Ally


737 Irving St, San Francisco, CA 94122, (415) 566-7775

We've all heard that silly bit of info about only eating oysters in months that end in the letter "r." Well, screw that bit of nonsense! I've been on an oyster kick lately and when Ally D. wants oysters, Ally D. gets oysters. On a sunny Thursday, my houseguest and I took off for a trek to SF to fulfill my Ostreidae obsession. I wasn't going to be sated until I was slurping down some yummy bivalves from their half shells with a little sriracha and lemon. After doing some shopping, we met up with Yelper Omar B. who took us around Hayes Valley, Sunset and the outer Richmond. Although I've spent a lot of time in SF (usually lost if I'm the one driving), I wasn't too familiar with these areas. We grabbed a few drinks and then wandered across the street to PJ's Oyster Bed on Irving Street. PJ's blends in well with the various boutiques, bakeries and pubs lining the Sunset District. It's quite small which was the reason for the wait... about a half hour. This wouldn't have been too bad if there was a designated bar section or waiting area. As it was, we stood chatting in the foyer with our backs to a table of four that was chowing down. I'm sure they enjoyed staring at our asses throughout the first portion of their dining experience. Brandon, the host, seemed quite nice and was pretty on target with his wait quote.

Finally, our name was called. I sunk into our half-booth and politely browsed the menu (although I already knew what I wanted). The menu consisted of many NOLA-style dishes like jambalya, gumbo and something called Alligator Eggs (I didn't ask). Forget the menu! Bring on the booze! Bring on the oysters!

Hillary, our server, was friendly, attentive and efficient. She didn't blink an eye when we only ordered a plate of a dozen raw oysters and a bottle of wine (the Bolla, an Italian white, paired quite well with our order). Since my guest had filled her alcohol quotient for the night at Yancey's, Omar & I finished off the entire bottle by ourselves. The oysters were good, but lacked a little je ne sais quoi and were on the smaller side...not like the fatty, succulent oysters I had sucked down on a recent visitation to Sausalito. They're served with tabasco, lemon, cocktail sauce and champagne mignonette (Phooey! We don't need no stinkin' mignonette! Where's the damn sriracha?). Also, after a few glasses of wine the surrounding wall murals got a bit creepy...was it just me our did all the people in the mural look like they were in some kind of state of 420-ness?

Overall, a pretty good dining experience. If I were to return, I wouldn't mind checking out their Oysters Rockefeller. The table next to us were digging into some and they looked mighty tasty (the Oysters Rockefeller, not the people at the next table).
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