Press Release

Stephanie Stone (415) 379-5121

Helen Taylor (415) 379-5128

Innovate restaurant and cafe schedule to open in October 2008 with emphasis on
local, organic menu of multicultural offerings for adults and kids

SAN FRANCISCO (July 4, 2007) - The California Academy of Sciences is pleased to announce that a contract has been signed with Loretta Keller and Charles Phan, two of San Francisco's most distinguished chefs, to run the restaurant and cafe in the Academy's new facility in Golden Gate Park. Consistent with the new building, which is being heralded as one of the world's most innovative museums, the new restaurant and cafe will be an extension of the Academy itself. Both will explore and explain the natural world in a living way to visitors through exhibits, menus that exemplify sustainable agriculture, and ecological practices. Olle Lundberg of Lundberg Design and Cathy Simon of SMWM, both of San Francisco, are collaborating on design.

The restaurant and cafe are both, as yet, unnamed. The full service restaurant will be open for lunch and dinner, and will be a museum exhibit in the form of a restaurant, communicating the vital relationship between food and culture. The cafe will offer healthy, kid-friendly, multicultural, food to a wide demographic. Elevating the quality of food available in a museum, they will work with local suppliers of sustainable, organic foods.

Loretta Keller is Chef/Owner of COCO5OO located South of Market in San Francisco. Keller originally opened Bizou in 1993, and redesigned the space and menu in 2005 as COCO5OO. She is one of San Francisco’s preeminent female chefs. She began her San Francisco career at Jeremiah Towers' revolutionary Stars. Keller has long been known for sourcing local, organic ingredients for her soulful and beautifully executed Mediterranean dishes. COCO5OO is on the San Francisco Chronicle's "Top 100" restaurants in 2007.

Charles Phan is Chef/Owner of The Slanted Door restaurant in San Francisco's Ferry Building, and Out the Door with locations at the Ferry Building and Westfield Centre. Phan is renowned for bringing modern Vietnamese food with an organic California filter to the U.S. He opened his first restaurant in San Francisco in 1995 and has been a pioneer in forging sustainable and ecologically aware practices in his restaurants. The Slanted Door is on the San Francisco Chronicle's "Top 100" restaurants in 2007, and Phan was awarded the prestigious James Beard Award for Best Chef California in 2004.

Designed by Pritzker prize-winning architect Renzo Piano with local partner Stantec Architecture (formerly Chong Partners), the new California Academy of Sciences will combine inventive architecture and eye-opening exhibits to inspire its visitors to explore and protect the natural world. Topped with a living planted roof, the new building will set a new standard for sustainable architecture. It recently received the silver Holcim Award for sustainable construction in North America. The estimated total cost of the project is $488 million, including building, exhibition, relocation and interim operation costs. The new Academy, which will house the Kimball Natural History Museum, Steinhart Aquarium, and Morrison Planetarium, is slated to open in late 2008. For more information, visit

The California Academy of Sciences is home to Steinhart Aquarium, Morrison Planetarium and the Kimball Natural History Museum. The Academy is in the midst of an extensive rebuilding project in Golden Gate Park. Pritzker prize-winning architect Renzo Piano is designing the new Academy, which is scheduled to open on September 27, 2008. (415) 379-8000.

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