Chef Noriyuki Sugie from Hitachi, Japan recently opened a new restaurant in Lower Nob Hill based on Kappo, a Japanese style of eating focused on pairing delicious food items with beer or wine. Hitachino Beer & Wagyu serves the highest grades of Hitachi wagyu beef from the same area as Hitachino’s Kiuchi Brewery in Japan.
For the restaurant’s soft opening, they plan to serve beer and snacks. Prospective diners can sign up for the email list and enter a lottery for the chance sit down at tables to enjoy the wagyu menu. The other option to get in is to be lucky enough to be introduced from someone who has eaten there, an old-school Tokyo tradition. In the spring, the wagyu menu will switch to a la carte, and reservations will extend beyond the restaurant’s email list.
The restaurant offers 10 beers on tap, ranging from white ales and lagers to IPA. Three of the beers are exclusive to the taproom, including a very rare “3 Days Beer.” This unique beverage was made during the tsunami in Japan that caused a power outage in the brewery, contributing to a longer time in the tanks and strange fermentation. Strangely, the Black wagyu cows that are the source of the fine beef also drink the same beer that’s served in the restaurant’s taproom. Hitachino also serves sake and plum wine from the Kitachi region.
The restaurant has a standing room front area with stools at the bar, as well as 26 seats at booths in the back. It was designed by Japan-native Chi Kano, who often collaborates with Hitachino on its spaces. The bar and table furniture is made from old sake presses and was designed by Yagi Sawa.
From the Facebook comments, it’s clear the supply and demand to get in on these coveted reservations have been pretty steep. More opportunities are on the way, you just have to get on the email list first to get a go at it.
+++ Hitachino Beer & Wagyu, 639 Post St., San Francisco
By email list only. Hours are Monday through Saturday from 4:30pm-12am.