March 22, 2016

March 22, 2016
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The side dining room. Photo courtesy of Waxman’s SF.

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The café side. Photo courtesy of Waxman’s SF.

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English pea toast. Photo courtesy of Waxman’s SF.

Opening this evening for dinner service is ~WAXMAN’S~, the new Ghirardelli Square restaurant from chef Jonathan Waxman and partner Howard Greenstone. Their partnership, the Waxstone Group, also owns and operates NYC’s Jams, Nashville’s Adele’s and Bajo Sexto Taco and the forthcoming Bajo Sexto Taco Lounge, and Atlanta’s Brezza Cucina. But now Waxman, who was born and raised in Berkeley, is opening his first San Francisco restaurant.

The executive chef is David Suarez, and the market-fresh menu includes ingredient-driven pastas, wood-roasted vegetables, meats and fish, plus fresh salads. Dishes include baked Hammersley oysters with onion confit and brown butter; petrale sole crudo with avocado and orange salad; pea purée on toast; and charcoal-grilled market vegetables with Meyer lemon mayo. Pastas like spaghetti carbonara and risotto di mare with mussels, squid, and Dungeness crab will be served, plus entrées like wood-roasted steelhead with Treviso and romesco salsa and Jonathan’s signature JW chicken with salsa verde (yay).

David Lynch (previously St. Vincent) is behind the wine list, with new- and old-world selections, and around 20 wines by the glass. Patrick Poelvoorde has put together a list of handcrafted cocktails that will change with the seasons.

The 6,500-square-foot former warehouse has been given quite the restoration and transformation by Boor Bridges Architecture. Historic features include 130-year-old Douglas fir columns, original brick walls from the 1890s, double-height ceilings, two atriums, and expansive windows.

The dining room has 110 seats, with walnut tables and Thonet chairs, while the 75-seat café has cypress wood tables and Fermob chairs, plus there are 60 seats on the outdoor patio. There are two walnut bars seating 20, plus bentwood barstools, a communal table made out of reclaimed redwood logs that seats 10, and an oversized cypress and redwood service table that sits in the center of the restaurant. It makes sense that Evan Shively was involved when you hear about all the wood pieces, which include wall-mounted medallions from a felled cypress tree and the cutout interior of a walnut burl tree root that spans nine feet in diameter.

Open Sun-Wed 5pm-10pm and Thu-Sat 5pm-11pm. Bar open daily at 4pm. 900 North Point Street #201 at Larkin, 415-636-9700.

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The entrance to the new Revelry Bistro in the Lower Haight. Photo via Facebook.

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The Burmese tea leaf salad from Tender Loving Food. Photo via Facebook.

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The clean and sunny As Quoted in Presidio Heights. Photo via Facebook.

There are some new openings for you to add to your dance card. First up, we previously mentioned there was a taker for the former Samovar space in the Lower Haight, and now ~REVELRY BISTRO~ is open. Hoodline took a look at the cozy space, which now features local art. Chef-owner Brad Roth’s menu is succinct and French-inspired, and there’s an extensive wine list. Dinner is being launched first (Wed-Sun 5pm-10pm), with brunch coming next. 297 Page St. at Laguna, 415-241-6833.

Fans of Oakland’s Burmese outpost ~GROCERY CAFE~ can now enjoy chef-owner William Lue’s authentic cooking at ~TENDER LOVING FOOD~ in the Tenderloin. If you have a moment, you really should read these two stories that delve into his background and the altruistic motivation for opening this latest venture, which involves helping his fellow Burmese immigrants.

There’s a takeout menu with everything for $9 or less, and he’s offering a banquet menu too. The bare-bones space is just getting up and running, but after a few bites of Lue’s ohno khao swe (coconut chicken noodle) and Burmese tea leaf salad, that’s what all your attention will be fixed on. Expect more dishes to be added soon. You can also book a banquet dinner; call 925-566-4877. Open Mon-Thu 8am-11pm and Fri-Sun 11am-11pm. 393 Eddy St. at Leavenworth.

