Opening this Friday December 22nd is a new project from David Barzelay and Nicolas Torres of Lazy Bear: TRUE LAUREL. This stylish bar was designed along with Nicholas Roberto, and the former woodsy look of The Tradesman has been replaced with new materials like powder-coated steel, concrete, and a plaster wall sculpture. True to its name, the main bar is made from a cross section of a laurel tree and is inlaid with white-green quartzite.
There is also an eight-person back bar that will open in 2018, offering a tasting menu of five tasting-sized cocktails with dishes from the kitchen. There will be two seating times per night and a designated bartender.
Unlike Lazy Bear, the bar is walk-in only (no reservations), and it has a more relaxed style and vibe, whether you want a drink and a bite or are looking for more of a meal (there is both bar and table seating).
The cocktails by Torres are ingredient-driven, with a focus on seasonality and minimal waste, so he utilizes everything from the pith to the pit when possible. He also likes to utilize wines from around the world and apéritifs in his drinks, making them even more food-friendly.
Cocktails include the Top Dawg (house Shinko pear tonic, rancio wine, carbonated and served tall with a black sudachi and smoked salt rim) and the Shaker Lemon Stirred (with Meyer lemon fino sherry, moscato chinato, and wheat vodka, served up with a candied and charred lemon wheel). They run $14-$16 each.
There are some fun vintage elements, from the glassware to some spirits like bourbon from the 1940s-50s, bottled and labeled specifically for the San Francisco Pacific-Union Club.
As for the menu from Barzelay and chef de cuisine Geoff Davis, look for fun shared plates like Dungeness crab and aged cheddar fondue served with toasts; charred pumpkin lettuce wraps; crispy hen-of-the-woods mushrooms with sour cream and alliums dip; and a TL patty melt.
Hours will be daily 4pm-2am. The kitchen opens at 5pm, with last call for the kitchen at 1am. They will be closed for a Christmas break from December 24th-25th. 753 Alabama St. at 19th St.