I gotta say, the ‘trekking’ up to The Cliff House was the most exciting and riskiest thing ever. Or so it feels. With torrential weather and monster wind, you risk getting blown away or have the seemingly invisible grains of sand blown into your eyes. Okay, exaggeration. But no, it was something like that.
En route to the restaurant, you can see people kite surfing out in the ocean with big waves. And they can go as far out as a few miles away, and that, to be, is extreme and ridiculously brave on their part. I’d never do that even if I’m paid a million. Anyway, walking up to The Cliff House is an unforgettable experience, but if you aren’t up for some adventure / cold wind to your skin, take a cab there and save the trouble.
The hostess was the friendliest, and we were seated by the window, excellent view, and I appreciate that she didn’t ‘reserve’ it for some other more ‘deserving’ diners, in other words, favoring a certain type of diners over the other. The bread basket in America is almost always, impossible to finish, and refillable. It’s their way of filling you up before the main courses serve up. Not only that, the common Sourdough served is delicious, accompanied by the butter of quality. Somehow, this one tastes better when placed as a chunk instead of spreading on the bread.
Frutti De Mare (USD$25+) :: Though meant to be a tomato based penne paste, it doesn’t have much tomato taste to that, which is awesome (because I all against tomato-based pasta). What’s better is, they are generous with its portion of seafood – sauteed rock shrimp, clams, mussels, scallop and crab meat. You don’t have to worry about just trying to finish up the plain pasta towards the end of the meal. Excellent.
Southwest Mole Rubbed Pork Tenderloin (USD$22+) :: It might not be the most filling meal / the commonly seen big portion meal, it isn’t too bad a course too. I always believe that vinaigrette (a mixture of oil) holds a very wholesome taste to whatever it is served with, this honey-lime vinaigrette goes well with the Pork Tenderloin. I feel that it can be taken out of the fire a little earlier – it’d taste even more succulent.
Fourteen-Ounce New York Steak (USD$32+) :: 14-oz equates to about 400grams, worth of steak. That is about double the size of what we usually have. Imagine that, with the steak fries as its sides – enough to fill you up for the whole day. Done medium rare, the humungous New York Steak tasted stunning at first, but started to get boring after a while. I blame the Maitre D’ Butter (Steak Butter) that comes along with it – not flavorful and ‘addictive’ enough to finish the steak. But I feel that for the price, it’s good enough, and all worth it.
So for a Restaurant / Bistro that’s situated literally beside the Pacific Ocean, it is reasonably priced, service, as always, commendable, and food above average, I say anyone who’s at San Francisco for a holiday ought to try this outlet no matter what. It’d an experience of a lifetime.
Oh. A great time to have a meal there? Sunset. Prepared to be awed.
Address: 1090 Point Lobos Avenue
Telephone: (415) 386 3300
Opening Hours: 9am – 9.30pm (Mon – Sat); 8.30am – 9.30pm (Sun)
Photos by Kathleen.