SOMA's upscale locavore restaurant Radius has completed its transformation in record time, and this evening, it'll be back in action as El Capitan, a more casual Latin and Caribbean-inspired restaurant from the same owner, Jon Whitehead. Helmed by industry veteran Mark Furr, most recently of the Broken Record, El Capitan will offer drinking-friendly small plates like ceviches (in varieties like coconut-achiote, shrimp and octopus aguachile, and scallop-yuzu-passionfruit), frybread tacos (oxtail, pork cheek, and harissa rock cod are among the options), and short ribs with sweet potatoes and mole. Almost everything on the current menu is under $15, though in the coming weeks, he'll also roll out some pricier large-format dishes intended for sharing, like whole fish and suckling pig. The whole affair is intended to be more in line with the needs of the neighborhood, where a burgeoning tech scene means greater demand for casual post-work spots.
On the booze side of the equation, Whitehead has added more beer taps and upped the wine selection; he's also offering sangria by the pitcher. Loophole cocktails will be phased in over the coming weeks, and the restaurant has a full liquor license planned, which should come online later in the spring. The space mostly looks the same, but the art has been updated and the bar seating expanded to give it a more hangout-friendly vibe; more interior touches will be added over the coming months. Also of note: the next-door Radius cafe, also owned by Whitehead, has already reopened as Carafe. Its menu is similar to that of its predecessor, but with more of a focus on healthy food by day, and an expanded wine list and wine-bar vibe at night. The two restaurants share a spacious back patio, which will be a bonus for warm evenings. Hours for El Capitan are Tuesday-Thursday, 5-10 pm, and Friday-Saturday, 5-11 pm, with happy hour from 5-6:30 pm.