2875 18th Street, San Francisco | ositosf.co
Chef Seth Stowaway, whose résumé includes Mister Jiu’s and Bar Agricole, has launched what is billed as the only fine dining restaurant in the City that cooks all of its food over a live fire. “The biggest challenge is controlling temperature. It turns what were once simple, quick tasks into longer, more focused processes,” says Stowaway, who adds that he is “most excited to create anything delicate, but bold in flavor and idea.” The $295 15-course repast — the Ocean and Orchard menu, new for February, is a tribute to the sea and California’s coastline — relies on a steel-and-brick hearth by blacksmith Jorgen Harle. The ticketed dinners feature one menu per night, with seatings at 5 and 8:30 p.m. When Stowaway opened Osito, which derives its moniker from his nickname and translates to “little bear” in Spanish, he also debuted an adjacent bar, Liliana. The latter features cocktails and lowballs, as well as a couple of nonalcoholic options. The dishes at Liliana also showcase the wood-fire kitchen, including a sourdough flatbread with fonduta, fermented tomatillo, black trumpets and arugula.
One Ferry Building, San Francisco | instagram.com/yespudding
“Banana pudding is the dish that I became in charge of for family celebrations,” says Quanisha Johnson. “Before it became a business, it was just a family favorite.” While it may be what put her on the culinary radar, Yes Pudding’s new brick-and-mortar spot is proof that her talents extend beyond the crowd-pleasing dessert. Part of the inaugural group to receive funding from San Francisco’s Dream Keeper Initiative — a program that invests in the City’s Black and African American community, including businesses and entrepreneurs — Johnson, along with her sweet and savory varieties of custard and bread puddings, can now be found at the Ferry Building. The venue provides “a great opportunity to make Yes Pudding a San Francisco staple,” says the Ingleside native, and also to “help create jobs and opportunities — even inspire younger generations to start businesses in areas they are passionate about.” Among the best sellers are the banana pudding (of course), bourbon caramel bread pudding and mushroom fontina, though we suspect that the new Croque Madame bread pudding will be a big hit, too.
144 South B Street, San Mateo | fogbird.co
After operating 31st Union in downtown San Mateo for nine years, David and Susan Hunsaker shuttered the business and hit the reset button. Last month, they introduced the 60-seat cocktail lounge Fogbird, not far from their old restaurant that closed in March 2021. To transform their new space — previously a tiki bar — the couple enlisted designer Je Anne Ettrick, who worked in partnership with Laura Sears Designs. Now, brick walls and walls lined in a botanical motif serve as the backdrop for sipping cocktails such as the Fogbird Paloma and the Swan Song (created with Hendrick’s gin and Chareau aloe liqueur) while noshing on light bites, including cheese and charcuterie boards, pretzel knots and spicy chickpeas. In addition to providing the community with a “moment of respite,” as the Hunsakers put it — hence the name that evokes the beauty and tranquility of the Northern California coast — Fogbird offers in-person and virtual cocktail classes as well as canned cocktails for those wishing to imbibe at home.
KMD Design & Antiques Atelier
275 Primrose Road, Burlingame | karimcintoshdesign.com
In addition to starring in her projects, antiques are part of interior designer Kari McIntosh’s DNA: Her mother owned an antiques store. “Antiques are a passion of mine … I learned from her,” says McIntosh, whose KMD Design & Antiques Atelier soft-opened a couple of months ago; a grand opening party is slated for this spring. Supply-chain issues and environmental concerns make antiques all the more appealing right now, she notes. McIntosh’s inventory includes “the types of items that I like to incorporate into my design work: seating, storage and accent pieces,” she says. “Unique and bespoke artisanal gifts from artists I admire” — like Colette Cosentino’s art kits, paperweights and prints, as well as Llane Alexis’ textile creations — are also stocked, along with Cabana magazine, Trudon candles and Assouline books. McIntosh imbued her new venture with a gallery sensibility, including rotating quarterly installations and a gold-leaf wall treatment by decorative artist Caroline Lizarraga. Browse the atelier for antiques and inspiration Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (or by appointment). NHG