Eats and Beers

Another Long Line For Empty Calories Headed For 24th

The Crème Brûlée Man, the purveyor of desserts disproportionally popular with social media professionals, connoisseurs of San Francisco's litany of beigeist eateries, and people who just plain like sugar lit on fire, has announced he's opening a new shop on 24th Street.

Yum.

[Twitter]

Gentrification Conspiracy Theory of the Week, Divisadero Edition: Bi Rite opens, Da Pitt closes. Check Mate, NOPA?

Just over a month after Bi-Rite Divisadero opened it's tiny, velvet roped doors and pay-by-the-hour parking service, neighborhood BBQ staple Da Pitt has been served an eviction notice. The full rebranding of the Divisadero strip from “Western Addition” to “NOPA” is hereby complete. Haighteration has the scoop on the eviction. Get it while you still can. 

Pic via Haighteration.

Medjool's Roof Deck to Become a Latin Street Food Cocktail Lounge Buzzword Something Something

Remember when Medjool had a roof deck that we all hung out on top of on warm summer night?  Me neither.  But the folks at Lolinda hope to revitalize the roof, bringing us a most buzzable spot to squander away our evenings. SF Magazine has the details:

Everyone would probably be relaxing in a rooftop restaurant on this glorious Monday, so let’s talk about Lolinda. Since Adriano Paganini opened the restaurant in August, customers have constantly asked when the notorious roof deck will swing back into action. No one has been up there since Medjool closed in early 2012, but we’ve known for a while that Paganini had something special in store. Late last week, he revealed that the roof will be called El Techo de Lolinda, offering a new menu of Latin street food and classic Latin cocktails like mojitos. El Techo will be open for dinner every night of the week, and for brunch on Saturday and Sunday. The whole space has gotten a major overhaul—apparently with some rather fancy and amazing Australian heat lamps.

[Thanks, Sam!]

Bender's Is Hosting A Monthly Cheese Club And This Is Very Exciting News

Cheese

Queso here's the deal: Bender's is now hosting a Stinky Cheese Club on the third Tuesday of every month (tonight! 5pm!) because Bender's is a magical place staffed by beautiful geniuses who were put on this earth to make us happy. Here are the details from the Facebook invite

The Cheese Stands Alone!

Every 3rd Tuesday join Tuula and Mikey for the monthly meeting of the STINKY CHEESE CLUB.

Come down, bring some cheese (or crackers, meats, pickles, etc…) and get a free can of PBR or Well Drink, and enjoy the spread…

There you have it! Come provolone or bring a friend, but be sure to pitch in your favorite wedge. Either way its guaranteed to brie a grate evening. 

Silly Danish Brewery Still Thinks Mission Kids Are Called Hipsters

Gray sends us this alluring photo of a crowded refrigerator and a quick review of Evil Twin's unfortunately named Mission Hipster Ale: “It's like a typical Dolores kid: brightly colored, proud on the outside, but somewhat boring and bitter on the inside.”

(For what it's worth, the brewery describes their creation a bit more favorably: “This super-exclusive, counter-culture pale ale is dedicated to ‘The Mish’ aka Mission District in San Francisco. It’s an homage to skinny jeans, tote-bags, fixie bikes with drop handlebars and Dolores Park.”)

Anyway, if you're looking for some somewhat boring and bitter beer, you can grab a pack at City Beer Store in San Francisco's 'NoMi' aka North of the Mission neighborhood.

Rite Spot Cafe Backhandedly Makes NY Times' 10 Favorite SF Bars List

In an obvious attempt to gin up their alt cred, the New York Times recently swung through the Mission during an otherwise “old news” San Francisco bar crawl. (Unless you haven't heard of Vesuvio and Tosca, in which case it is most definitely new news.)  The result?  Rite Spot, a beloved but thankfully sparsely trafficked bar, made their favorites list.  And their enthusiasm jumped off the page:

Rite Spot Cafe looks like a white tablecloth Italian restaurant about to breathe its last.

Normally I'd criticize them for this sorry observation, but if anyone knows anything about having one foot in the grave, it's The Times.

