Yesterday I swung by the about-to-open BI-RITE MARKET on Divisadero for a preview tour of the space. After a lot of construction and delays, the market will be opening on Wednesday March 13th. Most of the offerings will be similar to the 18th Street location: an awesome butcher counter, a deli, the rad selection of wines, the beautiful produce, the grab-and-go meals…. and the Creamery! Some new features are an expanded fish case, some different prepared foods (Morgan Maki will be running the show), and cut-to-order cheese (I know, there’s a joke there, ha-ha).
The 3,000-square-foot shopping area is a bit wider, but is mostly the same square footage as the original location. The ceilings are an airy 20 feet tall, with skylights. The biggest changes are behind the scenes: Co-owner Sam Mogannam (the other partner is Calvin Tsay) showed me the temperature-controlled butcher room that adjoins the refrigerated meat room, the streamlined delivery area, and more. Mogannam says, “Everything we have learned, we have applied. We will work even better. I’m so excited—as I look at the space, it really is a dream.” There will also be an herb garden on the roof, beehives, and more.
The team has done an amazing job uncovering and restoring the building’s Art Deco façade, from removing all the paint off the indigo terra-cotta tiles to the transom windows they put back in. Look for the Bi-Rite sign (including some old-school signs an artist is just finishing that say “meat” and the like) and an awning to get installed in the next week. There are two entrances of accordion-esque doors that can swing wide open, all the easier to welcome the neighborhood in. Hours will be 9am-9pm daily to start. (For more pics, check out this in-depth preview on Haigheration.) 550 Divisadero St. at Hayes.
Just a block away, SFist announces a taker for the former Plant It Earth space at the corner of Divisadero and Grove: Planning Department activity reveals that a place potentially called LA URBANA is moving in, which is a new “Latin-themed restaurant and mezcaleria … that will feature around 130 seats, two bars, and a private dining/mezcal tasting room.” Stand by for more as this project makes its way through planning approvals, liquor license acquisition, and other hurdles that are the opposite of being expedient. 661 Divisadero St. at Grove.
The Art Deco exterior of the new Bi-Rite Market on Divisadero. Photo: © tablehopper.com.