Looking for somewhere new to eat? Here’s your monthly cheat sheet of five brand-new places that recently opened around town.
Hear that? It’s the Rooster’s Song, a cocktail on the Bon Vivants–crafted list at this Basque newcomer, calling you to order it (it’s made with Lustau gran reserva brandy, Cappelletti, Byrrh, and tomato tincture). You may as well order some pinxtos to go with it too, before your table is ready in the dining room. Chef Ryan Pollnow (Central Kitchen) has crafted a menu of Basque dishes with some Cali spin—you can try housemade charcuterie, tapas-sized plates like the can’t-miss double-fried patatas bravas (trust), plus some larger cazuelas (like lamb albondigas). You’ll be able to learn all about (read: drink) Spanish wines too. The stylish space is in the Swedish American Hall, where the Café du Nord café and offices used to be—stand by for the downstairs to open in a month or so (the menu will be different than Aatxe). Dinner nightly. 2170 Market St. at Sanchez, 415-471-2977.
The Mission has a new Southern neighborhood restaurant from partners Miguel de Ocampo and Jaime Chavez, who actually took over a former Laundromat. The menu is wallet-friendly, with all dishes running less than $18. You can snack on potato chips with pimento cheese dip ($6), and then tuck into some chicken and waffles ($14), which you’ll also find on their brunch menu, plus shrimp and grits. They’re making a bunch of items by scratch, including house-cured bacon. There’s outdoor seating, and solo diners can snag a seat at the bar. Lunch, brunch, and dinner served. 2848 23rd St. at Bryant, 415-341-1031.
No, it’s not that Jiro, but this Jiro Lin (Hamano) is incredibly talented at crafting beautiful sushi (he has been making it for 24 years). This very unique omakase experience is a temporary pop-up at the chic and exclusive Saison chef’s counter, next door to the restaurant. Only eight people can sit at the black walnut counter, and you’ll have the individual attention of Jiro as he places piece after piece of exquisite nigiri in front of you. It’s a very special and elegant experience, with beautifully sourced and prepared seafood and seasonal ingredients; the entire meal starts at $220 (pairings are an additional expense at $100). The pop-up is wrapping up at the end of May, so if you can afford it, reserve now. 178 Townsend St. at 3rd St., 415-716-6008.
Melissa Perello has graced the city with a sequel to her beloved Frances, and the lucky folks in Pacific Heights all let out a collective cheer (it’s in the Quince and Baker & Banker space). You’ll hardly recognize the dining room, which is now all airy and rustic chic, with an open kitchen in the back. Start your meal with some small plates, like the beautiful toast and spicy “deviled egg” (two items that we see a lot of these days, but of course Perello elevates them). The menu continues her unique NorCal cuisine style with some French roots, and a little Italian too (her paccheri with clams is so delicious). You’ll find vermouth cocktails and a deep wine list from beverage director Paul Einbund. And save room for dessert from pastry chef Sarah Bonar, like the creamsicle float. Dinner nightly. 1701 Octavia St. at Bush, 415-408-7507.
This new Jackson Square restaurant is from the Hi Neighbor restaurant group (Stones Throw, Fat Angel), and they’re offering an unexpectedly generous experience in the city: every night, a three-course prix-fixe menu for $35 is available. You’ll be able to choose from a couple dishes in each category (appetizer, entrée, and dessert), and you can have a pasta supplement for $10. Chef Jason Halverson is offering an appealing menu of comfort dishes made with a modern hand, and even though the plating is quite beautiful, you’ll still walk out well-fed (our mains one night were short rib “pot roast” with potato gratin, and pan-roasted salmon with farro and an orange-sherry vinaigrette). The wine list also has some special deals, and many beers to choose from as well. And the room has an urban yet welcoming style, so enjoy. Dinner nightly. 531 Jackson St. at Columbus, 415-772-0922.