A window looks in onto the pasta station in Quince's kitchen, and pedestrians strolling by on Pacific Avenue can gawk at the carefully folded tortellini—likely to be stuffed with suckling pig, or nettles.
Those who actually gain entrance—reservations are at a premium, as are the prices—will get to experience the tortellini first hand, as part of one of three tasting menus offered each night: a 5-course menu, a 9-course vegetarian menu, or the 9-course full chef's menu.
Chef Michael Tusk started Quince in Pacific Heights, and moved to Jackson Square in 2009, redefining the restaurant: Quince became the higher-end option, and Tusk opened the equally good but more casual Cotogna next door.
Any meal here is going to be an impressive, sensational experience. The dining room is as luxurious as the ingredients Tusk uses. A dinner might include black cod with crayfish, spinach, and shishito peppers, or a piece of lamb with a green garlic sformato. End with a visit from the roving cheese cart or with a digestif from the cocktail cart.