Mirroring the smart pairing of Herb & Wood with its casual companion Herb & Eatery, downtown’s flashy new Animae Restaurant has unveiled an adjacent daytime-focused spot in the Pacific Gate by Bosa building. Open daily from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., and also available for private events, NIMA Café is geared for both dine-in and grab-and-go service at breakfast and lunch.
The high-ceilinged space, also designed with Bells & Whistles, evokes a giant terrarium, with sweeping glass windows and tendrils of greenery dripping from the ceiling. Its menu, by executive chef/partner Joe Magnanelli, reflects a wide swath of Asian cuisines. Breakfast offers homemade spam and egg musubi and Japanese egg omelet sandwiches with American cheese and miso mayonnaise as well a selection of Asian-inspired pastries from executive pastry chef Adrian Mendoza that includes matcha croissants, pork sung buns, peanut butter togarashi cookies, and yuzu morning buns. Lunch ranges from a duck grain bowl and a miso chicken salad to a banh mi sandwich with duck liver pate, a variety of fresh spring rolls, warm and savory rice porridge, and a pour-over ramen with housemade noodles, soft egg, ham hock, and bok choy. Beverages include coconut matcha smoothies, lemongrass gin and tonics, pineapple sencha iced tea, and the full gamut of coffee drinks.