The fifth iteration of Mina Test Kitchen, Mina Group’s Cow Hollow restaurant that rotates concepts every few months, will be “Postcards from La Costiera.” The focus will be on cuisine from the Italian Coast, including Lazio, Campania, Sicilia, and Puglia.
The menu, which will include five courses of both family style and individual dishes for $59, is composed of crudo and antipasti, hand-made pastas, roasted seafood and meats, and sides. There will also be an entire section dedicated to caviar and mozzarella, a combination that chef Adam Sobel says will be the restaurant’s signature.
“Creme fraiche and caviar is good, but mozzarella is so texturally great; I’m infatuated with it,” Sobel told Eater SF. Think osetra caviar with burrata, red onion, and lemon on a warm zeppole (Italian doughnut), plus rotating combinations of creamy cheese and caviar. (Check out the full menu below.) Wine pairings will be available, curated by MINA Group’s beverage director Daniel Grajewski, and will be based on the different regions visited by Michael Mina and Sobel on an upcoming Italy trip. Italian cocktails and house-made limoncello will also be on offer.
The idea arose from a forthcoming trip that chefs Adam Sobel and Michael Mina have planned throughout 23 regions of Italy. “We did dirty, red-sauce Italian with [past concept] Little Italy,” says Sobel. “This refined, seafood concept is the complete other end of the spectrum. There’s nothing quite like it in SF.” The chefs will visit with winemakers, butchers, cheesemakers, and more as they travel along the coast, led by legendary guide Livio Colapinto.
Besides the entire concept, one of the biggest changes this time around will be a much-needed renovation of the restaurant that was once the dark and sultry Cafe Claude. Sobel says the space will be much lighter and brighter, and geared toward the “Postcards” theme. So, say ciao to the burnt velvet wallpaper and heavy gilded mirrors that have haunted the past four themes (though it did lend itself well to the Little Italy concept).
The last night to check out the current concept, International Smoke is November 4; following a quick refresh, Postcards from La Costiera will start up on November 12. Tickets are now available via Resy Tuesday through Sunday for dinner.