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Affinities: Flying High

Berber brings North African cuisine—and unique entertainment—to Russian Hill.

See all the Affinities photo shoots here.

A trip to tunisia sparked Tony Garnicki’s, founder of Berber, idea to bring a North African restaurant and supper club to San Francisco. “[I] felt ready to introduce an authentic dinner show experience with an elegant atmosphere and in the spirit of Berber hospitality,” he says. At the center of the new venture is a culture that brings together villagers, tribes and families through music and dance. “Celebration is a focal point of their social life,” he adds.

The restaurant puts on four to five performances between courses on Saturday nights (with Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays soon to follow), ranging from aerialists and belly dancers to musical acts. Entertainment Director Zoe Jakes uses her expertise and years of experience as a producer and a performer to scour the city for talents, including aerial hoop performer Sylphie Ariella, shown here.

The menu also speaks to Berber’s culinary culture, which focuses on healthy, vegetable-forward dishes; fermented and dried foods; seafood; and a plenty of spices, such as coriander, turmeric, sumac and star anise. “We [procure] specialty dried items and spices from Tunisia and Morocco,” says Garnicki.

The decor, inspired by Berber artisans, highlights handselected individualized pieces of furniture and fixtures from North African communities. “We wanted to take this opportunity to surround guests with Berber designs, art and symbolism to help educate guests [about] their culture,” he says. 1516 Broadway, 415.800.7767


Originally published in the February issue of San Francisco 

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