Nopa is one of those restaurants whose name feels like it is constantly being thrown around in San Francisco. Even if you’ve never been or don’t even know what style cuisine they serve, if you live in San Francisco, chances are you have at least heard the name.
When my mom told me we had reservations during the one week I was back for Thanksgiving, I immediately got even more excited to return home. As I churned through the final weeks and days of school before Thanksgiving break, Nopa began to represent to me everything and everything food-related that I missed about San Francisco and home. With all of these ideas and expectations running through my mind, I am surprised that Nopa managed to meet my expectations. The dinner was tasty, though the dishes ranged from those phenomenally great to those that were just good. The ambiance and design of the restaurant alone, however, I think are worth a visit and the price of the meal.
A note – one thing I kind of loved about Nopa were the more quirky dishes on their menu, though they may not be everyone’s cup of tea. A young couple sitting next to us did not love the dishes that we lovingly devoured . While everyone may not agree, having complex dishes that involve peculiar ingredients like duck gizzard feels distinctly San Francisco to me, and I loved it.
Josh @ Nopa, perusing the scene
Grass fed Hamburger – probably, almost definitely the juiciest burger I have ever tasted. (Sorry, Dad, your freshly-ground burgers are almost as good.)
Piggy platter – trotter terrine, smoked ternderloin and liver mousse.
Avocado salad, pickled beets, clementine, almonds, and sesame seeds.
Fried Sardines with Romesco.
Grilled Bread, Duck Gizzard Confit, carrot hummus, pickled jalapeño and persimmon.
Flatbread of spicy fennel sausage, butternut squash, olives and crescenza.
Country Pork chop, potatoes, brussel sprouts, mustard and grapes. The pork chop was divinely moist (extraordinarily) and my dad is to this day still speculating as to how they created it.
Seared duck breast, sauerkraut, carrots, golden raisins and wild arugula.
Morrocan vegetable tagine, toasted almonds, lemon yogurt.
I ran a 5k the next morning. If that is what I have to do to stay alive and eat meals like this every day, consider it a done deal.