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Food & Drink

Long-awaited steak restaurant coming to San Francisco with $29 menu

Glowing orange letters spell out the words "Medium" and "Rare" against a circular metal frame above a restaurant entrance.
A bright orange sign welcomes hungry visitors to Medium Rare’s restaurant in Arlington, Virginia. The restaurant plans to open early this summer in San Francisco’s China Basin neighborhood. | Source: Courtesy of Medium Rare

A steak restaurant with Washington, D.C., roots expects to be ready to start serving simple, budget-conscious fare in San Francisco's China Basin neighborhood in summer 2024.

Medium Rare has signed a lease for 266 King St. in the China Basin neighborhood near Oracle Park, the company told The Standard on Tuesday. The address once housed Tender Greens and is near several other restaurants, including the One and Nama Sushi.

Two plates hold a large thick cut slice of fresh bread and steak, fries and sauce, joined by a glass of red wine and a metal bowl with more bread and butter in a smaller metal bowl, atop a white tablecloth.
Medium Rare's signature prix fixe dish includes coulotte steak, french fries and its special sauce, plus salad. | Source: Courtesy of Medium Rare

The restaurant's main focus will be its prix fixe meal, which includes a mixed green salad, fresh bread, hand-cut fries and a coulotte steak for under $30. Joining all of these items is Medium Rare's signature sauce, described as having hints of mustard and cracked pepper and using a closely guarded recipe. (The only hint: It's gluten-free but not dairy-free.) 

A signature move for the prix fixe meal turns out to be seconds, with a server arriving mid-meal with another portion of items. For those taking time off from red meat, there is a vegetarian option: a grilled portobello mushroom with fire-roasted red pepper sauce and fries. 

A person's hand holds a fork over a plate bearing several slices of rich looking French toast with sliced strawberries and a few blueberries.
French toast, lightly dusted with powdered sugar, is one of the star attractions at Medium Rare's weekend brunches. | Source: Courtesy of Medium Rare

Desserts include seven-layer chocolate and carrot cakes and hot fudge sundaes, while weekend brunches for around $40 per person feature French toast and bottomless beverages like mimosas, bloody marys and screwdrivers.

Through a representative, restaurant co-owner Mark Bucher told The Standard that he wanted to bring Medium Rare to San Francisco, saying it is "a great city with a great sense of community, and we look forward to being a part of it." 

About two dozen people sit at tables outside a restaurant near bushes and a tree with Christmas lights wrapped around its trunk.
Patrons enjoy meals outside at Medium Rare's location in Arlington, Virginia, in October. | Source: Courtesy of Medium Rare

Medium Rare currently has four locations—one in Washington, D.C., two in the D.C. suburbs, and one in New Orleans.