World-Class, Seasonal Tasting Menus - The Stunning, Exquisite Food at Saison! (Review / Pics)

Hi @BradFord,

Good to know they take some dishes out of rotation, but bring it back later.

That Indonesian curry and the duck liver toffee sound amazing! :slight_smile:

We talked more about soccer than anything else. :slight_smile:

Considering Single Thread for my anniversary. Anyone have a more recent experience to share?

Can do LA or SF, so we have a fair amount of choices. My credit card # was outdated in my Resy account and by the time I corrected that, I missed (by 1 minute) being able to secure an N/Naka reservation this morning! Thinking SF area has more “special occasion” type places anyway and Single Thread was very appealing.

Did you end up going to single thread? i’m think of getting tickets and was interesting in your thoughts. Thanks.

I have a reso for this Saturday night. Super excited!

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Interested in reading your thoughts too.

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Hi @djquinnc,

Nice! Me, too! :slight_smile: Let us know how it is.

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I ended up not getting tickets yet, as we postponed our Wine Country trip until later this summer. It’s ok, I’m not fond of the whole ticket thing, and now I don’t mind to wait to see a few more reports before checking it out.

Interested in your report, @djquinnc !

Something Saison related (cross-post from my report back from Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare). Comparing the uni toasts.


‘Liquid toast’ of Mendecino uni with Tartine bread soaked in ‘soy’

Brooklyn Fare

Hokkaido bafun uni on brioche toast with preserved truffle

The preserved truffle was maybe unnecessary, IMO. But it’s a great dish anyway. Though it sounds similar to Saison’s uni “liquid toast,” the two are quite different. At Brooklyn Fare, what you notice is the great combination of the uni’s ethereal sweetness with the brioche’s yeast flavor. It’s a luxurious bite. At Saison, the proportions are different, and you notice more the contrast in temperature and layers of textures between uni and the rustic, “soy sauce”-soaked Tartine bread.

I actually think Saison’s works better with the Hokkaido bafun uni version - I’m too lazy to dig up old pics now, but it’s one of those close your eyes bites. That warm toast and cold, velvety uni contrast. There’s more bread in proportion, too, so you notice the crisp more.


Hi @BradFord,

Wow, they both look so great. I loved the Saison Uni Toast (2 servings of it! :smile:). I hope to try Brooklyn Fare one of these days. Did you think it was worth it?

I’ll definitely return to Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare (now in Manhattan) and I consider it worth it for me. “Worth it” is always subjective, but I liked it a lot, and compared to many other fine dining menus around that price, it compares very favorably in my book. To a certain extent, the flavor combinations may be a bit more tried and true (but not stolid at all like Le Bernardin). However, the dishes are very well executed, and they spoil you with luxury ingredients - we had fluke, bafun uni, a big dayboat scallop, nodoguro, a generous serving of caviar, madai, king crab, uni/foie/abalone risotto, duck, a5 wagyu, and dessert, and the price was all-inclusive. Wine was reasonable. The last time I had a tasting menu with those kind of ingredients was Vintage Cave’s Kazuma, which was just about twice the price. CTBF is a fun, relaxed meal (David Bowie and 'The Stones playing while I’m eating some grilled madai with chanterelles), a relative “value” compared to some others which have a menu at ~the same price, and a true 3-star, IMO.

Saison and Chef’s Table have their own individual DNA, of course; their respective menus are quite different - even the uni toast dish has a very different take and emphasis. What Saison really has going for them is the live hearth, their own garden, and some brilliant flavor combinations.

It’s almost Summer - excited to see what they do again with Sungolds…and the smoked caviar with corn custard and tomato water gelee was one of my top dishes in years.

Nodding off with some Talisker now, but I could go for some of these:

(biscuits made in the hearth)

and a bowl of this:

(antelope broth with blue sage)


Thanks @BradFord, I definitely can’t wait to try it now. :slight_smile:

And why’d you have to go and remind me about the amazing Biscuits and Antelope Broth at Saison?! :wink: Now I’m craving it! Loved those dishes the last time I was there. :blush:

I went to Single Thread a couple months back an really enjoyed it. Perhaps one of my favorite meals in the past few years. Flavor combinations really came through for me. Around that same time I went to Benu and Quince as well. I would say my favorite was Single Thread, followed closely by Benu and then Quince.


