1/17/2013 03:00:00 PM

"Mr. Pollo" Now Turning Out Tasting Menus at Roxy's Cafe

Unlike the highfalutin must-try tasting menus that we were drooling over earlier in the week, there are few bargain basement, under-the-radar multi-course meals that savvy San Franciscans also seek out. One of the best, worst kept secrets has been Mr. Pollo, where former Coi and Quince alum Manny Torrez Gimenz has been turning out stealth Columbian-inspired market-driven tasting menus in a tiny hole-in-the-wall Mission storefront for only $20.

Well, like all good things that have to come to an end, we got wind last week that Gimenez is now running his one-man show down the street at the larger Roxy’s Café, where he’s offering a new set of new four-course prix fixes ($25) and 10-course tasting menus ($75), this time around incorporating Latin, Asian and Italian influences. 

It turns out the move was instigated by a landlord disagreement and the Inside Scoop has all the messy details, but all we care about, frankly, is the food. According to Gimenez, both multicourse menus will features his signature arepas, a Latin-American corn patty topped with cheese or meat, both will change daily, depending on what the chef picks up at the farmers market everyday, and both are offered at lunch and dinner time.

Of particular note, Gimenez, who learned how to make pasta from Michael Tusk during his time working at Quince, will be showcasing at least one of his uniquely own handmade pasta dishes on the 10-course tasting menu, such as chitarra pasta made from plantains with chorizo, egg, Parmesan and black pepper or yucca gnocchi with wild mushrooms. Other new dishes on a recent sample menu included a crab hand roll with fennel sprouts and spicy garlic sauce and wild arugula vichyssoise topped with pickled carrot salad and dill crema. Sounds like a must-try to us.

Roxy’s Café: 2847 Mission St, for reservations, text 415-375-1185, open Monday-Saturday for lunch 12- 2 PM, dinner 5-10 PM, no a la carte offered.

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