The Michelin two-starred Acquerello has just announced that its more casual sister space at 1760 Polk Street is going to become a new cocktail-focused bar serving Venetian-style cocktail snacks as well as bigger Italian plates.
1760 had been in a seeming constant pivot mode before the pandemic began, which was seven years after its 2013 debut. The casual Polk Street spot began as an interesting, cocktail-heavy offshoot of Acquerello with an internationally influenced menu — and an excellent fried duck sandwich. But soon, after the departure of opening chef Adam Tortosa (now chef-owner of Hayes Valley sushi temple Robin), the restaurant pivoted to Filipino fare in 2015, under chef Carl Foronda, and tried out Asian-inspired brunch, among other things along the way.
Following an extended pandemic closure, Acquerello owners Suzette Gresham and Giancarlo Paterlini and Paterlini's son Gianpaolo — who spearheaded the original 1760 — have announced a new concept for the space called Sorella (which is Italian for "sister").
As Tablehopper was the first to report, Sorella is taking shape under the helm of former Greens chef Denise St. Onge, and the plan is for a bar menu of cicchetti, or Venetian bar bites, including things like arancini, meatballs, and a fried pizzetta.
In the dining room, there will be a more full Italian menu with pastas and more, and likely a focus on vegetables, but details are scant.
Cocktails are being handled by a consultant, the women-owned Manhattan Zodiac, and the menu will be driven by Italian spirits.
During the pandemic, Acquerello emerged as a small success story, with a takeout and delivery operation that turned out more successfully than they'd even hoped — and they did a lavish to-go spread for New Year's Eve last year too. Some customers were disappointed, Greshem said, when it came time to stop the takeout and meal-kit operation so they could reopen the dining room again.
They're aiming to open Sorella by December 1, and to do a Wednesday-to-Sunday dinner schedule, with weekend brunch and an early Sunday supper.
Stay tuned for more details, and you can follow Sorella on Instagram for updates and maybe dish previews.
Photo via Facebook