The interior matches the $225 tasting menu

Eight Tables by George Chen, the fine-dining cherry-on-top of sleek Chinese food emporium China Live, debuted this week in the heart of Chinatown. Diners furtively enter the second-floor restaurant through a special elevator tucked into an alleyway behind the restaurant. The soft pitch of the lighting, the hue of the walls, and the layout of the dining room set the stage for a restaurant that’s theatrical in concept and glamorous in execution.

Designed by AvroKo — the NY-based firm behind Single Thread in Healdsburg — no luxe detail is spared for a restaurant that will charge $225 per guest, plus an optional $125 pairing. The focus is on shifan tsui, or “private chateau cuisine,” a traditionally elite style of dining at home. As a result, the interior of Eight Tables is intimate, boasting literally eight tables separated by walls and screens.

The room is cream-colored and neutral with brass accents throughout, from the inlays in the mid-century tables with built-in lazy Susans to the custom-made lighting. It’s a serene setting for a meal that is filled with flavors like beef tendon cooked in numbing Szechuan peppers, Chinese five spice, and other bold flavors. In typical AvroKo fashion, details like plaster panels depict lace patterns from Chinese wedding dresses. Plates are fine china, chopsticks are ebony, and cocktails are rolled into the dining room on a custom gueridon.

Reservations for dinner are now available starting October 3 on OpenTable. – Eater San Francisco (09.08.17)