Soma Eats

When Shirley and Oussama came to us with their idea for an upscale retail wine and spirit shop for the corporate set, and  a daytime cafe, delicious lunch venue, and night-time wine bar, we said “Sure! Why not?”. The 2500 SF had soaring ceilings, existing brick and a prime location in the financial district, but how does a single space do it all? Lighting has to go from day to night, the cafe/lunch/wine bar crowd can’t discourage the beer/wine shopping and the retail lighting (and wall of refrigerators) can’t distract from the communal feeling of diners.

We started by making distinct zones with shopping on one side and eating on the other. Next we created a focal point with a 60′ long copper topped bar and order counter. Aquamarine, modern arabesque tile by local manufacturer “Fireclay” faced the length of the die wall and custom pendants  and sconces by Metro Lighting punctuate the bar. The owner’s Middle-eastern roots influenced the menu, materials, and aesthetic, all balanced with a modern SF feel.

Project Description

A modern all day, Middle-Eastern-Inspired Cafe/Wine Bar and Beer/Wine/Bottle Shop in the SF Financial District.

When Shirley and Oussama came to us with their idea for an upscale retail wine and spirit shop for the corporate set, and  a daytime cafe, delicious lunch venue, and night-time wine bar, we said “Sure! Why not?”. The 2500 SF had soaring ceilings, existing brick and a prime location in the financial district, but how does a single space do it all? Lighting has to go from day to night, the cafe/lunch/wine bar crowd can’t discourage the beer/wine shopping and the retail lighting (and wall of refrigerators) can’t distract from the communal feeling of diners.

We started by making distinct zones with shopping on one side and eating on the other. Next we created a focal point with a 60′ long copper topped bar and order counter. Aquamarine, modern arabesque tile by local manufacturer “Fireclay” faced the length of the die wall and custom pendants  and sconces by Metro Lighting punctuate the bar. The owner’s Middle-eastern roots influenced the menu, materials, and aesthetic, all balanced with a modern SF feel.

Project Details

LOCATION
TEAM
CLIENT: Soma Eats
CONTRACTOR: Baba Builders
GRAPHIC DESIGNER: Rubber Design
BRANDING/OPERATIONS: The Culinary Edge
MILLWORKER: Menlo Hardwoods
CUSTOM LIGHTING: Metro Lighting
PHOTOGRAPHER: Patricia Chang
PRESS
Eater SF
Owned by husband-and-wife team Oussama Mannaa and Shirley Azzghayer, who also live in the neighborhood, it's intended to fill a number of holes in the corridor's food and drink offerings, ranging from third-wave coffee and quality sandwiches by day to a wine bar with small plates and a fully-stocked artisan liquor store in the evening.
California Home + Design
The gorgeous space, with its globally-inflected menu and in-house bottle shop, is a welcome addition to an area that continues to shape itself as a design-centric destination.
Zagat Review
The food is worth checking out, but so is the take-home beer and wine selection (over 200 beers alone) in their Bottle Shop; coming soon is the liquor library, a wall set to be stocked with a wide range of whiskeys and other spirits for sale.
Fireclay Tile: Project Spotlight
The space was designed by Abueg Morris Architects and is the ideal example of industrial-chic style.  Exposed brick walls, wood beams, industrial style lighting, reclaimed wood countertops, and rustic wood floors create contrast against the fresh Moroccan-inspired Azurine Tile.