842 Valencia Street (Between 19 and 20th St)
San Francisco, CA 94110
Range is an American Restaurant located in the Mission district of San Francisco and is run by the husband and wife team of Phil and Cameron West. They opened in the summer of 2005 and received one Michelin star in 2009 and 2010, but lost it in 2011.
Decor, Vibe – Modern industrial chic look with metal tables, open kitchen in the middle of the space, modern art on the walls. Three seating areas, the best being in the back. Casually dressed San Francisco locals mainly in their 30’s and 40’s.
Range Menu (Click to zoom into any picture)
Mojito ($8.50) had a limited amount of mint, lots of lime flavor, and was mixed to hide its potentency.
Wild Arugula ($10.50) with jonasgold apples, celery root, bacon, and gruyere cheese was a refreshing salad. Light almost undetectable dressing with thick bacon chunks and quality cheese.
Purée of zucchini soup with basil oil and almonds ($8) was a stand out, hiding its vegetable roots so even kids might enjoy it. Slightly spicy, smooth, and not creamy.
Northern Halibut ($25) with trumphet, shitake and chantrelle mushrooms, arrowhead cabbage and herb broth was very good but on the small side. It was cooked perfectly and contrasted well with the very crunchy fresh mushrooms and chives. Bok choy provided a California element.
Roasted chicken with butter beans, lucques olives, cherry tomatoes and feta cheese ($20) is a classic dish here. One of the better versions due to the flaky and tender brinded flavor of the meat. Nice chunky bean accent. Zuni Cafe is still tops in roast chicken though.
Pear huckleberry Tart ($8.50) with creme fraiche had very fresh fruit, ultra thin crust, except for a nice one on the edge. Creme Fraiche did not seem to work with the tart.
Bittersweet chocolate soufflé ($8.50) was a no extra wait version. Nice and light. Very strong bitter chocolate flavors. Could have used some Grand Marnier sauce on top.
Espresso Martini ($9.50) Hangar one, araku, baileys, espresso was a strong, bitter coffee dessert drink with totally hidden alcohol. Faster than having an espresso and a shot!
Coffee rubbed pork shoulder with creamy hominy and braised greens ($24) was cooked to a level of super tenderness but lacked flavor. The dish needed more hominy for starch. Kale was cooked fine. This Southern dish was on the subdueded flavor side.
Petit Fours – Dark Chocolate cubes
We were stuck at Range with a mediocre server. She never asked how food was nor did she follow up on the wine menu on the table. Water refills, bus boy actions, and the like happened regularly. Hopefully this is an isolated incident. The food was very good, so we tried to ignore this faux paus. We can recommend Range, but feel it is more of an outstanding casual neighborhood restaurant than a destination place. More sophisticated American fare can be found at places like Boulevard and Michael Mina.
Range has a decent wine selection with bottles from $32, half bottles from $22, glasses from $8.50.