Animae reopens August 5, after being temporarily shuttered since mid-March, under the direction of new culinary director Nate Appleman. The James Beard Award-winning celebrity chef joined the Puffer Malarkey Collective during the shutdown to help reboot the nearly year-old restaurant.
Moving outside to utilize the garden and fountain area of the Pacific Gate by BOSA residential tower as its 60-seat outdoor dining room, Animae is ushering in an entirely new culinary program. Still rooted in Asian flavors with a decidedly West Coast perspective, the menu includes an expanded cold section of lighter dishes ranging from Filipino kinalaw-style albacore to lobster with Vietnamese nuoc cham.
Holdover favorites like butter dumplings and tom yum mushrooms have been retooled and joined by new plates that include Dungeness crab with tamarind, lamb ribs with chili eggplant, and steamed rock cod with yuzu kosho butter. Cooked on a coal-fired grill, it’s selection of American Wagyu steaks, from an eight-ounce filet to a 32-ounce porterhouse, come with a variety of sauces, rice, and banchan, or Korean-style side dishes. The new drinks, from general manager and cocktail pro Lucien Conor, include the Peché Collins with bourbon, yellow peach, ginger, lemon, and soda and a spin on The Last Word, a classic gin cocktail, infused with honeydew and cantaloupe melon.
Animae is open from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday with reservations strongly encouraged.