I have a Pavlovian reaction to grits. I hear the word "grits" and I start salivating. I love me some grits. I like them boiled simply with water and salt, I like them with melted butter, I like them cheesy, I like them creamy, I like grits on its own, I like it with a side of bacon or ham, I like it for breakfast, lunch or dinner. But by far my favorite (before discovering 1300 on Fillmore) were the shrimp and grits I had in Charleston, South Carolina - buttery grits topped with barbecue shrimp in its own gravy.
Whenever I find grits on a menu outside the deep South (and especially in NorCal), I will order it just because I'm happy to see it on the menu, only to usually be disappointed.
But at 1300 on Fillmore I discovered what has to be the best grits west of the Mississippi....and perhaps the best grits on planet earth. The barbecue shrimp and grits at 1300 on Fillmore are TO DIE FOR. Creamy, perfectly cooked grits topped with succulent, savory shrimp, gravy, diced tomatoes and fried garlic slivers. It is a bowl of culinary perfection.
The fried green tomato salad with goat cheese and honey-lavender dressing was also excellent, as was the warm cornbread wedges with honey butter and sweet red pepper marmalade. The fried chicken was juicy and tender and the portion was very generous. I thought the mac n' cheese was disappointingly bland, but this was the only flaw, and one I can happily overlook in my ecstatic glee at discovering this awesome restaurant, which I will definitely be visiting many many many many times in the future. I also love the subdued but classy decor - and I'm loving the revamped area of the Western Addition!
Did I mention the amazing grits?
Black skillet roasted catfish
Barbecue shrimp n' creamy grits
Black skillet fried chicken with buttermilk biscuits
Food rating: ****
Bang for buck rating: 3.5
Location: 1300 Fillmore Street, San Francisco
Average price of meal for two: $80