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Saison's Joshua Skenes Planning New Restaurant with Sushi Chef Jiro Lin

Beginning next month, they'll cook together at Saison's chef's counter.

Skenes in Saison's Marin garden.
Skenes in Saison's Marin garden.
Bonjwing Lee

Three-Michelin-starred Saison chef Joshua Skenes surprised the local culinary scene by turning over his chef's counter to under-the-radar sushi chef Jiro Lin for a couple of months, and the partnership has gone so well that Skenes is now looking to help Lin open his own restaurant. While the dynamic duo have yet to sign a lease, they're on the hunt for a petite space in SOMA or the Financial District, with a bar and a small omakase counter for Lin to ply his trade.

In the meantime, Skenes is teaming up with Lin to offer a new menu at Saison's eight-seat chef's counter, beginning next Thursday, June 4. The duo will cook personally for guests each Tuesday-Saturday, with Skenes and his crew providing small plates like caviar and grilled seaweed bread or rockfish and fire-roasted thistle broth, while Lin contributes his signature nigiri. The Saison team will wrap it up with dessert. The price of dinner starts at $225/person and goes up from there, depending on how much guests eat and what dishes they'd like to try. Sommelier Mark Bright will also offer beverage pairings, starting at $100. (Those looking to reserve a seat should call Saison for info.)

With freshly installed GM Alicia Boyes (formerly of Per Se) helping to run the show at Saison, Skenes is also nearing the finish line on his first fast-casual project, Fat Noodle, whose first location will be at 2nd and Mission. As previously mentioned, it's a Chipotle-like Chinese concept with an emphasis on hand-pulled noodles (as well as egg and rice noodles, congee, and rice); diners move down the line and select their own sauces, broths, and toppings. The sleek, modern restaurant is currently targeting a fall opening date, and Skenes says he and partner Adam Fleischman (Umami Burger, 800 Degrees) have an eye on New York as a potential next location if all goes well.


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