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New Locally-Sourced Restaurant Opens in San Mateo

At the spot where Bollywood Indian Cuisine once stood is 31st Union, an American comfort food restaurant with primarily local ingredients.

Smoked duck tacos. Lamb meatballs. Grilled baby artichokes.

Those are just a handful of menu items that will be offered at 31st Union, one of San Mateo's newest restaurants that opens its doors to the public Thursday.

Executive Chef Paul Burzlaff, hired by owner and Director of Operations David Hunsaker, will present a small plate format menu showcasing American comfort food prepared with seasonal ingredients, primarily obtained from California sources.

The name of the restaurant, located at 5 S. Ellsworth Ave., is derived from California being the 31st state to enter the Union, combined with the commitment to sourcing ingredients and libations almost exclusively from within state lines, according to restaurant officials.

Chef Burzlaff, a California native who grew up in Colorado and later the California Central Valley, is a 2002 graduate of the California School of Culinary Arts in Pasadena, and did his externship at the Brown Palace Hotel in Denver.

In 2005, he relocated to the Bay Area where he worked at The Restaurant at Wente Vineyards in Livermore and developed a passion for “farm to table” cuisine.

In addition to its cheese boards and variety of appetizers and main courses, the 31st Union bar will offer a section of contemporary, classic and original cocktails, plus local artisanal craft beers and a California wine list that will include a dozen keg wines on tap, six white and six red.

A Happy Hour menu, available Tuesday through Friday from 4:00 to 5:30 p.m. and Thursday through Saturday from 10:00 p.m. to close, will feature a select wine and beer of the week for $5.00 and four to six food items, each priced at $5.00.

The restaurant will open initially for dinner only, on Tuesday, Wednesday and Sunday from 4:00 to 11:00 p.m., and Thursday through Saturday from 4:00 p.m. to midnight.

There are plans to add lunch service sometime later, according to restaurant officials.

The venue was previously home to Bollywood Indian Cuisine.

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