A return visit to an Asian favorite: Nashua's San Francisco KitchenBY OUR GOURMET September 03. 2013 5:02PM
San Francisco Kitchen133 Main St., Nashua; 886-8833; www.sfkitchen.com
Pricing: Appetizers, $4-$8; Pastas, rices and sides: $7-$11; Entrees $14-$24.
Serving: Monday-Wednesday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Thursday until 11 p.m.; Friday until midnight; Saturday, noon to midnight; Sunday, 4-10 p.m. Lunch buffet weekdays 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
Scores for San Francisco Kitchen
Atmosphere: 18/20 — Cool and comfortable, Japanese-style furniture and decor. A classy eatery with a hometown feel.
Menu: 18/20 — Extensive, creative, vast and very versatile.
Food: 20/20 — Top picks: Plum Wine Salmon Napoleono ($20.95); Chinese New Year Lanterns (full order, appetizer, $6.95)
More top picks: 20/20 — Thai Chicken Teriyakis (appetizer, full order $7.95); Pan-Fried Haddock with Asparagus and Plum Tomatoes with Seafood Cream Sauce ($20.95); any sushi order ($3.25 -$36.95)
Bonus: 18/20 — Cocktail lounge, with tables and TVs, totally separate from dining room.
When friends from New York visited over the holiday weekend, we wracked our brain to pick just the correct spot for a nice dinner, then realized we hadn't visited our favorite Asian fusion restaurant for a couple of years.
So we made it a bi-coastal experience and brought our friends - and four large appetites - to downtown Nashua's San Francisco Kitchen, as classy a bistro as you'd want with a menu as extravagant as anyone can handle.
From top to bottom, SFK's menu titillates the senses and tempts the taste buds. Seafood rules at SFK, and the sushi menu is extensive.
Appetizers that creatively challenge your limits when ordering include Basil Beef Egg Rolls, Mushroom Kabobs, Calamari with honey mustard, chicken and beef and lamb skewered cuts, and a dozen more, including sushi-style seaweed, soybean and wasabi plates.
Sushi combinations are all over the board, nicely divided by size and price , featuring all of the standard seafood rolls, and large diner plates at around $20. A Sushi and Sashimi feast features two dozen pieces for $36.95.
It wouldn't be aptly named a San Francisco place without San Francisco-style Pot Stickers and sourdough bread. The latter comes with all entrees, along with a delightfully fresh and crispy small garden salad, made simply with lettuce and sliced bell peppers and crispy rice noodles. The salad is simple but thoughtfully prepared, letting the few ingredients show off the delicious house dressing of Thai spice and ginger with a hint of teriyaki.
The entrees go deep into seafood, with a flourish of creativity and accompaniments including lots of vegetables, spicy mayonnaise, walnut shrimp, garlic mashed potatoes (with meat dishes) coconut curry sauce, tofu, and on and on.
Meat dishes include lamb chops and filets, roast tenderloin, filet mignon and Grand Marnier beef.
Add chicken, tofu, special rice and noodle dishes, crab meat soup, Fisherman's Pier Wonton Soup and something called Buddha's Delicacy (only $13.95) and you have a choice of fare that can hardly be matched.
And, oh yes there's more: There is another entire page of Chinese cuisine, a Shabu Shabu menu and Japanese hot pot dishes.
A nice drink menu includes specialty martinis and a good selection of wine and beer, and those have to receive good business for the time it takes to peruse the menu.
One has to assume that SFK has dessert, too, but the four of us ordered so much food, and feasted so properly, dessert wasn't even a hint of an option.
San Francisco Kitchen has become a stalwart of dependability on Nashua's restaurant row - Main Street downtown - and it is as good now as it has ever been.
Highly recommended, often.