The Tablehopper

Corey Lee’s latest venture, In Situ, is like culinary art

Brown oyster stew, benne, and Charleston ice cream (Sean Brock, Husk). Photo: Eric Wolfinger


As if the reopening of SFMOMA wasn’t exciting enough, chef Corey Lee’s (Benu) ambitious concept In Situ (151 Third Street, 415-941-6050, is now open. Each menu dish is from a different chef, painstakingly re-created (as much as ingredients allow) by Lee and his team. The menu is like a gallery of chef artwork from around the world.

There is a staggering and impressive lineup of global legends including Martin Picard (Au Pied de Cochon), Juan Mari and Elena Arzak (Arzak), René Redzepi (Noma), Massimo Bottura (Osteria Francescana), Anita Lo (Annisa), and locals like Alice Waters, David Kinch, and even Alex Hozven and Kevin Farley of The Cultured Pickle Shop.

In addition to a dining room menu, there is a lounge menu (for walk-ins). Lounge dishes include a lettuce sandwich with fermented romaine, goat cheese, and olive oil from Christian Puglisi of Relæ ($12, Copenhagen, Denmark); while the dining room menu includes brown oyster stew with benne and Charleston ice cream from Sean Brock of Husk ($28, Charleston, South Carolina); guinea fowl larp Chiang Mai from David Thompson of Nahm ($24, Bangkok, Thailand); and Umami Soup with miso-marinated wagyu, asparagus, Inaniwa udon from Hisato Nakahigashi of Miyamasou ($38, Kyoto, Japan). And, of course, there’s an homage to Cecilia Chiang of The Mandarin with guotie pork, shrimp, and cabbage pot stickers ($12). Take a look at In Situ’s Instagram for more images, and visit the website for more menu items.

The restaurant is currently serving from 11 a.m.–4 p.m. and will be extending to 9 p.m. in the coming weeks.


There is something high profile going on in Mina land: The latest pop-up concept at Mina Test Kitchen (2120 Greenwich Street, 415-310-8371, is International Smoke, on which Mina is collaborating with cookbook author Ayesha Curry (The Seasoned Life: Food, Family, Faith, and the Joy of Eating Well, and yes, she’s Steph Curry’s wife). The focus is “the lighter side of barbecue, grilled, and smoked meats with flavors from all around the world and fresh seasonal produce.” All dishes will be served family style; tickets are $45 for the four-course menu, and additional courses for a supplemental price. Reservations are tough to land after Steph Curry and Drake came by on opening night, but you can try. Open Wednesday through Saturday.


A few months ago, Union Larder owner Jay Esopenko tipped me off that he had a new project coming, and now that the ABC paperwork has hit the wires, I can tell you more. Esopenko and his wife Melissa Gugni’s first project, Little Vine in North Beach, is about to have a neighbor: The Salzburg (663 Union Street), which is moving into the former Cinecittà space.

Esopenko says it will be an Austrian wine tavern (heuriger) featuring food, wine, and beer influenced by Germany, Austria, and Northern Italy. “The drink focus will be on the wine regions surrounding the Alps and their American counterparts like Tatomer, Massican, Matthiasson, Forlorn Hope, and Teutonic. Our house wine is being made by Sandlands and we’ll also have a stellar beer selection with over 10 on tap.”

As for executive chef Ramon Siewert’s menu, look for house-made sausages and salumi, and because this location has a grill and fryer, there will be schnitzel, a burger, and other dishes, too, many inspired by Alpine wine regions. Union Larder’s cheese director Kristi Bachman will be in charge of the Alpine-focused cheese program.

The same firm (8inc) that helped design Union Larder will be the architects for this project. They will completely demolish the interior and facade (the front windows will open completely), and they will add a 500-square-foot heated patio with a fireplace out back. There will also be a small dining area downstairs available for private events with room for up to 20 guests. I’ll keep you posted as things take shape.

If you come to the iconic Da Flora (701 Columbus Avenue, 415-981-4664,, you won’t be seeing owner Flora Gaspar on the floor anymore. After opening the restaurant in 1994, she has sold it to her chef, Jen McMahon, and McMahon’s husband, Darren Lacy. Scoop reports Gaspar just turned 60, and it sounds like she wants to ease up and focus on her new shop next door, Rialto Mercato, which we told you about late last year. Don’t expect much to change (except maybe some more reservation-less folks will be let in — Gaspar was notorious for her watchdog stance at the door), and she will still be doing the wine list for Da Flora.


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Marcia Gagliardi writes a popular insider weekly e-column, Tablehopper, about the San Francisco dining and imbibing scene; get all the latest news at Follow @tablehopper on Twitter and Instagram for more culinary finds.