We had a chance to check out the soft opening of Lolo’s new location on Valencia Street in San Francisco Monday evening. We wouldn’t have thought it possible but the decor is even more lively and funky than their dear, departed, 22nd St. location.

photo photo (1) photo (2)With an open kitchen about 4 times the size of the previous one, it is great to see the guys in action. Even proprietor Jorge Martinez joined the line now that he doesn’t have to duck his head all the time! The space is centered on a larger bar, with more seating. And the line-up of mezcals is mighty impressive. The nice surprise is an extra bar, completely dedicated to all things bottled maguey. If you miss all the other cues that mezcal is the focus the image of Benito Juarez, Oaxaca’s favorite son and the first President of Mexico, are repeated across the wall. We can only hope for a special invite to pour mezcal back there and talk all things agave.

A side note – the specials on the menu are always divine, but the fried avocado tacos, never a favorite of mine, were quite spectacular. Lightly dusted, quickly fried and accompanied with a lovely creamy sauce. The nine year old at the table, a very vocal avocado hater, devoured my share, saying “Sue, taste buds evolve,” when I called him out. Solution – we just ordered more.