AATXE BRINGS BASQUE COUNTRY CUISINE TO SAN FRANCISCO ON APRIL 17, 2015 Chef Ryan Pollnow highlights regional Spanish cuisine and tapas culture in a communal atmosphere


Chef Ryan Pollnow highlights regional Spanish cuisine and tapas culture in a communal atmosphere

(SAN FRANCISCO; March 24, 2015)— Chef Ryan Pollnow, partner of Ne Timeas Restaurant Group, will open his first project, Aatxe (pronounced aah-CHAY) in partnership with The Bon Vivants on April 17, 2015. Located on the street level of The Swedish American Hall in San Francisco’s Upper Market neighborhood, Aatxe is a restaurant and bar that celebrates regional Spanish cuisine and culture with an influence from the Basque Country.

“Aatxe was born out of my experiences living and cooking in Spain early in my career,” says Chef Ryan Pollnow. “Though I originally traveled to Spain to learn about the upscale fine-dining scene, I immediately fell in love with the casual tapas and pintxos culture. The idea of traveling from bar to bar enjoying snacks and drinks in a lively, convivial atmosphere is an essential part of the social culture there, one that I wanted to bring back to San Francisco.”

Driven by the ingredients of Northern California, Pollnow’s menu draws inspiration from the Basque tapas culture, utilizing traditional Spanish cooking techniques and presentation. Encouraging a communal style of dining, the menu encompasses everything from traditional pinxtos and small plates to large cazuelas. In addition to sourcing local ingredients, Pollnow has stocked Aatxe’s kitchen with his favorite products from Spain and has implemented an in-house conserva program using Pacific seafood, local vegetables and foraged products. Opening menu highlights include Octopus with kohlrabi, avocado and salsa verde; Mussels Escabeche; and Morcilla chickpeas with braised pork cheek, snap peas and pine nuts.

To complement the cuisine, Aatxe showcases grower-producer wines exclusively from Spain. In addition to the wine offerings, Pollnow partnered with award-winning cocktail and hospitality consulting group, The Bon Vivants, to develop a cocktail menu that celebrates the country’s drinking traditions and flavors. Guests can enjoy aperitifs and contemporary cocktails served individually or in a carafe to be enjoyed amongst a group. Paying tribute to the national drink of Spain, Aatxe also offers a wide selection of gins and interesting tonics as well as a house-made gin and tonic on tap that will change seasonally. Opening menu highlights include cocktails such as the Pedro Romero with gin, sherry, red bell pepper cordial, almond bitters and the Zuzi with brandy, cava, seville orange and rosemary scented sugar.

Designed by Stellah DeVille (Claro Designs), Aatxe brings together old European style and San Francisco sophistication with dark hues and rich textures, a white oak chevron-pattern floor, and walls accented with Spanish tiles. To further encourage the communal culture and atmosphere of Spain, Aatxe’s 49-seat dining room and bar features a large communal table, white marble countertop bars, and an open kitchen with a view of the chefs at work. Standing ledges are positioned throughout, where guests are encouraged to enjoy a small bite or cocktail.

Aatxe is open Sunday-Thursday 5:30-11 p.m. at 2174 Market Street, and Friday and Saturday 5:30 p.m.-midnight, with food and drink served until closing. For more information and news on Aatxe, please visit http://www.aatxesf.com/; follow on Twitter @AatxeSF, Instagram @AatxeSF, and Facebook at www.facebook.com/AatxeSF.


About Chef Ryan Pollnow
Born and raised in Northern California, Chef Ryan Pollnow attended the School of Culinary Arts at SRJC in Sonoma County. After training in Spain at the two Michelin starred restaurant Mugaritz for a season, he returned to San Francisco where he worked as sous chef at a number of well-respected restaurants. Chef Pollnow joined Ne Timeas Restaurant Group as chef de cuisine of flour + water in March of 2012. In 2013, he was promoted and named chef de cuisine at the company’s central kitchen, where he focused his talents on refining dishes highlighting the bounty of products Northern California has to offer.

About Ne Timeas Restaurant Group
The Ne Timeas Restaurant Group, a collaboration between founding partners, Thomas McNaughton, David Steele and David White as well as partners Kara Bratcher, Vanya Shekell and chef Ryan Pollnow currently includes projects: flour + water, central kitchen, and salumeria. This spring, in addition to the partnership with Chef Pollnow on Aatxe, the group will open Cafe du Nord in partnership with The Bon Vivants.

About The Bon Vivants
Josh Harris and Scott Baird co-founded The Bon Vivants in 2009, a nationally recognized cocktail and hospitality firm specializing in creative marketing, bar concepts, and cocktail consulting. They also own and operate the award-winning and highly successful Trick Dog bar in San Francisco. For any media requests surrounding The Bon Vivants, please contact Sarah Abell, sabell@baltzco.com; or Beth Hengeveld, bhengeveld@baltzco.com.

About the Swedish American Hall
Built in 1907, the Swedish American Hall at 2174 Market Street was designed by famed architect August Nordin and built for the Swedish Society of San Francisco. The historic structure houses Café du Nord, a restored 300-person ballroom and event space and the headquarters of the Swedish Society. The building is currently undergoing a significant renovation and is slated to become a San Francisco Historical Landmark in May 2015.


Nicole Kilian / Jennifer Rodstrom
Wagstaff Worldwide