Four months have flown by and Off the Grid: Fort Mason Center is finally back. We’re ready to pull out all the stops in 2020 for our 10th anniversary! In our 10th year, you can expect more food Creators, more themed nights, more local artists, and more fun! You won’t want to miss this momentous season of San Francisco’s biggest Friday night street food party.
Before we get into all the juicy insider tips to help you make the most of your time at Off the Grid: Fort Mason Center, we wanted to take some time to thank you for all the support and share some information about our commitment to safety.
Since 2010, our mission has been to provide support to local businesses (Creators), while creating unique community experiences for our guests. Our top priority in making the decision to launch our Fort Mason Center market is to make sure that we’re supporting our Creator community—hundreds of small businesses—while keeping our experiences safe. With the upcoming launch, we want to share how we’re planning ahead. Off the Grid staff will be walking around with hand sanitizers throughout the event, wiping down all guest areas on an hourly basis and providing additional napkins to guests. We are also actively recommending that any Creators, employees, and guests with flu-like symptoms to exclude themselves from OTG activities moving forward. Learn more here.
As we’ve been working hard to make this the best season yet, we’ve been doing a ton of reflection on the past 10 years—and what a difference a decade makes! In 2010, in a San Francisco parking lot, a scrappy Asian inspired food market was born. Back then, we were a lean, mean fighting machine, with all hands on deck, including our CEO and founder, Matt Cohen. Though in its infancy, the mission and essence of Off the Grid was present: to create an incredible experience for our guests, build community, and mimic the unique atmosphere that Matt experienced during his 2007 travels to Asian night markets. With your help, something incredible was created.
The vision for what Off the Grid could become has transformed over time. What started as the desire to create a vast San Francisco night market has turned into a mobile events platform that transforms underutilized spaces into places that allow people to connect over a shared love of food and community. It was you, our guests, that made our one market grow to four locations in a matter of four months—now operating over 35 public markets per week. This would not have been possible without you showing up, creating community, and supporting our mission. So thank you for getting us to where we are today, opening Off the Grid: Fort Mason Center for its 10th season, with 35 weeks and a rotating selection of 30+ Creators.
10 YEARS OF NEW AND FAN FAVORITES!
BE THE FIRST TO SAMPLE 2020’S NEW MOBILE FOOD CREATORS
2020 is shaping up to be a year of tying new and old together, and guests at Off the Grid: Fort Mason Center are about to experience the benefits. Coming back to Fort Mason again this year, our Instrucktional program (Off the Grid’s own 24-month mobile food incubator, in partnership with Google) will be featuring—in rotating fashion—a variety of up-and-coming chefs. Off the Grid: Fort Mason Center is the only place that you can try these new concepts before they blow up and hit the streets with lines for hours.
With the most exciting lineup of new Creators yet, you can expect everything from mouth-watering cheesy birria tacos to Chilean street food. Taco Thai SF, a La Cocina SF participant, will be serving up Thai food with a taco twist. EaterSF pop-up of the year, El Garage, will be bringing their noteworthy tacos to the table later in April. OG Tacos!, whose “quesabirria” style of taco has amassed a cult following and created a wave of hungry Instagram followers will be serving up their sensational food on opening day. The Golden Marrow, known for re-inventing bone marrow and participating in some of the largest food events along the West Coast will also be joining us this season.
Have you ever heard of Yogui or Bomboloni? Don’t fret—this season you’ll have the opportunity to try a number of new dishes to hit the Bay Area, including the Northern Chilean street food called Yogui (a savory filled waffle on a stick) from Llama en Llamas and Mister Bomboloni’s light-as-air Italian donuts filled with nutella (yum 😋)!
