Although San Francisco offers a never-ending supply of Italian eateries, none will feel quite as authentic as La Ciccia. This rustic, Noe Valley spot is Sardinia’s culinary ambassador to the city, boasting a cuisine specific to that Mediterranean island. Traditional entrees include fregola with sea urchin and smoked pancetta, a glorious bottarga (salt-cured fish roe), and, for dessert, <em>truta de arrescottu</em>: Sardinian ricotta and saffron cake with honey and toasted almond.
You’ll find an abundance of rustic charm at this cozy husband-and-wife-owned Sardinian restaurant right on the border of Noe Valley and Glen Park. The seafood-focused food is bolder than what you likely think of when you think of Italian cuisine—the baby octopus stew is spicy and smoky, the fusilli with sea urchin, tomato, and grated tuna heart is an intense combo of sweet, spicy, and savory—and the service is friendlier and more personable than what you’ll get almost anywhere else, despite the fact that it is always packed.
How to book: Call 415-550-8114 or make a reservation online.
Bottarga! Glorious bottarga. This delicious fish roe, salted and cured, is served at La Ciccia with spaghetti. The roe is basically a cross of uni and bacon in powder form. In other words: heaven. It’s the signature fishy seasoning of Sardinia that packs the flavor power of anchovy without the salty-brininess. La Ciccia is Sardinia’s culinary ambassador to our city, representing the oft-neglected island over 200 miles west of the mainland. Other dishes of note include the Artisanal Fusilli pasta with sea urchin, tomato, and grated tuna heart, and Oven-Roasted Whole Prawns with basil oil and parsley.
How to book: Make reservations online or order takeout by calling 415-550-8114.