A most impressive downtown space entered the scene with a whisper earlier this week; Bang Bang, the ambitious new project from El Camino owner Mauricio Couturier and business partner Johnny Shockey, is now open in the Gaslamp. A grand opening is set for July 25.
Couturier, who also designed Noble Experiment and Voyeur, has crafted a Comic-Con goer's fever dream at Bang Bang, whose entrance is up a stairwell that's been lined with subway tile, with sounds from a Tokyo subway piped in to give it a tunnel-like feel.
The dark and dramatic 7,000-square-foot space, formerly The Witherby and Airr, now houses large video screens with ever-changing projections and a dining room covered with a canopy of hanging paper lanterns. In the 300-person capacity theater, which will host DJ nights and out of town acts, spins a five foot wide disco ball.
A more subdued and intimate sushi bar within Bang Bang makes its debut tonight; the 22-seat room offers specialty roll creations that range from lobster tempura to gravlax and cream cheese.
The dinner menu (available from 5 to 11 p.m.) plays with Asian street market snacks and includes edamame dumplings, hot wings with sriracha aioli and a "bang" mi with homemade chicken liver pate, grilled chicken and ham on a baguette. From the bar come flaming punch bowls, specialty cocktails and a wide selection of sake. The happy hour here is generous, with half off food and drink specials every night (all night on Tuesday) and from 10 p.m. to close on Sundays.
The pop culture style even extends to the bathrooms, where each stall has a different theme; men can look at images of Godzilla while women can gaze at walls papered from floor to ceiling with photos of Ryan Gosling.
· Bang Bang [Official Site]
· All Eater Inside Coverage [~ESD~]