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Best of SA 2013: 4/24/2013
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Food & Drink

Beat Street Coffee Co.’s Steady Beat

Photo: Dan Payton, License: N/A

Dan Payton

The crispy pig belly salad with apple, fennel, crisp parsnips, rucola and apple soda gastrique


The crispy pig belly salad, available without the protein (but seriously, go for it), is an excellent vessel for chef’s attention to detail and technique-driven background with its precisely placed Fuji apple slices, fresh bed of fennel, rucola and crisp parsnips laced with a apple soda gastrique sauce. The pig belly, prepared through several stages of curing, braising, resting and portioning, soars with caramelization and hints of cherry, green apple and port.

If you’re in the market for a serious dining experience that thrills and satisfies, go with the scallop/lamb fideo. Again, this isn’t your mom’s fideo. Wiley first created the dish in 2008 while at Las Ramblas, but we weren’t ready for it then. The spirited vermicelli dish is bright and “poppy,” a term chef uses to describe the orange, red and green hues on the plate. The Merguez makes its second appearance on the menu, and the diver scallops a la plancha are finished with a dollop of a nut puree that combines, among other things, pasillas, hazelnuts and ancho chiles. Don’t forget the fresh peas and piquillos. It’s flat-out yummy.

Beat Street also scores with its dehydrated-olive and gremolata-crusted tuna, atop a traditional cold ajo blanco soup dotted with crispy artichokes and traces of green apple—the briny flavors will persuade any olive dissidents to change their ways.

Whether Beat Street catches on as a coffee shop, lunch spot or intimate dining bistro is up to its patrons. But the coffee and dishes offered, not to mention the accessible wine menu, are bound to find their place in hearts of anyone looking for a first-rate dining experience at starving artist price points.

Where some coffee shops bite off more than they can chew by offering subpar sandwiches, or where restaurants pair beautiful dishes with lackluster coffee, Beat Street manages to not…well, miss a beat.

Beat Street Coffee Co. & Bistro

2512 N Main, (210) 320-2099
Best Bets The pig belly salad (with or without the protein), and the scallop/lamb fideo
The Skinny Coffee shop-bistro and then some, Beat Street elevates the casual neighborhood eatery fare.
Hours 7am-2pm, 5pm-midnight Tue-Sat
Prices Breakfast: $2-$4.25; Lunch: $5-$10; Dinner: $6-$23

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