After being closed for the duration of the pandemic, Stacy and Adam Jed’s Bluestem Brasserie is returning as BLUESTEM RESTAURANT & MARKET, with a new menu focused on California coastal fare and a flexitarian style, an all-day retail market (grab pastry chef Lori Baker’s cinnamon crunch babka muffins, or products for dinner later—plus locally made items), new cocktails (including a cioppino cocktail made with tequila, mezcal, salted tomato water, lime, serrano pepper, and a splash of clam juice), wellness drinks, and some renovations to the space. The market is open now (Tue-Sat 9am-8pm), and meal service launches at lunch on Friday November 26th (attention shoppers!) from 11:30am-2:30pm and is available Tue-Sat moving forward (the shrimp and crab roll awaits)—dinner and weekend brunch will come soon.
Over at the Ferry Building Marketplace, CHOLITA LINDA has finally opened in the former Mijita. The Oakland food stand became famous for its fish tacos at farmers markets, and has two locations in the East Bay (Oakland and Alameda), and now, SF. The menu has other kinds of tacos, plus sandwiches (like a Cubano, lechon), salads, and plates with picadillo, chicharron, and fried fish. Owner Vanessa Chavez has a Cuban-Mexican father and Peruvian-Chinese mother, so you can see these various influences all over this California-born chef’s menu, where tortilla chips and plantain chips are both equally at home. Open daily 8am-10pm. [Via SFist]
The Ferry Building Marketplace is seriously buzzing with new openings, because the TSAR NICOULAI CAVIAR CAFE is finally open as well. Although this is actually a return: the sustainable caviar producer originally had an outpost at The Ferry Building over 10 years ago! The Instagram post mentions housemade blini, bubbles, and, of course, delicious caviar from the first and oldest sturgeon farm in the country (founded in 1984). There are Champagne and caviar flights, smoked sturgeon and salmon, and bites like deviled eggs with paddlefish roe—plus bagels with smoked salmon and caviar on the weekends. Hubba. Walk-ins only; to-go options are available, so swing by and stock up for the holidays (or before you come see me, ha!). Open Mon-Fri 11am-6pm, Sat 9am-6pm, and Sun 11am-5pm.
Looks like VICO CAVONE in the Castro is doing some trial service (the next round is this weekend). This new Italian restaurant is opening inside the former Firewood, and will be taking advantage of the wood-burning oven and is serving pizza, as well as pasta and hot dishes. Hoodline originally reported the owners are Alessandro Raimondi (who is from Naples), Sanaa Hams, and Giancarlo Esposito (a master pizzaiolo). The grand opening is set for Sunday December 5th. Follow their Instagram for updates. 4248 18th St. at Diamond.
Just a little update since my last piece that BUDDY bar and café has now opened in the Mission. You can peep the menu here, with cocktails made by an all-star team, well-chosen wines, and sure-to-be-delicious snacks and dishes from chef Sean Thomas, like gougères with smoked trout roe and bay leaf labneh, and roasted trumpet shrooms with truffle honey, French feta, and walnut salsa macha. Sign me up! The former Californios space has been given a more-casual look, although the tobacco leather banquettes remain. Outdoor seating launches this weekend. Hours for now are Wed-Thu and Sun 4pm-10pm and Fri-Sat 4pm-11pm. Check out their Kickstarter to help get them through this opening push and enjoy some perks. 3115 22nd St. at S. Van Ness.
PROPOSITION CHICKEN will be moving its flagship location from Market Street to Laurel Village, opening Monday December 6th. On offer: fried chicken, flipped (rotisserie) chicken (both use Mary’s Organic Chickens), or fake (crispy BBQ tofu) as a sandwich, salad, or entrée. There are also wings, chicken strips, and sides (including brown sugar Brussels sprouts, homemade bone broth, and matzo ball soup). Pssst: come by on Saturday December 4th from 1pm-3pm for their pre-opening celebration, with free sandwiches. Open 11am-9pm. 3465 California St. at Locust.
The new California Gold cocktail at Bluestem Restaurant & Market. Photo: Kelly Puleio.