Hog Island Oyster Co.

Hog Island Oyster Co.
1 Ferry Building, Shop 11
San Francisco, CA 94111
hogislandoysters.com
YelpThe eat-a-thon continues with lunch at one of my favorite spots in San Francisco, The Ferry Building.  I love coming here on the Saturdays when the farmer’s market is really bumpin’.  I usually get filled up by all the eats from the food stalls and fruit vendors before I’ve even set foot in the building.  So I’ve actually never had a sit down meal at any of the restaurants at the Ferry Building.  I was looking forward to lunch with Panda Bear and Mani Bear at Hog Island for some oysters.

 
Black Mission Fig radicchio, treviso, pine nuts, honey-sherry vinaigrette, figs
The salad definitely had a lot of texture from the radicchio which was a nice change from lettuce or spinach.  It leaned a little bitter as a result.  The dressing was light, maybe too light.  The pine nuts added some more crunch.  The figs were not very plentiful.

 
 

 

Gumbo hog island sweetwaters, manila clam, gulf shrimp, chicken, andouille sausage

The gumbo was very hearty with plenty of meat and seafood.  I can’t say the depth of flavor was really there though.

 

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We went hog wild at Hog Island with the oysters.  We ordered 24 oysters, 4 each of 6 different kinds. Overall, the oysters here were excellent.  Fresh, sweet, briney, and some meatier than others.  The kumamotos are always reliably delicious.  I quite enjoyed the the meatier oysters like the Sunset Beach oysters.
Chowder manila clams, aromatic vegetables, bacon, potatoes, cream

I was told to get the chowder because it was a little different.  And this was true, because it was very hearty and chunky but, like the gumbo, it was lacking a little depth or maybe just salt?

Oyster Pan Roast hog island sweetwaters, lemon, uni, cream, grilled acme epi

The pan roast was very rich.  Heavy cream and uni comprised the body of the pan roast, while fat oysters bobbed around.  The hunks of bread were good for soaking up all that richness.  Maybe it was too rich?  It was definitely not like the pan roast I’ve had at Ritter’s.

 

Shrimp & Grits whole gulf shrimp, picnic ham, worcestershire, dry jack reserve

I can’t think of a more disappointing shrimp and grits.  While the shrimp was plump and well cooked, the overall seasoning of the entire dish was wholly lacking in punch.  Brenda’s French Soul Food shrimp and grits is the best I’ve ever have.  This was a far cry from those bold flavors.  It was a little bland.  Even the coloring of the dish is a little pale don’t you think?

The menu got me really excited, but the actually food was not as good as I had hoped.  It wasn’t horrible or anything, it just lacked that extra oomph you would expect for chowder, gumbo, and grits. Food like this should probably be best enjoyed at a place that specializes in Southern hospitality, not oysters.  But one aspect they did not fall short on was, in fact, the oysters.  I probably would come back just to enjoy those as a little snack or pre meal festivious.  I could easily eat 12 raw ones by myself, that’s for sure.  I heard the grilled oysters were also amazing, but I didn’t get to try it.  So maybe that is reason enough to come back.
10 – You NEED to eat here
9 – Awesome!
8 – Very good (for the oysters)
7 – Good
6 – OK 
5 – Average
4 – Not bad
3 – Not good
2 – Terrible
1 – Do NOT eat here

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