WE CAN’T FORGET ALL OF OUR LONG TIME FAVORITES
Alongside the monstrous list of newcomers, all your fan favorites who are no stranger to Off the Grid: Fort Mason Center will be joining the bustling action again this year. You can expect the return of award-winning Capelo’s Barbecue, which has been delivering locally sourced, wood-fire smoked meats since 2012. Some of your favorite Filipinio food will be back again this year, including Senor Sisig, Hula Truck, Jeepney Guy and Turontastic, with even more new Filipino vendors joining us for the first time. And we can’t forget fried chicken! This year we’ll see crowd favorite, Wing Man, serving up their sensational wings and fried chicken, and what we consider to be the most underrated Fried Chicken Sandwich in the Bay, Haley McNicolls’ Chuck Norris Spicy Fried Chicken Sandwich. We’ll also see the return of San Francisco food pioneer Mission Street Food from Anthony Myint. Mission Street Food will debut more classics exclusively at Off the Grid: Fort Mason Center in 2020.
Before you come, make sure to check out the weekly Creator lineup so you’ll know exactly which Creator of the lot to make a beeline for—or even better, download the official Off the Grid app: [Download for iOS | Download for Android]. (Shhh 🤫, a new version may be coming soon) We will be adding new Creators as the year progresses, so keep an eye on Off the Grid’s Instagram account for the latest news about Creator additions.
COME ONE, COME ALL – JUST COME HUNGRY!
Whether you’re coming straight from work in business attire (psst… did you know we know do reserved VIP spaces at our Fort Mason Market? Inquire here!), grabbing a bite with friends after rumbling around, or had a work-from-home Friday and are ready to hit the town in your new fit, you’ll fit right in at Off the Grid: Fort Mason Center. Simply put, come however you are. But just to stay prepared for the unpredictable microclimates of San Francisco, we always recommend dressing in layers for any curveball Karl the Fog or Sheila (what we, at Off the Grid, like to call the sun 🌞) may throw our way. Don’t fret when Karl does make his appearance, as we know he will (we even have a night to celebrate him!), we’ve got plenty of sheltered lounge spaces, fire pits, and heat lamps to gather around for warmth.
FRIENDS, FAMILY, FUTURE SIGNIFICANT OTHER?
Whichever pronoun you prefer, whether you’re human or canine, young or old; all are welcome at Off the Grid: Fort Mason Center. Whether you’re meeting for happy hour with colleagues, warming up before a night out on the town, celebrating a special occasion, or looking to spend time with your family, our Fort Mason Center location is perfect for it all. With no reservations required and plenty of food options to meet the entire group’s cravings and dietary needs, you can’t go wrong.
Have you been looking for a place to take your potential boo thang or long time lover? Off the Grid: Fort Mason Center makes for the perfect date spot, wherever you may find yourself in your love journey.
Canine lovers rejoice—Fido Friday is back! Every third Friday (beginning March 20th) guests are encouraged to bring their furry friends to the party. Off the Grid: Fort Mason Center will offer Yappy Hour specials from 5:30 – 6:30 pm (10% off Rye on the Road drinks for all guests with a pup in tow), along with a “Hair of the Dog” specialty cocktail. Special treats and doggie bowl stations will be available for all canine guests, as well.
COME EARLY AND GET FRIDAY NIGHT STARTED RIGHT
Fridays are for leaving work early and getting to Fort Mason fast. With our Fort Mason Center regularly attracting thousands of guests from the Bay Area and beyond, getting to the Market early can have some advantages, including snagging a spot at one of our communal fire pits or Cubert lounge spaces before they get snatched up. By coming early you’ll also have the opportunity to see the sunset with a drink in your hand from one of the best views in the city. Rest assured that if you do end up staying through the peak times (why wouldn’t you?), the energy and environment is electric and all of our mobile food Creators are equipped to handle the masses.
TRAVELING TO OFF THE GRID: FORT MASON CENTER
Parking can be limited at Fort Mason Center—but don’t worry, because there are a number of alternative public and private options to choose from. Consider coming on foot, by bike, via public transit or by rideshare. SF Muni’s 43 bus stops right in front of the Fort Mason Center entrance at Marina Boulevard and Laguna Street. There are plenty of other Muni routes serving the Marina area that drop off just a few blocks away, including the 28, 30, 30X, 47 and 49.