Earlier today came news that Mr. Bing’s, the grungy, 50-year-old North Beach drinking institution, has been sold to new owners, and will likely close. It is a strange time in a city that has been struggling with an identity crisis, as many of the places that have made it so weird and wonderful place have succumbed to rising rents, aging owners, and a cadre of other afflictions.
Anthony Bourdain, champion of dirty dives and the souls of cities, is a fan of the dark, late-night environs of Mr. Bing’s, having visited it during the filming of his show The Layover in 2012. Eater SF reached out to Bourdain for comment on the demise of Mr. Bing’s as we know it. In typical Bourdain fashion, he pretty much sums it up:
In a follow-up to his 2012 visit to SF, Bourdain famously told The New York Times: "Anyone who doesn’t have a great time in San Francisco is pretty much dead to me. You go there as a snarky New Yorker thinking it’s politically correct, it’s crunchy granola, it’s vegetarian, and it surprises you every time. It’s a two-fisted drinking town, a carnivorous meat-eating town, it’s dirty and nasty and wonderful."
Here’s to keeping things dirty, nasty, and wonderful as long as possible. Stay tuned for more.