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French-Tunisian Bistro L'Aviateur Headed to the Mission

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The eastern Mission is about to get an infusion of French bistro fare, with news that L'Aviateur is headed soon to 21st and Alabama. Tablehopper broke the new project, which will occupy the former Rock Nation Café space. A family business, L'Aviateur comes from French-Tunisian chef Maha Laforge and her husband Vincent, whose time as a pilot for Air France inspired the name (French for "the aviator").

Joining Maha in the kitchen is son Joseph Steinacher, who has a pastry focus and five years spent cooking in France under his belt. The menu will be a mix of North Africa, French and Mediterranean cuisines (think tagines and moules frites) and the initial focus will be on lunch and an afternoon French and Tunisian-inflected tea service. Dinner service may be added later, depending on the neighborhood's needs.

The rotating seasonal menu will feature a salad, a soup, two appetizers and two entrées daily, with a small selection of French and California wines available by the glass. And in a smart move, the Laforges plan to sell any leftover lunch items for each day's service by weight as a ready-made take-home dinner.

The intimate corner space seats 25, plus additional sidewalk seating for 20 to enjoy the Mission's sunny days, Parisian-style. With some inspections and a liquor license still to be granted, L'Aviateur is targeting a late April opening date.

· Some Details on L'Aviateur, Coming Soon to the Mission [Tablehopper]
· All Coming Attractions [~ ESF ~]


2850 21st St. San Francisco CA