This week's full-length restaurant review of Bouche, just north of Union Square, presented me with a bit of a quandry. Its chef, Nicolas Borzée, has worked for some of the greats, including Joel Robuchon and Michel Troisgros, and he's cooking a complex menu of small plates out of the tiniest kitchen imaginable.
|Bouche's cured salmon with poached egg.|
His dishes, though, could be divided into the rich and the strange. A dish doesn't come together for one of two reasons: There are flaws in conception and flaws in execution. Usually, it's a case of the kitchen not being able to execute a good idea properly. At Bouche, it was a case of technically precise food with odd flavor or textural combinations. Borzée's best dishes forgo weird contrasts and aim for opulence: chestnut soup with bacon and salsify chips, slow-roasted lamb shoulder with onion-almond jam. Some young chefs need to improve their technique; Borzée simply needs a good editor.
603 Bush St., San Francisco, CA