AQ Now Open in SoMa/Mid-Market


AQ’s open kitchen (and groovy whisk lights). Photo: ©


The view from the dining room toward the front of AQ. Photo: ©

Last week, ~AQ~ opened in SoMa, and let me tell you folks, the space is a looker. At a preview event a couple weeks ago, I admired the brick walls and historic façade, complete with tall windows and ceilings, timber beams, and unique light fixtures from Omega Too Lighting (I loved the one with the whisks). You’ll be able to see chef Mark Liberman working away in the open kitchen (there are 10 seats at the kitchen counter), plus there are two nearby 12-seat tables. The dining room has 60 seats, and the copper-topped bar has 14 seats. The space was designed in partnership with Rebecca Amato of Amato Architecture and Eric Heid of Martin Heid Design/Build (Commonwealth, Serpentine).

The restaurant will change seasonally, which will also be reflected in the décor and staff uniforms. The menu is described as innovative California cuisine, and the dinner menu pricing is set at $9-$13 for starters and $24 for main dishes. You can check out a PDF of the menu here. Lunch is more casual, with salads, sandwiches ($13), and a daily pasta, plus a few dishes off the dinner menu for $18. He’s a talented chef, and has worked for Daniel Boulud, Joël Robuchon, and locally was the chef de cuisine at La Folie.

Beverage director Kristen Capella worked with Master Sommelier Jesse Becker on the extensive wine program, and there are also locally brewed beers and unique imports. Head bartender Timothy Zohn (Alembic) is making some delicious vermouth-based cocktails like the Churchill’s Bain and the Palanquin served in vintage glassware (full liquor will be coming later in the year—and you’ll also find bartender Brandon Josie working there). Dinner Sun-Thu 6pm-11pm, Fri-Sat 6pm-12am, lunch Mon-Fri 11am-2pm, brunch soon.