Bay Area Restaurants Pivot to Groceries and Meal Kits

Cooking meal kit

Marin’s shelter-in-place order may or may not extend through summer and into fall. Restaurants are adapting, cooking up dinner for take-out and delivery and building meal kits, groceries and even toilet paper into their offerings. Here are a few options that reconsider the “grocery store” in a way unique to each restaurant.

Barrel Room, San Francisco

Hand sanitizer and 2-ply toilet paper are just a few of the items now available for delivery from this underground wine bar and speakeasy. Fresh sauces on their Specialty Items web page, like lemon béchamel, pair beautifully with asparagus and mushrooms from the Produce page and are available for delivery to Marin twice a week. New meal kits include a Santa Maria tri-tip with serrano chimichurri or an achiote-marinated mahi mahi with guacamole and corn tortillas.

415 Sansome St., San Francisco


Copita, Sausalito

Chef Joanne Weir’s legendary margaritas are now available to-go paired with chips and salsa. The restaurant’s wall-mounted rotisserie is still in action. A chicken dinner special is available. It includes a rotisserie-roasted bird, plus roasted potatoes, salsa rustica, and smoked beans. Combine the margaritas and chicken dinner in the Chicken Fiesta Dinner and party like it’s 2020.

739 Bridgeway, Sausalito


Equator Coffees and Provisions, Mill Valley, Larkspur, Sausalito

Equator Coffee’s Bay Area shops recently reopened for pick-up orders (order via app only.) Just click on the provisions tab for an array of grocery staples from a dozen café free eggs, a gallon or quart of Clover organic milk or a carton of Califia almond milk. As well as the entire menu, including their one-of- a-kind Shakeratos and breakfast sandwiches to Cibo’s chocolate croissants and morning buns, will lift your spirits along with your blood pressure. A new espresso collaboration with Corte Madera’s chef Tyler Florence, Wolf It Down, is 12 ounces or two pound bags of nutty, chocolatey espresso. Each purchase benefits Restaurants Care, supporting workers facing hardships during this difficult time.

2 Miller Ave. and 244 Shoreline Highway, Mill Valley; 240 Magnolia Ave., Larkspur; 1201 Bridgeway, Sausalito

Flourcraft Bakery, San Anselmo and Mill Valley

“Our CSA Spring Meal Kit has been the runaway hit so far,” says owner Heather Hardcastle, whose Mill Valley shop has handles the bulk of its take-out business. Add a few key add-ins (like meat, grains, eggs) to curated organic produce boxes, 3 recipes included. “It gives you the ingredients and recipes you need to create 3 healthy dinners at home (for 4 people each),” Hardcastle says. The weekend waffle kits involve a little cooking also. The shop’s gluten-free sourdough waffle batter, toppings, and sides like homemade lemon curd, creme fraiche, coffee beans, bacon, and berries, make whipping up a batch of awesome eats easier than ever.

Mill Valley Lumberyard, 129 Miller Ave., Mill Valley and 702 San Anselmo Ave., San Anselmo


Fast Food Francais, Sausalito

In addition to this restaurant’s full menu, “pivoting to groceries, meat, fish and wine boxes as well as meal kits, has really saved our business during this time,” says co-owner Susannah Souvestre. Flavors change weekly. A fresh fish box might include pre-portioned miso-marinated halibut filets or sesame ginger local rock cod. The duck confit kit includes cherry gastrique sauce to balance the duck meat and chocolate mousse for dessert. Parisian-style cocktails are available to enjoy from the comfort of your backyard. Shelter-in-place boxes available for pick-up only.

39 Caledonia St., Sausalito


Le Comptoir, San Rafael

French wines and cheese and a range of charcuterie and sweets are all part of the store side, or épicerie, of this popular French restaurant. The restaurant side offers a rotating assortment of comforting favorites such as coq au vin with ratatouille, tombo tuna with roasted potatoes or petrale sole with an organic mixed greens salad makes a fine supper. Pair your favorite with a bottle of French rose.

1301 4th St., San Rafael


Marche aux Fleurs, Ross

Hard-to-find staples, like flour, yeast, and eggs are now part of the grocery provisions available from this French restaurant in downtown Ross. “Foods prepared in-house are definitely top sellers,” says co-owner Holly Baker. The kitchen churns out everything from cookie dough and ice cream to meatballs, lasagna and sauce to serve alongside. Farmers market produce is a winning addition. “We gather it at the Civic Center Market and guests pick it up curbside along with the rest of their orders,” Baker says. What could be easier than that?

23 Ross Common, Ross

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Christina MuellerChristina Mueller is a long-time Bay Area food writer. She hails from the East Coast and has spent way too much time in South America and Europe. She discovered her talent as a wordsmith in college and her love of all things epicurean in grad school. She has written for Condé Nast Contract PublishingSunset, and the Marin Independent Journal, among others. She volunteers with California State Parks and at her child’s school, and supports the Marin Audubon SocietyPEN America, and Planned Parenthood. When she is not drinking wine by a fire, she is known to spend time with her extended family.

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