Comstock Saloon Opens Thursday May 20th


The bar at Comstock Saloon. Photo: © 2010 Liza Gershman.

The wait is over: Jeff Hollinger and Jonny Raglin of Absinthe Brasserie & Bar open their pet project, ~COMSTOCK SALOON~, this Thursday at the corner of Columbus and Pacific Avenues. The historic space dates back to 1907, and the menus of refined, turn-of-the-century saloon fare and classic cocktails (think Negronis, Manhattans) will match the spiff Barbary Coast interior. Details include the 20-foot-long original mahogany bar (constructed in 1907), five hardwood booths that each fit six people, gilded silver ball-and-claw barstools, charred hardwood floors, and a vintage ceramic absinthe fountain. And yes, above the bar, that is in fact a bronze statue of Emperor Norton, originally cast by the late local artist Peter Macchiarini in 1936—and the vintage 1916 Pukka Walla fan, made of brass and palm fronds, will continue to slowly fan the room. I’m looking forward to hearing some live music from the small mezzanine level.

The main dining room has banquettes and tables, with the original blue-and-white ceramic-tile flooring, and a restored original tin ceiling. Chef Carlo Espinas (Camino, Piccino) has put together a menu with dishes such as potted pork ($12); grilled game hen with oyster stuffing and greens ($17); and wild mushrooms with peas and griddled rice cakes ($15). A variety of pickled bar bites, along with fried beans, and an oyster cocktail will also be available. Oh yes, and salted caramel pudding for dessert (a bit more 2010 than 1910, but no matter). Open Tue-Sun 2pm-2am (dinner until 1am). Cheers!