The former Broken Record space in Crocker-Amazon will be reborn this September as The Halfway Club, a new project from a pair of industry vets.
After a 15-year run on Geneva Avenue, at the edge of the Excelsior and Crocker-Amazon, Broken Record called it quits last October, with owner Jason King crediting two years of pandemic closures and the rising costs of goods as reasons for closing.
Now, as Tablehopper reports, restaurant industry pros Ethan Terry and Greg Quinn have taken the space and are at work transforming the interior into The Halfway Club. The vibe, Tablehopper says, will be a sort of homage to a 1970s "dad’s bar in a basement bonus room," complete with "mismatched swag lamps," beer signs, and a vintage Wurlitzer 3600 Super Star jukebox — which will have a curated selection of tunes to fit the vibe.
The back room of the place, which was once home to the Gentilly pop-up before that restaurant found its permanent digs a few blocks north, will serve food from consulting chef Larry Piaskowi — who, like Terry and Quinn, comes fromt the Midwest, Chicago to be exact. The plan is for some Chicago-style food, including fried ravioli, and a Chicago beef sandwich — like the one featured prominently in Season One of The Bear.
The back room will also feature projected movies, Tablehopper says.
At the bar there will also be boilermakers and throwback cocktails that nod to the Midwest, like a a brandy Old Fashioned, and a spin on a Porch Crawler called the Pink Porch Crawler (pink lemonade concentrate, vodka, and beer), which will be on tap.
There will be classic cocktails and others on offer — and Terry and Quinn have serious cocktail cred, having met while working at Annabelle's, and later worked together at The Alembic. Terry has also bartended at North Beach cocktail destinations 15 Romolo and Comstock Saloon.
And, Tablehopper had the scoop on the origin of the new bar's name: It comes from the Half Way to Hell Club, a society that was formed by the 19 construction workers on the Golden Gate Bridge who were saved by nets that hung below the under-construction bridge, ca. 1936-37. Some men died working on the bridge, falling to their death, but those who were saved said they'd gone "halfway to hell." "There’s a plaque on the bridge honoring the workers, and it caught the guys’ attention as a great name for their project," Tablehopper says. "They decided to soften things a bit, so they took the 'hell' part out, even though it’s so punk rock."
Look for The Halfway Club to debut sometime in September, if all goes well.
The Halfway Club - 1166 Geneva Avenue, SF - Opening in September
Photo via Broken Record/Facebook