We've been tracking the progress of Black Sheep for awhile and we finally got a break in the case! Co-owner Vanessa Seidler informs us that Black Sheep will be soft-opening this weekend and what's more, she spilled the beans on this new (don't call it a wine) bar.
Okay, here's the straight dope. Vanessa and her co-owner/husband, Joe Seidler, are longtime residents of Russian Hill and have a deep affinity for the neighborhood. When the opportunity came up to buy what is now Black Sheep, they saw it as a fantastic way to get closer with their community and surrounding neighborhoods via sharing their love of food and drink. Incidentally, Vanessa and Joe met in a bar. And it all comes full circle, folks!
Of the concept, Vanessa says, "Black sheep is not a wine bar (there are enough of them in the city!), but just a neighborhood bar. The wine and beer selection isn't tightly focused. We are both curious and like to try a lot of different things." She goes on to say that the menu isn't dictated by price, either. If a beer is good, it's good, regardless of cost. Excellent, choice is key! Some nights I want a PBR and some nights I need to class it up with a Bud Light, ya know? Please note: I can neither confirm nor deny that PBR and Bud Light are on the menu.
Inside the space, you'll find deep red and taupe walls with dark wood beams, and a glossy black bar. Fittingly, a large "Black Sheep" painting is visible from the sidewalk. They did most of the work themselves, and are happy that it falls a little short of perfect. Perfect is overrated, especially when it comes to a neighborhood spot.
Finally, what you sick people come here for: the food. According to Vanessa, there's a definite focus on cheese plates, heavily influenced by the vast selection at Cheese Plus, which is right across the street. Also on the menu are a variety of panini made with seasonal ingredients that pair well with both wine and beer; the Reuben Panini and Prosciutto with fig and gorgonzola are the big hits at their test dinners (or, what do you call it when it's not a dinner? test noshings?). Finally, they're offering charcuterie, savory spreads, and TCHO Chocolate. Mmm... chocolate. [EaterWire]
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