If we had to pin a cliche on this fall's restaurant trends, we'd call it "back to basics." Daniel Patterson and Lauren Kiino's Bracina exemplifies that with its neighborhood restaurant feel and focus on pastured meat. Yerba Buena's Bluestem steakhouse also aims to serve sustainably raised, virtuous local beef, while Mayes Oyster House is a return to an old-school seafood and steakhouse of yore. Look for straightforward meat and vegetables and a less foam on the menu unless it comes atop a craft beer. Check out our list of anticipated openings below.
Address: Jack London Square, Oakland
Concept: A neighborhood restaurant and bar from Lauren Kiino and Daniel Patterson serving simple but high-end food, including pastured meats and cocktails.
Why we're excited: We got a taste of Lauren Kiino's restaurant management and menu design with Il Cane Rosso. This is the chance to further that experience in a legitimate restaurant with seating and a bar.
Anticipated opening date: December
Address: 1 Yerba Buena Lane (at Market Street)
Concept: A huge steakhouse/brasserie (6,700 feet) that will anchor Yerba Buena Lane
Why we're excited: Craft LA veteran Michael Magliano will create a menu of only meat from sustainable ranches.
Anticipated opening date:
Address: 3870 17th St (at Pond Street)
Concept: A more casual way for chef Melissa Perello to serve food she mastered at Fifth Floor and Charles.
Why we're excited: Perello has been looking for a space for more than a year and finally found one this summer. For someone not to give up on a project that daunting indicates a high level of commitment. Hopefully the food will follow.
Anticipated opening date: Fall 2009
Quince moving to Myth space
Address: 470 Pacific Ave. (at Montgomery Street)
Concept: Quince restaurant will move to the downtown space, where it will open an adjacent casual dining component.
Why we're excited: The restaurant's management has added some heavy hitters to the staff, like wine director David Lynch and pastry chef William Werner. The casual dining aspect means we might actually be able to eat there.
Anticipated Opening Date: Mid-September to early October
Address: 650 Gough St. (at McAllister Street)
Concept: A specialty rum bar from the man who started Alameda's Forbidden Island
Why we're excited: Martin Cate is one of the area's foremost cocktail experts, and he's been making a serious study of rum leading up to this opening. Also, that treasure hunt game was enough to pique anybody's interest.
Anticipated opening date: First week of November
Address: 758 Valencia St. (between 18th and 19th streets)
Concept: Late-night eatery for missionites. Custom made macaroni and cheese to burgers to "earth surf and turf"
Why we're excited: This is a chance to get decent, late-night food in a neighborhood where you're likely to find yourself closing a bar. A step up from Taqueria El Farolito, there still won't be anything over $14.
Anticipated opening date: December 1
Mayes Oyster House
Address: 1233 Polk St. (at Fern Street)
Concept: Re-opening the original as a seafood house with raw bar, cocktails and dancing.
Why we're excited: Love to see a place that has hosted flash-in-the-pan concepts like Midpoint and Holy Grail get taken back to it's old-school style.
Anticipated opening date: October 1
As-yet unnamed birreria from Beretta team
Address: 2175 Chestnut St. (at Pierce Street)
Concept: A neighborhood beer and cocktails joint with a specialized Italian menu that includes Roman pizza.
Why we're excited: Lots of pizza around, but this place will specialize in not-that-common Roman 14-inch pies. Combines the cocktail pedigree of Berreta with the beer mastery of Starbelly.
Anticipated Opening Date: November
Address: 2790 Diamond St. (at Chenery Street)
Concept: Decent, mid -range Italian food and wine in Glen Park from the owners of Higher Grounds café across the street.
Why we're excited: It's a somewhat run-of-the-mill neighborhood casual Italian place in Glen Park, but it's exciting because it's been in the works for so long. Word first came about the place summer 2008.
Projected opening date: Fall 2009
Address: 680 Second St. (at Townsend Street)
Concept: The owners of District wine bar are shooting for a day-time project. The café/diner will serve lunch to the SOMA office crowd.
Why we're excited. This team knows from quality and design, so the end result promises to be a cut above the greasy spoons and over-the-top holdouts from the dot com boom.
Anticipated opening date: Early September