Number 14: Delfina's Trippa alla Fiorentina

Categories: SFoodie's 50
Delfina_trippa_fiorentina_GilRiego.jpg
Gil Riego Jr.
Delfina's trippa alla fiorentina.
SFoodie's countdown of our favorite 50 things to eat and drink, 2012 edition

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Trippa alla fiorentina is not a pretty dish. There are no elegant curls of hand-made pasta to photograph. A tuft of baby greens placed on top would only look like a boutonniere pinned to the chest of an orangutan. But there's a reason Florentine-style tripe has been on Delfina's menu for most of the restaurant's 13 years.

It's one of San Francisco's best offal dishes, modeled on the tripe Craig Stoll ate around Florence and Tuscany before starting Delfina. His cooks slice blanched honeycomb tripe into thin strips and braise them with pancetta, aromatics, and tomatoes until the frilly tripe attains an almost gossamer softness. 

As appetizers go, it's not much less rich than seared foie gras. The pine-bough smell of rosemary haunts its aroma, as well as the sweetness and acid of the tomatoes, which disperse the tripe's offal funk, rendering it an earthy undertone. The cooks cover the surface of the dish in breadcrumbs -- a punctuating crunch -- and leave the crock in the wood-fired oven until the waiters arrive so they can bring it to the table, still bubbling. It may look humble, but it sounds -- and smells -- like a star.

Delfina Restaurant: 3621 18th St. (at Guerrero), 552-4055, www.delfinasf.com.

Other favorites in this series:
15: Truffled tater tots from Leatherneck Steakhouse
16: Baia Pasta's durum-wheat pastas
17: Z&Y's flaming fish with chile oil
18: Auntie April's fried catfish
19: None but the Brave from Heaven's Dog
20: Saha's vegan kibbeh
21: Starter Bakery's hazelnut kouign amann
22: Pupusas at Cafe and Restaurant Montecristo
23: 2 a.m. apple fritter at Bob's
24: Le Sanctuaire's vadouvan
25: Crab louis salad at Nettie's Crab Shack
26: Soy sauce chicken from Happy Bakery & Deli
27: Locanda's Jewish-style artichoke
28: Local: Mission Eatery's asparagus-egg sandwich
29: Memphis Minnie's 18-hour brisket
30: Custard buns from City View
31: Mission Chinese Food's kung pao pastrami
32: Panisse frites from Frances
33: Izakaya Yuzuki's chawanmushi
34: Fatted Calf's chorizo
35: Silvanas from House of Silvanas
36: Linden Street Brewery's black lager
37: Aged oolongs from Red Blossom Tea Company
38: Broken Record's crawfish grits
39: Cebiche mixto from La Mar 
40: Nutella-hazelnut hand pie from Black Jet Baking Co.
41: Fifth Floor's burger
42: Perbacco's agnolotti dal plin
43: Iced coffee from Sightglass
44: Cypress Grove's Purple Haze Chevre
45: Lechon from Tastebuds Cuisine
46: Duck with beets from AQ
47: Tai nigiri at ICHI Sushi
48: Fish with explosive chiles from Spices! 
49: Baker & Banker Bakery's blueberry cream cheese muffin
50: Kufta tajine from Cafe Zitouna

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Location Info

Venue

Map

Delfina

3621 18th St., San Francisco, CA

Category: Restaurant

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Jonny
Jonny

It might taste good, but it looks like a bowl of vomit.

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