San Francisco may have lost its last definitive lesbian bar when the Lexington Club closed, but Wildhawk is still channeling the female spirit of the place. Opening tonight, Wildhawk is a new bar in the Mission from Jacques Bezuidenhout and Ken Luciano, the team behind SoMa’s Forgery, who were inspired by Lola Montez, a San Francisco dancer in the 1800s who was apparently known around town as a "wild hawk" (which we’re guessing meant badass back in those days). The bar is owned by Hillary and Gavin Newsom's PlumpJack Group (MatrixFillmore, Balboa Café), but Bezuidenhout and Luciano are overseeing the drink program and Karri Cormican came over from Comstock Saloon to handle daily operations. Incidentally, the team currently running the bar is all-female, which is a happy coincidence given the bar’s theme.
The drink menu focuses on vermouth, but is pretty comprehensive with other spirits, beer and wine. As for food, bar bites and snacks like charcuterie and crudo from chef Howard Ko (now at Balboa Café, and formerly at Meadowood and Goose and Gander) do the trick. Designer Jay Jeffers went for a sleek, sexy, dark vibe inside the 49-person-capacity space, actualized through bold black and white prints with emerald green accents. The result is a boudoir feel, in the best possible way.
During soft opening (through the end of April), Wildhawk is open Wednesday and Thursday from 5 p.m. to 12 a.m. and Friday and Saturday from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. Starting in May, hours will be Monday through Thursday from 5 p.m. to 12 a.m., Friday from 5 p.m to 2 a.m., Saturday from 2 p.m. to 2 a.m. and Sunday from 2 p.m. to 12 a.m.