Paxton Gate's plans for the interior. [Photo: Courtesy of Third Rail]
Inside Scoop checked in with Phil West and Jeff Lyon of Range to see how their renovation of the former Retox is faring for its planned opening this fall. The bar now has a name, Third Rail, derived from a bourbon cocktail that was on one of Range's earliest drink menus; it's also a nice play on the T rail line that will run right outside. The bar will seat 49, and the focus will be craft cocktails, with a quadrant menu of four cocktails in each of four categories (spirituous, citrus, aperitif, and seasonal). There's no kitchen, but they'll have a jerky bar with a variety of dried meat from a local producer; drinkers will be able to buy their jerky by the ounce, like at a candy shop. The bar will also feature four local beers and three wines (a red, a white, and a sparkling wine) on draft. Here's a sample cocktail list (subject to change, of course).
Lyon, who's been West's bar manager at Range for some time, had initially planned to strike out on his own with the project, but after admiring the way West ran Range, he asked him to join him as a partner. For his part, West says the Dogpatch neighborhood reminds him of the early days of Valencia, when Range got started: "Everyone said we were too far down Valencia, that we screwed up. We would tell people that we're between 19th and 20th and people always said we're too far down," West told Inside Scoop. Because he and his wife lived in the neighborhood, they persevered, and now the middle strip of Valencia is, of course, booming.
Paxton Gate will be designing Third Rail, incorporating a train-station motif with a faux awning and Deco-inspired platform corbals. Even the banquettes will be designed to resemble the wood benches in a train station. The bar is targeting a mid-September opening.
· Third Rail bar in Dogpatch on track [Chron]
· Range's Phil West and Jeff Lyon discuss Third Rail [Inside Scoop]
· Range Team To Open New Dogpatch Bar Next Year [~ ESF ~]