RJ's Sports Bar, soon to be the latest Dennis Leary bar. [Photo: dgollub/Flickr]
The empire-building activities of Dennis Leary (of Canteen, The Sentinel, Golden West, and House of Shields) continue apace, with the restaurateur announcing not one but two projects to Inside Scoop this morning. The first is his acquisition of the former RJ's Sports Bar at Geary and Leavenworth, which he's planning to turn into a casual bar in the mode of House of Shields, with a program run by HoS bar manager Eric Passetti. The as-yet-unnamed bar will be designed by New York-based Jack Dakin, who's responsible for La Esquina and Barraca, among other restaurants there, and the look will be "international." With Rye right down the street and Bourbon & Branch and Tradition only a stone's throw away, it was a challenge for Leary to snag this bar from other Tenderloin movers and shakers; Scoop notes that multiple other "well-known San Francisco bar folks" were gunning for the spot.
Meanwhile, Leary's also plugging away at a second project, Cafe Terminus, at California and Drumm. Like The Sentinel and Golden West, Terminus will be a takeaway cafe with soups and sandwiches during the day, but unlike those spots, Leary's also hoping to snag a full liquor license and keep it open at night. It's a two-story spot that will have a fair bit of seating for both shifts (unlike the other two cafes, which have little to no seating), but it'll require a full build-out, for which Leary's brought in architect Troy Kashanipour. Both the RJ's project and the Cafe Terminus project are targeting late summer, but that could easily shift in either or both cases.
· Dennis Leary takes over RJ's Sports Bar on Geary, plots another restaurant downtown [Inside Scoop]
· All Dennis Leary coverage [~ ESF ~]