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Fresca Restaurant: Fresca Restaurant
Fresca Restaurant in Fillmore San Francisco is a specialty restaurant that serves Nouveau Peruvian Cuisine, a modernized style of Peruvian Cuisine, crafted by owner-Chef Jose Calvo-Perez. It is the only Ceviche Bar in San Francisco. It serves homestyle Peruvian food with a California twist, which means a menu filled with refreshing and flavorful ceviches.
Mon-Fri: 11:00am - 3:00pm
Mon-Thurs: 5:00pm - 10:00pm
Fri-Sat: 5:00pm - 11:00pm
Sat-Sun: 11:00am - 3:00pm
Sun: 5:00pm - 9:00pm
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Fresca: Peruvian Cuisine in West Portal District
Although the decore and menu are definetly Peruvian, there is much about Fresca that typifies the culinary art of San Francisco at it's best. The Ceviche is organized on square plates, making it resemble Korean or Japanese food, and the colorful drip is pure California cuisine. I'm a particular critic of those who attempt to serve fried yucca and platanos (plantains), since my wife is Venezuelan and we've seen the best of those plates in Caracas. But, Fresca met the challenge and more. The introductory toasted corn torilla chips appeared to be of the organic variety, and the salsa that went with them wasn't just another acidic chopped tomato and onion mix so popular these days. Rather the salsa was a deliciously refined and medium thick orange colored sauce, the constituents of which were difficult to determine, especially after I had consummed some wine at the Stern Grove Music Festival just an hour before (see Stern Grove Festival in "things to do"). Belinda was satisfied with the crab cake she had ordered, although she noted that it still didn't match the quality of a good one made in New Orleans. Our friend Chris had the Ceviche Mixto, while I had the Black Ceviche--a nice seafood mix colored black with squid ink. Off the menu were two non-alcoholic drinks ordered, called Inka Kola, which was an amber colored pineapple flavored sodas. Belinda ordered a Chich Morada, which was a thick herbal tea of some sort--very unusual.
Favorite Dish: What makes this restaurant great are the seafood dishes and traditional Latin American side dishes. If a person doesn't want cheviche, there are still plenty of shellfish soups and a paella. It's not the kind of place that specializes in carefully filleted fish, but the shrimp, crab, and shellfish are fantastically prepared in wonderful Peruvian sauces. Prices are actually quite reasonable for SF, but be prepared to wait a few minutes for a table during the rush of the dinner hour. The volume of people, tile floor, small closely spaced formiaca tables, and noise from the open kitchen make this more of a urbane city diner or cafe than a quite formal romantic place with a view. The focus here is on food as much as atmosphere. On the other hand, relative to the insanity of the Castro District, for example, just on the other side of the Twin Peaks Tunnel, the West Portal Commercial District has a relaxed small town feel to it.
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Fresca: Hmmm Peruvian Steak... yum
Fresca is a fantastic little restaurant in San Fran with a style you'll find hard to discover elsewhere. Peruvian.... Where else have you seen a Peruvian restaurant...
Anyway being a smaller place you do need to book even on a week night.
The tables are closely situated but it just adds to the authentic feel of the joint.
Favorite Dish: Between the three of us we tried a variety of meals and entrees. Not knowing what we were going to receive was part of the enjoyment.
The winning dish. The Beef skewers...By far. They were magnificient.... The marinade on them is to die for.
Fresca - Peruvian Restaurant: Don't miss the ceviche!
This is a great place to have a bite and/or watch a game of futbol. There are several varieties of ceviche. Get the 6 pack to try 6 different ones! My favorite is the salmon, but I had to leave room for shooters.
Favorite Dish: Oyster Shooters
Fresca: Nouveau Peruvian
Mmmmm. Fresca. What a great place. A large variety of ceviche as well as beautifully prepared dishes. I have been there several times and have enjoyed all of my meals there. I mean...hey...how many places do you know of that serve Peruvian food?? Great decor as well.
The only thing I'd say could use improvement is the wine list. There are a lot of great wines from South America, and I think that their wine list could use a few more heavy hitters. It's always nice to have the $100 bottle options available - even if you only purchase them on a rare occasion and usually stick to less expensive bottles like I do.
Favorite Dish: Too many to pick just one.
Fresca: Excellent Peruvian Cuisine in San Francisco
In a friendly warm environment with a cute, shiny golden sun in the background Fresca is a Peruvian restaurant with unique, exotic, and very tasty dishes.
I ate here tonight and did not need reservations. I suggest you make them just to be safe, but you'll be ok after 8pm.
The staff is friendly courteous, efficient, polite, and responsive without being annoying, intruding or attention distracting.
Health Code Violations
Favorite Dish: I am a seafood fanatic. I also love spicy. If you are like me, try the Picante de Mariscos. Pictured here, it is a spicy seafood stew with fish, prawns, clams, mussels, calamari, and scallops. Ask for a side order of rice and drink a Cusquena Peruvian Beer with it.
Here's the picture of what I ate today, May 29, 2005. It was extremely good. The orange walls only add more ambience to this West Portal Neighborhood.
P.J.'s Oyster Bed: Best Ahi Tuna and Clam Chowder
This was one of my favorite neighborhood restaurants when I lived in San Francisco. The chef is from New Orleans and would often go from table to table introducing himself, or offering up vodka jello shots. The wait staff was quite attentive and often wore colorful Mardi Gras beads.
Favorite Dish: The best Clam Chowder I have ever had-- and this is coming from a person who never liked clam showder. I also really enjoyed their Seared Ahi Tuna with mashed potatoes.
Fresca: Upscale Peruvian
This place was great. My friend Gina went to school with a guy who had just moved out to San Francisco the week we were there, so we met him (Shunpei) and his girlfriend Wendy at this great restaurant. The interior was modern and urban with orangish-red walls and a bar set at the rear.
Favorite Dish: They have seven types of Ceviche on the menu and we tried three of them as part of the Ceviche sampler. All of them were delicious and one in particular was spiced with Peruvian aji chile pepper, which made it good and hot. After the ceviche, we overindulged in roasted pork and a few different forms of antecuchos (although, here they are not actually baby beef hearts!). The service was awesome. Really friendly and helpful.
For 4 people, it was $160 with tip.
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