Following a seismic retrofit and almost year-long makeover, Bar Tartine’s new occupant, Stonemill Matcha, has set its sites on a May opening. The cafe and matcha bar will be San Francisco’s first premium matcha experience, wherein diners can enjoy a variety of preparations of the bright green beverage, alongside Japanese cafe offerings.
The idea comes straight from Japan, under the guidance of founder Eijiro Tsukada, and will feature stone ground matcha from Kyoto. The serene environs have been designed — by Boor Bridges — to highlight the process of grinding green tea leaves to create matcha, an educational process Tsukada hopes will expose San Franciscans to the benefits of the drink. As it turns out, much of the matcha often found blended into beverages, ice cream, and other food items aren’t good examples of the delicate flavor of the tea.
Mikiko Yui (Statebird Provisions, Coi) is leading the pastry program, which also includes treats via a collaboration with Tartine Manufactory — those goodies, which include matcha soft serve, matcha-blood orange tarts, and matcha almond cake, will be available at the Manufactory on April 28. When it opens in May, Matcha croissants will be available at Stonemill Matcha, also a Tartine collaboration.
On the savory side, Keisuke Akabori (Delage, Saison) will offer a menu of “elevated Japanese comfort food,” like a katsu sandwich. And of course, there will be matcha, from traditional whisked matcha to sparkling matcha and cold-brew Genmaicha on tap. An retail section will offer matcha-related products to take home, including ceramics from Japanese and San Francisco artists.
Stay tuned for more details on the cafe, which will open in May.