When researching our San Francisco dining options, we both somehow stumbled across Flour + Water and decided that it was a must-try. Our dedication to trying it was much rewarded.
Located in the Mission District, Flour + Water is dedicated to local ingredients (what San Francisco restaurant isn’t?) but still relies heavily on some traditional Italian preparations. They make eight pastas in-house daily and also have a dough room where their pizza dough rises. (It can also be used as a private dining room, if you so desire.)
Our first course (shown above) was a crudo of local halibut. The buttery slices were nestled in with freshly-shelled fava beans, wild arugula and a mix of green and red strawberries. The whole thing was topped off with a simple dressing of oil, salt and pepper. We had never had green strawberries before and were impressed by their tart-sweet flavor and firm texture.
For our pasta course, also shown above, we had their homemade, whole-wheat strozzapretti with tender chunks of wild guinea hen, broccoli rabe and little cubes of bresaola. This dish was the perfect combination of umami and bitterness, as the bresaola and hen added salt, whereas the broccoli rabe gave some necessary bite. The pasta itself was just toothsome enough and also sturdy enough to stand up to the hearty guinea. Ryan claims that this dish was good enough to eat a whole container of, solo.
Our last selection was the fungi pizza, with morel and hen of the woods mushrooms, ramp pesto, melted leeks and fontina cheese. This was the least impressive dish of the night, not because it was bad, but because the other two were just SO good.
We both loved everything about this meal; in fact, we loved it so much that we wanted to return but ran out of time. We found out after our dinner that one of the chefs at Ryan’s restaurant is friend with one of the chefs here, so now we have even more incentive to return in the future.
We opted out of dessert (sadly), but only because Humphry Slocombe is right around the corner, but that’s a tale unto itself. (Preview: balsamic caramel ice cream and Amarena cherries.)
– Laura and Ryan