When famed music venue and bar The Sweetwater threatened to shutter in 2007, there were petitions and outrage a plenty, hoping to fight its inevitable closure. The Mill Valley landmark had drawn the likes of Bonnie Raitt, Carlos Santana, Jerry Garcia, Elvis Costello, Hot Tuna (seriously, the list goes on) to its intimate, neighborhood stage since it was established almost 40 years ago by Jeanie Patterson. Naturally, supporters across the country were sad to say goodbye to all that history. Now, although The Sweetwater won't be returning to its original address, The Grateful Dead's Bob Weir and many other partners have joined together to continue The Sweetwater's legacy at The Sweetwater Music Hall , set to soft-open at the Mill Valley Masonic Lodge later this month.
They're going to try to keep the tradition of nationally-recognized acts in a neighborhood hangout atmosphere, but this time around former Bacchus Management Group chef Gordon Drysdale will run an on-site restaurant and catering operation focused on—you guessed it—"locally sourced organic fare." The initial menu will include dinner and happy hour fare, but by Spring they're hoping to have breakfast, lunch, patio dining and even "musical Sunday brunches" totally dialed. And maybe this proves something: coffee from Stumptown will be served.
There will also be much better music technology (read: "cutting-edge Meyer Sound and streaming video technology") to improve the quality and reach of performances. Check Facebook and the early website for updates.