Plus Oro shutters, RN74 launches a tasting menu, and the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival screens a documentary about Israeli foodie culture (followed by a chef-heavy reception at Aatxe).
[jump] Oro Shutters
Inside Scoop reports that Jason Fox's Oro (8 Mint Plaza) folded over the weekend. It isn't technically in Mid-Market, but it's close enough to the recently shuttered Cadence and several other large, expensive, and struggling statement restaurants that its sudden closure after nine months is starting to feel like a budding trend. Fox — whose other restaurant, Commonwealth, is doing fine — seems to think so, too: He told Paolo Lucchesi that “I feel like we’ll see a lot more of these (closures) happening in the next six months.” Ruh-roh.
RN74 Has a New Tasting Menu
Executive Chef Michael Lee Rafidi and Sommelier Rajat Parr's RN74 (301 Mission) has debuted a six-course, $75 tasting menu (with optional supplements) called The RN74 Experience with dishes like a steak tartare, chilled cucumber velouté (with whipped buttermilk, bottarga, and chive blossom), and a hand-cut chitarra with an uni “carbonara.” There are two wine pairings available, as well: a standard ($40) and a premium ($60), both created by Lead Sommelier David Castleberry, who just won a StarChef's Rising Star Award.
Bluestem Brasserie's Summer Cocktail Menu
To celebrate the fifth anniversary of Bluestem Brasserie (1 Yerba Buena Lane), co-owner Adam Jed and lead bartender Lindsey Neverisky created an “American Summer Vacation Cocktail Menu” inspired by iconic summer vacation destinations like Cape Cod, the Grand Canyon, and the Gulf Coast. There's a Maui Margarita made with Casamigos reposado, Cointreau, coconut milk and cream, lime juice, and lime zest, with a salted rim; a Summer Berry Julep with bourbon, mint simple syrup, a mint-berry puree; and a Painkiller with Plantation pineapple rum, pineapple juice, orange juice, and coconut.
Presidio Social Club's Summer Beer and Barbecue Garden Series Is July 13-Aug. 31
Executive Chef Wes Shaw will be cooking barbecue all summer, and we're all invited. Every Wednesday afternoon from July 13 – Aug. 31, Presidio Social Club (563 Ruger) will open up its patio for Fort Point beers and different meats, like smoked beef ribs (July 13, Aug. 10), pulled pork (July 20, Aug. 17) or spare ribs (Aug. 3). The series finale is “The Holy Smokes,” an Aug. 31 blowout with a little bit of everything.
It's Australian Black Truffle Season at La Toque in Napa
For the fourth summer in a row, Chef Ken Frank of La Toque (inside the Westin Verasa Napa, 1314 McKinstry), which was instrumental at the Napa Truffle Festival last January, will showcase truffles from Western Australia in two dishes: a Fresh Corn “Polenta” With Australian Black Winter Truffle and Seared Foie Gras, and a Potato Gnocchi with English Peas, Crème Fraîche, and Australian Black Winter Truffles. Frank is as anti-truffle-oil an exacting as anyone, so you know this is going to be fastidiously delish.
SFJFF Screens In Search of Israeli Cuisine, at the Castro Theater
On Saturday, July 23, at 2 p.m, the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival
(SFJFF) will screen Roger Sherman's documentary In Search of Israeli Cuisine, which follows James Beard Award-winner Michael Solomonov as he queries the state of Israeli food culture. Following the film, Solomonov will speak at a reception at Aatxe with its chef, Ryan Pollnow, along with Nick Balla and Cortney Burns of Bar Tartine, and Mourad Lahlou of Mourad and Aziza.
Barnes & Noble to Sell Booze in Four Concept Stores
Struggling bookseller Barnes & Noble decided to do something that Amazon cannot compete with (until a major advance in drone delivery technology, anyway). According to CNN, the chain will open four concept stores — of which one will be in Folsom, Calif., near Sacramento — that will sell wine and beer. Although the other eight members of my book club have expressly forbidden me from writing about it, I will say that this is a great idea for discussion groups that routinely gets into drunken shouting matches over the movie version of the assigned novel. Maybe.