SFist has decided to take Dr. Phil's advice and to go out on "dates" with our long-standing sweetheart. Living in the Outer Sunset as we do, our desire to keep the relationship alive is tempered by a desire not to go to far from home. And thus a new, intermittent SFist feature is born, in which we review restaurants in the oft-overlooked Richmond and Sunset. We hope your inspired to try new some new places, and we'd love to hear and recommendations of Westside joints you'd like to see reviewed, so please send them our way.

As usual, we sat in bed and talked about going to dinner. Our usual haunts were brought up and discarded. Eventually, we hauled out the aging PowerBook and pulled up Citysearch, and started searching restaurants in the Sunset. We noticed that every page was topped by "featured listings" for two restaurants: Cajun Pacific and Lotus. Since Cajun Pacific closed their doors as a full-serve restaurant in September of last year, they were out of the question, so Lotus became an intriguing possibility (because Internet advertising works, damnit). They describe themselves as "Modern California Cuisine in the Sunset," and a look at their menu (look out, it's a text download to actually see the menu, for some strange reason) showed an impressive, but not disturbingly ambitious breadth of Asian-influenced dishes.

Read on after the jump to hear what happened after we got out of bed and headed up to Noriega and 21st Avenue...

Photo by Mark Jordan, from the Lotus Citysearch entry