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Friday, July 24, 2015

The Strand Theater Has a Shockingly Affordable Lunch

Posted By on Fri, Jul 24, 2015 at 5:45 PM

click to enlarge PETER LAWRENCE KANE
  • Peter Lawrence Kane

After several months of marble staircase demolitions, vintage neon sign restorations, and fireproofing exposed I-beams and then getting stagehands to paint a veneer over them so that they look raw, A.C.T.’s Strand Theater is open for business. While the award-winning theater company put some serious elbow grease into restoring the derelict theater as a 283-seat performance venue, the idea was to keep it open to the public during the day as a key element of Mid-Market’s transformation.

click to enlarge PETER LAWRENCE KANE
  • Peter Lawrence Kane

click to enlarge Quiche! - PETER LAWRENCE KANE
  • Peter Lawrence Kane
  • Quiche!

(Full disclosure: I worked for A.C.T. for two seasons as a bartender.)

So the grand entrance, with a massive screen positioned over what used to be the stairs, is a café during business hours. And you’d have to work pretty hard to find a cheaper place to eat. (A sandwich is only $4!)

Painted red on the outside so that the building pops when viewed against the blue-green backdrop of the Federal Building, the interior is comparatively serene. With coffee by Artis, the Strand is yet another place along Market to enjoy a latte or a cortado, but there’s also zucchini bread, almond-butter blondies, a $5 pretzel with Dijon mustard, a charcuterie plate, and a cheese plate that contains many a San Francsican’s desert-island food, Humboldt Fog. And everything's local.

A.C.T. is perfectly candid about the Strand’s history as a palace of pr0n, but now it’s home to baristas with tattooed forearms making latte art in the shape of hearts. That’s exactly the kind of love that Civic Center needs.

The Strand Theater, 1127 Market.

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About The Author

Peter Lawrence Kane

Peter Lawrence Kane is SF Weekly's Arts Editor. He has lived in San Francisco since 2008 and is two-thirds the way toward his goal of visiting all 59 national parks.


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