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Brass Tacks Is Packed With Santa Claus Dolls

And more news to help run out the holiday clock

Brass Tacks

Like most folks, Eater San Francisco will be enjoying the holidays with friends and family, and will return to publication on Thursday, December 26. Until then, here are some news tidbits to enjoy while running out the clock at work, waiting out a delay at SFO, or avoiding those friends and family members mentioned in the prior sentence.

Brass Tacks is covered in hundreds of Santa Claus dolls

The Chron reports that 80-year-old Gary McLain (aka Marlena), who owned a drag bar called Marlena’s at 488 Hayes Street from 1990 to 2013, still hangs out at Brass Tacks, the business that opened in its place. Over the holidays, the bar continues Marlena’s tradition of covering the bar in about 700 Santa Claus dolls. “This year, they added more,” Marlena says. “It looks phenomenal.”

Modern Times Beer opened an Oakland spot

SFist reports that San Diego Brewery Modern Times Beer has opened at Oakland taproom called the House of Perpetual Refreshment at 2410 Valdez Street. Expect 34 beers on tap, a variety of cold brew coffee options, and interior decor that gives the flavor of a “psychedelic color party.”

Sushi Shio, a Japanese-Korean fusion spot, is open in the Mission

According to Hoodline, new Mission District spot Sushi Shiro (206 Valencia Street) “allows diners to select some of the 12 types of nigiri on the $85 omakase menu, as well as request their preferred salt and heat/wasabi levels.” At what point does a restaurant stop being omakase and start being a regular old place your meals are made to order?

San Franciscans reportedly spend $1,982 per year on dining out

The National Restaurant Association says that data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics suggests that San Francisco residents dropped $1,982 on average on restaurant food per year during the 2017-2018 period. This puts SF far behind cities like Seattle ($2,174 per year), and D.C. ($2,165) but ahead of San Diego ($1,864) and Honolulu ($1,816).

San Jose Airport’s latte robot is protected from assault

In a report on Cafe X’s robot coffee bar at San Jose International Airport, VentureBeat’s Dean Takahashi notes that “you can’t reach inside and do any real damage to the robot,” as it’s protected by a kind of “airlock” and “there are cameras in the airport.” This seems to imply that without those protections, SJC travelers would go full Man in Black on that poor little automated barista, proving without a doubt that the violent delights of robot-made airport coffee will indeed have violent ends.