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Four New Restaurants to Check Out This Month

The upstairs dining room at Gaspar. Photo by R. Brad Knipstein Photography.

Looking for somewhere new to eat? Here’s your monthly cheat sheet of four brand-new places that recently opened around town. 

Bartlett Hall 

This handsome new tavern has opened near Union Square, and it’s a big ’un, with 140 seats (just wait until you see the loooong bar, with plenty of barstools for you to plunk down at). Bar manager Brandon Presbury (previously Locanda) will take good care of you (try a barrel-aged cocktail, or the 49er Gold Rush, with bonded bourbon, lemon, honey syrup, and Fernet Branca, which makes it extra San Franciscan). You can order small plates like the delicious miso- and maple-glazed ribs (and yay, a bar menu is served until 1:00 a.m.). The chef is Eman Eng, previously at Maverick—which is why you’ll see Maverick's famed butter burger on the menu. Flatbreads and farro risotto keep things Californian, along with the beer and wine selection (they will be house-brewing beers soon). There are a bunch of TVs, so here’s your spot for World Cup viewing, Giants games, and more. 242 O’Farrell St.

Gaspar

Ready to learn about the location of your next hot date, after-work cocktail session, work lunch, or girls’ night out? This swank brasserie is conveniently located in the Financial District, with two levels, and look at that, two bars too. The décor is sexy, inviting, and detailed, with vintage chandeliers and lots of patterns and textures. Of course, le menu is French, with a variety of dishes from chef Chris Jones, like a multi-layered crêpe dish with smoked salmon, a selection of raw seafood, escargots (oui!), some soups and salads, and mains like duck breast and naturellement there’s a steak—you’ll find some tartines and a burger for lunch too. The cocktail list by Kevin Diedrich is destination-worthy in and of itself, and be sure to save room for Chucky Dugo’s superb dessert menu. 185 Sutter St. 

Kusakabe

For a town that loves sushi as much as we do, count this place a feather to add to our cap. Many sushi fanatics are already well acquainted with Mitsunori “Nori” Kusakabe, who was previously at Sushi Ran in Sausalito. This is his own solo venture, an intimate space with 31 seats in the Financial District. The kaiseki menu is a set menu ($95) focused on harmony and seasonality, and will feature some unique and lesser-known sushi styles, not just Edomae (Tokyo) style. There is also an à la carte menu you can order from as a supplement to the omakase menu. It has a very calming atmosphere (with lots of exposed brick)—you can sit at the elm bar, and there are tables as well. Dinner only Tuesday – Sunday. 584 Washington St. 

Red Dog

Whether you live/work in SoMa or you’d like a fresh option for a bite before the next ballgame, chef-owner Lauren Kiino has you covered. This spacious and minimalist restaurant has a full bar, plenty of seating, and an outdoor patio is coming very shortly. The menu is rustic and approachable, and includes a delicious Scotch egg, salads (like one with little gems, sweet peas, and bacon), a burger, healthy choices like a Massa brown rice and vegetable bowl, and you may recognize the amazing egg salad sandwich here—yeah, it’s the one she made famous at Il Cane Rosso at the Ferry Building, her other venture. Weekend brunch is also happening (the slow scramble with avocado toast, crescenza cheese, and dandelion greens sounds like a winner). It’s the kind of neighborhood restaurant you’ll wish was in yours. 303 2nd St.

 

Marcia Gagliardi is the founder of the weekly tablehopper e-column; subscribe and get more food news and gossip at tablehopper.com. Follow her on Twitter: @tablehopper.