Quick Bar Updates: Alembic's Temporary Closure, Fire at The Riptide, Cantina's New Owner


The original interior at The Alembic. Photo by Jennifer Yin via Postcard Communications.


The vintage vibe at The Riptide. Yelp photo by Jim M.


Things are getting close with ~THE ALEMBIC~’s expansion and new dining room (yay, there will be even more room to enjoy chef Ted Fleury’s awesome cooking). They are looking at temporarily closing for some final construction from Sunday August 23rd through Thursday August 27th (subject to change). When they reopen, the team will still be putting finishing touches on the space, but it’ll be pretty close to finished. I’ll keep you posted with a peek at the expanded space and renovations in early September. As for the temporary closure, call 415-666-0822 or check The Alembic’s social media before heading over.

Really sad news: SFist reports there was a fire at ~THE RIPTIDE~ this morning (ugh). It looks like the quirky little beach bar will be closed for a while (a post by the bar on their Facebook page says it is “completely devastated”). Such a shame, hopefully some of the knotty pine will survive? 3639 Taraval St. at 47th Ave., 415-681-8433.

There’s an ownership change at Lower Nob Hill/Union Square’s ~CANTINA~: Andrew Chun (Press Club, Schroeder’s) has taken over from former owners Duggan McDonnell, Aaron Prentice, and Christine Larsen (it opened in 2007). In an email, Chun says, “We love the bar and are big fans of Cantina. We are keeping the staff, concept, and name. We may do some minor touch-ups over the next few months, but most of the changes will be to the back of house.” So for now, the pisco punch by the pitcher continues! 580 Sutter St. at Mason, 415-398-0195.

As for Mr. Duggan McDonnell, I am happy to report I am looking at a preview copy of his new book, Drinking the Devil’s Acre: A Love Letter from San Francisco and Her Cocktails, which is coming out on September 15th (you can pre-order it at Green Apple Books here)! So excited to crack this one open and start reading it. Here’s what Duggan has to say about it: “I was certain the world didn’t need another cocktail book chockablock with recipes and pretty photos. I was also certain that there has not been enough narratives published on the subject of the bartender’s life. Inside its pages are many amazing recipes, with archived photos sourced by yours truly and beautiful photos shot by Luke Abiol—but it isn’t a book that belongs strictly on the coffee table or in the liquor cabinet.

“All of the prose in this book is autobiographical; every word is my experience of history, of shaking, serving and sipping the most significant cocktails to the city of San Francisco. Perhaps Drinking the Devil’s Acre will also thrive on the nightstand.

“Whether you’re a native, a current resident, or someone who has only visited San Francisco but once, remember the subtitle: A Love Letter from San Francisco and Her Cocktails. This book was written for you.” Sweet. And look for a lot more about this book release in coming weeks—you know there will be parties, and drinks.