Catch Up on These Big Headlines and Updates

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Khao soi. Photo courtesy of Pim Techamuanvivit.

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Manresa interior photo by Michael David Rose.

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The airy dining room at AL’s Place. Photo: Molly DeCoudreaux.

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The three-alarm fire on August 23rd at McAllister and Divisadero. Photo: © tablehopper.com.

I have posted some of these breaking news bits in my Instagram Stories the past couple weeks (do you follow @tablehopper?), here are some big headlines:

Great News
Was happy to see a post on Instagram from Pim Techamuanvivit that ~KIN KHAO~ is reopening in September in its original downtown location (in the Parc 55 Hotel). Fly back to us, pretty hot wings; hug us tightly, kua kling ribs!

Thanks to the support of supervisor Dean Preston, SF Heritage, and the Legacy Business Program, our precious ~CLUB DELUXE~ was able to negotiate a “fair and reasonable lease” after things were at an impasse with their landlord. Big exhale. (You can read all the details of how it went down in this SFGATE article.) The Deluxe is going to take a little break through September 30th to get their paint touched up and “dancing shoes resoled.” We’ll be ready for ya!

Good for Them News
The international culinary world was rocked with the news that chef David Kinch is departing his inspiring three-Michelin-starred restaurant, ~MANRESA~, on December 31st. In his post on Instagram, he says: “Starting January 1, I’m looking forward to helping usher in the next exciting new chapter of fine dining at Manresa, to dedicating my time and efforts to The Bywater, Mentone, and Manresa Bread and having the time and freedom to explore some exciting new pursuits, and revisit long-neglected passions.” 20 years, multiple fires, a pandemic…and three Michelin stars. What a run. Enjoy having more time to surf, chef.

Reservations are now available through the end of November on Tock, with December being added soon. The team would love to see you, they’ll be offering some special menus. As for the future of the business and property: “Interested parties may contact John Machado at Colliers International regarding the sale of the real estate and/or the business at 320 Village Lane in Los Gatos.”

Also on Instagram, chef-owner Aaron London of ~AL’S PLACE~ suddenly announced he’s closing the restaurant, after almost eight years of serving some of the City’s most creative and playful (yet serious) cuisine. The last day of service was August 28th. Thanks to the always-wonderful team there for so many memorable meals.

~CASSAVA~ has announced their North Beach restaurant opening is on track and they’re targeting early October, so they’ll be wrapping up operations in Cassava Balboa the third week of September—make your reservation to say goodbye, since Yuka and Chris have made the difficult decision to sell the Balboa location instead of keeping it.

Fire Damaged
Horrific is hardly strong enough to describe the destructive fire that tore through a large building on the corner of McAllister and Divisadero last week (on August 23rd). It was just a block away from me, and heart-wrenching (and terrifying) to watch. Thankfully, no one was seriously injured, but 13 tenants have been displaced, and it looks like they may not be able to return to the building for a few years (you can read an update about one couple’s harrowing experience and ways to help in their GoFundMe).

Neighborhood hangouts ~OASIS CAFE~ and ~KAVA LOUNGE~ both sustained extensive water and smoke damage—you can contribute to Oasis Cafe’s GoFundMe here to help them weather this challenging period; Kava Lounge mentions to watch their site for updates. I have also heard there will be a fundraiser for everyone affected by the fire in mid-September with the folks at Mini Bar, stand by for details.

I also saw a post from ~BAIA~ in Hayes Valley that they are temporarily closed due to a fire caused by an arsonist (or arsonists) starting other fires in the neighborhood. Ugh. They will reportedly be closed for the next 30-60 days; read more in this SFGATE piece.