One of San Francisco's oldest bars, the 123-year-old Bus Stop Saloon in Cow Hollow, gains a swanky upstairs neighbor tonight, and it's called Left Door.
Locals know the Bus Stop as a generally lively, fairly Marina bro-y neighborhood sports bar where you can find a community of beer drinkers on any night of the week, watching the multiple TV screens. New owners Joseph Wallace and Robert Lemons, who bought the building in 2021, have kept the Bus Stop pretty much as-is — though the bathrooms got a much needed refresh. But they decided to open a second, more mature cocktail business on the second level.
Hoodline had the news about Left Door (1905 Union Street) about a year ago, but now the Chronicle has word of the opening, which is tonight, Wednesday, November 22. The name comes from the entrance — the left door on the Union Street side of the building, which is how one gets up to the second floor. And the place has been outfitted with velvety upholstered furniture, a fireplace feature, and cozy wallpapered corners for canoodling over drinks.
And this is meant to be an elevated experience for sure, with prices to match. Cocktails, like a Manhattan with TCHO chocolate bitters priced at $21, are meant to be savored, unlike at the dive downstairs. And the martini menu, which also starts at $21, offers options like blue or goat-cheese-stuffed olives, and a bespoke brine for the dirty martini —
The food options are equally over-the-top for a bar — Wagyu beef bites with miso butter will run you $65; caviar service is priced at $80 to $210; and there's a lobster crudo ($32) on offer as well, topped with puffed grains and fried leeks.
Also, it's a reservations type of place, and seating looks fairly limited, though walk-ins will be accepted when space is available. The website also suggests that patrons "dress to impress," and limit their cellphone usage while inside.
"Gratitude for the last century, belief in the next – come up, enjoy the next song, stay a while," says the "about" copy.
Left Door will be open 5:30 p.m. to midnight on Tuesday and Wednesday; and 5:30 p.m. to 2 a.m. Thursday to Saturday, starting tonight.
Photo via LeftDoorSF/Instagram