The Anchovy Bar, the latest project from the team behind the State Bird Provisions team, is at long last cracking open and peeling back on Thursday, October 8. It was originally slated to open in April, but of course, the pandemic had other plans. “The goal was to open in the first two weeks of our local anchovy season,” says chef and co-owner Stuart Brioza. Instead, they’ll be catching the tail end, as it winds down in the next two weeks. Regardless, it’s a thrilling new opening from a star team, and there’s lots of other fish on the menu, which is teeming with anchovies, oysters, and butter.
It’s located at 1740 O’Farrell, in the former Fat Angel Space, just around the corner from State Bird and Progress, keeping all three restaurants firmly within the Fillmore District. For now, diners will have their choice between a parklet with six tables outside, and three tables inside the dining room, as Brioza is boldly declining to do takeout, and focusing on sit-down dining. It’s a relaxed menu flowing all afternoon, from 11:30 in the morning to 8 at night. “Come for some wine and oysters, maybe pregame with some anchovies,” says Brioza. “It’s an all-day oyster bar.” Reservations, which are required, are going faster than those slippery little fish.
The menu’s local anchovies promise to be a special treat, pulled from local fishermen, and quick-preserved as soon as they land in the kitchen. They’re also importing anchovies from Spain and Italy, for a taste of those famous regions, served with creme fraiche, thinly shaved vegetables, and crisp ciabatta. The menu keeps rolling into raw oysters, barbecued oysters, butters and spreads, and fish and meat. Desserts from chef and co-owner Nicole Krasinski are always highlights, and Brioza said the wine list called for “porch crushers” worth drinking outside.
The Anchovy Bar is now open Wednesday through Sunday, 11:30 a.m to 8 p.m. Stay tuned for the full menu details and fish photos.