california search button





Plumed Horse Restaurant Saratoga  Best Restaurants San Francisco


previous < Best Bay Area Restaurants > next



Top 9 Restaurants in San Francisco Bay Area


food tours

By GraceAnn Walden

Food History Tours



Plumed Horse

14555 Big Basin Way
(408) 867-4711

Cuisine: Contemporary cuisine

Pluses: Spectacular million-dollar decor, extensive wine list (1800
choices), very creative food.

Minuses: Food can come out slowly; very expensive.

Don’t miss: Surf and Turf: red abalone with pork belly, squab and pork

Prices: Appetizers $14-25; entrees $32-37

Overview: Like San Francisco’s Spruce, the Plumed Horse was the most
anticipated opening. In the old days, Saratoga had two fancy schmancy
restaurants: the Mouton Noir and the Plumed Horse. Both formal - both
very French. A million dollar re-do of the Plumed Horse has brought it
into the modern era. And not surprisingly, they owners hired Peter
Armellino, from Aqua. I’ve followed his career for years and I knew
someday he would be a star.

If you hit the lottery, go for the caviar service – it starts at $95
and goes to $225. Not being that lucky, we opted for the Camembert
cheese fondue, with duck fat fried fingerling potatoes and black
truffle and also the Maine Sea Scallops with an interesting oxtail
“marmalade” and horseradish foam. Shades of Spain’s Chef Ferran Adria.

I fell in love with my entrée, the Peking-style California squab with
ginger cabbage, dried plums with barley-corn pancakes, and could eat it
once a week for a year. The squab looked as if it had been shellacked
and the other components of the dish couldn’t have paired better.
Armellino doesn’t let a steak just appear. His New York strip is
dry-aged, prime and accompanied by tempura vegetables, yuzu-butter
potatoes with a sprinkle of pink salt from Hawaii. We had to have the
baked California. Like a baked Alaska of yore, it involves meringue and
ice cream. Plus sorbet.

The “new” Plumed Horse will surely gallop into the century delighting
all who pass through its portals.




hot deals

Discount Disneyland Tickets

Catalina Flyer