The Other Critics

Josh Sens Calls Plum ‘Unforced Urban Groovy’; Unterman Kind of Likes Haltun

Photo: Brian Smeets/Grub Street

Plum occupies a corner of the Uptown district, but it could fit just as easily into Tribeca,” writes Josh Sens, “and not just because it serves until one in the morning. The vibe is unforced urban groovy, enlivened by a mix of young neighborhood loft dwellers and fashion-forward diners who might be aging hippies but don’t dress enough like Muppets to evoke the East Bay stereotype.” Also, he’s quite a fan of the food, complimenting both executive chef-owner Daniel Patterson for knowing that sous-vide carrots are “more compelling once the chef has worked them over,” and chef de cuisine Charlie Parker, particularly for “a medley of clams and smoked bone marrow that marked a vast improvement on old-school surf and turf.” The only flub: the pacing on Parker’s short-lived, five-course tasting menu, which he says the kitchen couldn’t handle. Verdict: three stars. [SF Mag, Patti U.’s earlier take, Bauer’s]

Patricia Unterman describes the stretch of 21st Street occupied by Haltun as an “un-hipsterized” corner of the Mission, and we’re impressed with Patti just for employing such an adjective. Like Kauffman before her, she’s in love with the cochinita pibil, and while she says the restaurant lacks a “full commitment to regional Yucatecan cooking,” she enjoys the kots-ditzo “crispy fried mini-tortilla rolls stuffed with ground chicken [and] panuchos ($2), soft fried tortillas tinted with black bean puree, topped with shredded chicken, pickled cabbage, onions, avocado and tomato.” [Examiner]

Josh Sens Calls Plum ‘Unforced Urban Groovy’; Unterman Kind of Likes