Drink Here Now: 5 Places to Sip This Week


1. The Corner Store Opens: Located in one of the city's more unusual spots (the former Hukilau space at the corner of Geary and Masonic), this new restaurant offers classed-up comfort food like burgers and wedge salad, as well as an extensive cocktail program (all $9) with lots of housemade syrups and sodas. The Strawberry Blonde (gin, cilantro, strawberry syrup, Drake's hefeweizen) caught our eye, as did the Pickled Paloma (tequila, pickle juice, lime, salt, house grapefruit soda). They also offer traditional fountain treats like a black cow or a strawberry soda float, and grown-up desserts like the 50/50 (spiced rum, orange marmalade, vanilla ice cream). Seven draft beers and six draft wines round out the selection. (Tuesday-Friday, 11 am-2:30 pm and 5:30-11 pm; Saturday, 9 am-3 pm and 6 pm-11 pm; Sunday, 11 am-2:30 pm and 6 pm-9:30 pm; 5 Masonic Ave., Western Addition/NOPA.) 

2. The Ice Cream Bar Gets Booze: Also on the boozy soda fountain front, Cole Valley's Ice Cream Bar has finally seen its beer and wine license come through. That means your Touch of Grey (one of our Big Drink picks) will remain unsullied by shots, but a few new drinks take advantage of the limitations, like the Rebound Fling (Speakeasy's Payback Porter, blackberry ice cream, sour cherry syrup, lactart) and the Can't Stop (Drake's hefeweizen, butterscotch syrup, egg, cream, Carpano Antica float). There's also a new savory lunch menu, with classic items like egg salad, grilled cheese, and hot dogs. (Daily, 12 pm-10 pm, at the Ice Cream Bar, 815 Cole St., Cole Valley.) 

3. Two Deals at Grand Cafe: Grand Cafe continues to come up with innovative ways to promote its lounge and new cocktail program. The latest? Green Chartreuse on tap, which may be a first. The digestif (made by French monks) is almost as popular with industry folks as gold standard Fernet-Branca, and it's now available for $5 as a shot or $8 as a boilermaker with a Kronenbourg. There's also a Grand Old Fashioned cocktail on tap ($8), with cognac and Chartreuse. Those who'd rather avoid the green stuff can check out the bar's new happy hour deal: two glasses of sparkling wine and a cone of truffle fries for $10, available until the end of September. (Sparkling wine deal: Daily, 4 pm-6 pm; Chartreuse deals available all evening, at Grand Cafe, 501 Geary St., Union Square.) 

4. Anderson Valley Beer Dinner at Alexander's Steakhouse: Tony SOMA steakhouse Alexander's is hosting a beer dinner tomorrow night with NorCal brewers Anderson Valley, who are best known for their Boont Amber Ale. You won't find any Boont on the menu, though; instead, the brewery's more unusual and rare beers, like a sour stout, Flemish-style red, and barrel-aged imperial stout, will be in the spotlight. Dishes include black cod, roasted squab, and of course, a dry-aged New York strip steak. Tickets are $120 and can be purchased by calling (415) 495-1111. (Thursday, August 30, 7 pm, at Alexander's Steakhouse, 448 Brannan St., SOMA.) 

5. Bar Deals at Michael Mina: With the addition of new chef Ron Siegel, Michael Mina has been in the news again lately, but even those who can't afford the full Michelin-star experience should consider bellying up to the bar for happy hour. They're now offering Mina's classic tuna tartare for $10 (regularly $18), which should pair nicely with one of the $7 Bartender's Choice cocktails. For $5 more, they'll even come up with a custom cocktail to suit your tastes. (Monday-Friday, 4-6 pm, at Michael Mina, 252 California St., Financial District.)


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