We were off to the Mission again. This time, we went to try the new Son’s Addition. The 24th-Street restaurant, “Founded by husband and wife team, Nick Cobarruvias and Anna Sager Cobarruvias, Son’s Addition launches with culinary clout. Nick’s experience includes opening two restaurants in LA, and time as the executive chef at The Farm of Beverly Hills and chef de cuisine at Marlowe. Anna handles the front of the house, having worked in restaurants since she was 15 at places like Supper Club, Anzu, Maverick, and SBE, a hospitality company in LA that manages restaurants. Together, the two are nailing it: the theme is upscale, but family-friendly, the menu is exceptional, yet approachable, and the decor feels hip without being intimidating,”
Michael Bauer writes, “Son’s Addition is a family affair in many ways. The couple, who are parents to two girls, decided to return home to be near family, and they hope to build a restaurant that is essential to the community. The restaurant was financed with loans from parents and grandparents. To buy flatware, glasses and other items, the couple maxed out a credit card. Even the restaurant’s name has meaning. The couple was hoping to have a third child — hopefully a boy. Once they signed the 15-year lease and started building out the space, Anna observed that the restaurant had become the new addition to the family. What was once an inside joke, Son’s Addition, became the name.”
Bauer also says, “Not every dish on the menu works . . . but there’s an authentic, caring spirit that pervades Son’s Addition.” And we felt that too. This is comfort food, but comfort food children for my Millenial children, rather than for Boomers like me and Ken, with offerings such as bacon-kimchi deviled eggs, roasted bone marrow, achiote cured hamachi, and five spice braised lamb shank.
Ordering can be a puzzle these days with small, medium and large plates. Do we share everything? Do we share some and order our own entrees? Will it be enough? Will it be too much? Our server was friendly and guided us through the process with ease and goodwill.
We started with the pork chicharron, because I love everything fried and crispy. We expected a bowl of pork rinds but when we dove in, we found delicious and tender pieces of pork belly underneath.
The little gem lettuce was ordered so we could at least try to be healthy. Unfortunately, this was the least impressive dish of the evening. The chicories were tough so that the vinaigrette wasn’t fully absorbed, like in too many kale salads.
Ken was unimpressed with the poached chicken with coconut rice until we figured out that he didn’t get any of the fermented soybean salsa. The salsa makes all the difference, but is easily missed because there is just a thin layer around the side of the dish. If you don’t go there to scrape it up, you can miss the salsa entirely. Is chicken and rice the new shishito pepper or Brussel sprout? It seems popular these days, because we had chicken and rice last week at Hawker Fare too.
Ken orders beef tartare whenever he can and this one hit did not disappoint. I’m not crazy about tartare, but have to say that the meat had a wonderful depth of flavor. What a great way to eat house-made chips.
The superstar of the meal was the evening’s special, oxtail with rice noodles. This was definitely not my mother’s Chinese oxtail stew. I’ve stopped cooking oxtail in the past 10 years or so, because it is so rich and fatty, but not this one. It was the best oxtail dish I have ever had. The meat was fall-off-the-bone tender, so much so that the wait staff doesn’t set a knife because you don’t need one. The flavor was layered and rich without being greasy or gelatinous. The rice noodles were fresh and delicate in contrast to the meat, and the broth was more like a consommé, light and savory with just enough salt.
This is a restaurant to keep our eyes on, as they find their way. The dishes that weren’t great were also not terrible, just unexceptional. The dishes we enjoyed were special. Son’s Addition is definitely worth a few more tries. In fact, there was a burger at the next table that looked especially promising.
Son’s Addition: 2990 24th Street, San Francisco. Dinner Sunday to Thursday 5pm – 10pm, Friday to Saturday 5pm – 11pm. Brunch Saturday to Sunday 10:30am – 2:30pm. Reservations available on OpenTable.com.