Market Square, a.k.a. Twitter HQ, which set this whole thing off.
We've already talked extensively about the big land grab going on in western SOMA, where the combination of Twitter workers and comparatively inexpensive spaces (for SF, anyway) have been luring the likes of Daniel Patterson and the AQ guys to the party. In a big article for the Chron yesterday, Paolo Lucchesi talked to a variety of restaurateurs, both those who've already committed to the area and those who are considering dipping a toe into the pool. Here are the most important data points from the big piece.
· Dominique Crenn is considering opening a second restaurant, which may or may not be in SOMA. She's apparently gotten quite a few offers from developers down there.
· Bill Russell-Shapiro of the Absinthe Group (which also includes Boxing Room, Arlequin Cafe, and Arlequin Wine Merchant) is bullish on the area; considering that he's a former urban planner who nailed the appeal of Hayes Valley back when it was a non-entity, that's a big vote of confidence. All he'll say is that he's "pursuing new possibilities" in the area.
· Daniel Patterson's still-unnamed restaurant at 10th and Market will be an "inexpensive, fast, very cocktail-driven, everyday kind of place." No timeline as of yet.
· Progress is being made on Lauren Kiino's Red Dog at Second Street Plaza, which she says will be a 100-seat gastropub serving rustic food. The Il Cane Rosso chef will also have a coffee shop, Fearless, in the space.
· The Market Square building (a.k.a. Twitter HQ) still only has one tenant, the AQ team's Bon Marche, but they have room for three more: a 6,300-square-foot restaurant space, a 5,600-square-foot space along Stevenson Alley that can be subdivided into two restaurants, and a 22,000-square-foot retail food market space that will likely thrill area residents, as the neighborhood is pretty short on grocery options.
· Gayle Pirie and John Clark of Foreign Cinema, who were the avatars of the mid-Market restaurant rebirth with four-year-old Show Dogs and now Machine Deli, aren't seeing the benefits yet. "The pieces are there and it's happening, but how long can a single family business maintain that?" says Pirie.
· Restaurateurs leap into Mid-Market [Chron]
· Daniel Patterson to Open Casual Spot at 10th and Market [~ ESF ~]
· AQ Folks to Open Bon Marché in Twitter Building [~ ESF ~]