Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Tartine - San Francisco, California

So when we first started planning our trip to San Francisco, all I kept hearing was “We have to go to Tartine!” and “I want to go there for breakfast every day, they have the best Muesli in the world!”
He had been to the city before (I had not) and it had left quite an impression on him.
I also looked it up on urbanspoon and the reviews are remarkable and it currently ranks at #2.
So, of course, our first morning in town we headed straight to Tartine.
The building is not much from the outside, in fact there is only a tiny sign inside the window letting you know that it is a bakery. I suppose more then that isn’t really necessary because what draws people to Tartine are the smells of delicious baked goodness in the air and a line that can wrap around the entire block.

We got lucky and there were only 12 or so people in line before us, however finding a place to sit would prove to be very challenging. There were just a few tables inside (of this tiny building) and a couple outside, and we noticed that with the large crowd people were just hoping to find a seat anywhere they could. We waited in line and hoped for the best – maybe someone would happen to get up as we were going to sit?

So we knew going in to this that we would each be getting a Bowl of Museli (toasted whole grains, whole-milk yoghurt, fresh and dried organic fruits and toasted nuts $6.50) but we also wanted to look through the display cabinet and pick out a few extras (planning to take them with us, unless of course we ate them all). The first thing I saw in the window was a Gigantic Chocolate Chip, Walnut and Oatmeal Cookie for just $2.25. It was about the size of a 45 record (yes, I know that dates me a little) and I simply had to have it! We also got a slice of Passion Fruit Lime Bavarian (lime-moistened genoise with passion fruit Bavarian, topped with sweetened cream and coconut $6.05) and a 4” Lemon Cream Tart (sweet pastry shell filled with rich lemon cream, topped with unsweetened cream $6.75) and a cup of Coffee.

So as he paid the bill (more then $30) I actually saw two people get up and so I went over and asked the other guy if I could join the table and he said “Of Course”.
Hooray! We had a seat!

We started with the Muesli. I took my first bite and although the texture was good and it seemed fresh I could tell that it had not been sweetened at all. (I’m sure a little honey would have helped, it was available but I decided to eat it the way it was since there were so many other sweet things that we would be eating) Then I looked up at him with his sad face and then he said “It’s not the way it use to be”. He felt a little disappointed (I feel) because he had remembered it in such a fond way and then when this didn’t taste the same he was let down. I felt bad for him, however I’m sure everything else was going to be delicious.

We then dug in to the Lemon Tart. It had a nice tart taste and was not overly sweet. 
We both liked it a lot.

Then the Passion Fruit Lime Bavarian – Creamy, Sweet, Tangy, Tart – with a nice Coconut outer layer – very enjoyable (and I’m glad we shared it because I couldn’t have eaten the whole thing by myself).
We both left full after this decadent breakfast.

I took my Cookie with me, knowing that it would be a while before lunch and I would want something in a couple of hours.
When I did have it I realized that not only was this my favorite item that we got at Tartine, but that it quite possibly was the best Cookie ever.
It had the perfect balance of Nuts, Chocolate and Oatmeal, and it put a big smile on my face!

I get Tartine and why it gets such good reviews. Personally I wish they were more of a customer-friendly restaurant with servers and ample seating, however if it ain’t broke, why fix it? I am quite positive that they are doing just fine.

Tartine Bakery on Urbanspoon

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