Saturday, June 19, 2010

Zare at Fly Trap

On Thursday my granddaughter and I left for a 2 day trip to San Francisco. Were were going to do the sight seeing tourist thing. We spent the day on the Wharf shopping and going to the Wax Museum. We checked into our hotel the Mark Hopkins at the end of the day to relax and get ready for dinner. Dinner that evening was going to be at Zare at Fly Trap. I had been there once before with my fellow bloggers Shankari and Mel and Marlena Spieler and her friends. My only regret that time was Hoss the owner of Fly Trap was not there at the time because of prior commitments.
Now, Hoss has become a Face Book friend of mine. I comment on his wall every so often but I don't know him personally and he has hundreds of Face Book friends. I had made a comment a couple of days prior that we would be there for dinner on Thursday, and didn't think any more about it. Tianna and I met Karen and Gil for dinner on Thursday and had to wait for a little bit while our table was cleared and set. We ordered drinks and Tianna ordered a virgin Margarita. The bar tender said she'd make her an even better drink so concocted a drink with Margarita mix and fruit juices that was really good. Tianna was a happy camper but got even happier when they brought her out a plate of french fries. Those were excellent fries too! As we were waiting I noticed Hoss coming out and going to different tables to talk to the diners. He was all over the place from delivering food to just making sure everyone was happy and having a good time. After we were seated we were served an Amuse Bouche of spicy finely diced cucumber and smoked salmon
Hoss came to the table to welcome us and it was instantly like we were old friends. I told him that I had commented on FB that we were coming in and he said he knew that and had written it down so he'd know we were there. I have to say I was blown away, he said unlike a lot of chef's he actually does post to his wall and read the comments rather than having someone else do it for him. He told us he wanted us to feel like we were in his home and to relax and have a good time. He told Tianna when we got to the desert course she could go make a desert herself in the kitchen. She was excited about that.
We all ordered and of course all the dishes were delicious. I'm putting up pictures of the food of course, but this blog is more about Hoss and his "Hoss"pitality. Now, Thursday night was busy, the place was packed. The kitchen must have been hectic but none the less Hoss came out several times to see how we were enjoying the food and talked to us for a few minutes. I commented to him that I was impressed with the way he would visit tables to make sure everything is going well and to just socialize with the diners. I think that that is what makes his restaurant so unique. The personal touch is there, he is not stuck back in the kitchen he is out there selling himself (easy sell too) and his restaurant. When it came time for desert I mentioned to our waitress that Hoss had said Tianna could go back and make a desert. Again Hoss came out personally to get her and Karen and I went back with them to take the pictures. He told us to wait that he had a special surprise for her. He came back with a chef's jacket for her. He helped her into it and got it just right..and the smile on Tianna's face said it all. They created the Not Your Grandmother's Pie a deconstructed lemon curd pie. He showed her how to plate it and even let her use the torch to caramelize the meringue. She said it was the best thing she ever had.
I think I was as thrilled as Tianna with her getting to make the desert.
When we were talking Karen mentioned that she and her family were there for Mothers Day but he probably didn't remember..not only did he remember he knew exactly which table they were at! Of course we were both super impressed with that, since he didn't know her either. For a chef/owner to take such personal attention to this kind of details just amazes me. I think that's what's missing now a days, the personal touch, the owner coming out and talking to the diners, making them feel at home. Here is Sacramento Biba does that but she's the only one I can think of that I've ever had come to our table to introduce herself and see how our dining experience was.
OK, I'm gushing.. but I just can't say enough good things about Hoss and the way he runs his restaurant! If your ever in San Francisco go to Zare @ Fly Tap , the food is outstanding and the service is spot on and then there is "Hoss"pitality.
The food:
Grilled lamb sausage w/grilled fennel, roasted squash, mint

Braised Italian Eggplant ,sun-dried yogurt, walnuts, crispy onions

Sumac cous cous salad, dungeness crab,watercress,tomato, serrano chili
Roasted beets, laural chenel goat cheese,grpae molasses, mint

Lamb Shank Abgusht, black eyed peas, fingerling potatoes,torshi (pickels)

Grilled pork chop, brussel sprouts, napa cabbage,pistachio salsa

Caspian seafood stew,black cod,mussels,smoked sturgeon, saffron, campanelle pasta, black garlic

Falloodeh, sorbet w/ vermicelli, sour cherries, pistachios and tequila


Zare at Fly Trap
415 243-0580


undercover caterer said...

Looks like a fun evening and the food looks great too!

Unknown said...

I just love that guy! How exciting. Did you like the Fooduleh?

Tianna looks like she is on top of the world and I don't blame you for gushing. I love it there..and him..and the food of course!!

I love that harissa meatball and the smoked trout over cucumber linguine..and the lambs tongue, and the etc. So excited for you both!!

shankari said...

Hoss is the best. We enjoyed his hospitality on my bday. He made it very memorable. I am so glad Tianna could experience this!

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