This week, we drank in news that the barmen behind the erstwhile Big have opened Benjamin Cooper, a cocktail den tucked inside the Hotel G. We also covered the expansion of San Mateo's Michelin-starred Indian restaurant All Spice into the former Game space. And, glory: we learned that the Street Food Fest has been saved, relocating this August to Pier 70 and spanning two days.
Elsewhere, Tablehopper had word of a new pizza parlor and more, Jersey, from brothers Mitchell and Steven Rosenthal (Town Hall, Anchor & Hope, Salt House, La Capra Coffee) and chef Ramona Rill (Town Hall, Salt House). The SoMa spot features five pie options from Trenton Tomato (mozzarella, parmesan, sauce on top) to California styles (like asparagus).
Japan’s Mensho Ramen, or Menya Shono, a perennial on best-of-Tokyo lists thanks to chef-owner Tomoharu Shono, is plotting its first American expansion right here on Geary Street, as Inside Scoop reports. With the relatively recent arrivals of Orenchi Beyond and Hapa Ramen, this town is clearly showing a growing ramen appetite, as well as plenty of options to appease it. At Mensho Tokyo in SF, expect housemade noodles in classic broth like tonkotsu, but also, variations like foie gras tsukemen (depending on the legal status of the stuff).
The PlumpJack Group, who we reported are taking over the Lexington Club space, aren't just expanding in SF. They're getting bigger outside the city, and even plotting a PlumpJack Foundation led by part-owner Gavin Newsom, reports the SF Business Times.
Eater broke the news that 4505 Burgers & BBQ on Divisadero is at long last opening their late night burger window. Starting softly this weekend, you can order out that "Best Damn Cheeseburger" and some fries between 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.
Tofino will be a new wine bar shop in an unusual space at Geary and Masonic, as Inside Scoop has it.
Week in Reviews
The Examiner's Alex Hochman was tickled by Made in China, the newish Outer Sunset restaurant with a sprawling and curiously translated menu, from Acid Droplet Beans pork to a carrot-free Fried Bacon Carrot. He'll be back to find out what, exactly, “griddled little yellow croaker" might be.
Michael Bauer swooned at Zuni Cafe in his check-up, where he found that, "From start to finish, Zuni continues to uphold Rodgers’ standards. It is and, I think, will continue to be San Francisco’s wonderfully eclectic dining room." Three and a half stars for a 36-year-old place where the chicken is still "an offering to the culinary gods."
And Mr. Bauer's Sunday review went live on SFGate Friday night, and it is a review of Hapa Ramen. Constant Twitter presence and Hapa Ramen chef Richie Nakano was quick to start complaining about it, but it's actually a pretty positive review. Bauer likes the shaking beef tenderloin and foie gras appetizers, and compliments the miso ramen in particular, though he does note some inconsistencies in the other broths between visits. All told, he calls is a good addition to the neighborhood, and gives it 2.5 stars.