Organic, warm, unpretentious, and clean, Local: Mission Eatery is a destination for those looking to partake in seasonal, thoughtful, and delicious food. Located on the eclectic 24th street of the Mission, a simple wooden sign hangs above the entrance while blue tiles climb up the side wall, encircling the window and doorway and enticing soon-to-be-guests of the experience within. Blues, grays, browns, and creams are the palette of choice with an occasional pop of color to offset the earthy tones and enhance the glow of the space. The juxtaposition between the salvaged wood and brick columns with the stainless steel countertops and white subway tiles creates the perfect balance of urban rusticity.
The menu is simple, concise, and prudent with only the freshest ingredients sourced and used in a way to highlight the season and local farmers. Items that are included in one dish will resurface slightly tweaked in another: an ingenious way to ensure minimal product waste and a successful small kitchen operation. The rabbit cavatelli is seasoned perfectly. The meat melts in your mouth like butter and the sauteed leeks marry in texture with the soft pasta that is lightly coated in a butter. The polenta, goat cheese, and soft boiled egg creation is surprising and steals the night’s fame. The color and feel of the egg and cheese tricks the eye and until you break into the yolk and witness the slow ooze of orange, you are not sure which ingredient is what over the corn yellow polenta. The flavor is insanely unique but simple: the cheese is tangy but not overpowering, the egg is rich and luscious, the polenta creamy, and the charred greens sprinkled over top smokey and crunchy. Never before has a carnivore been converted into a vegetarian until tasting this incredible dish.
The wine and beer list does not stray from the establishment’s local ideology and offers a wide array of regional beverages that practice safe and ethical agriculture. This list, too, is short and well intentioned, with interesting choices such as White Granache and a Roussanne by Donkey & Goat that tastes like a mix between a sour beer and white wine. Truly an uncommon and tasty drink. The waitstaff, appropriately dressed in hipster attire, shares in labor as if unassigned to a section and simply endorsing a communal service where if one sees a guest in need, one assists. Quite a laid back style that harmonizes with the ambiance and menu.
For the ultimate dining experience, sit at the bar and watch the chefs work in unison preparing meals for their patrons. Never a word heard above a whisper, Executive Chef Jake operates his kitchen like a well oiled machine, never letting the open kitchen (that so obviously offers a show to countertop guests) influence the quality and flow of food. Come full circle to the evening’s treats and partake in a dessert prepared by Chef Jake’s wife, Shauna. The restricted menu (3 items plus cheese) is no doubt an homage to the saying ‘quality over quantity’ and does not disappoint with items such as homemade candied grapefruit and thyme lemon marmalade. Fantastically uncomplicated yet so refined.
A journey to Local: Mission Eatery is something that should not be missed. Be prepared to relax, eat well, and feel good in both body and mind knowing that you are supporting an establishment that so successfully executes its love for all things San Francisco.