Wednesday Eight: Castro Food Hall The Myriad's Grand Opening Is Saturday

Plus Smokestack gets a new chef and menu, Cafe Flore gets sold, the Planning Department inserts itself between Ike's and Sweet Inspiration, and don't you want to go to a Museum of Ice Cream?

[jump] Smokestack Gets a New Chef and Expanded Menu (With Texas Caviar!)
Smokestack at Magnolia Brewing (2505 Third St.) has followed up the new menu at its Upper Haight sister restaurant Magnolia Pub with a new menu of its own, assembled by incoming executive chef Brandon Korf, who arrived from North Beach's La Trappe. The chalkboard menu has been given over to the specials, but the beef jerky and the pastrami are still there, plus Korf added things like tri-tip, a sausage sandwich with pimento cheese and Texas caviar, plus sides like summer succotash and German potato salad. Because it's Magnolia, they didn't omit the liquid end of things, either. There's a new happy hour, it includes barbecued oysters, and it's also got a version of an Old Fashioned in addition to all the beers.

Cafe Flore Getting Sold
While San Francisco is reeling from the possible-but-by-no-means definite end to The Stud after an imminent tripling of the rent, over in the Castro, the 43-year-old Cafe Flore (2298 Market) is about to be sold as well. Co-owner Stu Gerry, who's been part of a group that's only owned the place for two years — and did some very visible renovation work — told Eater that he can't afford to finish the job, and the low-seeming sale price reflects the fact that they're retaining the liquor licenses. Gerry is a real estate agent who owns several commercial properties and doesn't sound especially optimistic that things will continue as they are. 
Also, the Castro was once largely a Scandinavian and Nordic neighborhood, and Cafe Flore's address was at one point the site of Finnila's Finnish Baths, a famous and well-regarded non-gay bathhouse that opened in 1910 and hung on until 2000 (albeit at several locations).

Russian Hill La Boulange Location to Become Split

The former La Boulange at 2300 Polk St. will become San Francisco's third Split Bread, whose other two locations are both in SoMa. While a logical replacement in terms of feeding Russian Hill its breakfast, Split will be open for lunch and dinner, and serve wine and beer. The estimated opening date is mid-September.  

Fusebox Expands in West Oakland
Inside Scoop reports that Fusebox (2311A Magnolia, Oakland) will soon cede its title of “West Oakland's smallest food and drink establishment,” as the mostly Korean purveyor of Tokyo po' boys and gochu jang grilled chicken will expand into the space next door, enlarging the bar and making room for 60 warm bodies.

The Myriad's Grand Opening is Saturday
The Myriad, the food hall at 2175 Market Street, has slowly been filling up with tenants since March, and it's now ready to announce itself to the world. This Saturday from 10 a.m. until midnight, there'll be a grand opening celebration featuring a ton of live music — and plenty of vendors, including Mrs. Jones, Antonik’s BBQ, Crepes S’Il Vous Plait, Homestead Cookies, Le Bread Xpress, NoNaMe Sushi, Poke Delish, Raw – A Juice Company. San Francisco Brewing Co. and The Cro Café. (Just note that “Hot Baked Goods” is actually an act, not a bakery, and they'll take the stage from 3:30-5:30 p.m.)

Sixth Street Chronicles: The Argentum Project 
In addition to the forthcoming Pentacle Coffee, the block of Sixth Street just south of Market is set to get another cafe. Hoodline reports that The Argentum Project (47 Sixth St.) will open sometime this fall, serving mostly to-go Italian and Greek food. (Is it just me or does the name “Argentum Project” sound like government research into time travel from some supernatural thriller?)

Planning Says Not-So-Fast to Ike's and Sweet Inspiration
If the phrase “conditional use authorization” gives you warm fuzzies, you'll no doubt be riveted by the news that 31-location Ike's Sandwiches, which is vacating its 16th Street location later this summer and hoped to shack up with nearby Sweet Inspiration (2239 Market), got snared by S.F.'s formula-retail ordinance. Hoodline reports that Ike's also got dinged for some minor violations like selling sandwiches via a different menu and putting its name and logo in the window. The net result is that the Castro may soon become both Ike's-less and Cafe Flore-free, which sucks.

There Is a Museum of Ice Cream
In the event you visit New York between July 29 and Aug. 31, and one of the days is so humid that you want to remove your skin, consider stopping by the Museum of Ice Cream, in the Meatpacking District right near the Whitney. It's got a “sprinkle pool” and edible balloons, and admission is $18 for one adult. Your ticket includes ice cream.

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