Cafe Bastille, which opened back in 1990, was the first restaurant on Belden Place and led the revolution of the lane.

And while the restaurant is offering outdoor dining and curbside pickup, and has 10 years left on a favorable, non-triple net, lease, it’s also quietly on the market with an asking price of $300,000 for the key to the restaurant and (Type 47) license to serve booze.

In related news, the office vacancy rate in San Francisco has ticked up to 14 percent while the Small Business Eviction Can [has been] Kicked Down the Road.

Comments from Plugged-In Readers

  1. Posted by Cave Dweller

    I guess this is how we destroy a city. Many memories at this restaurant. This one hits it home for me.

    • Posted by anon2.5

      How right you are. We should just open everything up. Put restaurants before lives.

      • Posted by Brian M

        Except that completely shutting down an economy DOES affect lives. Even to death. I bet you are one of those “liberals” who believe that the jobs and prospects of the working class are, as one lefty blogger I stopped following, not very important anyway. And no, having the government mail everyone a check is not the answer, either.

        How many years are you willing to shut the economy down? Because COVID is endemic now and numbers will pop up every time there is an opening.

        • Posted by cg415

          Have fun spreading the plague, Brian. People like you, who politicize the response to a virus, and put profit above public health, are the problem.

          People who question science and treat quarantining like a joke, are the reason there are more and larger outbreaks (and more business closures) than there otherwise would be.

          What good is money if you and/or your loved ones are dead? Or if your customers are dead? Stop trying to pretend that everything can just go back to normal.

          • Posted by Cave Dweller

            Profit above public health? Economic well being has a direct consequence on mental well being which in turn feeds motivation, creativity and other human qualities/needs and wants that understand the importance of economic well being. Do you disagree?

            Mental health is a factor in public health. Public health is not a simple binary life/death conditional statistic.

          • Posted by Brian M

            Funny. I am not some maskless Trump rally attendee, but I also do not buy the idea that we can shut down the economy for what…five years?

            I am guessing you are either retired or some kind of white collar employee fiddling spreadsheets for a living so you CAN work from home. But show a little empathy for the rest of the economy and society. Given, as I said, that Covid is probably endemic now, how do you propose we run a society and an economy with 20% unemployment under perpetual lockdown? People were not exactly healthy during the 1930s.

          • Posted by Aladin

            Just look at Sweden, NO Lockdown, No Mask, No Social distancing and they are doing great but your TV doesnt tell you that because it doesn’t fit their narrative…

          • Posted by jimbo

            sweden is not doing great and public health officials in Sweden have admitted they made a big mistake. Compare sweden to its neigbors. it has 5x as many deaths per capita as Norway, Denmark, finland, and the economy is doing much worse. they didnt save the economy

          • Posted by Cave Dweller
          • Posted by SocketSite

            Actually, with the recorded case rate in the country having just hit a new pandemic high, Sweden’s public health agency is now positioning to support regional lockdowns and restrictions (versus the article you’re referencing from last month).

            And now back to Belden Lane…

          • Posted by tfourier

            An IFR of < 0.2%, a CFR of approx 2% (for those with high PSI/POST scores) and a prevalence of maybe 0.35% is not exactly the plague. In fact those are the same kind of numbers you have been living with quite happily since you were a kid. For the human corona-viruses / HCOV's like 229E and OC43. You have had at least several dozen HCOV infections in your lifetime. At any given time at least 1% of the population has a HCOV infection. I got H1N1-09 (Swine Flu) back in 2009. Not fun at all. Very nasty. My current health risk from SARs CoV 2 is lower than it was from H1N1 in 2009. Did they lock-down the country back then? Sure did n't.

            That's the actual clinical science. Look it up.

            But all those positive tests you say. Well that math of mass testing using RT/PCR is very simple. When carefully done (30 cycles max) with a low prevalence virus the false positives are 90% plus. For much higher cycle count, 95% plus false positives . The false negatives using RT/PCR for HCOV's during the 10/15 days of the typical active infection average 50%. So even after three pass testing of positives the false positive rate is still more than 30% (down from 70% on second test) and you have eliminated at least 85% of the actual infected cases.

            Thats the actual science. And math. There is a very good reason why the guy who developed the RT/PCR test said it should never ever be used for diagnostic purposes. Its worthless. But thats what all those mass SARs CoV 2 tests uses. The numbers you see splashed all over the media headlines.

            Like to talk the math of random diffusion airborne infection spread when no therapeutic treatments or effective vaccines available? Nothing changes the area under the curve. Nothing. So lockdowns a waste of time. Thats been the science for at least 140 years. Did nt you know, HCOV vaccine development, like SARs CoV 1 and MERS, have a long history of total failure. For very good scientific reasons. And lots of nasty side effects too. There will be no effective vaccine. Just a rerun of the flu vaccine fiasco of 1976 which killed and maimed many if they try to roll out a SARs CoV 2 vaccine in the next year.

