Good but not particularly great Asian Fusion. Place is tiny! Even with a reservation it still took about 30 minutes to sit, but it's Friday in SF so no biggie. Service had an issue with capturing the one of our appetizers checkup that my +1 and I ordered (we ordered Dumplings, we got Tempura delivered). Fine, mistakes happen. We ask the server to come over and noted that we didn't order Tempura, we ordered Dumplings (uh I've never ordered or ever thought about ordering Tempura in my life, and they don't sound remotely the same but to be fair the place is small and sound carries so maybe that contributed). The server does a horrible job in handling the situation. She gives us a stare and look as if I know what I heard, I heard Tempura there's no way I made a mistake. She didn't do the right service call to offer to correct (I understand that the server may be charged for the missed order capture, but I always pay in back in tip). But the quiet stare & attitude of 'so what do you expect me to do?' left me unimpressed with their lack of basic service-oriented training. I was celebrating something with my +1 that night and didn't want a stink to insist taking the dish back, so my +1 and I looked at each other and decided let it go and take the dish (the server is clearly stubborn and not getting it). I've worked with the restaurant industry in NYC, Philly and DC for over 15 years, color me unimpressed. We noted to the Floor Manager at the end of the meal of the situation, for service correction later. Manager noted that she understood the possible server's rationale (usually meticulous with the ordering process) but not the result of how it was handled. Other than that, the meal we enjoyed. Nothing great but nice dishes, taste and presentation. Too many other places in town for a service snafu on that level. Food didn't overcome that service miss, not really an OMG on the food.
Boy oh boy is this place good. The wasabi noodles with angus steak is unreal. I would get this every time if there weren't a bunch of other delicious-sounding dishes on the menu that I want to try... Also got the ahi tuna dish. The dish was put together nicely and the spicy mustard aioli was perfect. Though I'd recommend getting these two dishes on separate visits (similar tones of flavor in wasabi and spicy mustard). The venue is pretty small and cozy, with some bare decor. It got a bit loud at times, making it hard to hear each other, but probably because it was a Fri night in a pretty lively bar area. Our party of 4 went at around 10pm without a reservation and only waited for about 10 min before a table cleared up. However I've heard the wait can get pretty long during more regular meal times so I'd make a reservation to be safe.
I've had pretty much everything from the menu, including the occasional specials, and its always a win. The regular garlic and the wasabi noodles rock my taste buds. I dream of the sea bass most often =D
I would describe the meal as Asian-Fusion cuisine with the typical sweet flavor, and a focus on food presentation and good service. My favorites included the nicely textured tuna poke with mini crispy rice balls, the not-too-sweet persimmon bread-pudding dessert and the fruity Pinot Noir from Ponzi Wines. Others in my party liked the deep-fried salmon rolls with the spicy Chinese hot mustard sauce and grilled sea bass with garlic ginger soy. The other dishes were just average—warm wasabi noodles that could have been spicier, mushroom soup with a tad too much truffle oil, dumplings that tasted like they have been in the freezer a bit too long and sesame soy glazed king salmon.
This is one of my favorite restaurants in the city. It's tiny, it's in a weird spot in North Beach among Italian food and strip clubs, and I recommend making a reservation, but every dish is so delicious and so creative (Asian fusion) that it's well worth it. I usually get fish - salmon, tuna, or sea bass are all very good. I'm making myself hungry just writing this.