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Bar Food That Goes Beyond Beer Nuts

Scotch Egg Trick Dog

Trick Dog's updated bar classic, the Scotch Egg. Photo by Eric Wolfinger

The Spaniards have had it right all along. Drinking snacks, which they call tapas, need not be dumbed down and greasy. They just have to be delicious, flavorful, and easy to chow. Now, the city’s American bars—and not just self-styled gastropubs—are following suit, keeping people on stools a little longer with tasty noshes to soak up a buzz.

Trick Dog is a prime example. The craft cocktail bar with Mission cred serves Michael Bauer-approved foodstuffs, including a hot dog-shaped burger made with ground chuck, sirloin, and brisket dubbed the Trick Dog, as well as a kale salad with parmesan, pumpkin seeds, and avocado. Yes, kale salad. In a bar.

The trend is everywhere. Larry Piaskowy of 
Bar Jars spoons homemade fava bean hummus, deviled ham, and chicken liver mousse into bar-friendly containers that are nowoffered at Blackbird and Reed & Greenough. Meanwhile, The Galley at Clooney’s Pub (Mission, 415-206-1388) does a spin on French onion soup, served in sandwich form. At Hi Tops, imbibers can tear into a well-seasoned pork chop on a stick or one of the best fried chicken sandwiches in town. And at Two Sisters Bar and 
Books, sophisticated brunches bring deviled eggs topped with fried capers and subtly spiced pickled vegetables.

Don’t miss notable pop-ups like the monthly Truck Stop Café at Truck, where Humphry Slocombe’s Jake Godby puts duck fat to work in Chex mix; and the equally ducky Tango & Stache from Bar Bambino alum Joshua Wilder Oakley, whose duck egg-laden pork tacos and the like make regular appearances at Rye and Big. With booze infused into almost everything he makes—from Negroni-braised pork belly to Wild Turkey jalapeño pickles—Oakley’s eats give bar bites an extra shot.

This article was published in 7x7's June issue. Click here to subscribe.