Originally Posted by Manton
Slanted Door is fusion, but the chef/owner is Vietnamese and Vietnamese food is the foundation, as it were. It's a concept restaurant, and Phan is something of a celebrity chef, and celebrity chefs these days scoff at doing traditional cuisine from any country. They have to add their own twist.
As mentioned earlier, the Tenderloin has a lot of Vietnamese dives. There are also some in the Mission, which is where Slanted Door started.
And, did I mention, it's really goooooooooood.
I think the various Momofuku in NYC do fairly true Asian food, but are still kind of conceptual. The difference is that their conceptuality highlights native features rather than trying to fuse them with an alien cuisine (not that there's anything wrong with that). Have you had a chance to try them?
Also, any suggestions for Tenderloin restaurants? I was wandering around there once looking for an Indian restaurant, and witnessed a public cheering of someone running the wrong way on a one-way street trying to evade a police car that had been chasing him from the previous block. That's probably not the best place to look lost.