Looking for a bougie wine bar with some seriously pricey but tasty bites?
That’s exactly what you’ll find at Le Fantastique, the newest spot in Hayes Valley. While the average diner probably hasn’t heard of this restaurant as I haven’t seen a lot publicity about it, I was curious since it comes from the same team as Bird Dog in Palo Alto. The food and vibe is pretty different from Bird Dog as the menu is limited and the atmosphere is intimate.
They’re known for their various crudo preparations so of course we had to try some.
First round of crudos were fluke with chamomile and grapefruit (very clean and refreshing) and salmon with espelette and sour orange (a little more robust).
Next round included buri belly with citrus and horseradish (a little fatty with a nice kick) and big eye tuna with yuzu kosho and fermented peppers.
While all the raw fish preparations were scrumptious, portions were very small.
Is it absurd to pay $49 for two miniature éclairs? Probably but this was one of the most delicious bites I’ve ever had. All the flavors worked harmoniously together to create a flavor explosion.
Their housemade parker rolls were outstanding. Warm, buttery, and fluffy served with their cultured butter.
I really liked the crispy red prawns flavored with Meyer lemon, shiso, and a touch of cayenne pepper. The celeriac brûlée was on the heavier side with the mornay sauce with walnut butter and miso.
Since their bread was superb, we got another order but this time with the mussel glaçage. It was basically a warm seafood dip with whole pieces of mussels on the bottom with a sweet jammy tomato confit. Really good.
We opted to skip the larger dishes (they only had two options) since prices were a little steep.
A fun riff on a classic American dessert with cinnamon crémeux.
Now this is how you do shaved ice. The shaved ice was very fine so it melted easily when eaten and this was flavored with chocolate and almond toffee.
There’s no denying that the food at Le Fantastique is both beautiful and executed well. While I’m no stranger to smaller portions and high prices, even I was a little taken back at the portion sizes and menu prices so I’d have to rate them at a 7.5-8/10.