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Smart riffs on American classics, like these fried chicken thighs with a dillspiked yogurt sauce, are a hallmark of the kitchen at the new Bottle Cap.

 

Eats: Bottle Cap

An old-school tavern takes a fresh turn.

North Beach
The often resurrected Washington Square Bar & Grill has finally died for good, and Dane Boryta, most recently of Sens, and his wife, Liz Ferro, have taken on the space, bringing to it Boryta’s own brand of American cuisine. The vagueness of that term, and the hodgepodge on the menu, which ranges from cheese-and mushroom stuffed pierogi to roasted Muscovy duck in vanilla-merlot sauce, has you bracing for a night of chaos. But Boryta keeps his flavors focused. Fried chicken thighs with a bright dill-yogurt dip are like happy hour snacks for picky palates. Braised pork shoulder with apples, brussels sprouts, and mustard seeds is a humble cut beautifully dressed for winter. And those flaky-caked pierogi, served with purple cabbage and pearl onions, in a dill-scented broth, are a babushka’s signature, rewritten by a sure-handed chef. The setting is your grandmother’s idea of hip, with pale green walls and robin’s egg–blue tables, but the amiable service and Boryta’s able cooking keep the restaurant up-to-date.

1707 POWELL ST. (AT COLUMBUS AVE.), S.F., 415-529-2237 $$ RW ★★½

Our review policy: To ensure that we get a typical consumer’s experience in a restaurant, our writers dine anonymously; all expenses are paid by the magazine. Reviews are pulled from our listings two years after the review date or any time personnel changes at a restaurant render a review invalid. Our admittedly imperfect star ratings are based on food quality, variety, service, ambience, and value. 

Staff reviewers and contributors to our restaurant guide include John Birdsall, Susan Bryan, Stett Holbrook, Rachel Levin, Jan Newberry, Josh Sens, and Lisa Trottier.

Prices:
Average price of an entrée:
$ = $10 or less
$$ = $11–17
$$$ = $18–24
$$$$ = $25 or more

Symbols:
D = Dinner only
R = Reservation required/recommended
C = Cash only
V = Valet parking
W = Wheelchair accessible

Ratings:
★★★★ = superlative
★★★ = excellent
★★ = very good
★ = good