Immediately after stepping off the bustling streets of San Francisco onto 6 Claude Lane, you are swept up in the serenity of a charming French style côté rue. Nestled in the heart of the city’s Financial District, owner Frank Le Clerc opened Gitane in 2009 as the second restaurant in the Claude Collection and it has become one of the city’s culinary gems.
Husband and wife chef team Bridget Baston and Patrick Kelly are constantly updating the ever-changing seasonal menu options. Their fashionable Southern Spanish dishes stem from the vast regional offerings in alimental hotspots such as Seville, Andalusia and Valencia.
Chef Kelly prepared the 5-course tasting menu for a group of influential media and culinary experts and Haute Living was invited. The newest tasting menu, Catado – Tasting Galicia is perfectly fashioned to stimulate any palate.
The first course begins with Ostras, which is served with delectable Kumamoto oysters, crisp summer melons, garnished with hibiscus and sea grapes. This truly unique melody of flavors makes this a splendid beginning to stimulating menu.
The next course is Paté de Higado, which is prepared with monkfish liver paté, garden-fresh heirloom tomatoes, seaweeds, and an interesting creation of garum ice that enhances the dish with a distinct touch.
Traditional Empanadas with a contemporary take are the third course. The spin on this popular dish arrives with duck prepared in three unusual ways, air dried duck breast, crispy duck tongue, duck egg emulsion adorned with iberico crumble, and padron peppers.
The fourth offering on the menu is the Bistec Vacuna. Cooked to perfection, this dry aged strip loin is served with braised spicy greens and an divine potato turnip mousse, the 2010 Mencia, Viña Caneiro, Ribiera Sacra that is paired with the meat, goes perfectly with the savory essences and truly brings out the intense and satisfying flavors.
The final and scrumptious dish of the evening is an elegant and blissful Sorbetes y Helados. The creme fraîche and rubarb “vacherin” arrives perfectly shaped in a cylindrical shape and is accompanied by cherry/strawberry sorbet and fresh berries all paired with a delightful Moscatel #2, Jorge Ordonez 2011 from Malaga, Spain.
The upper-story of the Gitane offers the popular five-course summer tasting menu and wine pairings, as well as revolving a la carte selections.
The impressive use of the two-storied space, which is uniquely decorated in 30’s art deco style, a splash of theater lighting and drapery with a twist of playful adventuress and contrasting artwork truly enhances the complete Gitane experience.
The fully stocked bar has a marvelous assortment of Spanish wines that were carefully chosen by Sarah Knoefler, in addition to the largest sherry selection in the Bay Area. Guests seated at the bar or outside, on one of the charming bistro tables, can also savor a casual bite with their libations.
The 5 course summer tasting menu Catado – Tasting Galicia is $75 per person with the option of wine pairing with each course, which is $50 and participation by the entire table is required.
A reservation is recommended and can be made by visiting Gitane online http://www.gitanerestaurant.com or calling 415-788-6686
“Highlighting one of the most time-honored Spanish tradition of eating well, with laughter and conversation”