I was lucky to be invited to the opening party last night for San Francisco’s newest cocktail and food establishment, Beretta.

While I am still puzzling over the connection between Pizza and Cocktails, there is no questioning the mightiness of the cocktail list Thad Vogler has created or impressive array of staff he has assembled to make those cocktails.

Starting with Mr. Vogler, whose resume includes such stellar establishments as The Slanted Door, Presidio Social Club, and Jardiniere, the list of talent includes Todd Smith, (Bourbon and Branch,) Eric Johnson, (Bourbon and Branch, Eastside West,) and Ryan Fitgerald, (Tres Agaves).

The cocktails are based on a fun assortment of mostly New World spirits. Rum, Pisco, Tequila, and Rye Whiskey all make appearances. I was especially taken with the Dolores Park Swizzle, Agricole Mule, Airmail, and Agave Sour.

I’m not sure if the configuration of the restaurant they had for the party was the same as they will have for formal service, but it seems like about 2/3 of the space will be taken up by shared seating, a la NOPA, with only a few tables for proper seating in the back. Definitely a casual, cocktail friendly vibe.

As you may know, I live in Bernal Heights, which is mostly a desert as far as decent cocktails go. It is possible you may get lucky and have a half way decent cocktail at Wild Side West, Stray Bar, Knockout, or Argus, but really the closest place where you can be assured a truly great cocktail is range. It is quite exciting that Beretta is now here, a couple blocks closer than range. I can only hope that the Southwards Progress continues, and one day I will have a tasty cocktail in Bernal Heights that I, or one of my neighbor cocktail enthusiasts, didn’t make. Until then, I am looking forward to getting back to Beretta to try out that mysterious pizza and cocktail combo.

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