State Bird Provisions Dim-Sum Style Dining | San Francisco

State Bird Provisions gets it right

We don't like to throw around the word "perfect," but State Bird Provisions comes close.

From the moment you enter Stuart Brioza and Nicole Krasinski's exceptional restaurant–stepping almost directly into the open kitchen, where the impish Brioza warmly greets you–the experience feels different (click here to see the video).

In a novel twist, most of the food here is served dim-sum-style, offered to diners from carts and trays. Selections change often, the flurry of small dishes all the more enticing because of their unpredictability: Will the silky duck liver with almond biscuits ($4) be available? What about chicken salad ($5), the meat suspended in gelée flavored with Buddha's Hand citrus?

A few dishes are always on the menu, and can be ordered to supplement the circulating options. They include the silver-dollar sourdough, sauerkraut and ricotta pancakes ($6; click here for the recipe), and the State Bird With Provisions ($8 for half; $16 for a whole), a fried quail recipe from Brioza's days at Rubicon that inspired the restaurant's name.

In time, Krasinski's desserts arrive: butter cookies and carrot jam ($3), a buckwheat profiterole with a cloud of cream ($3) and, at last, a glass of "world peace," peanut milk sweetened with Muscovado sugar ($2).

In other words, the perfect ending.

State Bird Provisions, 1529 Fillmore St. (at O'Farrell St.); 415-795-1272 or