Time: Wednesday. July 09, 2014. 8:00 PM. Reservation.
Address: 1760 Polk St
Cuisine: American (new)
Party Size: 3 (M&V; M)
Order: 5 glasses of wine, 7 entree plates, 1 dessert
Pre-tip Cost: $233 [$206 food & drink; $18 tax; $8 SF health charge]
Verdict: Feels like they are going for a Michelin star, not sure if they can make it.
1760 entered the SD dining scene in September 2013 with hype and expectation as the sister restaurant of Acquerello. We visited 1760 a few months back (before I started this little pet project) and recall it being worth a second visit. We decided that an out-of-town friend’s visit would be the perfect chance to give it another go.
The entrance is unassuming, the large windows allow light to enter (before dark) and allow those walking by to peek in at the crowded dining area.
As with out first visit to 1760, we showed up for our reservation on time but had a small wait on account of other tables to wrapping up. The hostess escorted us to the designated waiting area at the end of the bar and provided us with dinner and drink menus to review. This particular evening, 1760 was featuring a selection wines by a local producer who would visit the table and talk about the wines, if you ordered any. The syrah was fantastic, the cab was alright.
The bar is long and well stocked. All seats were claimed.
The menu at 1760 is essentially a listing of small plates built for sharing that, as the staff loves to point out, conveniently cascade from smallest to largest down the menu. The dishes are ocean heavy with a coupe of land walking and veggie options thrown in for good measure.
In terms of our meal, we ordered a range of dishes to share then topped it all off with a desert. Since this was our second visit, I have some comparisons to draw (with pictures) for repeat items.
The meal started with the amuse bouche, which was a cornbread cube with a sweet dollop of something on top.
Caviar with Hokkaido scallop tartare, uni, chive
The caviar spoon shooters started the meal off with a refreshing taste of the sea. The uni and scallops dominated the flavor.
Shishito Peppers with Castelvetrano olives, hazelnut and smoked sea salt
The peppers had a salty and spicy kick to them but are not the most efficient vessel for transporting the nuts.
SRF Beef Tartare with marcona almonds, herb and a Thai vinaigrette
1760 Beef Tartare – mixed
This was a dish we ordered both visits and can compare. The favor profile of this has a strong Thai salad taste, something consistent from the first try. The presentation went through a transformation, of which I preferred the original.
Hamachi Crudo with avocado-preserved lemon, yuzu kosho and cucumber
The colors and style in the presentation of this dish had me gushing about how beautiful it was – which is the lingering impression I still have.
Crispy Octopus with butter beans, parsley pesto and red mizuna
Another of our repeat dishes, the octopus was cooked to a blissfully tender, chewy level. The beans however were dry and somewhat unappealing to me. The prior dish was favored by the two of us.
Bucatini with uni, garlic, red pepper and bread crumbs
The pasta and sauce + uni are a creamy combination. The bread crumbs look a little excessive on top but mix in nicely. The uni left a slight aftertaste the next morning.
Fried Duck Sandwich with slaw, pickles and spicy aioli
This was love at first sight. While waiting for our table, a few of these appeared from the kitchen and I knew it was a mandatory order. This is a dish I wish I didn’t have to share. The duck was juicy and tender, not overly fried. The slaw, pickles and aioli were a cool, creamy, spicy and sour combination, all at once.
Milk Chocolate Ganache with hickory ice cream, bourbon caramel and marshmallow
Our second visit to 1760 was about in line with our first. The only downgrade in my book is adding the beans to the octopus but even with that, I would still keep 1760 on my list of places to take out of town guests to give them the ability to try a wider range of the types of dishes that make San Francisco food so great.