A new high-end Thai spot arrives in Japantown, a new but familiar French bistro is taking over the Catch space in the Castro, and Chronicle critic MacKenzie Chung Fegan admits she likes it when servers are mean.

A new, high-end Thai tasting-menu restaurant that we first told you about in February is opening May 3 in Japantown, and it's called Hed 11. It's a new project from restaurateur Naruephon “Billie” Wannajaro (of Hed Very Thai near Union Square) and chef Piriya “Saint” Boonprasan (of Bangkok's Michelin-starred Saawaan), and it's opening in the remodeled Kimpton Enso Hotel (1800 Sutter Street). As Eater reports, the menu will highlight seafood and the flavors of Southern Thailand.

Mestiza, the plant-forward, Filipino and Southeast Asian fast-casual restaurant from chef Syl Mislang and restaurateur Deanna Sison, is now open in a new location at 214 Townsend Street in SoMa. As Tablehopper tells us, after closing during the pandemic and reopening here, Mestiza is offering dishes like crispy sweet potato lumpia with pineapple chili jam, and calabasa coconut curry with aji verde. And starting next month, they will be doing reservation-only, communal Kamayan-style feasts on the back patio. They're open Tuesday through Saturday, 11:30 am to 8 pm.

In the Castro, the space that formerly housed longtime seafood spot Catch at 2262 Market Street will become a new location of French bistro ChouChou. Hoodline had the news and reports that an employee on site said the place would be open in a few weeks. ChouChou's Forest Hill location has been open for 21 years, and a former chef and partner in the business left to open Bisou in the Castro in 2010, and that closed in 2018. Now owners Mina Habil and Etemad Eissa appear to be in expansion mode, and just opened a second ChouChou in Burlingame last year.

Two San Francisco bars landed on the latest North America's 50 Best Bars list, from the organization that also publishes the World's 50 Best Restaurants list. They are True Laurel, the fancy Mission District cocktail spot from the Lazy Bear team; and Pacific Cocktail Haven in Union Square/Nob Hill.

The Chronicle's food team tasted their way through the ground-level offerings at IKEA's Saluhall, and they have some recommendations.

Over in the East Bay, Pastrami guy Cash Caris, formerly of Berkeley's popular Delirama, is turning to the pop-up game again with Little Pyro, his latest venture after closing the short-lived restaurant that replaced Delirama, Elsie's, several weeks back. Little Pyro made its first appearance last weekend at Almanac Beer Co. in Alameda. Check Instagram for the next pastrami pop-up.

Chronicle Associated Restaurant Critic Cesar Hernandez filed a review of Tanzie's, a new Thai cafe in Berkeley that is apparently doing excellent Thai brunch, and Hernandez calls it a "culinary gem."

And critic MacKenzie Chung Fegan admits this week that she likes it when restaurant servers are gruff or outright mean.

Photo courtesy of Hed 11