Guest chef pop-ups bring something special to the table this spring.
A la carte offerings from Immi's Kevin Law, who recently guest chefed at Turntable at Lord Stanley. (Courtesy of @turntable_sf + @immi.sf)

Guest chef pop-ups bring something special to the table this spring.


Food is the globe's best cross-cultural ambassador. It nourishes us with the history and heritage of those whose experiences are unlike our own, and delights our senses in unexpected ways.

So on the rare occasion that a restaurant brings in guest chefs to collaborate and share their culinary perspective, we can’t help but sit up and take notice.

This spring, some of our favorite San Francisco restaurants are showcasing their talent alongside renowned gourmands hailing from Hawaii to Vancouver to Spain...and closer to home. Get a taste of something special at these upcoming guest chef series.

Abacá and Friends

(Courtesy of @restaurantabaca)

Chef Francis Ang and team created their new guest chef series, Abacá and Friends, as a way to bring the community together to explore the global influences in Filipino cuisine. It’s a much needed opportunity to gather and “be human” in an unforgiving industry, says Ang. The monthly event will bring lauded chefs from near and far to take the helm at the critically acclaimed Abacá for one delicious night. Coming up on April 13th, Vancouver-based Mark Singson of Top Chef Canada fame, will craft a four-course meal with dishes like pork belly and shrimp with pinakbet and pork rib jus, Dungeness crab raviolo with taba na talangka and coconut, and sans rival baked Alaska. On May 16th, Ang hands over the reins to Tara Munsod of San Diego’s Animae, followed by local star Srijith Gopinathan of Copra in June.

// 2700 Jones St. (Fisherman’s Wharf),

Third Culture at Nisei

(Courtesy of @nisei_sf)

Last month, Michelin-starred Nisei launched Third Culture, a series of collaborations with talented first- and second-generation AAPI chefs who’ve developed innovative genres of cuisine. At the monthly, two-day event, chef David Yoshimura will work alongside the guest chef to prepare a multi-course meal celebrating diversity in food. At each dinner, guests will also get to listen in on a chat between the chefs that dig into the challenges and successes of mixed cultural identities and the cuisine they inspire. Coming up April 15-16, snag tickets to taste the menu developed with Ki Chung of Bar Maze in Honolulu. On May 6th, James Syhabout of Oakland’s Commis will cross the bay for the Third Culture collaboration, followed by Nae Ogawa of NatuRe in Honolulu, June 24-25.

// 2316 Polk St. (Russian Hill),

Turntable at Lord Stanley

(Courtesy of @turntable_sf)

ICYMI, Lord Stanley, Nob Hill’s Michelin-starred Cal-European restaurant, ditched its original concept in favor of something completely different back in 2021. Turntable at Lord Stanley now operates as a permanent homage to chefs from around the globe. Tastemakers take up monthly residencies in the restaurant’s kitchen to showcase their skills through three- and four-course prix-fixe menus for those dining in, and a la carte to-go options. Through April 1st, check out the stylings of Parisian chef Eduardo Gonzaléz (Jaja, Glou, Bon Vivant Paris), including dishes like beef tartare with smoked cream, radishes, and brioche; poached halibut with trout roe beurre blanc and cabbage; and crispy suckling pig with colatura glazed chard. April 5th through 29th, catch Argentinian chef Mecha Solís (Tegui, Cafe San Juan, La Cantina) and her famed alfajores.

// 2065 Polk St. (Nob Hill),

Global Cuisine Series at Navio

(Courtesy of @navio_hmb)

Navio’s Global Cuisine Series comes with sweeping views of the Pacific. The Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay’s fine dining restaurant will welcome Michelin-starred chefs throughout the year to collaborate with chef de cuisine Francisco Simón on a seven-course weekend dinner tasting menu and multi-course brunch. Next month, chef Rachel Haggstrom of Paso Robles’ The Restaurant at Justin Vineyards & Winery will join in on the fun, April 20-23. Later this year, the honor will go to chef Paco Perez of Barcelona’s Enoteca, chef Pepe Moncayo of Washington D.C.’s Cranes, and others.

// 1 Miramontes Point Rd. (Half Moon Bay),

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