|NOVEMBER 6, 2007 | SAN FRANCISCO Town
Hall and Salt
House’s talented trio of Rosenthal x 2 and Washington
make a great law firm!) are at it again: come spring, look for
an oyster bar and fish shack called ~ANCHOR AND HOPE~ opening in
SOMA. The space was previously void, so it’s sure to be a
cool build-out. More details as the concept gets fine-tuned—I’ve
heard some word of an interesting art program, which will fit right
in with the arty neighbors (111 Minna and Varnish). 83 Minna St.
about bait and switch. A few weeks back I heard the ~SUSHI
GROOVE~ location that was slated to open in Mint Plaza was hitting some
delays, but in a swift and very unexpected change of plans, Jocelyn
Bulow is now opening a restaurant in what was to be Sushi Groove’s space. Suffice to say, there is some sh*t going
down, including some legal ruckus—I’ll let you know
what the official statement says.
in Noe Valley, moving into the former Cybelle’s Pizza
space will be ~BASSO’S~, just next door to Noe’s Bar.
In an interesting twist, one of the owners ran a restaurant there
for nine years, sold the space to Cybelle’s (which later
closed), and since his brother owns the building, they decided
to reopen a restaurant again. It’s a family project, with
two brothers, Wayne and Gaetano Basso, and Wayne’s two sons. They
have been renovating the restaurant space over the past six months,
and it’s slated to have a soft opening next Wednesday the
14th, and opening that Thursday or Friday. In another funny twist,
three of the original members of the kitchen staff are returning,
including Antonio the chef, who was recently at Caffè Museo.
are 37 seats, with six at the counter overlooking the open kitchen.
They decided to keep the massive pizza oven, so look for some
Neapolitan-style thin-crust pizzas made with quality ingredients,
plus an approachable menu of steaks, pastas (including homemade
ravioli), salads, daily house-made soups (including a vegan soup),
market-driven sides, and fresh-made desserts. All the ingredients
will be organic and the meats will come from Niman Ranch, including
porterhouses, New York steaks, filet, and skirt steak, plus lamb
chops and pork chops. The seafood will be eco-friendly, so no
swordfish here. Daily specials will include liver and onions
on Mondays, osso buco and risotto on Thursdays, and cioppino
on Fridays. There is a wine list with reasonable pricing, plus
quality beers, or you can grab a cocktail next door—Noe’s has reportedly
hired a really skilled bartender who has added some quality cocktails
made with fresh ingredients to the list. The bar will become an
easy spot to watch the game on Sundays and have a bite to eat,
and will probably handle some restaurant overflow. Basso’s
will be open for lunch and dinner, and look for breakfast and lunch
starting a few weeks after opening. Check out the late hours too:
open until 11pm on Sunday, midnight Mon–Thu, and 1am on Fri–Sat.
3782 24th St. at Church, 415-285-3212.
now you can enjoy dinner there on Sundays too! Michael and Danny
will be serving traditional izakaya "ippinryori" dishes
(no sushi!), with dishes rotating in and out each Sunday, depending
on what is fresh and in season. During these fall and winter months,
look for authentic dishes like simmered daikon rounds; grilled,
simmered, or stewed fish; simmered pork belly (Japanese and eventually
Okinawan style); sautéed or grilled vegetables; sake-simmered
chicken wings and daikon; Okinawan-style spareribs; yaki-onigiri;
small rice dishes; and salads. You’ll be able to share these
small plates with friends while drinking some fab sakes—that
will keep you toasty! Sunday hours to start: 6pm–11pm.
exciting change at Sebo: Fukashi Adachi from Deep Sushi is going
to be their third chef—he will be a big part of
the Sunday dinners, as well as doing sushi during the week. Michael
and Danny are excited to have another talented and detail-oriented
obsessive-compulsive chef on board. Kanpai to that. 517 Hayes St.
at Octavia, 415-864-2122.
are getting close on Joie de Vivre’s ~O IZAKAYA
LOUNGE~ at the Hotel Kabuki. The official opening is November 16, but look
for a soft opening with abbreviated hours by the end of this week—it
all depends on how the final inspections go. I attended a media
lunch a few weeks ago, and liked chef Nick Balla’s unique
dishes featuring house-made touches, like kimchee, and pickled
fennel (served with hamachi and enoki mushrooms). Most of the shared
plates are $9–$14, combining ingredients like saba (mackerel)
with wasabi, beet, and cucumber, and duck breast with eggplant
and red miso. The bar menu will include some yakimono, like hamachi
belly (the new pork belly?), lamb sweetbreads, beef loin, and chicken
thigh ($4 each). Lunch 11am–3pm Sat–Sun, dinner nightly
5pm–10pm, and bar until 1am. Hotel Kabuki, 1625 Post St.
at Laguna, 415-614-5431.
other JDV news, ~JENNIFER COX~ is heading up the new Director
of Culinary role for the company. Her background includes some
Chicago-area fine dining restaurants, she was a sous chef for
the late Barbara Tropp at China Moon Café and at the Warwick
Regis Hotel’s La Scene restaurant, she was the opening chef
at Montage Restaurant in the Sony Metreon, chef de cuisine of Citizen
Cake, and then Corporate Executive Chef–Culinary Development
with the Compass Group, a UK-based foodservice management company.
