Thank God for Gilt City. A friend directed me to a coupon through them advertising $20 for $40 worth of food at Bin 38 in the Marina – obviously he knows me well, because I had had this restaurant bookmarked on my Yelp! for almost a year now. I bought the coupon almost immediately, and I am SO glad I did, because let me tell you my pockets could not have afforded a regular priced meal here (err, well, I could have, but I ate A LOT, so you know….).
I went here with Lauren and Leslie, my best friend since first grade and her sister, who I mentioned here and here. As soon as I bought the coupon I thought of them, as we all have similar tastes, which is to say we like to unleash our inner fat girls when going out to eat. Some things to know about Bin 38 – it is not really budget friendly, and although I loved it here, I would be hesitant to return without a coupon/voucher (or a wealthy benefactor to foot the bill). Are glasses of wine really ten dollars and over? This makes me sad. Also, the two men we were seated next to were being very judgy at my blatant display of gluttony in taking photos of everything I ate (sorry dudes, I have to let everyone know what I am eating at all times), so I apologize but the pictures are not so great. HOWEVER, the waiters were awesome, and extremely knowledgeable and helpful, and something really cool was every item on the menu was paired with a particular wine. Very helpful if you are someone who knows next to nothing about wine. Aka me. Also the food was amazing, so you know, that didn’t hurt.
We started with some wine (I had a Rose and it was good, but I don’t really discriminate when given a glass of vino) and some Kennebec French fries with a roasted garlic aioli (glorified mayonnaise). The fries were SO GOOD. They had a little parsley and parmesan on them, and were perfect with the dipping sauce.
We also shared the flatbread pizza appetizer. It had prosciutto di parma, sweet garlic puree, arugula, shaved parmesan and truffle oil, and it was incredible. It was salted perfectly (and I love salt) and the sweet garlic puree was the star of the pizza. Also, the crust was almost puff pastry-like: extremely light and airy. We all agreed this was the highlight of the meal.
Leslie and I both ordered the Ricotta Agnolotti Carbonara. It came with pancetta, pea and pea tendrils, smoked spring onion, and a 63 degree sous vide egg. The waiter was very helpful in describing the dish, and got really excited when he started talking about the sous vide egg, so thank you waiter man for making me feel like I am not alone in my food nerdiness.
Lauren got the Korubuta Pork with whole grain mustard gnocchi, broccolini, turnip, cherry and nicoise olive emulsion. The gnocchi was so unique and I loved it; it was a little bit toasted, and the mustard flavor was subtle but very tasty. The pork was also done perfectly, and lightly salted. The cherries were the only weird thing about this dish, but that is a pretty small complaint.
For dessert, we all split the Warm Chocolate Cake with dulce de leche, spiced chocolate ‘soil’ (pretentious name for powdered sugar…) and Mexican chocolate ice cream. The cake was very dense, but it was nicely complimented by the ice cream and sauce.
We left feeling very pleasantly full, as the portions were not huge – they were actually the perfect size. There are many more things I would like to try here (the pork belly with clams, truffle popcorn, and tuna crudo being a few) so I hope that another coupon will turn up. After dinner we walked to the Legion of Honor, which I though was pretty, so I will share with you:
San Francisco is the best.