Arcsine’s Newest Restaurant Project, Meso, Opens in San JoseAuthor:Michelle Konstantinovsky
Oakland-based architecture and interior design firm, Arcsine, recently debuted an ambitious new project: the 200-seat modern Mediterranean restaurant, Meso, in San Jose’s Santana Row. The latest concept from the Left Bank restaurant group features executive chef Gregory Short, formerly of French Laundry and Masa, bringing French influence to Mediterranean cuisine.
Calling upon the firm’s signature “Method Design,” Arcsine’s principal Adam Winig, senior designer Eunji Kim, and interior designer Soo Yoo drew inspiration from Mediterranean influences to create Meso’s look and feel. The warm earth-toned palette is accented by cool blue hues and guests are greeted by a decorative blue tile inlay at the host stand. Inlaid rope and wood shelves offers a glimpse into the dining room while terrazzo wraps the length of the bar wall and folds onto the floor. Paying homage to Moroccan patterns and archways, the team installed custom-patterned white metal screens to encapsulate the bar area overhead. Beside the bar, a communal table is flanked by two dried olive trees and mirrored alcoves.
Spanish moss, air plants, and succulents can be spotted throughout the dining room while a free-standing fountain with hand-made blue tiles serves as the centerpiece. The room also features two pendants, each with 12 hand-blown lamps, from Troy Lighting to illuminate the tables below. Off the main room, the private dining room entryway is bordered by custom millwork, and mosaic wall tile connects arched niches while column mounted sconces provide warmth.
Sliding accordion doors connect the indoor dining rooms to the outdoor patio which is blanketed by a louvered deck-covering and string lights. The outdoor area also features heating lamps and fans, and French-inspired round back metal chairs surround the custom metal tables.
Wrapping the façade of the restaurant is a mural by Bay Area Artist Caroline Lizarraga and two large pieces of custom rope art designed by San Francisco-based Windy Chien are located above the round booths in main dining room.
Executive chef Gregory Short and Chef/Partner Roland Passot collaborated on a menu that embraces a modern take on housemade Mediterranean classics like pita, hummus, vegetables with vibrant presentations, while pastry chef Eva Wong’s dessert menu nods to traditional sweets with a balance of fruits, nuts and spices.
The beverage program is based on classics with a Mediterranean twist including regional spirits and spices. Highlights include Blood of Mars (spiced rye whiskey, hibiscus Athens vermouth, tart cherry, creole and aromatic bitters); Pistak Sour (botanical gin, house made pistachio orgeat, chili cordial, Persian lime, basil and egg white); and the Chios Dirty Martini (vodka, olive washed, mastika liqueur, lemon bitters, garnished with pimento and feta olives). Mocktails are also available, like the Mediterranean Tonic (orange blossom, peppercorn, grapefruit salt, peach bitters) and the Lime Soda (house pomegranate molasses, tarragon, lemon tinctures).
The extensive wine list features varieties from across the Mediterranean Basin including Greece, Spain, and Portugal, in addition to wines from Slovakia, Lebanon, and Israel.
Meso is located at 3060 Olsen Dr. #50 San Jose, CA 95128.
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