For a place that is so hard to garner a reservation, you would think this was a bomb ass place.
I called on Sunday around 12 pm to get a table for 2 at 1 pm. The guy said it was no problem, so we started walking over from Union Square. My stupid iPhone map gave me the wrong address, so we ended up walking 1 mile more than we were supposed to, but I guess it was worth burning the extra 200 calories before our big lunch.
Due to us getting lost, I called and told them we were running 15 min late. He said it was not a problem. When we finally arrived at 1:20 pm, the hostess said it would be a few minutes. We sat down in the lounge area and waited 20 min before my BF went up there to ask what was up. Apparently she claimed that she thought she sat us already. Whatever, she ended up seating us then.
After sitting down at a table by the window, we looked over the menu and waited for our waiter. And waited. 20 minutes later, we flagged down a busboy who went to get our waiter. By now, I was beyond starving since I didn't eat breakfast cuz I was saving up for lunch. It took all of me to keep my temper in check. I mean, c'mon, get on it Slanted Door! Service was definitely not a high point here.
Anyway, the waiter shows up and friendly and cool, so at least when he was present, he was decent. We ordered daikon rice cake, grilled prawns with rice noodles, shaking beef, and catfish in claypot.
My favorite dish was hands down the daikon rice cake. I don't know what they put in there, but it was so damn good, I could have ate 5 of those babies. The sauce it came with was well flavored and had a slight tang to it. It's similar to turnip cake at dim sums. But, I think theirs trumps any dim sum I've ever had. I'll have to find the recipe to duplicate it.
Rice noodles with grilled tiger prawns was mediocre. I've had better at a hole in the wall Vietnamese restaurant. I did enjoy the imperial roll that came with it, but overall, the highlight of this dish were the mint leaves. I guess mint really brought out the flavor of the noodles. Oh yeah, the fish sauce was good too.
Shaking beef was okay as well. I thought the filet mignon was bit chewy, but the onions were to die for! OMG. I could have just ate the onions over a bowl of white rice and been happy. Also, the lime sauce was pretty damn good too. A nice tangy addition over the white rice we ordered.
Caramelized catfish claypot was my least favorite. My BF loved it though. The fish itself was cooked well, but the sauce was overpowering and way too sweet. I put a little bit over my rice and it was so saccharine sweet, I couldn't eat it. I had to waste rice! Oh horrors.
In nutshell, The Slanted Door is a good place to dine at, when you get service. I expect better service for a $75 lunch for two. However, I'm coming back for those daikon rice cakes. Also, I heard the cellophane noodles with crab are a must try as well. Next time.
The Slanted Door
1 Ferry Bldg
San Francisco, CA 94111