Tucked away in the Mission District is an Italian restaurant called Farina. Italian food comes from different regions and Farina’s culinary menu hails from Genoa. I wanted to see if I could be “wowed” by anything on its menu and I was indeed “wowed” by its famous focaccia. When one thinks of focaccia, the image is of a thick, oven baked bread infused with herbs and olive oil. However, the focaccia at Farina goes against the grain but deliciously so. Its focaccia is as thin as pita bread but nestled between its layers is a creamy melted Stracchino cheese. I indeed, savored each bite. Farina is the only restaurant in San Francisco that makes it this way and I would go back if only to have one more taste of this.
Wait, there’s more. To top it off, Farina’s award winning freshly made handkerchief pasta with its Genovese basil and almond pesto is delicate and refined. Pesto sauces are often swimming in olive oil but this sauce is lightly spooned over the pasta, neither underwhelming or overwhelming the pasta, just enough to coat it a light pea green. I can see how it won an award in Italy at the Pesto World Championship in 2008. Paired with a chilled white, the combination was superb.
The next dish I had was rabbit carefully braised au jus with potatoes on the side. The rabbit was delicious, cooked just right. The last item that I had was dessert, a molten chocolate lava cake. LOL. It brings to mind, an episode of Masterchef. Joe Bastianich, one of the judges, had the finalists choose a dessert to replicate. Bastianich’s childhood dessert was molten chocolate lava cake. I can say that Farina just takes the cake in that category. The chocolate sauce oozed out with the first slice and every spoonful of cake was coated with the remaining decadent liquid.
I hope you will get an opportunity to visit Farina, 3560 18th Street, in the Mission District during your stay. They have just opened a Farina pizzeria one block away that serves salads and entrees as well.