Tidbits: Namu Gaji Adds Weekend Brunch, Here Comes Orenchi Ramen, State Bird Update, More

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The Hangtown Benedict at Namu Gaji. Photo courtesy Namu Gaji.

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The space next door to State Bird Provisions. Photo: © tablehopper.com.

Now there’s yet another way to fill your belly with the fine vittles at ~NAMU GAJI~. As of this past weekend, they’re serving weekend brunch on Saturdays and Sundays from 11:30am-4pm. Look for the Hangtown Benedict, a hollandaise-drenched take on the classic fry, or rice with slow-cooked onsen egg with kimchi and a choice of chicken thigh, pork belly, or vegetable tempura; check out the menu here. You’ll also find a soju-based Bloody Mary and mimosas—you can stumble across the street to Dolores Park for your nap afterward, how convenient.

Ramen fiends are going to be excited by this news: Eater reports that Santa Clara ramen favorite ~ORENCHI RAMEN~ is opening a location in San Francisco. The northern outpost will be in the Mission, but won’t be opening until sumer 2014 at the earliest. Look for tonkotsu ramen, tsukemen, and Japanese beer and sake. 174 Valencia St. at Duboce.

We gain some, we lose some: Over in North Beach, ~KIRIMACHI RAMEN~ is going to be closing since the building it’s in just sold. The last night of ramen service will be Friday September 27th. It’s a shame, because chef Leonardi Gondoputro went to Japan earlier this year to perfect his ramen, studying from a ramen master. We’ll have to see where in the Bay Area Leo turns up next! 450 Broadway at Kearny.

I caught up with the ~STATE BIRD PROVISIONS~ crew for an update on how construction is going on their expansion (you can read previous details here); the restaurant has been closed since August 10th. The current targeted reopening date is early to mid-October, and they have a new GM: Ryan Anderson, previously at Uchi and Uchiko in Austin (you can read an Eater interview with him here).

Not only will the new space feature two large tables for groups (with room for six to eight people), a heater, and new bathroom, but the original space is now going to have an insulated raw bar (near the former front door). Chef-owner Stuart Brioza mentioned there is a new menu format in development for the larger, reservation-only tables, which will be a set-price menu (although there will be some flexibility in the menu)—just imagine waves of small plates that will come to the table. Sounds like heaven to me. Psssst, if you want to try to score a reservation, they will be opening the books soon—just follow State Bird on Twitter for updates (you can also sign up for their mailing list).

I was riding my bike past ~RANGE~ in the Mission and noticed there was some construction going on. Ends up the restaurant underwent a small refresh: They redid the façade, did some repainting inside, and also added wallpaper in the back. They added cool new lights and are still waiting on new curtains and new art. The new look should all be completed by the end of the month. 842 Valencia St. at 19th St., 415-282-8283.

Check out this cool culinary art project at the Montalvo Arts Center in Saratoga. Artist Andrea Blum has been exploring American food traditions with her My American Pantry photo series, and on Sunday September 29th at 1:30pm, she’ll be doing a photo shoot and community picnic at the Arts Center. The event is free, but you do need to register here. 15400 Montalvo Rd. at Piedmont, Saratoga, 408-961-5800.