In this week's food news, we have the opening of a new bar/restaurant in the TenderNob, some movement at the vacant Bar Bambino space on 16th, and the debut of A16's East Bay spinoff.
First off, last week marked the opening of Redford, the new, much brighter replacement for the former Ambassador. Gone are the leather banquettes and dark interior, and in comes a lot of light from new front windows and several skylights. Two of the guys behind Redford also own The Brixton in Cow Hollow, and it's a straightforward cocktail bar and American tavern, with a food menu that includes things like a pastrami board, a kale salad, mac-and-cheese, pizzas, and a chicken pot pie. The design by Parisa O'Connell is all about Americana, sort of like nearby (and soon-to-close) Big, including a flag motif, and a vintage tractor wheel behind the bar. Cocktails lean toward the classic, with a four-shot "whiskey plank" option featuring the "brown [liquor] of the month," and, just to be different, they're offering wine-and-shot pairings, rather than beers and shots. 673 Geary Street (between Jones and Leavenworth) [Eater, Thrillist]
Next up, we get word via Inside Scoop and the liquor licenses that the former Bar Bambino finally has a taker, after being dark for six months. The new name appears to be Maruya, and it's a Japanese/sushi concept from chef Masaki Sasaki (Hecho, 2G Japanese Bistro) and Raymond Feliciano. There's no word yet on an opening date, but it's likely later this year. 2931 16th Street (between Mission and South Van Ness) [Inside Scoop]
And over in Oakland last week, A16 Rockridge opened, bringing to life the fourth restaurant (including SPQR, and the S.F. and Tokyo branches of A16) for partners Shelley Lindgren and Victoria Libin. The chef at the Oakland restaurant is Rocky Maselli, and the menu is similar to the San Francisco original, though not identical, with a number of Maselli's pasta dishes leaning more toward Puglia, and a fried montanara pizza. Also, in contrast to the wine focus of the Marina restaurant, the Rockridge branch has a full bar and cocktail menu to boot. 5356 College Avenue, Oakland [Chron]