/1/16
Lord Stanley opened about a year ago and has garnered some high praise in its first year. It received a Michelin star in October and was added to Michael Bauer’s Top 100 Restaurants in the Bay Area list in April after getting 3 1/2 stars from him.
The food is from the husband/wife team of Carrie and Rupert Blease, formerly of Commonwealth and Central Kitchen. At Lord Stanley, they are cooking a refined cuisine described as modern European/Californian. A seven course tasting menu is available ($83), but we went a la carte on this evening.
SALT COD BEIGNETS WITH TARTAR SAUCE
Beignets were a little crispy on the outside, with a hot and creamy cod filling on the inside. I thought they had good flavor with the cod nicely complemented by plenty of lemon zest.
CHICKEN WINGS WITH LEMON
Each order was one chicken wing, delicately deboned and cut in half, grilled and accompanied by a lemon cream. Easy to eat and pretty flavorful.
CONFIT SALMON WITH YUKON POTATO, SORREL AND BEURRE BLANC
A piece of confit salmon was smoky, plated with a rich beurre blanc and soft potatoes. This dish was fine, but just wasn’t that interesting.
WAGYU BEEF TARTAR WITH SUMMER TRUFFLE AND HAZELNUT
There was plenty of beefy flavor in these tender cubes, brightened by a lot of acid. I didn’t think the hazelnuts were necessary amongst the tender chunks of beef, being too much of a textural contrast. The truffle flavor was subtle, but present.
LOCAL HALIBUT WITH SQUID, POLE BEANS AND CURRIED BRAISSAGE
Halibut was cooked to a medium temperature, bathed in a hearty broth with a variety of beans and mini squid.
SLOW COOKED SHORT RIB, WITH ASH, CHARRED EGGPLANT, AND RED WINE JUS
I think the short rib was prepared sous vide; it was tender with a pink medium temperature on the inside. Pretty delicious especially with the red wine jus.
LAMB LOIN AND BELLY WITH CHERRY TOMATOES, BASIL, GARLIC, AND LAMB JUS
A duo of lamb preparations consisted of both the tender loin and rich belly. These were both prepared well, and made more delicious in its own jus with vibrant cherry tomatoes and creamy potatoes.
CHOCOLATE CHIBOUST, GENMAI CHA ICE CREAM AND TEA CAKE
We shared one dessert centered around this chocolate cream. There were a bunch of components to this dish, but I’m not sure it came together too well. There were pieces of burnt molasses candy in the mix which I found a little off-putting.
Salted caramels finished off the meal.
Our meal at Lord Stanley had its ups and downs. I thought the main courses were relatively strong, as were the beignets. But this meal was probably overhyped for me – from this singular meal, I’m not understanding the Michelin star, nor the 3.5 (out of 4) rating that Bauer gave in March.