flour + water
Opening the doors in 2009 in the heart of the mission district in San Francisco, flour + water continues to showcase a menu influenced by regional traditions throughout Italy with Northern Californian inspirations led by Executive Chef Thomas McNaughton.
Thomas McNaughton, Chef and Partner
Thomas has a long career in the culinary industry; he graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park and gained valuable experience working for premier bay area restaurants La Folie, Gary Danko and Quince in addition to stints at Michelin-rated restaurants in France, Germany and Italy. The deepest connection for Thomas comes from the hands of farmers, artisanal producers and small productions within the neighborhood.
Just prior to beginning work on the opening of flour + water, Tom spent a good deal of time in a Bologna pasta factory honing his chops with all the hand rolled varieties under the watchful eyes of “committed artisans”.
David White, Managing Partner
David White, hailing from Co. Laoise, Ireland has been banging around restaurants since he was 19. He began as a dishwasher at the Hilton hotel in Cannes while on a summer break from university. After he graduated he started waiting tables as a way to travel. “I’m not sure if I ended up in this business by accident or destiny” says White, “almost 20 years later it is in my blood, it’s that simple”
After landing in San Francisco in 1997 he worked in a variety of capacities in a host of well respected restaurants including Postrio, Plouf, Scalas, Eos, Momo’s Chez Papa, and Quince. These experiences culminated in Nua Restaurant and Wine Bar, which he co-designed, built and ran.
Food and wine are inseparable for David and something he views as intertwined cultures that grew up hand in hand. “I love the unending surprise that wine offers; it’s a never-ending journey. The more you learn, the more you realise you do not yet know. I love encountering a new wine for the first time”
Influences and interests are many, and range from photography and far-flung travel to snowboarding, sailing and his nationality: “What it is to be truly Irish is not something that is easy to explain to someone who is not.”
If a committed Irishman in San Francisco opening a restaurant that features artisanal pasta, pizza and cured meats seems odd at first glance, know this: the potato and the tomato are both part of the Nightshade family.
David Steele, Managing Partner
David Steele merges the heart of a food entrepreneur with the brain of a born businessman. Eight years of restaurant experience—working both the back and front of the house—segued into 18 more working in finance, most recently as a Managing Director of a wealth management firm.
This combination of skills, inclinations and a Masters Degree in English Literature is mirrored in an aesthetic that prizes the modern and industrial as well as the somewhat under the radar school of “Steampunk.”
Being a New Jersey native, Steele knows pizza, but is emphatic about one thing, “flour + water is not a pizzeria,” he says. “It’s a restaurant that prizes the basics and prepares Italian food with conviction, authenticity and passion and then serves it at great value to our customers. It’s all about simplicity.”
An avid cyclist and student of yoga, David wouldn’t be without his Converse All Stars, an iPod play list heavy on Modest Mouse, Built to Spill, Pavement, and Radiohead, along with (you guessed it), a steady supply of pizza, pasta and good wine (heavy on the Brunellos and Rhones).
We at flour + water feel extremely fortunate and privileged to be a part of such an incredible community.
Bear Bottom Farms has been providing quality wood products for cooking and heating for over 25 years.
Take a bite of any of our cheeses, and you’ll taste the difference one family’s commitment to quality can make.
Located in the San Joaquin Valley in the small town of Parlier.
(San Joaquin Valley, CA)
Our farm is committed to cultivating long-term relationships with our customers. Our diverse crop list allows us to offer fresh, seasonal produce to our wholesale, retail, food service and restaurant partners year-round.
County Line Harvest grows specialty lettuces, specialty salad greens, baby spinach, chicory mixes, radishes, turnip mixes, carrots, cippolini onions, baby leeks, fennel, mixed baby summer squash, basils, parsley and sage. All crops are organic
(Point Reyes Station, CA)
Since 1997, we have been producing organic cheese in Point Reyes Station, California, and promoting artisan cheesemakers throughout the U.S. and Europe.
Devil’s Gulch Ranch, a diversified family farm located in California’s North Coast region, grows premium wine grapes and offers rabbits, eggs, poultry, lamb, pork, and asparagus for retail sales and to high-quality restaurants. We believe in sustainable agricultural practices and farm organically whenever possible.
(Santa Cruz, CA)
The farm is split between two of the best growing areas of the Bay Area — Santa Cruz’s banana belt, where the weather is relatively hot and dry in the summer and La Selva Beach where there is a stronger coastal influence.
Free Spirit Farms is a 2-acre farm nestled amongst orchards of walnuts just outside Winters, California.
