Big news for burger fans: Marlowe is reopening for takeout, starting with its legendary burger and cocktails. For the first time ever, its meals will be packaged up as kits, with online ordering available now for pickup on Friday, May 22. For long-time devotees of the stylish black-and-white bistro, the announcement should come as a comfort and relief, satisfying cravings for a serious burger and a stiff drink. Also, it’s just in time for the long holiday weekend and the beginning of grilling season.
Restaurants, like Marlowe, that are located in San Francisco’s currently-deserted SoMa district face some unique challenges right now, Marlowe managing partner Anna Weinberg tells Eater SF. The neighborhood has never been particularly cozy, and when tech companies sent workers home and Moscone Center’s conferences all canceled, the area cleared out fast.
“This is not a neighborhood where everyone is home,” says Weinberg. “It’s like, board up the windows, hide the booze.” Nevertheless, Marlowe is one of the heartbeats of that area, serving its diners for over a decade with deviled eggs and fried brussels sprouts. It has many regulars from inside and outside the neighborhood, all, Marlowe hopes, will be excited to learn that its burger window is back in takeout business.
Starting with meal kits could be a smart strategy, to ensure those burgers and cocktails travel well. The burger kit includes the signature fresh grind of beef and lamb, along with cheddar, bacon, caramelized onions, and horseradish aioli, and serves two people ($40). There are four different options for cocktail kits, featuring bourbon, rye, or gin, and each makes a generous nine drinks ($75 each).
None of these preparations require too much hands-on time, just some searing and stacking, or mixing and pouring over ice. It’s also possible to throw in a green goddess salad or chips on the side, and Weinberg says the team put a lot of thought and care into presenting these favorite menu items. “We just wanted it to feel like Jen is cooking you dinner in your own home,” she says, referring to acclaimed executive chef Jennifer Puccio.
As far as the rest of her Big Night Restaurant Group, Weinberg says they’re looking forward to more specific guidelines from the county on when sit-down service can resume, but in the meantime, it will continue cautiously reopening spots for takeout. Marlowe is Big Night’s first to reopen for burgers and cocktails, and Petit Marlowe, just down the block, is now supporting it as a production kitchen.
Weinberg says that the FInancial District seafood spot Leo’s Oyster Bar might start offering lobster rolls and cocktails within a month, and that North Beach’s Park Tavern could crack open next. British clubhouse the Cavalier may stay quiet the longest, given that it’s situated within the currently empty Hotel Zetta, so fans of those Scotch eggs and lamb scrumpets will have to be patient. Stay tuned for more updates.