Those are potato chicharrones from Plum in Oakland. They’re very good and greasy, kinda like a thick cut potato chip, only hella more expensive. I dunno, they were good but the more I think about it, I won’t be craving them and I won’t be back for another hit. I like food that turns me into a junkie, and this isn’t it. I love clean food with complex flavors, it’s that the dish didn’t DELIVER. That’s kinda how I felt about everything at Plum. The only standout dish I tried—and I tried everything vegan on the menu, and everything that could be made vegan—was the mushroom dashi with yuba, greens, and tofu. As my dining companion pointed out, it’s very difficult to make something with a clear broth have intricate, nuanced* flavors, but this really did it. It was so damn good, however, it was the ONLY dish I tasted that justified its price.
Let’s talk money. This is Depression 2.0, people. Folks WITH JOBS are digging in trash cans for half-eaten sandwiches and selling their kidneys for a pizza and shiz. Money is precious and I can’t be dropping hundies on inadequate eats YOU FEEL ME?? Our check came to $46 each for a round of small plates and a wine and a beer, and we both left craving something more. OH YEAH, and they put a “standard 18 percent tip” in the check, no matter how big your party is. We were told this right before the check was served—it was really fucking annoying. That shiz should straight be on the menu. I always tip 20 percent, even if the service is terrible (I was a waitress, everyone has bad days, etc.) but I dunno, something about that rubbed me the wrong way. Maybe I am just a Grumpy Gus and should shut up AND STILL I RISE.
I think Plum would be a good choice if you’re going somewhere with self-described foodies,** ya know. Or, meat-mouths who think they’re fancy. You’ll totally have enough options to not feel screwed, and afterward you can head down the street to No Worries to GET STUFFED.
*I hate me, too.
**totally don’t be friends with someone who self-identifies as a foodie.