SF Eats: Cathay House to get a makeover, Burmese restaurant coming to Mint Plaza, more

Here's the latest on San Francisco's restaurant scene. In this edition, a fast-casual eatery makes headway at a historic Chinatown building, a new Burmese restaurant is heading to Mint Plaza, and a limited edition ice cream collaboration from a local chocolatier. 



Cathay House/601 Dupont (601 Grant Ave.)

Al reports from Chinatown that there's some movement at the historic Cathay House, whose downstairs was formerly occupied by McDonald's and most recently, Chinatown Food Court. 

According to Eater SF, the building has been taken over by the Yeo family, who are also behind San Jose-based restaurants Straits and Sino. They plan to open two restaurants, the first of which is 601 Dupont, a fast-casual Cantonese spot. Housed in the downstairs of the building, it will open sometime this fall.

The Yeos also plan to make over the Cathay House upstairs, with dim sum carts, Cantonese entrees, a banquet hall and a full bar.

601 Dupont's "construction looks to be going swiftly," said Al. "The back part of the eatery has a new stainless steel range hood and kitchen fixtures and a newly installed granite countertop." 

Construction underway at 601 Dupont. | Photo: Albertino M./Hoodline Tipline

Cathay House originally opened in 1939, serving Cantonese-influenced cuisine geared toward a "more Western crowd," said Patrick Wong of Lafayette, who told Hoodline he used to visit the restaurant as a kid when his father worked at a nearby advertising agency.

"A lot of their revenue was based off of tours, and even in the middle of the day, tour buses would be parked out front." 

Cathay House's opening announcement from October 1939. | Photo: San Francisco Chronicle

"Sweet and sour dishes, which they've always served, didn't exist in China," Wong said. "But you could get the authentic stuff if you asked for it, like pork chops cooked in a black bean sauce."

Wong said he's excited to see the building get a "refacing," but hopes that some of the aesthetic that he grew up with remains.

"My friends keep talking about it," he said. "Hands down, we can't wait for it to open."


Untitled Burma Superstar Project (8 Mint Plz.)

Burma Superstar is continuing its Bay Area expansion, with a new Burmese spot from co-owner Desmond Tan slated for Mint Plaza.

Tan, who co-owns Burma Superstar with Joycelyn Lee, told the Chronicle that he's opening the yet-to-be-named Burmese restaurant in the former home of Oro, which closed in 2016. 

8 Mint Plz. | Photo: Google

“It’s going to be a restaurant, but we don’t have a name for it yet,” he said. “I can just say that it’s definitely going to be a Burmese restaurant.”

Tan said that he'll be working to spruce up the space, which includes some interior renovations like relocating the bar. He hopes to open by the end of the year. 



OCHO Candy at Humphry Slocombe (1 Ferry Building)

Finally, local chocolatier OCHO Candy and ice creamery Humphry Slocombe have teamed up to create a new flavor that will be available until the end of September. 

The new treat, named "OCHO PB&J," is made with milk chocolate ice cream and chunks of OCHO's milk chocolate peanut butter bars, and topped off with swirls of organic raspberry jam. 

OCHO PB&J. | Photo: Courtesy Humphry Slocombe

You can check out the new flavor at a free tasting event on Saturday, September 15 from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. at Humphry Slocombe's San Francisco Ferry Building outpost. It'll also be served at the creamery's Oakland Hive location, at 2335 Broadway. 

Thanks to Al M. for the tips! If you've seen something new in the neighborhood, text your tips and photos to (415) 200-3233, or email tips@hoodline.com. If we use your info in a story, we'll give you credit.

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