Now open in Presidio Heights is ~AS QUOTED~, a casual but nicely designed space that can handle any dietary restrictions you may have, whether you’re dairy-, gluten-, nut-, or soy-free. The menu includes salads, sandwiches, soups, smoothies, and more. Eater reports the project is from sisters Kara and Andie Yamagami—they have a strong local focus, with coffee from Andytown, meats from Marin Sun Farms, and produce from Full Belly Farm. Beer and wine are coming too. Hours for now are Mon-Fri 7am-7pm, Sat 7am-2pm—Sundays will be coming soon. 3613 Sacramento St. at Locust, 415-914-0689.

Fans of the chicken wings and hot sauces from ~HOT SAUCE AND PANKO~, previously in the Richmond, has relocated and reopened in the U-Lee space in Lower Nob Hill (the building they were in was going to be demolished). You can get wings to go (no table service) and take your pick from their extensive hot sauce collection. They will be adding confit/fried duck legs with a brandied hoisin sauce soon, oh yeah. Open Wed-Sat 11:30am-7pm and Sun 11:30am-5pm. 1468 Hyde St. at Jackson, 415-359-1908.

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The taker for the former St. Vincent space on Valencia has been revealed: it’s Marko Sotto, who has been working as director of operations in Adriano Paganini’s restaurant group for Beretta, Starbelly, Pesce, and more. This new project is his own, which he is calling ~BARZOTTO~, an “American pasta bar.” The chef will be Michelle Minori, who is currently executive sous chef of the Ne Timeas group (Flour + Water, Aatxe, Cafe du Nord, Salumeria, and Central Kitchen).

The menu will feature housemade pasta, made daily in front of guests. Five pastas will be highlighted, from classics like bucatini all’amatriciana to three seasonal pastas, plus salads, roasted meats, vegetable sides, and housemade gelato for affogatos.

The restaurant will be “fine casual,” meaning you order at the counter (like at Souvla), and your food is brought to you. The wine list will span California and Italy. There will also be a retail section, with pasta available by the pound, sauces, and gelato. Look for an opening in late summer. 1270 Valencia St. at 24th St.

The former Rickybobby in the Lower Haight is going to open as ~THE LODGE ON HAIGHT~ (no relation to the recently opened The Lodge in Oakland) in April. The chef is Matt Nudelman (previously Greenburger’s), who is opening the project with co-owner Tim Felkner of Vigilante Hospitality (Oro). Hoodline reports it will be a fast-casual spot, with burgers, mac and cheese, and other comfort food dishes made with local and organic ingredients. Beer and wine and of course an interior that’s heavy on the wood are also in the plan. 400 Haight St. at Webster.

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The Elite Cafe now (photo courtesy of The Elite Cafe).

A couple of old-timers are closing around the city, starting with ~THE ELITE CAFE~ on Fillmore. We saw some ABC license activity, and Scoop caught the story that Andrew Chun (Schroeder’s) is taking over the 35-year-old restaurant space from current owner Peter Snyderman, who has had the restaurant the past 10 years. While it’s not clear what Chun’s plans are for the location, the name and New Orleans roots will remain intact. I was sorry to read that talented chef James London is heading back to South Carolina to open his own place—best wishes. The Elite’s last service will be Easter brunch (March 27th). 2049 Fillmore St. at California, 415-346-8400.

A tablehopper reader let us know that longtime SoMa restaurant ~TRIPTYCH~ had a “for lease” sign in the window, and now an ABC license suspension hit the wires (looks like tax issues). According to Yelp, the restaurant is now closed. We’ll have to see what’s next for the space, which features a garden patio. 1155 Folsom St. at Rausch.

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The center of Piccino’s dining room. Photo: © tablehopper.com.

Great news (especially for industry folks): ~PICCINO~ in Dogpatch is going to be open on Mondays from now on, starting Monday March 28th. You can come by for lunch from 11am-3pm, a limited snack menu from 3-5pm, and dinner from 5-10pm. And to celebrate, a new tradition will be Fiorentina Mondays, offering a seared bistecca for two people—the T-bone steak is coming from Dogpatch neighbor Olivier’s Butchery. Wine director Danny DeMartini will be putting together a small reserve list with some great steak pairings, by the glass and bottle.

~ORO~ in Mint Plaza has launched weekday lunch (Mon-Fri 11:30am-2:30pm), with dishes like chicken and sprouted grain salad with soft-cooked egg, and a burger with charred onions, Gruyère, and housemade pickles. Everything is available to go as well. There is also a new happy hour Mon-Fri 4pm-6pm. 8 Mint Plaza, 415-974-1212.

In the Marina, ~DELAROSA~ is now offering a late-night menu, with special food and drink items from 11pm until 1am Sun-Thu, like a meatball sandwich, cacio e pepe pasta, and a calzone. 2175 Chestnut St. at Pierce, 415-673-7100.

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Enjoy an espresso at the new Coffee Cultures in SoMa. Photo via Instagram (@coffeeculturessoma).

We mentioned last spring that ~COFFEE CULTURES~ was opening a second location in SoMa in the new Panoramic apartment building, and Hoodline caught the opening. The first Coffee Cultures in SF is at 225 Bush St., which uses Counter Culture Coffee from North Carolina. This location will offer quite a bit more: in a month or so, there will also be a wine and beer bar open until midnight and lunch service too. For now, come on by for coffee and tea, plus pastries from Patisserie Philippe and Starter Bakery. Open Mon-Fri 7am-7pm and Sat-Sun 8am-7pm. 1301 Mission St. at 9th St., 415-896-4272.

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An array of dishes at Blind Tiger. Photo courtesy of Blind Tiger.

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The social communal table setup at Blind Tiger. Photo courtesy of Blind Tiger.

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Dishes from the second Noodle Theory location. Photo via Facebook.

We heard from the folks behind ~BLIND TIGER RESTAURANT AND BAR~, who have opened a restaurant in Uptown serving pan-Asian tapas and gastropub fare, with craft cocktails and 20 beers on tap. The menu includes a range of dishes from the raw bar, plus a variety of hot and cold dishes, all priced around $8 or so and the right style to go with cocktails.

The chef is Deena Chafetz, who cooked on the East Coast and specializes in Japanese and Thai. Bar manager Liam Gilmore was previously at Boot & Shoe, Penrose, Flora, Fauna, and more. All the cocktails feature fresh-squeezed citrus, housemade syrups and bitters, and fresh fruit garnishes. The 8,000-square-foot space has about 200 seats and was vacant for more than 20 years—it was previously a disco nightclub. It’s an underground space so look for the tiger’s head out front. Open nightly 5pm-1am, full kitchen open to 11pm, with a happy hour menu (with $1 oysters) from 5pm-7pm and 11pm-1am. 2600B Telegraph Ave. at 27th St., Oakland, 510-899-9694.

There’s a new chef at the helm at ~CALAVERA~ in Oakland: Sophina Uong is taking over for opening chef Christian Irabien. She was most recently at Revival Bar & Kitchen in Berkeley and Picàn in Oakland. 2337 Broadway at 23rd St., Oakland, 510-338-3273.

~NOODLE THEORY~ in Rockridge has opened a second (and very spacious) location on San Pablo in Emeryville—look for an expanded menu as well. Hours are Wed-Mon 11:30am-2:30pm and 5pm-9:30pm, closed Tue. 5849 San Pablo Ave. at 59th St., Emeryville, 510-922-8619.

Speaking of noodles, if you can’t wait to try Kyle Itani of Hopscotch’s ramen from his upcoming ~ITANI RAMEN~, you can attend a pop-up series before the restaurant opens in mid-April. The pop-ups will feature a very limited menu, with ramen from different regions and housemade gyoza. Running March 25th-27th, and April 1st-3rd and 8th-10th; follow along on Facebook for updates. 6pm to midnight. 1736 Telegraph Ave. at 18th St., Oakland, 510-788-7489.

The vintage car dealership ~CLASSIC CARS WEST~ has opened a beer garden (plus there’s a bar inside), serving food by Hella Vegan Eats. Eater reports that the beer list spotlights local brews like Linden Street, Ghost Town, and Ale Industries, plus cider from Crooked City. Open Wed-Sat 5pm-10pm, plus brunch Sun 11am-4pm. 411 26th St. at Telegraph, Oakland, 415-626-1135.

In case you missed it, ~NABOLOM BAKERY~ (2708 Russell St., Berkeley, 510-845-2253) is open once again, and there’s a new place to have “exactly like you want it” espresso drinks at ~ALGORITHM COFFEE~. 1122 University Ave. at Curtis, Berkeley, 510-280-5153.