4/09/2013 02:00:00 PM

Saison's Wildly Mixed Chronicle Review: Brilliant and Problematic


Mr. Bauer’s highly anticipated, behind-the-pay wall review of Saison is lighting up social media as fans, foodies and haters weigh in The Chronicle’s Sunday review of Joshua Skenes’s relocated restaurant near At&T Park. Bauer gave the restaurant a wildly divergent report card, bequeathing the kitchen four stars for Skene's “flawless technique”, "creative mind" and “breathtaking” presentations that result in "producing nothing short of brillant food." However, Bauer was less smitten with the “hard-edged interior" (with less-than-glamorous views of the refrigerator-freezer units) that "throws out the window everything we have come to think of as luxury dining.” He also decries the dearth of niceties (no online menu, no substitutions, no valet service) and lack of accommodating service which “should be a given” since Saison is now the most expensive restaurant in San Francisco (surpassing The French Laundry).

All of this flies in the face of what Skenes told us that he was striving for when he said that "in the end, it is purely about the enjoyment of our guests, nothing else." Overall Bauer gives Saison three stars, only two for service and two for d├ęcor, and comes to the damning conclusion that sadly, “Saison isn't.... a restaurant that treats the customer with as much respect as it treats the food." Snap. Read the whole review (which is now available on line) here.

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