The recession ain’t over yet

The design is hip, the food is good, the customers just aren't there

Thursday night we went to an opening at the RayKo gallery, then out to dinner in the City.  As usual, I used Opentable to find a new/different place to eat, and we ended up at Circolo, in the Potrero Hill district south of downtown.

Circolo is a very modern, young, hip kind of place.  The music is loud–although they turned it down for us.  The food is “nuevo Asian”, whatever that means—lots of small plates, interesting combinations, an overall Latin flavor.  The decor is great, tables downstairs and very cozy booths on the balcony.

What was sad was to see all  the empty tables.  We got there about 8:00 pm, perhaps it’s more of a nightspot/dancing/music place and wakes up at 11, but it sure was quiet.

I had the kabocha squash soup, and liked it more than I did the pumpkin soup the day before  at Spruce.  The chef told me it was actually very think just from the vegetable, and they then thinned it with chicken stock–no where near as rich as the other one.

Then, the Brussels sprouts:

Mike would hate this, but I thought it was great.

Roasted brussels sprouts, bacon, pears and fresno chiles.  Not only was it great, but the portion was excellent.  Which came in handy, because I ordered a flatbread which the waiter apparently forgot entirely.

Gail went for the burger–but this was no White Castle mini-burger:

That's what a burger should be

The burger was just great–thick, tasty, perfectly medium rare, ripe avocado, bacon, house made ketchup and mayo, seasoned fries.  And too big for Gail to finish by her self, so I could help.

The service was very good, except for the forgotten flatbread part.  They seated us in the balcony area because it would be quieter, even though it meant the waiter had to run up and down the stairs.

As much as I liked this place, it was disheartening to see the empty tables.  The recession may be waning, but it isn’t over yet.

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