San Francisco Restaurant Celebrates Bay Area History
An ode to the City by the Bay, Bartlett Hall opened in San Francisco’s Union Square in May, aiming to capture the essence of the city with its food, drinks and upbeat, quirky atmosphere. Named for mayor Washington Allon Bartlett, who changed the city’s name from Yerba Buena to San Francisco in 1847, the restaurant is located in a building that dates back to 1914 and features original moldings and steel columns. More modern design pieces include exposed brewing equipment that’s used to make beer in-house, a media wall and a cabinet of curiosities. Bartlett Hall has a seasonally driven menu that blurs the line between restaurant and bar. The offerings span snacks, pizzas and larger dishes, including the Wild King Salmon served with potato gnocchi and The Maverick, a Kobe butter burger topped with cheddar and stout rarebit (entrées are $16 to $30). The drinks list features a handful of specialty cocktails ($11), such as the Tessie Wallbanger, comprising Gruven vodka, Mission Blonde ale, lemon and carrot syrup. The venue also offers craft brews from local and European producers, including Lagunitas Pils and Anchor Steam ale ($5 to $8 a draft pour, bottle or can), and a California-focused wine list with roughly 30 labels ($9 to $15 a glass; $34 to $129 a 750-ml. bottle).
ESquared Hospitality Adds Mexican Venue In NYC
Better known for its BLT-branded, meat-focused eateries, ESquared Hospitality unveiled the Mexican concept Horchata in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village in May. The restaurant specializes in authentic regional fare and drinks, including spiked horchatas, Tequilas and mezcals. The venue has a warm and comfortable interior with reclaimed wood and exposed brick. Horchata’s menu lists fresh guacamoles and salsas, tacos, ceviches and larger entrées like Carne Asada and Pollo al Horno (dishes are $6 to $25). Signature cocktails include The Papi Chulo, made with Gran Centenario Añejo Tequila, Bols Crème de Cacao liqueur, Ramazotti amaro, pineapple, lime and ginger beer. Horchata also offers Margaritas, Mojitos and Caipirinhas, as well as Mexican beers ($6 to $7 a draft, bottle or can) and Latin wines ($10 a glass).
- Stephen Starr expanded his New York City holdings this spring with the debut of his Mexican concept El Vez in Manhattan’s Battery Park City. The contemporary venue celebrates Mexican-American culture with regional cuisine and creative specialties. The bar emphasizes Tequila and Margaritas.
- Michelin-starred chef Jason McLeod debuted Ironside Fish & Oyster in late April in San Diego. The venue features a large raw bar, an in-house bakery and a European-style open kitchen. Operated with drinks experts CH Projects, Ironside’s beverage program boasts more than 50 cocktails and 26 draft beers.
- Modern but approachable French fare takes center stage at Le Garage Beer Bar & Frites, a gastropub that opened in late April in Baltimore’s Hampden neighborhood. The venue highlights Belgian, French and local beers, offering 14 tap handles and myriad bottles, along with boutique spirits and French wines.
- Taking an international approach to artisanal Italian fare, Tanzy is a locally minded restaurant with global roots. The concept debuted in Los Angeles in May and features a raw bar, cured meats, pastas, and larger meat and seafood dishes. Mixologist and sommelier Adam Seger heads the drinks program.