She will assist JDV in creating their new restaurant concepts,
develop back-of-house training programs, and mentor their culinary
new beer and wine tavern opening in the old Kelly’s Burger
space in the Mission has hired a chef, Kevin Kroger. He worked
as a sous chef at Left Bank Brasserie in Larkspur and B Restaurant
in Oakland. He's also been involved with Restaurants Unlimited
for the last ten years, and has served as a consultant, most recently
with First Crush. The pub-style menu will have burgers, sandwiches,
salads, and shareable items, like cheese and salumi. To recap,
look for 100 bottled beers from around the world, and 24 draughts
(mostly California brews), with a heavy focus on education about
beer styles and brewing techniques. There will also be wine available,
eight by the glass. For now, the opening date looks like November
19th. 3141 16th St., at the corner of Albion, between Valencia
Mission news: a friend in the ‘hood told me there was
some activity going on at ~SENSES~. Huh whaaa?
Yes, Senses, the restaurant that just can’t stay closed.
Both faceless shills and haters are alive and well on some recent Yelp
Try the calamari! LOL. 1152 Valencia St. at 22nd.
Shadow Lounge, which could have been called the cracker lounge
(sca-ry), has new owners and is being transformed into ~MEDICI
LOUNGE~, a much more auspicious name, methinks. Greg Noto is
the owner (he also owns Place Pigalle and used to own Abbondanza
Catering), Matty DeTrumble is the executive chef (he is a teacher
at the CCA and was also the chef at Geranium, and most recently
at the short-lived Crave on Market), and Kevin Meagher is the
bar manager/mixologist who is putting together a premium cocktail
program based on fresh ingredients. They are hoping for an opening
now they are renovating the structure and interior, so we’ll
just have to wait and see. Look for a Cal-Ital market-driven menu
of shared plates (I know, it’s not the first time you’ve
seen this, but give ‘em a chance!) made with handpicked ingredients,
organic wherever possible. Other features might include a late-night
kitchen and special wine and spirits events. Just consider this
a teaser for now! 299 Ninth St. at Folsom.
Happy Birthday to ~MAGNOLIA
PUB & BREWERY~, celebrating ten years
of business with a week of special anniversary menus that will
feature beer pairings, naturally, including the remainder of Batch
1000, AKA Ain’t Life Grand.
Tonight is English gastropub night, with a three-course dinner
that includes Niman Ranch beef and kidney pie or monkfish tail;
Wednesday is Belgian bistro night, Thursday is fried chicken, and
Friday–Sunday is a special five-course tasting menu of seasonal
and sustainably sourced, beer-friendly, gastropub cuisine (hello
rabbit fricassee). Cheers! 1398 Haight St. at Masonic,
through the Castro this week, I noticed the former Metro Café found a name: ~THE
LOOKOUT~. Its new owner is Chris
Hastings, formerly of Catch, just up the street. A pal told me
he didn’t see many changes to the interior, but according
to an article I read in the BAR, the adjoining restaurant space
is slated to house a pizzeria—more on this soon. 3600 16th
St. at Market, 415-703-9750.
we’re tawkin’ bars with food, this weekend I went
to the neighborhood-y/divey Jack’s Club, which is now the
home of the new ~TASTY
Look for Southern-inspired food coming out of the tiny kitchen
in the back, like pulled pork sandwiches, burgers, and same damned
good fries with Old Bay seasoning. The chef is Grant Edwards,
who hails from Richmond, Virginia, and got his culinary training
in South Carolina. 2545 24th St. at San Bruno Ave., 415-641-5371.
had some folks ask me about places to go for ~THANKSGIVING~ around
the city, so I thought I’d do a little roundup of
places I’d consider going to if A) I didn’t have an
oven and/or B) didn’t have a lovely grandma and mom who always
make the best Thanksgiving dinner—bring on the giblet gravy!
the Hotel Vitale is doing a dinner
~Balboa Café would be cozy
~Garibaldi’s on Presidio (here’s a PDF
of the menu)
is hosting dinner
~Harris’ would be a fun, classic spot—love those booths
~Home if I was light in the wallet ($37 for a three-course dinner)
Market will be using top-notch ingredients
serving an organic dinner with heritage turkey
~Terrace at the Ritz-Carlton—you know this will be fab
we’re talking about the holiday season, I wanted to
forward this call for donations from ~FOOD
who are asking San Francisco restaurants and businesses to donate
excess perishable and prepared food to agencies feeding the needy;
they are also seeking volunteers to assist with the distribution
of the food. Here’s more: “Food Runners delivers approximately
10 tons of food a week that would otherwise be thrown away–providing
enough food for 2,000 meals a day in San Francisco. The recipients
range from senior centers and homeless shelters to halfway houses
and others in need.
Runners regularly picks up food from the Marriott Hotel, the
Westin San Francisco Market Street Hotel, Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods and Harvest Urban Markets. A number of
San Francisco restaurants, including Piperade, Fog City Diner,
Frisson, Kokkari, Aqua, Rubicon, Jardinière, Rose Pistola,
PlumpJack and many more generously contribute “Planned Overage,” preparing
a main course once a week which is taken directly to a neighborhood
home by a Food Runners volunteer. Volunteers generally give one
hour a week, or at their convenience, to pick up and deliver food
in their own vehicle.” For more information, please give
them a call at 415-929-1866 or visit www.foodrunners.org.
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