I was a fan of Jake des Voignes’s cooking back when he would kill me with food at Fifth Floor (along with his kitchen wingman, Charlie Kleinman, who is now at Wexler’s). After a stint as the exec chef at Fish & Farm, des Voignes is now partnering with Yaron Milgrom-Elcott in an exciting project in the Mission called ~LOCAL: MISSION EATERY~. The pair took over the former Alhambra Halal Meat Co. on 24th Street, and are going to serve lunch, a set-menu dinner a couple nights a week, and will also host cooking classes.
Lunch is launching first, with five or so sandwiches, plus a soup, salad, house-made pickles, and a house soda. Some examples of sandwiches may include a roasted goat with smoked and braised beet tops with pickled carrot; smoked sablefish with beets and candied horseradish; or a roast potato with green garlic, fromage blanc, chicories, and pickled shallot (des Voignes mentioned he wants to compose them the way he’d plate a dish, carefully balancing flavors and textures). A few will come on homemade flatbread, focaccia, or brioche, or on bread from neighbor Panorama.
Now, who is going to be making the bread? Shauna des Voignes, Jake’s wife and previously the pastry chef at RN74, will be running Knead Patisserie, a second business in the back of the space. Her background includes a year and a half at ubuntu in Napa, plus time at Quince, and Fifth Floor, which is where she met Jake. She will be offering a new take on a French pâtisserie, making pastries, cookies, cakes, brownies, candied fruit, and more.
Both the pâtisserie counter and sandwich counter will be open Tue-Sun 11am-6pm. You’ll be able to come in and sit down over some coffee and fresh-baked treats, get some sweets to go, or order a sandwich from the Local counter. Or heck, do all three. Shauna might be offering dessert on Friday evenings a little further out.
The plan is to open for lunch and baked goods the first week of March, and once the beer and wine license kicks in, dinner will be served one night a week on Thursdays at one seating. The four-course market-driven menu will be around $48, including tax and tip. In a twist, the kitchen will plate and then serve guests each course (instead of servers)—so if you want to know what was in the sauce you just tasted, you’ll be able to get answers right then and there. The expanded plan is to eventually have two seatings, and to also offer dinner on Saturdays. There will be 30 seats at dinner, including 12 at a counter for those who want to watch the open kitchen (during the day there will be more seats, around 40 in all).
In a unique partnership, Local is partnering with both Terroir and City Beer Store in SoMa to put together custom wine and beer lists each week. And then there are the cooking classes: you’ll be able to take classes on Wednesdays (and maybe on Sundays) from Jake, Shauna, and guest chefs like Charlie Kleinman, and local bread guy Danny Gabriner of Sour Flour.
Does this place sound fun or what? I’ll keep you posted on the opening date over the next two weeks. You can also follow their progress on Twitter.