It’s been a whole year since I visited Tartine Manufactory!
Tartine Manufactory was one of the hottest openings last year and for good reason. It’s basically a mega bakery with a full running restaurant, ice cream shop, and wine bar. Last September I went to Tartine Manufactory within the first few weeks of opening. When I went there, I just ordered numerous breads and pastries to go. Recently, they opened up for dinner service (they have a separate menu for breakfast and lunch) so I was intrigued to try their highly seasonal Californian cuisine. The menu is divided into four categories: various toasts and things on bread, appetizers, vegetable dishes, and main courses. Of course we tried dishes from each category to get the “full experience”.Tomatoes and eggplant are two of my favorite produce ingredients and so appropriate for the end of the summer season. The bread was chewy and moist with that beautiful crunchy crust slathered with creamy Ricotta cheese piled high with juicy tomatoes, slightly pickled eggplant slices, and aromatic opal basil. So simple but so satisfying. Smørrebrød, a type of Danish rye bread that is dense and earthy, was heavenly with the thinly sliced fatty guanciale (cured pork jowl), the sweet corn cream, and crumbly Feta cheese. This was much smaller than the previous toast so you might want to order two. Chicken liver on bread is something I grew to love after eating it countless times when I lived in Florence (it’s a traditional Tuscan dish). Of course this version is definitely Californian inspired with the type of bread, the summer sweet figs, and a drizzle of sticky saba (cooked grape must). I would love to come back to Tartine Manufactory and just try every dish under the “toast” category as there were many to chose from. Octopus and potatoes are a classic combination of flavors. While the octopus had a nice char and was still soft, the entire dish needed more seasoning and flavor. ‘Nduja is a spreadable spicy pork salumi and this had no heat or punch to it. I’m actually always hesitant to try pasta at restaurants because my expectations are high. The pasta must be al dente and it needs to be integrated with the sauce so that its nice and creamy. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by their pasta dish. Since the bucatini was made from durum wheat, the pasta did break more easily than a typical bucatini. I loved the addition of creamy butter beans, the salty porkiness of the guanciale, and the crunchy breadcrumbs on top. A simple delicious vegetable side dish. The charred romano beans still had some texture, the corn aioli underneath was luscious and sweet, and the almonds on top added a nice crunch. This was probably the weakest dish of the night. The gateau basque was slightly dry and dense and the rosemary ice cream was overpowering. Any type of fruit galette or tart is right up my alley. There’s something about flaky pastry crust with beautiful seasonal fruit that’s just magical. This was a gift from the kitchen as I know one of the cooks. Definitely an interesting ice cream flavor that’s slightly on the savory side. The olive oil added a richness to the ice cream.
Tartine Manufactory served a solid meal. My least favorite part of the meal was the desserts which was slightly surprising. All the savory dishes were delicious, fresh, and highlighted amazing seasonal produce. I would definitely come back again, perhaps for breakfast or lunch to check out the other menus. My overall rating is a 7.5-8/10.