In the same year that Saison executive chef Joshua Skenes landed in Food & Wine’s prestigious Best New Chefs issue, San Francisco Magazine has decided to name him the best chef in town in their annual Food Issue. We have to shout our support for this choice, with Saison consistently turning out some of the most exciting food we’ve eaten in the past year. The restaurant itself — its youthful vibe, its intensely local and casually haute food, Steely Dan on the stereo, the fire blazing on the patio, the shawls on the backs of the chairs — feels like the most quintessentially San Francisco spot there is right now. As Skenes tells the mag, “I want to respect the traditions of my fine-dining training and keep that same refinement, but I don’t want to serve precious little things.”
Additionally, the magazine gives their Rising Star honor to Mission Chinese Food’s Danny Bowien; Best Wine Director goes to David Lynch of Quince and Cotogna; and Best Pastry Chef goes to Bill Corbett of Absinthe.