It's a challenge to round up the food news this week, as we're still all in carb comas after compiling our best San Francisco bakeries and are suffering from hangovers after our final visits to Doc's Clock in its current location. Fortunately, this food-toting robot is here to deliver us from our suffering, but don't expect it to transport goods from Hecho (it's closing) or Adesso (ditto). Oh, well, at least we've got this $1 Yes Plz cup of coffee and SF's first Salt & Straw to ease our pain.
Opening this week is Arthur Mac's Tap & Snack a few steps from Oakland's MacArthur BART station at 4006 Martin Luther King Jr. Way in the MacArthur Annex. Inside Scoop tells us to expect beers in the $4.50-7 range from this, the latest spot from Farm League Management (Tigerlily, Drake's Dealership). The menu's still shaking out, but pizza and wings are appear to be their strongest suit thus far.
Outer Sunset residents have been wondering what happened with the popular Brother Seafood Restaurant at 1830 Irving Street. It shuttered and underwent a lengthy remodel to become Cafe 1920 in 2015, but shuttered a few months later. Last Friday, Nami Ramen Bar opened in the space, Hoodline reports. There you'll find Kyoto-style noodles, but (as of yet) no booze.
Also opening last week near Union Square was Kinara Kitchen, which Hoodline tells us "offers an unusual combination: pizza, Indian-fusion fare, and hookah." Located at 710 Post Street, the food's pizza and wings type stuff, and the (fully permitted, they say) "hookah bar boasts an illuminated water feature." No plans for any liquor, though, so you'll be smoking clean and sober.
We've been hearing about Navi Kitchen, the Emeryville joint planned by Juhu Beach Club's chef Preeti Mistry and business partner and wife Ann Nadeau, since last October. Eater now has the menu for the all-day cafe in the Bakery Lofts at 5000 Adeline Street, which promises Indian-Neapolitan pizza, a "Mumbai morning burger," and tikka masala mac and cheese. The opening date has yet to be set, but should happen in the next few weeks.
Also happening sometime in the future, Hoodline reports, is a mini wave of Mission Moroccan eateries. Khamsa Restaurant is preparing to serve "California-Morocco fusion" at 1503 15th Street, and Magador Moroccan Cafe And Cuisine is seeking permits at 105 Valencia Street. No word as yet on opening dates for either.
Kantine, a Scandinavian restaurant from chef Nichole Accettola, whose Danish-style open-faced sandwiches you might have seen at pop-ups or the Ferry Building, is also in the works on Upper Market. The space they're hoping to open in is the former Little Hollywood laundromat at 1906 Market Street, the Bay Area Reporter says, next to the Orbit Room. An opening this fall is planned, if all goes well with DBI and Planning.
Another thing to look forward to this fall is the opening of C.D.P., James Syhabout's planned full bar and lounge space next door to his Michelin-starred Commis on Piedmont Avenue in Oakland. Food will be small plates and snacks, the booze will be heavy on Brandy and Champagnes. Speaking with Inside Scoop. Syhabout says "This is going to be a laid-back space for people that want the Commis-type of experience, but they don't want to have a full sit-down dinner." Construction on the space at Oakland's 3861 Piedmont Avenue begins in May, a fall opening is planned.
If you're wondering about the fate of the long-shuttered McKenzie's Bar at 5320 Geary Boulevard, wonder no more — a 27-year-old guy named Norman Louie bought it in "late 2015," Hoodline reports. By June it should open as Natives, its previous dive bar trappings eradicated as Louie says “From the inside to the outside, everything’s going to be new." He's planning 5-10 specialty cocktails, local beers, and possible "portable hot plates" from nearby Super Pan.
Another longtime bar that's transforming is Coronitas Bar and Grill. Open for the last 26 years at 3326 Mission Street, owner Jorge Esparza tells Mission Local the place has become profitless, so he's applied to turn it into a Latino-oriented pot club. Should everything pass all approvals, keep an eye out for La Corona Wellness Center to open there in October, a bar no more.
