Ame, San Francisco
January 27, 2008
On January 26, 2008, Wendy, Sam, Linda and I dined at Ame, a new restaurant in the St. Regis Hotel. The décor is sleek, with a lot of black. The serving counter of the kitchen is open to the dining room. The noise level is high, but not impossible.
We ordered a bottle of 2006 Alban (Edna Valley) Viognier and debated at length whether to order from the intriguing à la carte menu or have the five course $85 tasting menu for the whole table, our eventual choice. We ordered another bottle of the viognier and one of the 2005 Gary‘s Vineyard (Santa Lucia Highlands) Pinot Noir.
The first course was four pieces of very elaborate sashimi or crudo with toppings including caviar and a truffle slice. They were all described to us, but I could not record such complexity except with my camera. They were as delicious as they were beautiful.
The second course was a soup made from Kabocha squash with what seemed to be bottarga, or dried tuna roe, on top. Nice.
Third was Broiled Sake Marinated Alaskan Black Cod and Shrimp Dumplings in Shiso Broth with mussels, a selection from the main menu. It was delicious.
Fourth came Grilled Sonoma Duck Breast with broccolini, what seemed to be slices of fresh bamboo shoots and a round of polenta.
We could select our dessert from the main menu. I chose the Green Tea Affogato with Pistachio Ice Cream (“Affogato” means “drowned” in Italian and originally referred to pouring espresso over vanilla ice cream.)
All in all the meal was excellent, with delicious food, beautifully presented. The waiters were helpful and efficient. The price was very reasonable for what we were served. Go.