Big news from the local bar scene: Well known local barkeep turned booze writer Duggan McDonnell and his original partner have sold their bar Cantina (580 Sutter Street) to a new regime. As Inside Scoop reports, the buyers are Andy Chun and Jan Wiginton, who also own Press Club and Schroeder's, and they're bringing in another local bar star, Kevin Diedrich, to revamp and manage the place.
Latin-themed Cantina has been McDonnell's baby since he opened it in 2007, but now that he has an actual baby of his own as well as a pisco business that was borne partly out of his love for Latin cocktail culture he tells SFist he's now "a bar investor, no more a saloonkeeper."
I recently interviewed him here about his San Francisco cocktail memoir Drinking the Devil's Acre, and as he tells Inside Scoop, he's looking to spend time doing more writing, which was part of the reason for the sale.
Diedrich, meanwhile, has bounced around to a number of high-profile projects in hotels in recent years, including The Burritt Room, Jasper's, and the now defunct BDK. He plans on keeping some of Cantina's well loved classics like the Laughing Buddah and Pisco Punch, while adding some of his own and extending the reach of the menu to Italy and Spain as well. The full menu revamp will take a couple of months, but as of Monday, December 21, the bar reopens as Turnkey at Cantina, under new management.