The much anticipated new Cambodian noodle shop from the chef at the wildly popular Nyum Bai in Oakland is finally arriving this weekend at SF's Ferry Building.

In the three months since we first learned of chef Nite Yun's plans to open a new restaurant at the Ferry Building, the big news came that anchor restaurant The Slanted Door will not be reopening there — which makes the opening of a new, sure-to-be-popular restaurant in the complex all the more significant.

Lunette, Yun's new noodle- and rice-bowl-focused restaurant at the Ferry Building, will open to the public on Sunday, June 2 — timing that likely reflects Yun's desire to get through a week before having to deal with Saturday farmers' market crowds.

For Nyum Bai's many fans, it is surely excellent news that the new restaurant will feature at least a couple hit dishes from the Nyum Bai menu, like the rice-noodle pork-broth soup known as KTPP, or kuy teav Phnom Penh; and Yun's fish-sauce-marinated Cambodian fried chicken. There will also be mee Kola, a Burmese-influenced noodle dish in which noodles are steamed and coated in soy sauce and garlic oil, topped with cucumber relish, boiled egg, dried shrimp, and peanuts.

Mee Kola. Photo: NyumBai/Instagram

Yun has been testing out dishes like mee Kola at pop-ups since the abrupt closure of Nyum Bai in 2022. It was a surprising and sad end to a popular restaurant that still seemed at the top of its game, and was still drawing significant crowds to its tiny space in Oakland's Fruitvale Village.

But that tiny space may have been part of the problem, along with Nyum Bai's quick, runaway success, which Yun tells the Chronicle this week was overwhelming and exhausting.

"I was depleted, inside and out," Yun tells the paper. "The way Nyum Bai grew so fast, I just couldn’t keep up."

In addition to attracting ample local attention, Nyum Bai quickly garnered national attention as well — including being named one of Bon Appetit's Best New Restaurants in 2018. It was one of the first restaurants reviewed by Chronicle critic Soleil Ho upon taking the critic's job in early 2019, and the review was a rave.

What followed was four years of nightly waitlists and steady business, all served out of a postcard-sized kitchen with barely a dozen seats indoors (most of the seating was on an adjacent patio). Until Yun's lease was up and she called it quits, promising to return in a larger space at some point.

There is a nice connection to the old space on the new menu, as the Chronicle reports. Lunette features a new dish called "student noodles," which are stir-fried pin noodles with scallions and chives that come topped with smoked brisket from Tacos El Ultimo Baile, the taqueria that took over the old Nyum Bai spot in Fruitvale.

Lunette isn't a full-service restaurant — it has moved into the former Prather Ranch Meat Co. space, and while it has 30 seats for dining, it's a fast-casual, counter-service operation. It appears that they've been softly open already this week for those passing through the Ferry Building, but the grand, official opening is on Sunday.

And hours will be somewhat restricted. Yun tells the Chronicle that Lunette will be open 10 am to 6 pm on weekends, and from 11 am to 7 pm from Wednesday to Friday next week. Eventually it will be open seven days, but Yun says she wants to keep the closure time early to improve employees' work-life balance.

Will there be more to come from Yun, besides this Ferry Building outpost? That seems certain. The chef and La Cocina alum says she's hoping to start a hospitality group whose mission will be to promote and celebrate Cambodian culture.

Previously: Nyum Bai Chef Bringing Noodle Bar to SF's Ferry Building