Fifth Floor

Overall Rating: 5.700

Address: 12 Fourth St.
Cross Street(s): Market St.; on the fifth floor of the Palomar Hotel
City, State ZIP: San Francisco, CA 94103
Neighborhood: SOMA
Phone: 415.348.1555
Hours: M-Th 7am-10pm; F 7am-11pm; Sa 8am-11pm; Su 8am-10pm
Type of Establishment: Restaurant
Cafe Rating: 5.80
Barista: 4
Savvy: 5
Ambiance: 6
Presentation: 8
Consistency: Inconsistent
Espresso Machine: La San Marco
Coffee Rating: 5.60
Aroma: 5
Body: 6
Brightness: 6
Crema: 6
Flavor: 5
Taster's Correction: 0.0
Size: L
Primary Taste: Pungent
Coffee Beans: La Colombe Torrefaction
Cup Manufacturer: Bernardaud
Price: $3.50
Last Update: 01/15/2010
First Reviewed: 02/02/2005
Notes: None

Modern, semi-pretentious restaurant at the fifth floor of the Palomar Hotel. The food is generally quite good. Stratospheric bar prices like everything else including the $3.50 espresso shots made from their old school, two-group La San Marco at the bar. One of the few S.F. establishments that use La Columbe beans, and they swear by them. The barista once filled the Bernardaud cup to the absolute limit, leaving only a thin, pale film of crema to distiguish it from drip coffee. More recently, they serve a more modest-sized cup with a decent mottled, congealed crema with white heat spots - and it's a dramatic improvement. It isn't as watery as before, but its potency doesn't veer too far from a drip-coffee roast flavor. Instead of an ashy, hot, and sour flavor reminiscient of a Chinese soup, it's now a mild-mannered but modestly efficient espresso.