First Bite: Chris Cosentino’s Cockscomb opens in SoMA

Chris Cosentino’s new SoMa eatery, Cockscomb, is now officially alive and kicking. The name is hard to pronounce, the entrance is hidden, the location is hot – this is the baseline for Cosentino’s much anticipated restaurant. Almost simultaneously, Cosentino’s previous venture, Porcellino (a reincarnation of Incanto), closed, and it looks as if the local celb chef is going all in on this new and exciting project.

The dark, communal space is already buzzing with visitors, be it curious diners eager for a first taste, tourists fresh from the neighboring Kurious Cirque du Soleil show or rejects from the neighboring Marlowe.

As previously hinted and speculated, Cockscomb’s menu is a mix of straightforward classics and oddball indulgences—there’s the obligatory beef heart tartar, true to Cosentino’s offal obsession, grilled cheese and baked oysters. On the other hand, there’s sea urchin bruschetta, bacon chop with “brussleskraut” and tripe with chili and tomatoes.

A separate section of the menu is devoted to the very attractive pates and terrines—a quick and sexy solution for those on the bar who mainly want to have an atmospheric drink.

Speaking of which, Cockscomb’s atmosphere, early on, is electrifying. The open kitchen faces the bar with pride, the wooden tables and the exposed concrete make for a rugged, appetizing decor, and the service is familiar yet precise.

On our visit we tried the chicken terrine and the country pate with a helping of tasty, fresh bread. Both were flavorful, rich and decadent, textures carefully crafted and spices masterfully distributed. A side of fresh, lemony broccoli rabe proved Cosentino handles non-fat, non-carnivore items with equal success.

A complete lack of signs and a penchant for exclusivity have already become staples for the local dining scene–this time, it’s feels totally justified.