Appetite: Jumping at Trick Dog

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The Bon Vivants (Josh Harris, Scott Baird, Jason Henton) need little introduction in the drink world, from humanitarian work with their Pig & Punch events -- they're featured in the latest issue of Imbibe magazine -- to unforgettable Bon Vivants' parties. Last Sunday, I walked through the unfinished space of their long-awaited bar Trick Dog. Though it appeared there was much left to be done, in 24 short hours the bar was looking all grown up and open for business, welcoming a slew of early birds and industry folk at 3pm on January 7th.

Trick Dog buzz is already at fever pitch. The two-level space, designed by the Bon Vivants (they recently launched The Bon Vivants Design–Build) along with Wylie Price Design, boasts thoughtful details like iron banisters from the original Warfield and a seating area upstairs overlooking the action for those who want to sit and dine. The space is both industrial and warm, named after the vintage trick dog piggy banks spotted around the bar.

While cocktails are the Vivants' expertise, listed on a brilliant menu resembling a Pantone paint color guide-swatch (designed by Camille Robles Ramble & Ride), there's food from Chef Chester Watson, like a salt cod-wrapped Scotch egg and dreamy, minty Fernet ice cream laden with toasted cacao nibs. Soon I will have worked my way through the menus but for opening day, I tasted half of the 13 Pantone color-named cocktails ($10-$12), each a winner. There are also $8 highballs (like amaro & Moxie soda), $7 alcohol-free drinks, $35 punches to share, and $8 “Neat with a Side” options, like George Dickel #12 Tennessee whiskey with dill pickle gelée.

Behind the bar, lined with Vivants'-designed sliding bottle shelves, a tight team of bartenders is already busy attending to opening week crowds. Here are my opening day highlights and cocktails in photos.

TRICK DOG, 3010 20th Street at Florida, 415-471-2999, open 3pm-2am daily (brunch coming soon) 

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