Here's a new and interesting way to deal with outdoor dining in a not very sunny or warm spot where you're likely to have homeless people passing by: plastic, geodesic domes.
That's what Hashiri, the ultra-luxe, Michelin-starred sushi restaurant from Tokyo with an outpost on Mint Plaza, has opted to do.
The $200-per-person kaiseki and omakase menu experience is possibly the most high-end dining option available in SF right now, and it's outside, but not completely.
"Starting Wednesday, August, 5th, Hashiri will offer a unique outdoor multi-course dining experience weaving through Kaiseki and Omakase Edomae Nigiri Sushi," the restaurant announced on Facebook. "Luring you into a world of tradition and refined skills showcasing the finest of the season."
As the Chronicle explains, these plastic "garden igloos" have been employed by rooftop restaurants in Chicago and New York to deal with inclement weather. In addition to the domes, the restaurant has added some wine barrels to act as temporary barriers, hopefully deterring anyone from bothering the diners mid-omakase.
"We wanted to continue offering the fine-dining experience — and safety and peace,” says bar manager Kenichiro Matsuura, speaking to the Chronicle. “Mint Plaza is a phenomenal space, it’s just sometimes the crowd is not too favorable."
The restaurant had tried offering to-go bento boxes, but they didn't take off — and for restaurants like Hashiri, they felt a bit off-brand. Matsuura adds that the dome thing is "our only option to survive" right now.
So, if you've been wanting a high-end sushi experience — this one is about two hours, with five courses, including a chef's selection of nigiri sushi — then book a table for two to four people with whom you share a household or quarantine bubble.
Seatings are at 5:00 and 7:30 nightly. Call 415-908-1919 for reservations, or grab one on OpenTable.