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Virgil's Sea Room Debuts in the Mission

Photo: Jay Barmann

A laid-back new neighborhood watering hole just opened over in La Lengua this week, and it's called Virgil's Sea Room, occupying the bar next to El Rio formerly known as Nap's III. The team behind it consists of Lexington Club owner Lila Thirkield, former Nickies bartender Gillian Fitzgerald, and Tom Temprano, better known as DJ Carnita from Hard French, and the current president of the Harvey Milk LGBT Democratic Club.

As Temprano tells Eater, the name is an allusion to a play by Thirkield's uncle, who's a playwright, and the "sea room" part just had a nice ring to it. We asked if the vintage painting of the tall ship that sits near the back of the bar was any sort of inspiration, and he says, "Nope. We bought that piece from upstate New York to tie the name into the space."

There's a patio in back, which is just over the fence from El Rio's renowned patio, that's still in the process of being renovated and not yet open. And up front, the design by David Marks was meant to convey the cozy warmth of a knick-knack collector's living room.

One section of wall (see below) is devoted to a group of seven local heroes after whom signature cocktails have been named, including the late billionaire banjo enthusiast Warren Hellman, the Brown Twins, Frank Chu, Fillmore-reared soul singer Sugar Pie DeSanto, and the late trans drag performer Vicky Marlane. (The Warren Hellman is our favorite so far ? it's a bourbon mule with basil syrup and lemon.)

There are plans to revive Nap's traditional karaoke nights, but those have not yet begun. Like them on Facebook to see further updates.

Hours are Monday to Thursday, 4 p.m. to 2 a.m., and Friday to Sunday, 1 p.m. to 2 a.m. Drop in for a drink, should you find yourself at that end of the Mission.

· Virgil's Sea Room Taking Nap's III Space [~ESF~]