Mission News: Balançoire Open Softly, Mission Picnic Coming Soon, Gallardo's


The exterior of Balançoire. Photo from Facebook.

In the former Blue Macaw space on Mission St. comes ~BALANÇOIRE~. Balançoire means “swing” in French, for the swing that will descend over the crowd on weekend nights with a sexy, lip-synching lady à la Moulin Rouge. The spot is a combination of club, bar, and restaurant, with brunch on Saturdays and Sundays, snacks at the bar during the week, and lots of wild-sounding parties like the Clam Jam (that’s a lesbian underwear dance party, by the way) every third Saturday night. There are weekly dance parties, a monthly benefit happy hour, and a burlesque happy hour is in the works too. Their Facebook page has lots of updates on upcoming shows and events.

The chef is Art Vagoner, who worked in Belgium before coming to San Francisco, and his menu is focused on French Creole cooking that will change according to the seasons and his own whims. Owner Richard Einselen says that he wants the spot to cater to the eclectic tastes of the Mission, and he is hoping to create a spot where lots of different neighborhood folks can be comfortable. He also wants to start offering zydeco brunch on weekends and bring zydeco music and dance to the Mission. Wed-Thu 5pm-12am, Fri 5pm-2am, Sat-Sun 11am-2am, brunch from 11am-3pm. 2565 Mission St. at 21st St., 415-920-0577.

Word came in that ~MISSION PICNIC~—a new spot for sandwiches, salads, and soups to go—is opening in the former Corazon Juicebar space. One of the owners, Sterling Tatsumi-Price, says that he and his partners plan to start serving rustic, seasonal sandwiches made-to-order out of the space by March 30th. They’ll have six to nine sandwich choices, with one daily soup and salad special. Many of the menu choices will have a slight Asian twist, though it won’t be the only focus. Eventually, they are hoping to offer large, call-ahead picnic box orders for people to take to Dolores Park. The plan is to be open rather late, from 11am-8pm Sun-Thu and 11am-12am Fri-Sat., thought the exact hours are subject to change. Stay tuned for more information on the opening. 3275 22nd St. at Valencia, 415-735-3080.

A tipster mentions that ~GALLARDO’S~ is opening a new spot around the corner from its current location on Folsom. The new spot is currently under construction (it’s the space where Chava’s had a fire more than 10 years ago and then moved to 24th Street), but the crew confirms that it is the same owners as Gallardo’s on Folsom. No word yet on a time line or opening date, but here’s hoping for more excellent weekend birria. 3248 18th St. at Shotwell.