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Namu Gaji

499 Dolores St. (18th St.) Send to Phone
Dennis Lee and his brothers pay attention to the details at this Mission restaurant.
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Local Deals: 120 * 90

Lunch & Dinner Tues.-Sun.
Open late Fri.-Sat.

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Dining room at Namu Gaji, San Francisco, CA

Namu Gaji Restaurant Review

: This narrow nook of a restaurant bumping up against Bi-Rite's ice cream shop brings sophisticated Korean-inflected cuisine to the Mission. The reclaimed wood that dominates the interior was milled locally; the grill is fueled by imported binchotan, the traditional (and expensive) charcoal of Japan that lends a clean, distinctive grill flavor to meats and vegetables. Dennis Lee's eclectic menu focuses on izakaya-style small plates. A meal starts with house-made banchan --- pickles --- and progresses through an easy assortment of innovative Asian dishes: Korean "tacos" made with seaweed shells that are two-bite treats; crispy, gooey potato puffs that call out for one of the house's proprietary beers; delicate buckwheat gnocchi more appropriate to one of the restaurant's carefully curated, and often hard-to-find, sak├ęs. Beef tongue is thick and meaty with a pleasant seared salty edge. Flavorful, well prepared scraps of fish come from whole fish delivered live to the restaurant. Beverage director Collin Casey stocks the wine list from his private cellar, often at close to retail prices. The selection of proprietary and natural wines, for which Casey is an identified expert, is impressive for a list and location of this modest size. Seasonal shaved ice finishes the meal, or, if the "bake sale" is available, target it --- the brownie alone is worth the order.

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