Nick Cobarruvias and Anna Sager Cobarruvias, the husband-and-wife partners behind Son’s Addition in the Mission, are putting the finishing touches on their new restaurant in the Lower Haight. Unlike Son’s Addition, which showcased the chef’s years at French-inflected restaurants, this new restaurant Otra draws on his Mexican heritage, starring fresh masa in tortillas and tamales, vegetable-centric dishes, and spicy tequila and mezcal cocktails.
Nick is the chef, coming through Marlowe and Jardiniere, and Anna manages the front of house, having worked at Maverick and SBE hospitality group in LA. The couple opened Son’s Addition in 2017 with an eclectic menu, and it’s now known for kimchi deviled eggs and roasted bone marrow, as well as fun brunches and family-friendly vibes. At the time, they joked it was a substitute for a third child.
Their daughters are now just 5 and nearly 7 years old, and in fact, the Cobarruviases weren’t expecting to have another restaurant child quite so soon. But when a space opened up in their own neighborhood, they jumped. They signed the lease in November 2019, hoping to open by May 2020, before the pandemic derailed that plan. But they say both their landlords have been “amazing partners,” and they feel like the city is ready. “The people demand,” says Nick. “That’s the feeling. People are getting vaccinated, and they want to go out, and hopefully we’ll get busy.”
The new menu at Otra is going to lean into modern Mexican comforts, riffing on the foods Nick grew up with in Texas, and what his family likes to eat and drink now. “I love French bistro food, but the truth is my dad is Mexican. I grew up eating Mexican food, and it feels genuine. I don’t think as much while cooking these recipes. It feels fun.” He’s sourcing corn from small growers, doing his own nixtamalization (soaking the corn in lime), and making fresh masa daily, to fold into tortillas and tamales. He’s also making his own queso fresco and slow-roasting salsas. And his family isn’t eating too much red meat these days, so he’s planning to rely on more vegetables and beans.
But Nick says that food and drinks are going to be equally important (“and you know how hard it is for a chef to say that”). Shanti de Luca, a dad friend from Marlowe days, is doing the bar program, pouring tequila and mezcal into spicy margaritas and smoky old fashioneds, some laced with guajillo and habanero chiles. But not too fancy, Nick qualifies. “I didn’t want a hipster bar that takes 15 minutes to make a drink,” the dad says. “I’m too old for that. I’ve got too much shit to do. We wanted good drinks and quick drinks. Drinks that make you want to eat food, and food that makes you want drinks.”
The location is taking over the former Sushiraw at 682 Haight Street, which is an ideal stumbling distance between the Page and Toronado. Nick says they’ve done a good amount of work to the 2,100 square-foot space, which features a bar below, some lofted seating above, and a freshly installed parklet out front. Designer Dan Vickery helped reimagine the space in dark woods and blues and greens, and local artist Rachel Sager painted a big mural on the back. Stay tuned for more details.
Opening day is May 5, just in time for Cinco de Mayo. Opening hours will be Sunday to Thursday 5 to 10 p.m., and Friday and Saturday until midnight with a modified food menu. Brunch will follow in a couple of weeks, as will takeout and delivery options.