            So the actual published (and verifiable) science and math is that the actual epidemic has been over for months (using the standard medical definition of an epidemic) , since late June, had a very low mortality rate except for those who were already at high risk to death from viral pneumonia over the age of 70. Just like with flu. Lock-downs have zero effect on final 720/1080 day infection curves. And like all HCOV's SARs CoV 2 is spread by respiratory aerosols in badly ventilated confined spaces. So every mask other than a N95/N99 had zero barrier effect. Zero. A placebo. I've had my N99’s since early February. Just in case. And you? Wearing a placebo mask?..

            And you think destroying the retail economy of downtown San Francisco, putting out of business many hundreds of small businesses, and making many 10Ks of people unemployed was a great idea? For a minor novel respiratory disease whose main morality age cohort were those people who had a suppressed mortality rate from H1N1-09 back in 2009. And pretty much nobody else.

            Thats the actual science. From the primary source published scientific literature. Not the stuff you read on Facebook

          • Posted by jimbo

            tfourier. you are the one posting facebook science. the IFR and CFRs look correct but the rest is gibberish.

            there are plenty of valid studies showing that cloth mask use conveys protection, especially if both the infected and the people they encounter are both wearing it. and the pandemic is far from over as you see rising hospitalizations, deaths and test positivity rate. the case rate is not super useful, but you cant deny hospitalizations. the IFR was significantly lower for swine flu than COVID-19 and COVID-19 has 10x higher IFR than the seasonal flu.

            stop listening to your facebook friends and trump, and follow the top epidemiologists, infectious disease experts and public health officials, and top medical journals

          • Posted by Ohlone Californio

            People who argue mortality rate decline as proof that the pandemic is over are ridiculous. As if the medical community has not developed more effective treatments between April and now? Of course the mortality rate is down. And I mean, that’s just one thing. The idea that the mortality rate alone is the sole problem with this virus is absurd.

        • Posted by Nobody

          Really? Look around. Businesses are open. Walk down Chestnut Street at night and it’s alive with people. Stop being so dramatic in thinking the world is black and white and that it’s either the economy or safety. It’s not. People can walk and chew gum, just as we can open and wear masks.

          • Posted by jimbo

            agree, i just dont even understand people stating the economy is shut down. most businesses are open. unfortunately some have failed and more will, but its worth the lives it saves. right now, the only restriction is wearing a mask and not going to bars. its not like we are in jail or have been sent to war.

          • Posted by Bluntcard

            In response to tfourier:

            So, the ENTIRE planet is in on this grand conspiracy to sway the election towards the Democrats in the United States? Because we are SO VERY important? What is the point of this world wide conspiracy? Mask production? People are getting wealthy off of clothe mask production?

            By the way, wearing a mask reduces drastically the amount of spreadable particulates, same as covering your mouth when you sneeze. It isn’t a difficult concept (for most people).

            The irony is that San Francisco is an example of how the country should have dealt with the virus in the first place.

  2. Posted by Dave (Seattle dude)

    Walking away from a non-triple net lease is unusual. Perhaps the owner is retiring? Or maybe they don’t see a bright (profitable) future for restaurants in SF?

  3. Posted by anon2.5

    Best case, you’re looking at 1-1.5 years before the financial district bounces back. That’s a long period of losses. I suspect most of the independent financial district restaurants will not survive. We will be left with a few chain restaurants.

  4. Posted by Kyle

    Bleden Place restaurants are just not hopping. I worked at 555 Cali building across the street and we only went like 1 or 2 a month… We went out to lunch and happy hour almost every work day…

    Good luck to them.

  5. Posted by Jimmy

    Wow, been here so many times.. really too bad

  6. Posted by Notcom

    I’ll not comment on Cafe Bastille – either good or bad, since I never ate there – but I would point out it wasn’t “the first restaurant on Belden Place”: a couple doors down (left in the picture) was a restaurant called “Vic’s Place” (IIRC it said ‘Since 1978’ in the window) which I remember eating at in the 80’s…so obviously before 1990.

    So perhaps the Editor means ‘first’ of the nouvelle cuisine joints, but as a reminder: before there was Belden Place, there was Belden Place…a bunch of non-descript eating places where people went NOT “to be seen”, but rather to be inconspicuous.

    • Posted by SocketSite

      Except Vic’s Place, now Sini, actually fronted Kearny.

      • Posted by Notcom

        Listen here, you young ‘un 🙂 That’s not the place I’m referring to. It closed probably 25 years ago, so why it’s listed on CP I’ve no idea, but that’s the address.

        • Posted by SocketSite

          By “left in the picture,” we assumed you meant on the left side of the picture (which would be the space we referenced, which overlooks Belden, with the old DarnGoodFood sign above). And in which case, that appears to be our “youthful” mistake.

          • Posted by Notcom

            Ah yes: the perils of assuming! But now that you’ve brought it up – again – I’m curious if perhaps VP simply relocated across the street, and lived on for at least another few years…that would be nice (altho in the end I guess not enough).

            And now back to the topic: Belden Place and its value as a proxy for the Covid Pandemic.

  7. Posted by L'Urbanista_SF

    My first professional lunch was at Bastille. I loved them so much. My fave was the quiche special of the day with salad and fries.

  8. Posted by MyOddCommentHandle

    I’ve eaten in Belden a few times.

    Still where you take someone you don’t want to be seen with

    i’ve taken and been taken there over the years. lol

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