Does this mean fancy, borderline-discerning Times readers will start flocking to an our favorite Italian restaurant that serves $4 whiskey shots?  Is Rite Spot over? (Also, did I really just link to a clip from Portlandia? Can someone start a Change.org petition to have me banned from life?)  We can only hope not.

[via Grub Street | Photo by Ariel Dovas]

Alcohol Claims Lives of 50% of Curry Up's Windows

Curry Up Now has been blinding Valencia passersby with their ample lighting for three weeks now, and they've already endured two instances of “drunk fools” making a deconstructed knuckle/glass fusion plate with their front window.  The chain restaurant seems satisfied with blaming boozed up hooligans with the destruction, but we can't help but think if they've served one to many vegetarians meat.

[Thanks for the tip, JM!]

Mission Beach Cafe Not Paying Their Employees?

Days after the neighborhood was rocked by news that Mission Beach Cafe's compostable forks have tendency to break, we couldn't help but notice reports that they had shut down “until further notice.”  Oddly, their pastry case was full and presumably safe for affluent human consumption, and it seems really unlikely that anyone would close a restaurant on account of defective greenwave.

So what was really behind the closure?  They told Eater that it was because of a “gas leak”, which strikes us as made up, given the lack of Twitter freak-out and the fact they couldn't pin down a reopening date.  And there are two neighbors claiming on Twitter that the staff “walked out” because “they didn't get paid.”

It's curious that a popular restaurant with near-constant lines out the door and $15 huevos rancheros on the menu would be struggling to pay their kitchen staff (or, worse, deliberately not doing so).  Then again, it's all a rumor.

For now, they're back open—their gas leak is 'fixed'.  We'll update if we hear more.

[Photo by dvtdl?]

Gestalt Debuts Arsenal of Pinball Machines

When I was up in Seattle for a long weekend recently, I inadvertently squandered far too many hours in a flawlessly shitty dive by the name of Shorty's.  For those of you that are unfamiliar, Shorty's has seemed to amass a Zeitgeist-like popularity up there, and for good reason: its walls are lined with arcade games and amusement park oddities, and they have an entire back room dedicated to pinball (15 machines in all). Plus, drinks are priced the way drinks should be priced (cheap) and they serve above gas station-quality hot dogs.  You know, the stuff good bars are made of.

So when I say I “squandered” too many hours there, that's not to say that Shorty's wasn't worth the time, because it most certainly was and is.  But it was my first time ever in Seattle and I had planned on seeing as much as I could, not blowing the better part of a Friday night feeding quarters to decades-old machines in the mixed company of yuppies and drug addicts.  So when I went to cash my second ten dollar bill in for quarters, I couldn't help but feel my attraction to this place was less about what Shorty's does well, but more about what San Francisco doesn't do at all.

For all the things we get right, our bars have become awfully dull and monotonous.  The industry spends so much time differentiating between cocktail menus and light fixtures that bar owners seemed to forget how to make their places fun.  Besides ordering sillypants drinks like a “gently bound”, we're lucky if a bar has anything besides a single pool table/pinball machine, (internet) jukebox, and an occasionally functional ATM.  Darts?  Hardly.  Events? Rarely. Mini-golf course?  Forget it.

So as that Friday night in Shorty's grew old and my index fingers tired, I got the most serendipitously perfect text from my friend Erika: the above photo with the message, “Gestalt debuted an arsenal of pinball machines. 5 total.”

Fuck. Yes.

Now, obviously, Gestalt isn't Shorty's.  At least not yet.  But, they sell cheap beer and sausages, which is basically an upscale take on the hot dog, and are making a legitimate attempt to open a mini-arcade in a bar.  Plus, all their equipment actually works, which is more rare than you'd think in this town.

As the bartender told me on my third visit in two weeks, “We're hoping Gestalt becomes a place people come to play games.”  Then he got someone to cover the bar so he could indulge in a round on Funhouse.

So far, the response to the shift has been so strong that they're already looking for more games to fill the place with.  And let's hope it keeps that way, if only so the next time I'm in Seattle I can stand in line for 2 hours at the first ever Starbucks or something.

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