Food news: Fiorella opens this week, Playland’s Hot House pop-up, Butter Love on Balboa, BottleZup on Clement, Buckshot closes

Fiorella's Toscana Oven by Forni Valoriani, built in Reggello, Italy

Fiorella’s Toscana Oven by Forni Valoriani, built in Reggello, Italy

Here’s the latest on food news in the Richmond District…

Fiorella: Neighborhood Italian opens this week

Fiorella, a new Italian spot specializing in pizza, will open at 2339 Clement (at 24th Ave) this Wednesday. The menu includes Fritti, Pane, Antipasti, Pasta (with gluten-free options available), Secondi, Pizza (cooked in an Italian pizza oven), Dolce, and Bambini. Owner Boris Nemchenok grew up in the Richmond District and both Chef-Partner Brandon Gillis and Chef de Cuisine Gavin Braid live in the neighborhood. Initially Fiorella will be open 5pm-10pm daily, with weekend brunch and backyard seating coming soon.

A Playland favorite comes back as a pop-up

Back when Playland at the Beach was around, “The Hot House” was a favorite food stop known for their cup-shaped tamales and red sauce. The original Hot House was in operation from 1934-1996, first at Playland at the Beach and then later on Balboa in the Outer Richmond. Now, the son of the final owner, Eric Faranda, is hosting monthly pop-ups that include the famous tamales, enchiladas, and chile con carne. There’s one on January 30 from 12pm-3pm at Al-Masri, 4031 Balboa St. at 41st Avenue. For reservations, email Hot.house28@yahoo.com [via Tablehopper]

Butter Love Bakeshop open on Balboa

Waist lines beware! Butter Love Bakeshop took over the space formerly occupied by Nibs Bakery at 3717 Balboa (at 38th Ave). After 5 years and several different pop-ups, owner Esa Yonn-Brown now has a permanent storefront for her all-butter-crust pies — savory pot pies, seasonal fruit pies, galettes — as well as Mr. Espresso coffee and what she calls “old-fashioned American baked goods” such as cookies and bundt cakes. And for those of you missing Nibs’ scones – they passed the recipe for their signature scones onto Esa, so she will continue to make those for the neighborhood. And with more regular hours we assume 😉

Buckshot on Geary closes its doors

The Buckshot Bar & Gameroom at 3848 Geary closed without any warning recently. No explanation from the owners, just some goodbyes on their Facebook page. “We thank you for making Buckshot one of the funnest and craziest bars San Francisco has ever seen. We will miss you.” Damn, where will we play skeeball now in the neighborhood? 🙁 UPDATE: The skee ball lanes have been moved upstairs to Ireland’s 32 – yay!

Bottlezup offers tea & coffee from Shabu House

Reader Derek passed along this tip to us: “Today I was passing by Shabu House Sushi on 5th and Clement when I saw a sign for Bottlezup Tea and Coffee on the *same* storefront. A guy by the name of Kenny poked his head out the window and asked if I’d like to try some samples. He invited me in and I saw that the tea shop was in a section of the front while Shabu was in the back. They’ve been open for about a month and the samples were delicious!”

The shared storefront of Shabu House and Bottlezup at 5th & Clement

The shared storefront of Shabu House and Bottlezup at 5th & Clement


  1. Butter Love has been open for a few weeks now and their pastries are awesome!

  2. Thanks sfresident – story updated! Her site still said coming soon and I hadn’t been out there yet!

  3. I will miss that little Sushi spot, but Fiorella looks really nice.

  4. Butter Love is really good. I miss Nibs’ scones, but I’m told Esa is using their recipe. Regardless, they are very good scones, the savory one was a nice change.

  5. Gluten-free options at buzz Fiorella is awesome. I can’t look at their site at the moment, did they also happen to have vegan cheese for pizza?

    Thanks in advance for any replies!

  6. I’m bummed about the Buckshot… that was a go to spot until 9pm when SFSU students take over.

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