The Treasury Is Where the Federal Reserve Could Convene Over Drinks

The first thing you need to know about The Treasury is that the team behind it has done a really good job with lighting. I recognize that this ranks fairly low on the list of reasons why people go to bars, but I'm experiencing chronic Edison-bulb fatigue syndrome and even to think about looking at another illuminated filament is positively enervating! So let me just insert a few clapping emoji with respect to the mood this place sets through its chandeliers, and crystal ball fixtures on beaded chains.

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That team, by the way, consists of Arnold Eric Wong (of Bacar, E&O Kitchen and Bar, and the now-shuttered wine bar Eos), Phil West (Range, and Third Rail), and Carlos Yturria (A16, Range, and Absinthe). They've put together a cocktail and bar bite menu that's full of regal touches — and indeed, you can elect to have $130 Tsar Nichoulai caviar service and a dozen oysters on the half shell for $39 — as well as comforting things like pigs in a blanket with Savora mustard.

But it's a bar, and you go there for cocktails. Priced in the $13-$15 range, they're a little more Manhattan than San Francisco, but then again, this is the Financial District, so a bit of inflation is a given. The best of the four that I tried was the smooth, balanced Standard Oil (Rittenhouse rye, Dolin Rouge vermouth, Drambuie, and coffee bitters). If you're iffy on naming things after evil corporations of yesteryear, head for the Shark Tank (Cutty Sark 108 scotch, huckleberry and coconut shrub, absinthe, and lemon) which dresses up the tartness of a Cosmopolitan with some smoke and perfume-y depth. 

Back to the decor. The Treasury occupies a corner spot in a former bank with high ceilings (and therefore some echoey acoustics) but lots of mosaic tile. It's opposite the Blue Bottle Coffee that opened last June, and both are sited correctly to catch or avoid the light of day. There are also ornamental pieces flanking the doorframe that look like giant matches — a nice touch. The Federal Reserve could convene here over drinks when it's time to raise interest rates again, or you could have a leisurely afternoon of Champagne and chicken liver mousse. Just don't show up in sweat pants.

The Treasury, 115 Sansome, 415-578-0530.

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