Last Night: Mission Street Food Mash-Up Night

(Palermo vs. Tokyo by Chef Ian Muntzert)

Notes and Photos by Tamara Palmer

We've written previously of our love of Mission Street Food, the brainchild of Bar Tartine line chef Anthony Myint that began life as a truck in October and now takes place most Thursday nights at Lung Shan (2234 Mission). Guest chefs are now a part of the mix each time, and this evening was called Mash-Up Night in honor of the different hybrid styles that came out of the kitchen.

A mash-up is also a term widely used in the music and video worlds to refer to the work that emerges out of multiple disparate elements. Mash-up songs were played on the stereo during dinner, and one of the funnier ones I took in came from San Francisco-based DJ Party Ben: His "Single Ladies (In Mayberry)" mixes Beyonce's "Single Ladies" with the whistling theme song to Andy Griffith.

Bar Tartine sous-chef (and self-proclaimed unicorn porn enthusiast) Ian Muntzert presented the memorable Palermo vs. Tokyo, an Italian twist on sushi with marinated Monterey Bay sardines eaten atop perfect and hearty arancini (deep-fried balls of rice) with romesco for tang. Carlo Espinas, chef at Piccino, offered Marin vs. Montreal, a coastal take on poutine with super crisp fried Kennebec potatoes, Cowgirl Creamery cheese, marrow gravy and Marin sun beef. Most of it was eaten very quickly and we wouldn't allow the plate to be taken away (despite several requests) until the very last bit was gone.

Myint and company had The Mission vs. Philly, a rerub of a cheesesteak with their homemade flatbread, aged Angus ribeye, pasilla chiles, cheese and onions. We ordered two more to go for pals that we knew would appreciate them but couldn't leave work early enough to get there right as the door opened, the only time all night that I would guess that there was no wait. We also tried Duck vs. Tofu, better known as Mission Street Food menu staples Meated Smoked Rice and Vegan Smoked Rice, and both were just as memorable as when I tried them last month. The beverage menu is small but changes thoughtfully with each menu. We enjoyed a small, sweet can of Finaguchi Kikusui Sake, and Tecate and Jubelale Winter Ale were also available.

Pastry chef Amy Kurtz is a recent transplant from Chicago, where she worked at the famous restaurant Charlie Trotter's. Her Dessert vs. Dessert duo of grilled pumpkin bread with mascarpone cream and addictively crunchy maple-glazed pepitas and Meyer lemon sherbet with a luxuriant pomegranate-cranberry sauce, crumbled thyme shortbread and a thin sliver of white chocolate was such a lovely way to end the meal, although I could have eaten two of each without any problem, especially the sherbet (note its size relative to the spoons).

This was the last edition of Mission Street Food for 2008, but stay tuned to the official blog for word on the January return, And keep it locked right here to SFoodie for continuing coverage, because we sure can't stay away from this wonderful project.
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