Some SF old-timers and industry folks should recall the much-adored ~BODEGA BISTRO~, a fantastic Vietnamese spot on Larkin Street that closed some years ago, and was known for the kind and talented chef Jimmie Kwok (RIP). But thankfully, some extended family members have been running a Bodega Bistro pop-up out of the Rooster & Rice location on 18th Street in the Castro called BODEGA SF, featuring original Bodega recipes and more for takeout (like their Sunday special of banh cuon, plus dry hu tieu noodles that help scratch the Ha Nam Ninh itch—I miss them and their dry #25 noodles so much—with phenomenal fish cake). The food is SO GOOD, and made with a deft touch.
But their time at this location is winding to a close—their last day will be Monday January 31st, and they hope to reopen in an interim location they just found around February 4th (at 590 Van Ness Ave. #304 at Golden Gate Ave.) while they work on their upcoming brick and mortar! That’s right, they’re opening a permanent spot! The new location is going to be in the Tenderloin/Union Square, formerly Mason House, which was only open for a couple months until Miss Rona cruelly closed it.
Chef Matt Ho and partners Eugene Kim and Adrienne Fornier (Nobu Palo Alto) will be opening a full-service restaurant, offering some modern/updated Northern Vietnamese dishes (Ho’s family is from Hanoi), with small bites and family-style dinners (with a mini pho for folks who just gotta have it at night—their beef pho really is on another level), plus a casual lunch, and there’s a full bar and lounge that will come later (plus: happy hour!). This also means the famous squab will be able to return! (This dish was a classic from Uncle Jimmie on Larkin Street!)
The space was a new build-out, so they’re just going to be doing some light updates, like a new paint job. There are 70 seats, and they will also continue to offer takeout and delivery. They’re aiming to open in March or April, and will be open six days a week for lunch and dinner, with a break in between service around 2:30pm. Follow their Instagram for updates, order takeout and delivery Wed-Mon 11am-8pm in the meantime, and don’t miss that banh cuon on Sundays! 140 Mason St. at Eddy.
Bodega SF’s Sunday special of banh cuon, stuffed with wood ear mushrooms and pork. Photo: © tablehopper.com.