July 25, 2006

July 25, 2006

Here's a friendly little joint that will be opening soon in the Mission: ~WEIRD FISH~, a concept that will offer eco-friendly fish & chips (think tilapia or fresh catch of the day in Anchor Steam beer batter, or even wheat-free cornmeal batter) and seafood sandwiches (can you say oyster or catfish po' boys and blackened catfish?!), plus fish tacos, seafood cocktails, ceviche, and some vegetarian fare as well, including a tasty spinach salad. The eatery will only feature fish from sustainable environments, and will try to source all their ingredients and products from local producers. The project is from Peter Hood (St. Francis Fountain) and Timothy Holt, and is moving into the former location of Red Tiger Discount Liquor, right on the corner. Sounds like a major improvement to me. They do plan on offering local beer on tap, like Anchor Steam and Speakeasy ale, and some Nor Cal wines. The preview menu also has yam fries (with fryer oil converted to bio-diesel fuel). Way to go on the local, sustainable, environmentally friendly, and healthy focus. Weird Fish will be open daily from 11am-10pm, offering eat-in or take-out. I'll let you know when I can confirm an actual opening date. 2193 Mission St. at 18th St.

It's a shame this place isn't open now, but as some of you already know, Bi-Rite will be opening the ~BI-RITE CREAMERY~ come September or October, just in time for Indian summer. The house-made ice cream will be made in small batches using Straus Family Creamery organic dairy, plus organic eggs, and organic sugar, and sorbets and granitas will be made from local organic fruits. They'll even be making ice cream sandwiches and popsicles/paletas! The flavors just made me drool onto my computer: try salted caramel, roasted banana, prune Armagnac, Meyer lemon, double ginger, or toasted almond with cherries, and even Pixie tangerine or pluot sorbet. I hope it opens up soon, like, lickety split! 3692 18th Street at Dolores St.

Chatted with Mike Yakura, formerly the Executive Chef of Le Colonial (for almost three years). He's been working with Jocelyn Bulow on the ~FORMER LA SUITE SPACE~ on the Embarcadero, which is morphing into a completely new concept for Bulow's Maktub portfolio: try Asian bistrot. (Quite a departure from the Chez Maman/Papa format.) Yakura stressed the restaurant is being designed to be versatile enough to really appeal to the neighborhood, from the workers by day to the residents by night. They are designing it to be lunch-friendly, and a destination for brunch on the weekends. The menu will feature an array of dishes built to share (none over $20), spanning Japanese and Vietnamese influences, with some hints of Chinese, Korean, and Thai. I used to work in that 'hood, and there really isn't much Asian in the area, truth be told. The space is also being drastically altered, with the brasserie styling and wainscoting being taken out, and the front dining area is being converted to a lounge area that will be a fun and friendly space to hang out, while the back area will be reserved for dining. The look will feature Asian sleek styling, with hardwood floors, and will be taking advantage of the wonderful alfresco outdoor space they have. Perhaps it'll be the third in the big patio players (MarketBar, Americano) on the Embarcadero. Expect a September 10 opening (with a name too, hopefully). It will be open continuously from 11am-11pm, and later on the weekends. 100 Brannan St. at the Embarcadero.

A couple new wine bars have popped up around town: first there's the petite ~VINOROSSO~ in Bernal Heights, an enoteca with Italian and some Cali wines and some tasty formaggi and other nibbles to match, plus a couple heartier dishes like pasta and some salads. (629 Cortland Ave. at Anderson St., 415-647-1268.) And yes, whaddya know, another new place in the Mission: ~PAREA WINE BAR~, which moved into the old Oxygen Sushi Bar space on Valencia. I was whizzing by on my bike and saw bright shades of blue, red, and yellow—muy Andalucia. But the eats are actually going to be Greek-focused (one of the owners is Greek). Looks cute, check it out! 795 Valencia St., at 19th St. (I know, you thought I was gonna say 18th Street, but no, it's one block away.)

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