Good News/Bad News: The Moss Room

Golden Gate Park: Currently in the midst of its review circuit is the Moss Room, Loretta Keller's eatery in the depths of the Academy of Sciences. In many ways, it's a project unlike any other in the city, if not the country. All the typical challenges of opening a restaurant are there, but also ones unique to the museum, like location, patrons, and the super-sustainability they've got going on. Plus, the living wall has to be kept living. From what we've seen and heard thus far, Keller's been pulling big crowds day in and night out, so on the precipice of the review deluge, here's the early buzz from the first six weeks:

The Good News: "Dinner at the moss room was amazing--not just because of the sweet treatment we got, but because of the smooth service and the delicious food. [It's] a hell of a thing to finish a nice meal and be standing in golden gate park. Chef justin simoneaux is really doing some nice stuff on the menu, like perfectly seared sweetbreads, a crispy guinea fowl confit, and one of the best fish entrees ive had in a while--black cod, chanterelles, short ribs and cippolinis ... hospitality is alive and well in SF, [despite] the sour economy." [linecook]

The Bad News: "The desserts at Moss Room were very good. And it is a beautifully-decorated restaurant. That's where my positive remarks end. 'Sustainable' doesn't have to feel like sacrifice, but our meal certainly did. We practically had to trip the waiter to get some bread (not warm, no butter)." [Chowhound]

Lukewarm News: "The restaurant actually looks smaller than I imagined, but it was elegant and calm ... Overall, I thought the food wasn't executed that well although the menu sounded interesting. It might be the kitchen finding their way and trying to deal with the crowds (everyone did seem like they were still trying to figure out things) but service was friendly." [Single Guy]

Nonsensical Yelper News: "The Moss Room is totally not made for someone of the likes of me. I'm giving this place the benefit of the doubt, just because the food I ordered was pretty damn good, although, if your looking to get some energy food to keep walking around the museum, you should not come here." [Yelp]

And Some Final Good News: "The service at the Moss Room is by far some of the most gracious I've encountered. Be prepared for a a bit of an adventure getting to the entrance, but rest assured there are plenty of museum and Moss Room employees around to guide the way. The dining room is small, but in a really good way. The leather on the banquettes is just ridiculous. Like buttah ... I look forward to a return - our bill for the above was $95, so more than a general Thursday night dinner, but not mind-blowingly off the charts, either." [Yelp]
· Eater Inside: The Moss Room [~ESF~]
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