Bay View’s Sisu Cafe Adds Dinner Service
Finnish-inspired coffee shop will transform into a classic steakhouse three nights a week.
Starting Saturday, Nov. 26, the business will transform from casual cafe into polished eatery — think white tablecloths, candlelight, live music and sharply-dressed waitstaff. Dinner services will be held Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Local Ingredients, Nordic Flair
The menu will be concise, according to Sanchez, who said the simplicity will allow its “creme de la creme” selections to shine.
The restaurant’s Nordic-influence is immediately noticeable in its alkuruoat, or starters. Light, flavorful bites such as roasted cauliflower and carrot hummus, creamy baked goat cheese and Norwegian smoked salmon with rye crackers and picked vegetables invite diners to awaken their appetites in preparation for the main event.
Roasted garlic mashed potatoes, creamy scalloped potatoes, parmesan potato skins, sauteed mushrooms and caramelized onions, roasted brussels sprouts with dijon hollandaise, creamy risotto and others are among the side options.
Additional entrees include atlantic salmon linguine, lingonberry and roasted apple pork chop, spatchcock chicken and, for a vegetarian option, portabella parmesan risotto.
Sanchez, who will take on the role of bartender, said he is also excited to introduce a lineup of cocktails to accompany both brunch and dinner service. The restaurant will also offer happy hour specials.
A classic sidecar, bourbon old fashioned, strawberry daiquiri, negroni and pomegranate cosmopolitan round out the evening cocktail options.
At brunch, diners can expect the classic offerings, including mimosas and bloody marys.
In creating the menu, Sanchez said he strived to offer the highest quality while remaining accessible and affordable. After conducting a survey of potential customers, Sanchez found that the majority of respondents “love going to steakhouses,” but feel like they can’t afford to visit often. Sisu’s dinner program attempts to overcome that hesitation.
Day to Night
As the dining area transitions from brunch to dinner service, guests will also notice a visual shift in the space. Sanchez said he aims to emulate the luxurious feel of a classic steakhouse with simple details such as dim lighting, floor lamps, and crisp, white tablecloths. The large, floor-to-ceiling windows that make the cafe so welcoming in the daylight will be draped with curtains, creating a cozy, intimate setting. Waitstaff will also look the part, outfitted in polished black shoes and white aprons, Sanchez added.
Sanchez also reconfigured the cafe space to create room for a full bar, removing the bakery case and adding seating and a statement painting to the wall behind the bar. Piirainen created the painting, which was inspired by Finnish designer Marimekko.
The restaurant is located adjacent to a parking lot, where it has 70 reserved parking spaces for guests.
Cafe hours will stay the same: Tuesday through Sunday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Starting Nov. 26, dinner hours will be Thursday through Saturday from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.