The Plumpjack Group team behind Forgery and Wildhawk, its popular new cocktail bars, finally turned their attention to the group’s aging MatrixFillmore this summer, remaking the nightclub as a toned-down cocktail bar and reverting to the earlier name Matrix. Meanwhile, the team has rechristened the back room as The Concorde, its own pop-up “bar-within-a-bar” that, in keeping with contemporary trends (think ABV’s Over Proof or Trick Dog’s biannual menu swaps) is a rotating concept that will change twice a year.
MatrixFillmore opened in 2000, when PlumpJack hospitality group bought and revamped Matrix, the historic rock venue founded by Marty Balin of Jefferson Airplane, which had become a DJ-focused nightclub in the ’70s. PlumpJack, as politicos will know, was founded by Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom before he launched his political career, starting with the Marina wine store PlumpJack Wines in 1992.
PlumpJack decked out MatrixFillmore with turn-of-the-21st century design, making it a one of the Marina’s hippest clubs of its day. The only problem was the fact that it remained the coolest club of 2000 well into 2017.
After a brief closure for remodeling, gone are the champagne vending machine and chic fire place, and in their place are a couple of pinball machines, simpler decor, and generally more relaxed design from the firm ShopWorks. The focus these days is on cocktails, thanks to Jacques Bezuidenhout and Ken Luciano, the Plumpjack duo behind Wildhawk and Forgery. Their drinks list is below, and there’s also some bar food available, plus a new Aperitivo Hour, with discounts on options like Negronis and Aperol Spritzes.
Tucked in back is the new Concorde bar, billed as a tip of the hat to 20th Century London hotel bars. There, guests can expect tea sandwiches, table-side martinis, and the like under bar director Christian Clark. Other drinks include a Ritz Club Old Fashioned (Bing cherry Knob Creek bourbon, sugar, vanilla aromatic bitters, large ice cube), and a Connaught Martini made with either gin or vodka and served “fresh and floral” or “umami and dirty.”
During its temporary stay, The Concorde is open Thursday through Saturday from 8 p.m. onward. It can be rented out for private groups.