Looking for someplace new to try? Here’s your monthly reminder of five new spots that just opened around town. Have fun out there!
Freshly open on Polk Street in Nob Hill is this new venture from the Acquerello team (Giancarlo Paterlini, Suzette Gresham, and wine director Gianpaolo Paterlini) with their new executive chef they carted up from Los Angeles, Adam Tortosa (INK, Kiwami). It’s a strong team, so expect delicious things. The menu is contemporary and small-plates oriented, with dishes ranging from lobster ceviche to corn ravioli (you’ll find Italian and Asian influences on the menu). Cocktails are a highlight, with Christopher Longoria (previously Aziza) leading the show. Designer John Wheatman’s interior is understated and comfortable, with 75 seats, a communal seating area, a long bar, and an open kitchen. 1760 Polk St. at Washington, 415-359-1212.
This new restaurant in Ingleside (do you even know where that is?) may be a bit of a schlep, but then again, it was a schlep to Oakland to eat at the original location. This restaurant has a cult-like following for its Laotian dishes, like fried rice ball salad and noodle soups. The new location is open for lunch 11 am–3 pm and 5–9 pm for dinner; the menu is the same as at the Oakland location. 613 Faxon Ave. at Ocean, 415-349-4186.
Some may be tempted to consider this new Cole Valley establishment a wine bar, but food is very much a focus here (we’re not just talking charcuterie and cheese, peeps). The opening menu has a variety of bruschette, a couple mozzarella plates (including bufala), panini, and more. Owner Claudio Villani was previously the wine director at Perbacco, and at inoVino he decided to focus on Alpine and volcanic wines of Italy. Look for some very good values on some very tasty wines. The chic look includes a Carrara marble bar, sleek metal wine racks along the wall, and room for 30. Open at 4:30 pm every day except Monday. 108 Carl St. at Cole.
The Divisadero Corridor has a spiffy new addition that is bringing some Mexico City sabor to the neighborhood. It has an eclectic, modern-cantina look, full of vintage Mexican furniture on the wall behind the 20-seat zinc bar, plus colorful tiles from Mérida, and custom-made furnishings. The dining room has room for 60, and the menu from executive chef Ben Klein offers modern takes on traditional Mexican fare. You can start with a chicharrón de arroz with guacamole (made with rice flour), and there’s egg with chorizo, and “Tierra y Mar,” with crab and rib-eye. There’s also quite the selection of mezcals to choose from. 661 Divisadero St. at Grove, 415-440-4500.
The Upper Fillmore has a new watering hole that looks like it was transported from decades ago. White-jacketed bartenders, booths upholstered in dark red, and walls packed with old photos help build a retro look. The owners are Albert and Klaus Rainer (of the popular Leopold’s); chef Raymond Tamayo is serving American dishes like chilled corn soup, steak tartare, and prime rib. Cocktails ring in for less than $10, and there’s a long mahogany bar where you can enjoy you drink. 2298 Fillmore St. at Clay.