San Francisco: 15 Romolo

Before I moved to San Francisco for the summer, AF sent me a Yahoo! list of the best burgers in the city.  We swore that we would hit every burger joint on that list.  Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it), that list has expanded since I actually started living in SF.  Priorities may have shifted, but 15 Romolo remained close to the top:

15 Romolo is tucked away in an inconspicuous alley branching off of a street that loudly advertises its strip shows.  If you aren't specifically looking for it, you'll definitely never think to peer into that alley, much less find food there.  Even I had to squint to find the address on the sign.  The steep incline up the alley might deter some people from exploring, but not me.  Oh no.  Not when there are burgers at stake.

The restaurant was pretty quiet when we got there:

Though the bar (not pictured) was rather packed.

AF and I were dying to try the tempura fried avocado, so when we found out that it was no longer on the menu, we were DEVASTATED.  Apparently, one of the chefs had just left 15 Romolo to go on some long road trip and made the remaining chef promise to take the fried avocados off the menu (he didn't want to share his recipe).  The road tripping chef will be starting a new project after his trip, so I'll be keeping an eye out for it...and for his fried avocado.

Not only was the fried avocado no longer on the menu, many other things were also gone (including another dish we wanted to try, the chicken wings "boricuas".  The menu was actually changed so drastically that our server finally decided to just take them away and have us wait for the new ones to be printed.

With 2 of the 3 things we'd originally planned on ordering no longer available, AF and I were seriously thrown for a loop.  Luckily, the Yo-Mama burger survived the cut:

The Yo-Mama burger was precisely what we endured that ridiculous climb up to 15 Romolo for.  If even that had been taken off the menu, I probably would have flipped a table.  Fine.  I don't have the guts to do something like that.  But I would have felt like it!

Seriously though.  Peanut butter and bacon in a burger...who would've thunk?  A combination made in heaven.  Don't judge until you've tried it.

Since so much of the menu was so new (literally finalized just that day), our server couldn't really give us any recommendations beyond "everything is good here."

We played it safe by ordering the smoked pork sliders, another remnant of the old menu:

The sliders consisted of smoked pork, apple slices, homemade slaw, and slider sauce packaged in mini rolls.  While the concept wasn't a new one, the sliders were well executed and delicious.

We took a chance on the crispy shrimp n' cornbread, which made its debut on the menu that day:

The shrimp were lightly fried, drizzled with espelette mayo, and arranged on a bed of frisee over freshly baked cornbread in a mini cast iron skillet.  While I'm not crazy about cornbread, I have to admit that the cornbread was perfectly complemented by the seasoned shrimp and the mayo.

Though disappointed about the fried avocado, I still enjoyed my experience at 15 Romolo.  The portion sizes are on the small side, so expect to order more than one dish.  

Definitely try the Yo-Mama burger.  Not only is the name cute, the burger itself is pretty damn good.

15 Romolo
15 Romolo Pl
San Francisco, CA 94133
(415) 398-1359


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