I am heading up to the Sonoma Valley area for work in mid-October. I have always wanted to try Meadowood, but am apprehensive to throw down a ton of cash sight unseen. My mind is vacillating between the shorter bar menu or the regular dining room experience. Wondering what are your thoughts.

I haven’t tried the bar menu, actually. I believe it used to be just bar snacks but it looks like there’s now a 3-4 course option. The bar drinks are quite good at any rate - even some nonalcoholic beverages like “Flavors of Cabernet,” if you want to keep it light.

I’ve done the regular dining room and the Chef’s Counter. Both are excellent. I consider Saison and Meadowood my two favorite high-end places in Northern California (I haven’t tried Single Thread yet…maybe some other time). FWIW, we did Meadowood and Manresa on back to back nights and personally my party and I had a strong preference for Meadowood. I also did that back-to-back Manresa and Saison and Saison blew me away. Manresa is still quite good and I know that all 3 kitchens are very talented, that was just my experience with those particular menus (and I understand that each menu changes frequently). I mention that to say that Meadowood has hit all the high points for me and I would want the full experience. I’m not sure if the bar menu has different portion sizes, but 3-4 of Meadowood’s tasting menu courses would not fill me at all. A lot of the tasting menu courses are pretty small.

Btw, Meadowood releases reservations for its “12 Days of Christmas” in December, if collaboration dinners are your thing.


great report as always @Chowseeker1999. that lobster looks awesome, what’s that on top of the tail meat?

was the skin edible? it reminds me of the awesome meat fruit i had at dinner by heston blumenthal.

their pricing seems to fluctuated more than any restaurant i’ve been to.

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Hi @PorkyBelly,

Thanks. :slight_smile: Thank you again for the great recommendation! It’s so special.

For the Lobster, it was really amazing. What was on top of that? Magic sauce. :grin: Seriously, I don’t know. The server went over all of the condiments and explained most of the dish but I didn’t remember if he said what was on top. It added enough savory seasoning (not spicy) to enhance each bite (even without the rest of the condiments), but that 10 Hour Roasted Pineapple was definitely the winner! :heart:

For the Sumo Orange Creamsicle, no the skin wasn’t edible. Your dessert at heston blumenthal looks amazing! What was inside? :slight_smile:

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Great report, @Chowseeker1999! Yes, Saison is world-class, indeed. One of the very few.

They tweak their sauces here and there, but I know that in the past, they used a homemade “X.O.” style sauce on the lobster. It contained peanuts, so I asked them to omit it. Instead, I was served lobster sashimi with a broth of the shells, meyer lemon, butter, and wakame salt (basically the condiment to one of the renditions of live diamond turbot sashimi). I’m not sure if the above is the same XO sauce, but it looks similar to me.

Cedric Grolet of Le Meurice is the master pastry chef who does trompe l’oeil fruit. Though, I know that Heston Blummenthal and The Fat Duck have a sterling reputation for not only whimsy but also technique.

Ok, I have to visit Saison again soon…

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That lobster dish is insane. Loved the pineapple sauce that comes with it as well.Usually not a huge fan of uni, or maybe just had a bunch of bad experiences at other places, but the liquid toast at Saison is amazing. I’ve seen them teasing these giant slices of it on IG as well…

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Hi @BradFord,

Ooh! Homemade X.O. Sauce… done with the mastery and care of Saison’s kitchen / Chef Skenes?! :open_mouth: That sounds amazing! I think @A5KOBE @JeetKuneBao and our hardcore FTCers would love that. :slight_smile:

Thinking back on it, I’m not sure if that was an X.O. Sauce, but it was so good either way. :slight_smile: Looking forward to your next visit (and thank you again for your recommendation that brought me there)!

Hi @SFDiner,

Wow! That looks ridiculous. :slight_smile: