With an exciting (if challenging) menu and a benevolent business model, Commonwealth stands out among trend-chasing green restaurants.
Both the tasting and a la carte menus offer a roster of adventurous eats not often seen on menus where the price point hovers around $13. Foodies will drool over corn custard with sea urchin, grilled lamb tongue, and goat cooked in hay. Picky eaters need not apply.
At $60 for six courses, the tasting menu is not only a relative bargain, it also offers diners a chance to give back. The restaurant donates $10 from the price of every tasting menu to a different charity every week.
Be sure to save some room for dessert. The mille feuille is a sophisticated take on the s'more, a combo of cardamom marshmallow and burnt honey ice cream so good that you and your date will be fighting over it.
2224 Mission St., Mission District (415) 355-1500
Price: 2 (out of 4) Noise: 2 (out of 4)
Parking: $5 for a space in the lot, or metered spots on street.
Scene: Foodies and do-gooders
Best bets: Potato gnocchi; grilled lamb's tongue; mille feuille
Hot seat: Corner booth by the window
Wine and dine: The wine list features an international selection at reasonable prices.
Nearby: Luna Park; Beauty Bar; Bender's
The Rundown's restaurant reviews are based on anonymous visits by reporters, not press releases
Photo by Jackson Solway