Sunday, May 29, 2011

Red Door Cafe

Across Franklin & Bush Streets…

(They play some pretty cool music here. The original Bobby Womack 70's classic "Across 110th Street" was playing at one point. I just like this "cover" version with Bobby and Los Lobos better.)

(No web-site available, and somehow I really don't think they care.)


Avoid this "establishment" at all costs ~ even if it is free. I know that I will never darken their door ~ even a deeper burgundy or maroon ~ again.  If a "straight" or "Yuppie" restaurant ever attempted to exclude customers in this way, you can be sure that the ACLU would be on them faster than you can say "blue-haired tranny Nazi". The food was good, but not that good. If you would like a list of at least ten places in San Francisco that have better French toast ~ and all bitchy attitude-free ~ just ask me.

For an explanation, please see my 'blog-entry from August 26th, 2012:

Mick Jagger had it right.)

I had heard some pretty good things about Red Door Cafe (I am not sure if that is avec ou sans accent aigu; it wasn't designated on their menu, nor on their sign above the entrance) and finally got around to going there for breakfast this morning. They are located somewhere in the no-man's land over on the corner of Bush and Franklin Streets, near all the old car dealerships on Van Ness (which is somewhat triangulated between the Western Addition, Pacific Heights, and Nob Hill neighborhoods).

It is pretty easy to locate along Bush Street as there really aren't many other places around there to eat and there is normally a line waiting on the sidewalk to get in. That is because this is one of the tinier places I have been to for breakfast in a long time. They only have five tables of two seats and one table of four seats… and that is it! Someone came in while I was eating and kiddingly asked for a party of sixteen to be seated. So, be prepared for a bit of a wait. I got there just before they opened this morning and was lucky enough to be seated with the first group of diners (breakfasters?).

Their menu is mainly a Cuban-inspired one with a French twist. They have many good things on their standard menu for a vegetarian; plus, they have a few other items on their specials menu that looked pretty tasty, too.

However, I skipped most everything on the menu(s) as I mainly came here to check out the French Toast Josephine ~ Delicious Ginger, Cinnamon Dipped French Toast with Powdered Sugar, Shaved Almonds (or maybe they were just prepubescent), and a Hint of Seduction*. I had it with added banana, and they even threw in a slice of mango and some berries (blue-, rasp-, and straw-) without my even asking for them. I also had a cuppa their House Coffee ~ which is from a good local roastery, Capricorn Coffee ~ in a "Smiley-face" mug at that.


Now, this was good French toast, but it really doesn't compare to the Pain Perdu at Baker Street Bistro; and I really didn't expect it to, as that is an unfair comparison to most eggy-bread dishes. This also wasn't as good as the coconutty French toast I had last Summer at Neighborhood Restaurant & Bakery (see 'blog-entry from July 10th, 2010), but I would recommend checking it out if you are a French toast aficionado (sorry, I don't know how to say that in either French or Spanish). I had expected the banana (singular and whole) to have been sliced and sautéed (à la the most excellent Bananas Foster French Toast that they used to serve at the now-defunct Merchant's Way restaurant in downtown Wareham, MA), but I did find out that I really liked this flavour combination: Maple, Mango, and Mint ~ this is the real 3M (those miners up in Minnesota be damned).

I was kinda surprised to find out that they do not offer any side orders of any kind of potato dishes: no home fried, no hash browns, no home baked, no house potatoes, nor home fried-hash browns, even. So there was no need for any complimentary supplementation on my part. However, I did bring a few hot sauces from my collection just in case. I ended up loaning some of the Palo Alto Fire Fighters Pepper Sauce (Thanks again, Amy!) to the couple at the next table because they had egg dishes.

The one thing that I am still trying to figure out is why they named the place "Red Door Cafe"… must have something to do with communism or Castro.

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: French Toast Josephine ~ 6.3

*(I asked if I could have a "Soupçon of Temptation" instead, but they strictly enforced the "No Substitutions" rule with me… fargin' bastages!)

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