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News for Restaurants in San Francisco
December 2008 Archive

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Want to know who's doing what in your city? Gayot has the restaurant news you want to read on openings, closings, special events, and more. Learn everything you need to know about the restaurants in San Francisco here.

RESTAURANT NEWS

Openings

Big news for wine country diners---chef Michael Chiarello, formerly of Tra Vigne, host of the Food Network's "Easy Entertaining" and founder of NapaStyle-brand luxury food products and tools, opened new restaurant Bottega on December 5. Housed in an historic Vintage Estate building in Yountville (140-year-old brick and timber are visible throughout the space), the restaurant's design by Michael Guthrie combines rusticity with Napa sophistication, and features five communal tables, arched brick doorways, imported Murano chandeliers and antique windows. Two indoor dining rooms seat 118 with views onto an exhibition kitchen; a covered outdoor terrazzo features two wood-burning fireplaces and seats 66. A lounge and full bar offer enoteca fare, and the regular menu showcases Chiarello's refined, farm-to-table Italian cuisine. Dinner nightly. Bottega, V Marketplace, 6525 Washington St., Yountville, CA 94599, 707-945-1050.
 
Stylish Japanese enclave Ozumo restaurant and lounge---known in San Francisco for its high-brow sushi and robata grill dining, extensive sake list and contemporary allure---has opened a second location in downtown Oakland. The 8,000-square-foot East Bay location features more than 90 brands of sake, seating for 78 in the design-rich dining room, a full bar and wine program, and spacious and luxurious private dining rooms. Executive chef Jennifer Nguyen helped open ajasteak in Chicago, and worked for a time with "Iron Chef" Masaharu Morimoto. Dinner nightly. Ozumo, 2251 Broadway Ave., Oakland, CA 94612, 510-286-9866.
 
New eateries continue to flourish along Fillmore Street in Pacific Heights, including a second, larger location for Dosa, the Mission District South Indian restaurant. The new space at the corner of Fillmore and Post has a grand, seductive feel and a broader menu of South Indian dishes (including more fish and meats) as well as a brand new cocktail program designed by Jonny Raglin (Absinthe Brasserie & Bar, Nopa) and an international, eco-friendly, boutique wine list. The room is stylish, high and deep and features floor-to-ceiling windows and a mezzanine, and much of the venue's design features green materials and functionality. Ingredients remain local, sustainable and organic. Dinner nightly, Brunch Sat.-Sun. Dosa, 1700 Fillmore St., San Francisco, CA 94115, 415-441-3672.
 

News Bytes

Chez Papa Resto Recession Resto
Provençal restaurant Chez Papa Resto has cut menu prices by as much as 20 percent to help during tough financial times. Lunch options include a selection of tartines averaging $10, such as the prosciutto and coppa tartine with cambonzola aïoli, or a roasted eggplant and mozzarella version with roasted peppers, pistou and tapenade. Seasonal winter entrées from chef David Bazirgan (Baraka, Chez Papa) include seared scallops with roasted squash, chestnuts, apples and pomegranate glaze; and roast pork tenderloin with chanterelles, Brussels sprouts and sauce poivrade, both for under $25. Happy hour prices (Mon.-Fri., 5 p.m.-7 p.m.) include $6 cocktails and bar bites. Chez Papa Resto, Mint Plaza, 414 Jessie St., San Francisco, CA 94103, 415-546-4134.
 
Christmas Dining
Many restaurants across the Bay Area will provide special and/or prix-fixe options on Christmas Day. Examples include Café de la Presse's brunch and a four-course, prix-fixe dinner option; McCormick & Kuleto's Seafood Restaurant's à la carte lunch and dinner, featuring holiday specials such as lobster Thermidor and filet mignon; and Urban Tavern's holiday buffet from noon-6 p.m. Americano will present a three-course, prix-fixe menu of celebratory, farm-to-table dishes in three seatings---call to reserve a slot. In Palo Alto, Quattro Restaurant & Bar in the Four Seasons Hotel will feature a three-course prix-fixe menu all day from 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Call individual restaurants to inquire.
 
Champagne Wishes
Wine-focused restaurant bacar is offering a special menu of well-known and boutique Champagnes by the glass, half-glass and flight throughout the month of December. Hard-to-find vintages and small-production Champagnes will range from between $18-$99 a glass. New executive chef Morgan Mueller's accompanying menu will include bubble-friendly bites such as caviar with buckwheat blini and crème fraiche and oysters with verjus mignonette. bacar, 448 Brannan St., San Francisco, CA 94107, 415-904-4100.
 

Chef Shuffle

It's official: Silks in the Mandarin Oriental, San Francisco has a new culinary team led by now permanent executive chef Joshua Nudd. Nudd specializes in contemporary, Asian-inspired cuisine, and has trained under chefs Puck, Vongerichten, Hefter, Bracken and Hirabayashi, and worked in The Belvedere and Spago Beverly Hills, and Chambers Kitchen in Minneapolis. He is joined by chef de cuisine Orlando Pagan (Ducca, Gary Danko), pastry chef Nicolas Rose-Rankin (Gary Danko) and Australian-born sommelier Nicole Kosta, who trained under Master Sommelier Madeline Triffon. Along with maintaining Silks' high standards for fine contemporary dining, the elite team will also focus on providing approachable-yet-elegant food options for the hotel's MO Bar. Silks, Mandarin Oriental, San Francisco, 222 Sansome St., San Francisco, CA 94104, 415-986-2020.
 
Chef Ron Boyd has been promoted to executive chef of Aqua, the Financial District destination for fine seafood dining. Boyd served as chef de cuisine of the restaurant for the past two years under now corporate executive chef Laurent Manrique. Boyd's well-rounded Bay Area history includes stints at Pisces, Elisabeth Daniel, 231 Ellsworth, Hawthorne Lane and the Lark Creek Inn, and he was executive chef of Grand Café before joining the Aqua team. Aqua, 252 California St., San Francisco, CA 94111, 415-956-9662.
 

Closings

Tajine, a Polk Gulch neighborhood favorite for inexpensive Moroccan, has closed. Despite the citywide following for Mohamed Ghaleb's b'stilla and tajines, the chef has shuttered the restaurant for personal reasons as of December 2, 2008.
 
Napa's sprawling COPIA: The American Center for Wine Food & The Arts has proven unsustainable. All related facilities on campus, including restaurant Julia's Kitchen, have closed and the organization has filed for bankruptcy. COPIA: The American Center for Wine Food & The Arts, 500 First St., Napa, CA 94559, no phone.
 

CULINARY EVENTS
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