SF Eats: Kennedy's remains open, Lavash reopens after 2-year closure, new plans for Grubstake

SF Eats: Kennedy's remains open, Lavash reopens after 2-year closure, new plans for GrubstakePhoto: Carl C./Yelp
Alisa Scerrato
Published on December 30, 2019
Here's the latest in SF food news. In this edition, a quirky North Beach bar and eatery remains open despite announcing its closure in October, a beloved Persian restaurant and family business reopens in the Inner Sunset after a fire two years ago, and new development plans emerge for the structure that houses a landmark diner in Polk Gulch. 


North Beach

Kennedy's Irish Pub (1040 Columbus St.)

Photo: Lanie L./Yelp

Right before Halloween, Hoodline wrote about the closure of Kennedy’s Irish Pub & Curry House, as did several other media outlets, due to a post on the business' Facebook page, indicating that October 31st would be its last day of business.

The business, known as a quirky North Beach institution where customers can enjoy a Guinness and eat a samosa, all while playing a game of air hockey, received a lot of attention when it made an announcement on social media in October, which said:

“One last blowout! Come see us this Halloween, $4 beers of everything we have as we celebrate & mourn our last day in business ... Come drink us dry!”

Then, on November 7, Kennedy's Facebook page said it would not be closing down but that it was in the process of "major changes."

A few tipsters have reached out to us, saying that the business' announced closure was a publicity stunt concocted by the Kennedy’s team, while a few other tipsters noted that the business is being managed by another team.

Last week, Eater reported that Kennedy’s never closed as confirmed by a call to the business, as well as a post on its Facebook page promoting a New Year’s eve event at its place of business at 1040 Columbus St.

The Kennedy’s management team has not yet responded to inquiries about its decision to remain open and plans for any major changes. When we have more information, we will provide updates.

Inner Sunset

Lavash (511 Irving St.)

Soltanti (Persian kabobs). | Photo: Courtesy of Lavash

In November, we checked in with the owners of Inner Sunset’s Lavash about its plans to reopen the restaurant after a fire shut it down two years ago.

Kaivon Talai, who helps his parents Saeed and Nazila run the business, along with his younger brothers Kian and Kamron, told us this morning that despite the projected November debut, it softly opened its doors over the weekend.

Kaivon said the restaurant will remain in its soft opening phase for a few weeks, with limited hours and menu items, while it works out the kinks, hires staff and gets the kitchen warmed up.

The restaurant is best known for its authentic Persian cuisine, with items such as koobideh (skewers of mixed ground beef and lamb), jeweled rice, and fesenjan (chicken with a ground walnut and sour-sweet pomegranate sauce). It's also revered by its customers for its displays of fresh flowers and at-home feel. 

Follow Lavash’s Facebook and Instagram pages for updates on its new hours, menu items and mid-January grand opening date.


Polk Gulch

Grubstake (1525 Pine St.)

Photo: Brittany Hopkins/Hoodline

As we reported last year, the structure that houses Grubstake has been on the chopping block for a few years.

The old-school late-night eatery dates back to 1967, and it's a well-known San Francisco landmark — it was once featured on an episode of Guy Fieri's TV show Diners, Drive-ins and Dives.

Owners Nick Pigott and Jimmy Consos filed for a permit last year to demolish the one-story restaurant. Socketsite now reports that paperwork for the proposed new development has been submitted to the SF Planning Department, along with renderings.

The revised plans call for an eight-story building, rising up to 83 feet, with 21 apartments units to be built on top of a new restaurant space, incorporating some elements of Grubstake’s facade.

The newly filed plans indicate that Grubstake will make its return once the new building is complete.

Currently, there is no date set for the proposal’s hearing, but we will provide more updates about the redevelopment and Grubstake's return when we have them.

If you've seen something new (or closing) in the neighborhood, text your tips and photos to (415) 200-3233, or email [email protected]. If we use your info in a story, we'll give you credit.