Last fall we talked to married co-chefs Evan and Sarah Rich, who worked together in the kitchen at Coi (Evan is now back there as chef de cuisine for the time being) before launching their Chef's Night Off pop-up series, about their semi-delayed plans to open a restaurant somewhere in town. On Super Bowl Sunday, the Scoop was scanning the liquor license apps and spotted the Riches in the process of taking over the Paul K space at 199 Gough Street. The concept for their still unnamed restaurant, opening sometime later this year, will reflect the kinds of places in which they like to eat examples they gave us earlier of favorite spots were Camino and Outerlands, and the thoughtful, modern California food at their pop-ups has some things in common with both.
They had also talked about wanting to replicate some of the livelier energy of New York restaurants in their eventual restaurant. "We want that energy in the pop-up, and in the place we eventually open," Evan said. "We want it to be a little louder, the music a little louder, a little more boisterous, with relaxed service."
Update: Evan writes in to reiterate, "At this point there aren't that many details to talk about. We want to keep the restaurant low-key and inviting with a heavy focus on the food."
Between them, the Riches also have stints at Quince and Michael Mina on their résumés, but it's clear from their pop-up practice rounds that their intent is to bring some of that fine-dining technique into a more casual framework.
The new space will seat about 50, and we'll update you as further details develop. You can look out for future pop-up dates on their Facebook page.
Also, Paul K will remain open for an indefinite period, pending the liquor license transfer, etc.