Ceri Smith of Biondivino Planning to Open an Enoteca on Russian Hill

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Ceri Smith; photo provided by Ceri Smith.

After reading this blog post that Ceri Smith of ~BIONDIVINO~ was opening a second business in Russian Hill, I heard a rumor that Boulette’s Larder was involved, so of course I had to give her a call. It ends up she is not planning to open a wine bar as reported, but more of a true enoteca, serving espresso in the morning, along with some choice items to eat throughout the day and evening, and of course fantastic wines to enjoy as well. She is currently waiting for approval on a conditional use permit to convert a boutique (Eco Citizen) at 2255 Polk Street into her new (and presently unnamed) concept.

Ceri said it’s going to have a very Euro-centric and sophisticated style that is upscale without being uptight, and will be geared more toward the 30-and-over crowd (i.e. not a boisterous wine bar). Of course the wine list will be fab—she said imagine being able to swing by a casual but beautiful place with a deep list à la Quince or Acquerello, without having to sit for a five-course meal. She is meeting with Boulette’s Larder this week about ideas and plans for the menu, so the food component is TBD, but you know it’ll be spot-on.

The enoteca will be open in the mornings for really good Italian espresso service and a breakfast item or two, before transitioning into afternoon and evening offerings. While her focus is Italian wines, she also said there will be esoteric wines, smaller producers, some old California vintages due to a source she has, in addition to European selections like some Austrian rieslings, and even wine cocktails by Duggan McDonnell of Cantina.

Ceri said it’s going to have a very clean look, very modern and European. There will be 24-26 seats (at tables and chairs), and hopefully 4 outside. She stressed that service will be of the utmost importance, and guests will note thoughtful details like purse hooks and throws. She’s charmingly calling it “the smallest restaurant in San Francisco.”

While she has over 300 signatures from neighbors in support of the project, her hearing is on February 2nd, so even more positive letters would be appreciated! Feel free to send a letter in support to Kevin Guy via email or to the Planning Department, Attn: Kevin Guy, 1650 Mission St. Suite 400, San Francisco, CA, 94103. The case number is 2011.1233C, re: address 2255 Polk St.