Welcome to p.m. Intel, your bite-sized roundup of Bay Area food and restaurant news. Tips are always welcome, drop them here.
- Japantown’s businesses have been hit hard by the pandemic. While many have been forced to close, others have managed to stay open by staying extremely adaptable. Read about On the Bridge, a comforting yoshoku-style restaurant, in the Japantown mall and Benkyodo, the 115-year-old mochi shop, for a lesson in resilience. One important detail from this article: Benkyodo’s owners plan to retire at the end of the year, and will sell (or close) the restaurant. They hope to keep the business in the family, but no deals have been reached, so stay tuned. [KQED]
- Cook through the newly released Mister Jiu’s cookbook with the aid of chef Brandon Jew — via the newly launched “Eat the Book” subscription. Each month, receive the prepped ingredients necessary to cook one of the recipes in Jew’s new cookbook, Mister Jiu’s in Chinatown. It’s an easy way to try recipes without committing to an entire bottle or bag of an ingredient you may not necessarily use often. There’s also a bottled cocktail subscription from Jiu’s Ho Ho Cocktail Club, which is an ideal way to consume cocktails in the comfort of your own home.
- Do not be alarmed, Jug Shop fans who’ve noticed a liquor license application on the window of 1648 Pacific Avenue. The iconic Russian Hill liquor store is moving to that space from its throne at Polk and Pacific, but just temporarily, as its funky, one-story building is turning into a 53-unit building urban density project. The Jug Shop plans to return to the ground floor of that building when it’s completed, with a storefront facing both Polk and Pacific. No matter what happens, it’ll be an upgrade from the dusty, but beloved, liquor shop’s current digs. [Socketsite]
- The first stateside location of Fugetsu, the Japanese okonomiyaki chain, is closing its Santa Clara location and making the move to Sunnyvale, instead. The Fugetsu franchise’s owner will open within another Japanese restaurant, Rokko, owned by his business partner, which will allow him to serve the savory pancakes and yakisoba in person for the first time since the pandemic hit. [SF Chronicle]
- Chefs running pop-ups out of their home kitchens just got a win, in the form of a bill allowing small-scale food operators to sell a maximum of 60 meals per week after they’ve obtained a permit. They can’t have more than one full-time employee or exceed $50,000 in gross sales annually, but they can offer takeout, delivery, even dine-in service at home. [SF Chronicle]