Last weekend, finding ourselves not craving any particular cuisine, we came across Pomelo on Yelp and decided to give it a try. The place boasts the slogan "refreshingly global" because each dish on the menu (cutely divided into "side trips" and "destinations" for appetizers and entrées, respectively) is named after a different spot on the globe and represents an entirely different culture's cuisine. I couldn't take or find a very good photo of the restaurant so instead, I drew you this silly pomelo.
Service: There was one guy in there who did everything: greeted us, showed us our table, took our order, served us, and cleared our table. He was friendly and even showed a little humor. He was the sort of waiter who helped guide old ladies into their chairs and patted people on the shoulder as he was checking in on their meals. When he cleared our plates, he asked if we had been finished for a long time; we weren't at all. I liked him.
Food: I had a Provençal-inspired lamb ragout which was delicious; the best part though was the cakes of baked polenta served to the side of it that were the perfect consistency on the inside and crispiness on the outside. Nick had Indonesian-style noodles in a big bowl that smelled great but that I didn't try because it was too different from my meal. He enjoyed it. I think the concept of putting such disparate dishes all in one menu is an interesting and original one, and it works for people who like variety on the menu but not sharing around the table. If you like having a little sample of everyone else's dish but are still looking for a coherent meal, this is probably not the place for you.
Ambiance: This is clearly a neighborhood restaurant. The fresh rose on every table was a nice touch and the soft peachy colors and the dim lighting makes the place a good spot for a romantic but very very casual dinner. After previewing the menu online ahead of time though, I was a little bit surprised when I walked in because I think I was expecting an environment that matched their modern and eclectic theme. I could see this being a fantastic go-to dinner spot for people who live nearby but it does not look like a destination for me.
Pomelo is located at 1793 Church Street San Francisco, California 94131.