One of my favorite spots to eat in the Divisadero area is Horsefeather, hands down. Owned by Justin Lew and Ian Scalzo of High-Proof, a company founded in 2016 that also owns the recently opened concept, Last Rites, Horsefeather is a casual neighborhood spot that never lets me down. The menu, which is “classified but not defined as ‘New American’,” as stated on their website, offers dishes that are both comforting and familiar, but with an eclectic twist. A little Asian here, a little Latin there… Chef Ryan Chinchilla has curated a selection that is absolutely delicious and innovative, without trying too hard. Plus, everything is family-style, so you get to taste a little bit of all the dishes coming to the table.
I love sitting in the front of the restaurant in the greenhouse area. With its glass walls and ceiling, lush greenery overflowing from pots and succulents on shelves, it’s a homey setting with a chill ambiance perfect for eating and drinking the afternoon away.
Speaking of drinks, it’s a spot known for its bomb cocktails thanks to Dzu Nguyen of Forgery/VERSO’s bar program. His seasonal craft cocktails bring together fresh ingredients and unique house-made and wine based syrups that showcase local and small producer spirits. Super refreshing cocktails that taste as unique as they sound include the Mama Juana with gin, strawberry compote, martini & rossi rubino, “rainwater” port, yuzu and guajillo; the Sun Country with mezcal, lemon, vanilla, orange juice chardonnay syrup, mandarine napoleon and egg white; and the California Cooler with gin, celery juice, lime, thyme sauvignon blanc syrup and sparkling wine.
I haven’t had everything on the menu, but I’m almost there! Here are my favs. Be sure to get the fried chicken with your mac and cheese and do not overlook the cheeseburger because it’s actually incredible.
- Double cheeseburger with a blend of chuck, short rib brisket, sweet potato bun, bread and butter pickles, special sauce, smoked onion, lettuce and sweet potato chips
- Kimchi mac and cheese with sautéed kale, fried leeks and chives (add the fried chicken!)
- Fried chicken with cornbread, miso butter, sriracha honey, corn and cherry tomato esquites
- Halibut ceviche with charmoula, avocado, cucumber and taro root chips
- Shishito peppers with yuzu, greek yogurt and tajin
And if you’re looking to continue the night, head over to Last Rites in the Duboce Triangle area. This tiki-meets-doomsday bar is inspired by “Polynesian Noir” and is definitely tiki, but darker… adventurous… with a sprinkle of the unknown. Once you’re in the bar, get ready to be transported to a new (very dim) world where you’re essentially marooned in a savage tropical jungle. One that serves ridiculously good cocktails. Featuring a real airplane fuselage turned bar, vintage American Airlines seats instead of barstools, seating enveloped by enormous banyan tree roots, stacked stone booths nestled in a dense jungle canopy and nine feet tall stone skull idols, Last Rites is a bar that also kinda feels like the coolest adults-only Disneyworld attraction.
P.S. it has over 150 rums and a whole menu of fruity cocktails, like the namesake Last Rites cocktail, with Mount Gay Black Barrel rum, house white rum, an overproof rum blend, lime, passion fruit syrup, Blackstrap molasses syrup, a “Last Rites mix,” and a charred stick of cinnamon, served in a skull-adorned glass.
Or if you’re really down to treat yourself–and honestly, why wouldn’t you be?–get yourself some ice cream or a soft-serve cone at the Bi-Rite Market which is conveniently located on the same block as Horsefeather. With sundaes like the Sam’s Sundae with chocolate ice cream with blood orange olive oil, maldon sea salt and whipped cream, you seriously can’t go wrong. Then just walk it off by heading to Last Rites.