Wednesday, October 17, 2007

What We Ate... At Saha

Wednesday, October 17

Dinner: Saha, 1075 Sutter Street; 415-345-9547

Tonight was Date Night, so where does a guy take his lady? For a dining experience in the Tenderloin  the Tendernob Nob Hill, of course. For our date tonight, I decided to try something a little different, so I took Karen to Saha, a Middle Eastern restaurant in the Hotel Carlton. Named after the Arabic word meaning "a toast to good health", Saha serves up Middle Eastern fusion cuisine, combining the flavors of Yemeni cooking with Californian and French influences.

What we ate:

  • Stuffed avocado: Knaffe (see below) coated & lightly fried avocado stuffed with pomegranate, couscous, tabouleh, and served with semi-soy marinated tofu and raspberry reduction. This starter had an interesting mix of textures and flavors with the crunchy coating contrasting nicely with the creamy avocado. The slices of tofu were surprising good as well.

  • Kofta: Yemeni meatballs of ground lamb and beef marinated with allspice, cumin, mint, cilantro, onion, and olive oil. Served with zahaweg, a spicy tomato and chile sauce. The meatballs were nicely charred and tasty. The accompanying sauce provided quite a bit of kick.

  • Classic Moroccan couscous: prepared with 7 seasonal vegetables and 8 spices in light saffron broth with chicken and merguez sausage. This dish was excellent, with the couscous soaking up the plentiful juices from the meat. This plate had an interesting mix of vegetables too, included what I thought may have been daikon.

  • Lamb tagine: served with basmati rice. This was another excellent dish. The lamb was very flavorful, with a slight hint of sweetness, and fall-apart tender. This dish was a special addition to the menu tonight.

  • Knaffe: a sweet dessert made with shredded phyllo and melted cheese. A fabulous dessert, not overly sweet, with an interesting contrast in textures between the phyllo and cheese. Worth the 20 minute wait.

What we drank: