March 1, 2022

March 1, 2022

The newly open Yakiniku Shodai offers A5 Miyazaki sirloin, wagyu, and more cooked over charcoal. Instagram photo by @shodaisf.


The cozy dining room at Almadura. Photo courtesy of Almadura via Yelp.


A couple kinds of Korean fried chicken and fries at DAK Chicken. Yelp photo by Veronica C..

Recently opened in the former Kaya (previously Alta) in Mid-Market is ~YAKINIKU SHODA~ from Taiwanese chef-owner Andy Chiang. Yakiniku is a Japanese style of barbecue, and here they’re offering a high-end presentation of American, Japanese, and Australian wagyu grilled over charcoal for you, along with Hokkaido scallops topped with caviar, and other luxe ingredients like black truffle and uni (the yakishabu Japanese wagyu, a thin slice of New York strip with truffle egg sauce over rice looks utterly amazing).

The prix-fixe menu is $225, you DM them on Instagram for reservations. They also have a list of rare sakes and more. Open Tue-Sat 5pm-10pm. 1420 Market St. at Fell, 415-757-0201.

Now open in Lower Nob Hill is ~ALMADURA~, a tiny spot from the couple behind catering outfit Charlie’s Food Trailer, Veronica and Carlos Santos (according to What Now SF). The menu has small plates like shrimp in garlic or mussels with chorizo, a variety of tacos (including pork belly, sweet potato), and larger plates like lamb chops and a burger (nothing is over $24). Look for a variety of local beers on draft. Open Tue-Sat 4pm-9pm. 1022 Bush St. at Jones.

There’s a new Korean fried chicken place in the Outer Sunset called ~DAK CHICKEN~. The menu includes fried chicken (available by the piece, in combo meals, or half or full family meals) in original, chile garlic, sweet garlic, yang nyum (a sweet and spicy sauce), and gochujang rose (a creamy version), plus sandwiches and sides. Open daily 11am-9pm. 2045 Irving St. at 22nd Ave.


Malaysian laksa lemak by Tracy Goh of the upcoming Damansara.. Instagram photo via @eatwithtracy.


Dream temaki from Handroll Project: toro and caviar. Instagram photo via @handrollproject.

I have some quick notes about some exciting upcoming openings for you, starting with the great news that Tracy Goh of @eatwithtracy— known for her Malaysian pop-ups and amazing laksa suppers (since 2013!) and cooking classes—has found a brick-and-mortar location to open her restaurant, ~DAMANSARA~. Since I’m a restaurant P.I., I figured out from her post that she’s opening in the former Ardiana (previously La Nebbia, La Ciccia’s wine bar) in Noe Valley—what a perfect neighborhood location (love that bar!). Stand by for updates soon, she’s targeting to open this year but is keeping things quiet for now. She is a La Cocina entrepreneur, so it’s good to know she’ll be getting some seasoned support for her opening. 1781 Church St. at 30th St.

It looks like Ju-Ni’s ~HANDROLL PROJECT~ opening in the Mission in the former AL’s Deli is very close, take a look at this interior pic here. Will the corner location’s curse finally be reversed? Here’s hoping they’re smudging the place daily. Partner Tan Truong and chef Geoffrey Lee will be releasing the temaki soon, stand by for details. (And happy sixth birthday to Ju-Ni.) 598 Guerrero St. at 18th St.

Fans of ~CHUY’S FIESTAS~ in the Mission (and their awesome party patio) are opening a taqueria in Lower Nob Hill! The banner on the storefront announces tacos, quesabirrias, burritos, quesadillas, and more. They plan to open the second week of March. 710 Post St. at Jones.

Congrats to chef-owner Jose Calvo Perez of SF Peruvian stalwart Fresca, Pasion, Puerto 27, and his Lomo Libre truck, who is going to be opening a brick-and-mortar ~LOMO LIBRE~ in the former Taco Shop at Underdogs space in the Sunset. Bring on the lomo saltado and agave spirits. 1824 Irving St. at 19th Ave. [Via Eater]

And our Detroit-style pizza innovators Danny Stoller and Marc Schechter of ~SQUARE PIE GUYS~ are opening a location this summer in the former Pub at Ghirardelli Square, with cocktails (similar to their Oakland location), outdoor seating, and a nice waterfront view. 851 Beach St. at Larkin. [Via Eater]

~AARNA~, a “Nepali-Indian-American fusion restaurant” is opening in the former El Coreano/Buttermilk Southern Kitchen location in the Mission, offering “momos, fusion dishes, like Indian burritos and omelet parathas, and some classic American fare, like burgers and sandwiches.” It’s from Raj Gotame (with additional partners, including chef Kashi Kandel), and is due to open early March for lunch, dinner, and brunch. 2848 23rd St. at Bryant. [Via Mission Local]

Mission Local also reported that Jalal Heydari of the much-adored ~LIMONCELLO~ sandwich shop in Pacific Heights is partnering with his wife, Rozita Shaker, to transform her Zita Wine Bar in the Mission into another Limoncello, but with wine (and pizza)! After Lucca Ravioli closed, the neighborhood definitely needed a spot for Italian-style sandwiches. They’re targeting a March 15th opening, and will be kindly giving the community 120 free sandwiches on the first two days of business, with another 120 free sandwiches going to SF General Hospital employees on day three. So big-hearted. Keep track on their Instagram account. 2862 24th St. at Bryant.


A selection of Schlok’s bagels (pic taken during the pandemic—they have changed!). Photo: ©


An array of the fantastic Poppy Bagels (you have never tasted a sesame bagel like this one). Photo: ©

It’s a great week for bagel news. Now open in Nopa (after the typical bureaucratic delays and other shenanigans) is ~SCHLOK’S~, which started as a pop-up out of The Snug in the Fillmore from Zack Schwab and James Lok during the pandemic. These hefty, crusty, New York-style bagels are known for their one-sided toppings (one side remains plain) and their housemade schmears. Their new location is in a former part of the laundromat space (which downsized, but still exists).

While their production is ramping up significantly with all their new equipment and space, I have been watching them sell out since they soft-opened over the weekend. Early birds get the worm since you can preorder bagels on their site starting at 6:45am for same-day pick-up. Additional bagels, plus bagel sandwiches and coffee, are available via walk-up ordering, but they seem to sell out by 9am or so. We’ll see how things settle down in a couple weeks as they ramp up production. You can read more in their FAQ and in this in-depth Eater piece. Open Wed-Sun 7:30am-12pm (or sold out). 1263 Fell St. at Broderick.

I was so thrilled to see my favorite bagel maker (there, I said it), Reesa Kashuk of ~POPPY BAGELS~, landed her dream bakery and shop space in Temescal (the former Doña Tomás). In her announcement post, she mentions is targeting late summer/early fall, and you know this native New Yorker is going to be serving a bagel egg and cheese. She will continue making and delivering her fantastic hand-rolled bagels during this ramp-up as long as she can, and if you want to support this badass female entrepreneur, she is raising capital on SMBX. 5004 Telegraph Ave. at 50th St., Oakland.


The new booths and banquette seating at Magnolia Dogpatch. Photo: ©


A famous Giordano’s all-in-one sandwich (photo via their website).

This is always the section I wish I didn’t have to write. ~MAGNOLIA BREWING COMPANY~ (which New Belgium took over in 2018) announced the closure of the Magnolia Dogpatch location on Instagram: “COVID-19 has been a huge challenge for every hospitality business, including ours. When it came time to renew our lease in the Dogpatch, we made the tough decision to refocus our attention solely on Magnolia’s original home in the Haight, which is full of tradition, great beer, and good people. We’ve loved our time in the Dogpatch and will miss our neighbors there, but we’re excited to continue welcoming our entire community at Magnolia Haight.” Sad news, but am thankful Magnolia lives on in its original space (since 1997). This Eater post mentions a plant-based salmon company is moving in. Sigh. So much craft went into the design of that unique space in Dogpatch when Dave McLean opened it as Smokehouse. 2505 3rd St. at 22nd St.

After almost 20 years in North Beach (since 2004!), and close to 11 years in the Mission in the former and forever-beloved Ti Couz space (here’s my original post about the opening in 2011), ~GIORDANO BROS.~ closed its doors this past Sunday February 27th. Owners Jeff and Allison Jordan, with Adam DeMezza, left a farewell note on their homepage. Best wishes for their next ventures.

One of the city’s first Thai restaurants, ~THAILAND RESTAURANT~, has closed after nearly 30 years in the neighborhood. “For those still looking to get their Thai food fix in the Castro, [owners] Narongchai and Nopparat Wirattigowit still own and operate Thai Chef, another Thai restaurant just around the corner at 4133 18th St.” [via Hoodline and SFGate]

This isn’t a restaurant closure, but I did want to note that La Cocina’s program director extraordinaire Geetika Agrawal is departing after nine years (since 2013). She has worked with over 70 businesses, and “under her leadership, the number of La Cocina born brick-and-mortar launches grew from two to 33.” What a force. You may have listened to her inspiring episode on my *On the Fly podcast *in the beginning of the pandemic. Geetika, enjoy some well-deserved rest and relaxation. Thank you for all your heart, soul, and dedication to so many people and their dreams.