When I saw the waiter wearing a black T-shirt emblazoned with a red farfalle, the bow-tie shaped pasta, at the neckline, I feared that maybe we had stumbled into the equivalent of an Olive Garden. I eyed the front door, wondering if we should make a run for it. I decided against leaving because a) we were seated pretty deep into the restaurant b) we hadn’t seen any other restaurants in the neighborhood that might appeal to my daughter. Luckily for us, my first impressions/fears were all for naught as Vixi turned out to be a little neighborhood gem.
Vixi took over a space formerly occupied by Pasta Pomodoro, which we had been to previously. Much of the Pasta Pomodoro staff is still at Vixi, wearing those silly farfalle shirts. Once you’ve been seated (and not bolted for the exit like I had been tempted to), they bring you a plate of focaccia with a side of sun-dried tomato puree and olive oil. Bread is always a welcome sight, but the addition of the tomato spread (bonus!) helped alleviate any concerns I may have had.
Our waiter was super friendly and quite the salesman, offering us wine and then seeming baffled when we passed. We did, however, order beer to make up for it.
My daughter, ever the picky eater, got a basic spaghetti with tomato sauce. The sauce was made from fresh tomatoes, a good sign.
I had panicked when ordering and stuck to lasagna, a dish that’s tough get wrong. Made with housemade pasta sheets and layered with bolognese sauce, spinach, mushrooms and provolone and parmesan cheeses, the lasagna was good – although it did come under a heavy blanket of parmesan cheese which was a bit overwhelming.
My husband ordered the ravioli (the other dish I thought about ordering since it’s pretty reliable) and scored. Created from homemade pasta, the ravioli were beautifully constructed, filled with a ricotta mixture. The dish managed to be both delicate and full of flavor. I have been looking for a restaurant with good ravioli, and Vixi had exactly what I was looking for. Too bad I didn’t order it!
That dinner taught me not to judge a restaurant by the ridiculous clothes the waitstaff may be wearing. Vixi managed to exceed my expectations with their excellent food and service. In Italian vixi means “I lived.” Eat at Vixi, and you’ll be living well.
Location – 3611 California Street, San Francisco 94118
Website – http://vixisf.com
Kid-Friendly – Yes
Kid’s Menu – Yes
Pesco-Vegetarian Friendly – Yes
Vegetarian/Vegan Friendly – Yes
Gluten-Free Options – Yes