SFReview

photo credit: Kitchen Story

Kitchen Story review image
8.3

Kitchen Story

$$$$

3499 16th St, San Francisco
View WebsiteEarn 3X Points

Go to Kitchen Story in the Castro for the decadent brunch mixed in with Asian influences. The legendary french toast is a thick slice of bread that’s deep fried and topped with intensely rich honey butter, maple syrup, and fresh fruits. Cut into it and the crispy golden crust crackles before creamy mascarpone oozes out. You’ll also eat enough food to feed an elephant, including the absolutely enormous minced ribeye omurice smothered in velvety demi-glace, fresh Dungeness crab benedicts, and thick-cut candied bacon flights before probably spending the rest of the afternoon at home sucked into your couch. 

The service is friendly and smooth, considering that countless large groups, Instagram influencers, and visitors lugging suitcases and San Francisco guide books crowd the corner of 16th and Sanchez each day without fail. The line moves surprisingly quick, since there is plenty of space inside the loud dining room that looks like a suburban kitchen. There’s even more seating on the sidewalk patio and parklet, which makes for fun people-watching alongside excellent sriracha and soju-infused Bloody Marys and $23 bottomless mimosas.

Kitchen Story review image

photo credit: Kitchen Story

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Food Rundown

Mascarpone Stuffed Deep Fried French Toast

Buttery, very sweet, are my arteries going to be OK? These phrases come to mind when we think of this behemoth. You should absolutely order it, and share—the deep fried bread stuffed with not-too-sweet mascarpone is fantastic and worth the year or two it’ll take off your lifespan.

Millionaire’s Bacon

Anyone who makes all servers wear t-shirts emblazoned with the name of their trademarked bacon better ensure that bacon delivers on taste. Kitchen Story’s is something to be proud of. Each thick-cut baked slice gets candied from the mix of brown sugar, cayenne, and red and black pepper. The bacon itself has a balanced ratio of fat to meat, and the spices are mildly tingly.

Kitchen Story review image

photo credit: Kitchen Story

Millionaire’s Bacon Flight

The original Millionaire’s Bacon served alongside slices of citron, cinnamon, and rosemary bacon. Considering how rich it is, we have no problem splitting up the four pieces and sharing it with whoever’s at our table.

Belly Rancheros

The star here are the small chunks of slow-braised kurobuta pork belly—tender, sweet, superb. But we don’t really need them on top of somewhat soggy corn tortillas, which we can’t pick up anyway because the whole thing is overflowing with spicy guacamole, kimchi pico de gallo, and poached eggs. A great dish that loses a few points for impracticality.

Crab Benedict

The fresh Dungenese crab balances out the thick ciabatta. It’s finished with kimchi pico de gallo, hollandaise, capers, and a ton of sauteed spinach. This is one of our favorite dishes here.

Ribeye Omurice

Another memorable dish that will also make you head for the sleep couch. The flavorful minced ribeye is sauteed with carrots, cherry peppers, spinach, and jasmine rice and then slathered with a savory demi-glace. Crowning it all is a smooth mound of scrambled eggs that are silky and buttery.

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