When we last left the ongoing suds opera that is Speakeasy Ales & Lagers, they had decided against shutting down and were continuing to produce as they sought a sale. Now Inside Scoop says that they're outsourcing production to New York's Shmaltz Brewing Company, so when a new buyer comes in there's a plan to keep the beer flowing while permits are transferred. The window to bid on Speakeasy closed yesterday, so I guess we'll know who the highest bidder is soon enough.
Thursday, May 4 is A Taste of Potrero, planned for 6 p.m. at Pier 70. Eater reports that the fundraiser for "Daniel Webster, a Potrero Hill elementary school which faces closure every year due to an extreme lack of funding," will feature basically every high-profile food and drink name in the local biz. Tickets range from $100-225.
Another food event worth noting is Clusterfest, the star-studded June comedy event held in Civic Center. Eater says organizers also promise a massive lineup of food stars, including a Wise Sons version of Seinfeld's Monks Cafe and a list of general vendors that will make you drool.
Oakland's alaMar Kitchen continues to seek its footing, NBC Bay Area reports. They switched to a counter service model in January to cut costs, and now they're only taking payments by credit cards. Sorry, cash, you're no longer king.
This Week In Reviews
The New York Times' Freda Moon visited Mister Jiu's and calls out Chinatown's "medical herb vendors and knickknack shops." She describes Mister Jiu's bar as "crowded with Ivanka Trump types in tall heels and straight blond ponytails." Ouch. We get to the food at the very end, with some dishes falling flat even as the place "promises to grow even more compelling and provocative."
Over at SF Weekly, Pete Kane heads to Mission Cajun destination Bayou Creole Kitchen. The casual counterpart to Cajun neighbor Alba Ray's, Kane praises the small spot's frog legs and chicken-and-andouille gumbo, while fretting that the other chicken entrees can be a bit of a miss. Overall, it's a positive review, but Kane seems to worry that there might be more missteps than successes.
Heading Chronside, Jonathan Kauffman explores the wild world of Japanese hot dogs, which is basically just a wiener with a bunch of crap on it. Here's hoping he can expense the shirts he doubtlessly ruined trying to eat those things.
Chris Ying spends ten paragraphs establishing his Japantown creds before he gets down to talking about Marufuku. We already knew that it opened in February, and Ying thinks it's something special, rhapsodizing over their chicken paitan and Hakata-style tonkotsu ramen. "It’s a convincing reason to eat in Japantown," he says, applauding the broth and the "thin, slurpable" noodles.
Michael Bauer continue's the paper's Asian trend this week, with a visit to Palo Alto's Tamarine, a Vietnamese restaurant where M-Bau notes "Apple CEO Tim Cook and Google CEO Sundar Pichai were spotted together recently." That sighting "piqued my curiosity" about the place, Bauer says, so now you know how you can get the big guy to review your place, thirsty restauranteurs — get mentioned in TechCrunch. He says the restaurant "skewed to an established customer base," which means the people who eat there are old. That might be why the food was basically just "tame" and "safe" (if a bit too sweet), but pretty unmemorable. His greatest contempt is for dessert, a coconut tapioca "served in a white bowl that reminded me of a Toto urinal" and "misleadingly named" banana beignets. Food gets two stars, the quiet (you know Mikey hates noise) atmosphere gets three, so we end up with a tepid 2.5.
For Sunday, Bauer travels to Half Moon Bay to visit Dad's Luncheonette. The review is an interesting departure for Bauer, as it drops the pretense of anonymity to which he's clung for far too long. He speaks directly with Dad's co-founder/chef Scott Clark, which means we get quotes and backstory to enrich the review. It's a refreshing (and welcome) change for Bauer's format. He praises their burger, an insaneo creation on toasted white bread with a "4½-ounce patty, oak leaf lettuce, fried egg, pickled red onions, cheese and a sauce made with Meyer lemon, pepper, honey, sauerkraut juice and mayonnaise." Their mac and cheese, he says, is too bland. Bauer's not a fan of the atmosphere (you eat outside), giving it only 1.5 stars. The food gets 2.5, as does the overall star count.