Eating Out

Osito SF’s New Four-course Live Fire Tasting Menu

Osito restaurant, which made their ambitious debut in 2021 as a 100% live fire and fine dining restaurant, recently introduced a more accessible $90 weekday four-course tasting menu, as well as an a la carte reservation. Gone is the massive central communal table, replaced by numerous smaller tables which opens up the space nicely. 

I was a big fan of their adjacent sister bar Liliana before its closure, which offered strong la carte dishes from the same kitchen. They’ve essentially folded Liliana into Osito now, offering diners more flexibility in the same warm space with a view of the open kitchen.

Chef-owner Seth Stowaway (Mister Jiu’s, Bar Agricole) excels at making his elevated dishes fun and welcoming, and this new arrangement allows his vision to shine more coherently. On my last visit, I enjoyed the meat-focused shorter tasting menu with la carte seafood supplements. It was a quiet weeknight, and not only were the food and drink plentiful, but we also enjoyed stories told with Stowaway’s infectiously jolly and real energy.

The first course was a cured pork belly-wrapped savory profiterole filled with Harbison cheese. The delightful bite came out on a bed of smoldering fragrant pine needles, a wonderful welcome for all five senses.

We moved onto some oysters and crudo from the a la carte menu. These were subtle in flavor, and paired nicely with our bright, citrus-forward cocktails.

The next course on the tasting menu was a rabbit roulade, accompanied by a rabbit offal-stuffed morel, which further exaggerated the impressively sized mushrooms. Surrounded in a bowl of chicken fish consomme and a dollop of miso, there was much to love in this umami-forward dish.

In a nod to his Texan roots, Stowaway served a saucy smoked brisket as the main course on the shorter menu. The familiar, yet elevated preparation was plated with early season grilled peach, potatoes, and basil. The fancy summer BBQ I didn’t know I was craving.

Next up was a large-format dish from the a la carte menu, a shrimp and squid claypot rice assembled table-side and topped with a generous amount of whipped chili butter. This was one of my favorites, bursting with layered flavors and textures.

Dessert was inspired by the Southern hoe cake, a cornmeal pancake of sorts. This version came with blueberry almond sauce, plus crème anglaise spooned table side. Another great example of elevated comfort food that Osito does so well. And at $90 for the four-course tasting, this might be the most affordable Michelin-starred restaurant in the city.

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