300 Spear St. (At Folsom)
San Francisco, CA 94105
Prospect is a long-awaited new restaurant from the Boulevard restaurant team – Nancy Oakes, Pam Mazzola, and Kathy King – located in the posh residential Infinity Tower complex of San Francisco’s Financial district / SOMA district. They named it with anticipation, expectation, and looking forward. Prospect mirrors restaurant RN74 and its place under the nearby Millennium tower.
This new Contemporary American restaurant opened at the end of June 2010. They are trying to tap into a younger demographic than Boulevard.
Ravi Kapur, who has been the chef de cuisine at Boulevard, is executive Chef at Prospect, while the pastry chef is Elise Fineberg. They try to focus on local, organic, and sustainable ingredients wherever possible.
Decor, Vibe – Prospect has clean modern open and airy decor with high ceilings. Windows with motorized shades lined one side of the restaurant. A small lounge and a square concrete bar up front. Rustic reclaimed wood floors, long communal table before the main dining area, main dining room with booth seating up the middle and a long banquette on one side. Very spacious table spacing was up a great to see. Lots of modern art throughout the restaurant. Private dining room in the back. he place was packed with all segments of well dressed professionals eager to try the new place.
Menu changes all the time and had 10 starters and 7 entrees with 1 vegetarian entree.
Complementary filtered still or sparkling house water.
Mojito ($9) was well blended, balance and had hidden strength.
Yellowtail Crudo – seaweed rice cracker, cucumber, white miso ($14) had a very thin carpaccio like layer of fresh fish. Each bite provided a nice blend of textures and flavors from the fish, aoili, radish, and bits of crunchy cucumber.
Monterey Calamari – chickpeas, piperade, lemon, garlic ($13) was an unusual sauce for this type of dish but still managed to work out just fine. The calamari was fresh and cooked perfectly. Deep-fried chickpeas and the sauce, provided an exotic accent to the calamari.
East Coast Dayboat Scallops – summer truffles, summer squash, shaved sourdough, mint ($16) had three good sized scallops along with a healthy shaving of truffles. This dish was best eaten with all ingredients forked together, making for a multi-textured and robust flavor combination.
Petrale Sole – bugger bean mousseline, bacon, chanterelles, haricot verts, yellow wax beans ($24) was another excellent fish course. Perfectly cooked, good sized portion, and bundled with lots of fresh beans and mushrooms.
Halibut – tasting of all farms carrots, pistachios, melted cippolinis, basil butter ($27) was cooked perfectly and rendered tenderer and flaky. The pumpkin purée was excellent and provided the healthy touch to this dish. No heavy sauces here.
Lamb loin and rib – feta, potatoes, castelvetrano olives, pardon peppers, Lamb quarters ($28) was cooked to a perfect medium rare. High quality local Lamb with no hint of gaminess. Rib portion had a spicy/sweet rub to it. The potatoes were excellent but on the skimpy side quantity wise.
Pistachio-cardamom Semifreddo ($8) verjus roasted plums, pistachio wafer was a different type of dessert with a semi-frozen cardamom flavored bar and some very tart plums. The dish was a major contrasting flavors and not for everyone.
Peach Pie ($9) muscovado ice cream, brown butter crumble, bourbon was an excellent, warm, personal size soft peach pie with fresh peaches on the side. The ice cream was a little too salty.
Potato Dumplings – arugula pistou, crushed hazelnuts, maitakes, pecorino ($14) tasted gnoochi like and were pretty good but lacked quantity at this price.
Service – Prospect is pretty new so we’ll give them some slack but this is a well seasoned team of professionals. The service was solid with a knowledgeable server, never need to ask for water, and solid pacing.
Value – Prices are higher than we expected, but considering how glitzy the restaurant is, this price level is not a surprise. $50-$60 a person with a drink, is the norm here. Appetizer, Entree, and Dessert are needed to fill up as quantities are small.
Verdict – Does Prospect live up to its lofty expectations?
Prospect serves up solid food in a beautiful environment with expert service. We found the food little more focused on healthy combinations, and less on cleanness and deep-fried items. Prospect may be another big hit from the team at Boulevard.
Good wine selection with wine by the glass from $8, bottles from $32, $25 corkage fee. 4% Healthy San Francisco surcharge.