January 20, 2009

January 20, 2009

~15 ROMOLO~ in North Beach is closed for a facelift, and when it reopens around mid-February, there will be a new weekly menu of affordable bar food, with about 6–10 items on the chalkboard per day. The look will be warm and inviting, and will give a nod to pre-Prohibition, with amber-pink lighting, and long banquettes along the side. The original Victorian archway at the entrance is now exposed, plus there are some changes in the bar shelving. I hear the bar plans to be the SF headquarters for Pimm’s Cups, made with rum or gin and house-made ginger syrup. The kitchen will be open at 5pm, with food served from 6pm until 1am or so nightly. 15 Romolo Pl. at Broadway, 415-398-1359.

On Market Street, the Octavia Lounge is now ~THE TRIPLE CROWN~. There are already some parties and regular nights underway, with local talents like Jeno, Garth, M3, and some funk with Vinnie Esparza. Hours are Tue–Fri 5:30pm–2am, Sat–Sun 7pm–2am. 1760 Market St. at Octavia, 415-863-3516.

~BLOODHOUND~, the bar opening in the former Cassidy’s space in SoMa, is slated to open next Monday January 26th, although that date might slip. The space will have a comfortable neighborhood vibe, with rustic 100-year-old reclaimed barn siding on the walls, custom-made chandeliers, wallpaper with a design of blackbirds on the ceiling, and some large artist-commissioned paintings of taxidermy. There are brown-leather sectionals in the front, plus a spacious 15-seat bar, some 6x8 high-top communal tables in the back, and a pool table and jukebox loaded with rock ‘n’ roll. A few sample cocktails off the list include Planter’s Punch, a Jack Rose, a Negroni, and the namesake Bloodhound #2 with No. 209 Gin, sweet and dry vermouth, orange bitters, and zest. There will also be some well-chosen beers and wines. Open 4pm–2am daily. 1145 Folsom St. at 7th St.

I swung by ~HEAVEN’S DOG~ after the Fancy Food Show on Sunday night, and learned that Jackie Patterson is no longer working as the bar manager at Zinnia, and is now full-time behind the bar at Heaven’s Dog. Tables were talking about the new spears ice (nice and cold, but does it mean less cocktail in the glass?), the long flowing slab of wood for the bar top was quite gorg, and I foresee pork buns will be on every table. 1148 Mission St. at 7th St., 415-863-6008.

Over in the Marina, ~ACE WASABI'S~ is offering half-price drinks during happy hour, from 5:30pm–7pm. 3339 Steiner St. at Chestnut, 415-567-4903.

I got more details on ~MINI~, the wine and Champagne bar that is slated to open tomorrow (Wednesday the 21st), next to Esperpento in the Mission. True to its name, there are only 12 seats inside, but some outdoor seating will be added this summer. The list is also petite: four–five wines by the glass, 25-35 bottles of wine, plus a sparkling wine selection. The look includes marble tabletops, crystal chandeliers, and tiny oil paintings. Since the project is a collaboration between owners German Maldonado and Esperpento, there will also be some food items, like cheese, charcuterie, pate, a sandwich, and canapés available. Open Wed–Sat 5pm–midnight. 3283 22nd St. at Valencia, 415-850-4778.

This week is Brunello madness, and The Jug Shop is hosting an ~AFTER HOURS BRUNELLO BASH~ on Thursday January 22nd. The winemakers of the Consorzio del Vino Brunello di Montalcino who are visiting San Francisco as part of their U.S. market tour will be present. Look for great deals on the 2003 vintage, as well as discounts on pre-arrival purchases of the 2004 vintage. Space is limited for this special event and RSVP by phone is required. 9pm–11pm. $50 per person. RSVP by phone to 415-885-2922. 1590 Pacific Ave. at Polk.

~UVA ENOTECA~ is hosting an “Intro to Italian Wines” class with Giovanni, their wine guy, this Saturday the 24th at 3:30pm. The class will cover five different wines and discuss each region. The featured wines will be: Vernatsch from Alto Adige; Dolcetto from Piemonte; Tourette from Val d'Aosta; Frappato from Sicily; and Taurasi from Campania. The class costs $40 and will end at 4:30pm. Call 415-829-2024 to sign up. 568 Haight St. at Steiner, 415-829-2024.