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The Bluestem Brasserie reinvents the typical steakhouse, providing a unique dining experience within a carefully crafted space that is sensitive to its context, and effectively communicates the sustainable philosophy of the restaurant.

Unlike the traditional steakhouse—dim, dense, and inward-facing—the Bluestem interior is modeled after a meadow. Open, flowing areas take advantage of the lofty existing space. The design also focused on creating energy that extends beyond the interior, diminishing the distinction between inside and out. A large portion of the double-height façade was opened to the street via a new glass wall system. The building’s single-story setback allowed for a rooftop terrace overlooking Market street and adding an unexpected level of visual activity to the intersection.

The restaurant entrance opens to the main dining room and lively bar. This main space boasts 30-foot ceilings, the custom fabricated concrete bar is backlit with LEDs, adding a sparkle to cocktails that can be relished in the adjacent lounge. A grand curving stair leads patrons to the more subdued upstairs dining room and terrace. Though different functions have different zones, connectivity is maintained throughout. The open plan effectively represents the green philosophy of the restaurant and menu. The build out eliminated superfluous materiality, and allowed for maximum natural light within the space. Floors in the main dining area feature wood tiles, created by slicing cross-sections of Indonesian rosewood beams. The large, group table is fabricated from a Selebuan hardwood slab. All wood materials are either reclaimed or sourced from government owned plantation forests dedicated to the renewable harvesting of wood.

San Francisco, CA | 2011


Adam + Stacy Jed

LD Team

David Battenfield
Ben Jennett
Dina Dobkin

Project Team

Terra Nova Industries

Press and awards


Ryan Hughes