Things keep percolating in the Marina. Opening in the former Yuzu in mid-January will be The Gipsy Darling (3347 Fillmore Street), a New American restaurant that is a family affair: James Bourque is working alongside the owner and his Peruvian-born mother Margot Bourque (who is working with the assistance of her husband). They come from a corporate dining background, as does executive chef Kevin Fietek, and are excited to launch their first public project.
Their vision is to offer a personable, approachable, affordable, and casual experience. The menu will be updated weekly and fine-tuned based on what their customers like best. Some initial menu items include blood orange and pear toast with micro radish, pear, whipped chèvre, and cracked pepper; duck confit with sweet potato chips, house-made farmer cheese, parsley couscous, and celery slaw; and bacon-wrapped shrimp with creamy Gruyère grits, roasted corn, and fig glaze. They care a great deal about using ethical ingredients and quality sourcing and will be working directly with a Morgan Hill farm for their produce.
With just an 18-month lease, which will then go month to month, they’re having fun with the project, knowing it’s short term. The decor will be playful, with a midcentury look, plus some “new Baroque” elements. The 14-seat sushi bar will be transformed into an open kitchen experience, so guests can interact with the chef. There will also be some booths and regular tables with total seating for 64.
Breakfast will start at 9 a.m., with lunch 11 a.m. to 1:30 or 2 p.m., and then dinner from 5 p.m.; closed Mondays. Beer and wine will be offered. You can follow along on Facebook and Instagram for up-to-date news.
The Dorian (2001 Chestnut Street, 415-814-2671) is now serving weekend brunch from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The menu includes some pastry options like huckleberry scones (two for $5) and cinnamon sticky buns with whiskey caramel sauce ($7), as well as a grilled shrimp chop salad ($17) and a classic toad in the hole ($12). There are also plenty of cocktails, and the raw bar will be in full swing.
Craftsman and Wolves (1643 Pacific Avenue, 415-855-1414) is finally open, so folks on the north end of town no long have to trek over to the Mission for chef-founder William Werner’s inventive creations.
The cafe and pâtisserie serve breakfast items like their frittata breakfast sandwich (you should really try that amazing thing) and pastries, while lunch includes sandwiches, salads, and savory tarts. You can pick up breads and desserts like caramel-walnut-mandarin tarts, or from their retail section, great items like their matcha milk jam.
The space is dark and dramatic, yet full of natural sunlight. MAK Studio is behind the eye-catching and minimal design, which includes a 20-foot pastry case made of stone and blackened steel. There is seating for 18 at both high- and low-top tables. Open Monday through Thursday 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Original U.S. Restaurant (414 Columbus Avenue, 415-398-1300) has relocated to its new home in the former Colosseo Ristorante. It’s open for lunch, with sandwiches, salads, and pasta dishes, while dinner brings white tablecloths and dishes like risotto and osso buco, with plenty of Italian wine to choose from all day. Open daily 11 a.m. to midnight.
Meanwhile, after a year or so of being closed, the Italian deli Geppetto (658 Vallejo Street, 415-291-8811) from the chef of Pinocchio, Giovanni Zocca, has reopened. Not only can you can get sandwiches but also some grocery items. Initial hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Flora Gaspar of Da Flora has opened her new gourmet grocery and wine shop, Rialto Mercato (705 Columbus Avenue), just a few doors down from Da Flora in the former Wing Wah Tailor Co. shop.
Da Flora has been open since 1994, and at Rialto Mercato, you’ll find Gaspar’s favorite ingredients, from the common to the elevated, such as Sicilian jams, honeys, pastas, olive oils, canned tomatoes, and her Red Fangs paprika (as homage to her Hungarian roots). Gaspar is exclusively selling chocolates from Christophe — he has made a chocolate with paprika flakes in it just for her. There are also wines, spirits, unique books, and even some artwork for sale.