Full Belly Farm has used organic practices since 1985 and is certified by California Certified Organic Farmers. The farm produces an amazing diversity of vegetables, herbs, nuts, flowers, and fruits year-round.
Ruth and Bud Hoffman and their son, Joe, began raising game birds (pheasants and partridges) for the State of California Department of Fish and Game in 1979.
(San Francisco, CA)
Ice Cream With Attitude.
(Half Moon Bay, CA)
The cool, coastal climate of Half Moon Bay is ideal for growing flavorful peas and beans and Iacopi Farm prides themselves on their high quality.
Home of Magruder Meats
Leaders in soil evolution for the production of nutritious food.
Sonoma County Poultry was founded in 1992 by Jim Reichardt, a fourth generation duck farmer, in response to chefs’ demands for a larger, meatier, more flavorful duck.
Marin County’s finest all-organic produce farm.
(Point Reyes Station)
Focused and committed to producing local, pasture based food for the Bay Area community with the aspiration of building a sustainable food model.
Mariquita Farm is a small family farm located near Watsonville, CA. We grow organic specialty vegetables, greens and herbs.
He wants and has wanted from the beginning to create a “chef’s kitchen garden.”
(San Francisco, CA) Monterey Fish is based in San Francisco, California. While we are small enough to provide individual personalized service our sales volume is great enough to allow us to buy in volume directly from local boats and producers nationwide, enabling us to sell the best quality seafood at fair prices.
(San Francisco, CA)
They happily bring to America the tradition of wood roasted coffee.
(San Francisco, CA)
A philosophy embracing sustainably caught and cultured seafood.
Our farm is certified by California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF) and is located in the beautiful Capay Valley where rich creek-bottom soil, intense summer heat and winter frost make exceptionally tasty fruits and vegetables.
Sausalito Springs, a small family farm located in Sonoma County, California, has been growing high quality organic watercress, Nasturtium Officinale, since 1988.
Star Route Farms has been an organic farm in Marin County since 1974. We began on five acres using horse-drawn sulky plows and cultivators and a lot of ‘long haired ambition’.
(Solano County, CA)
Wild Boar Farms offers some of the most outrageous tomatoes available on the planet.
Purveyor of wild mushrooms and wild foods to legendary chefs and restaurants since 1981. Providing the ultimate in wild mushrooms, gathered sustainably, and with passion.
Our friends and neighbors
Championing independent culture since 1993
Samovar was created to make the intriguing world of tea approachable and affordable. Tea’s inherent values also guide our efforts to encourage community, vitality, and equanimity.
Paxton Gate was founded in December of 1992 by two landscape designers whose inspiration came from a fascination with the natural world.
Mission Cycling is devoted to the enjoyment of one of the world’s purest, most classic sporting endeavors: Cycling.
Jessica Niello is a San Francisco painter and printmaker
Jay Tyrrell is a Bay Area photographer.
Dynamic, cutting edge art, education, and community programs since 1974.
a cafe as a social institution, a positive landmark in the community where work gets done, people connect, and ideas are shared.
Located in the city’s historic Mission District, Bi-Rite Market has become San Francisco’s premier neighborhood market. We have been family owned and operated since 1964, in a location that has been serving the neighborhood since 1940.
Kitchen, Restaurant + Bar Specialists was founded to meet the growing demand for foodservice professionals skilled in generating high efficiency designs along with comprehensive food and beverage consulting.
Cocktail ambassadors that specialize in cocktail menu and program development, custom events, brand representation and our soon to be released line of unique bitters and bar tools.
The mission of La Cocina is to cultivate low-income food entrepreneurs as they formalize and grow their businesses by providing affordable commercial kitchen space, industry-specific technical assistance and access to market opportunities.
Sonya Yu takes amazing photographs of beer, wine and food.
“We strive to produce wines that crystallize our passion within each bottle. Because of our relationships with meticulous and respected grape growers, we have been able to produce wines of distinction and character that represent the best of what Northern California vineyards have to offer. We are proud of Skylark and hope to continue share these wines with family and friends, old and new.”
Palmina is a Californian celebration of the rich, wonderful lifestyle and attitude toward food, wine, friends and family that exists in Italy.
Unti Vineyards is a small, family-owned and operated winery specializing in red varietal wines with vineyard personality.
Originally started as the brain-child of two of Cherry Voodoo’s founding partners, Cherry Voodoo Brewing’s mission is to bring an amazing craft beer line-up to the national and international beer markets.
Our artisanal ales are brewed in collaboration with select Northern California sustainable farms. Each barrel-aged limited release is a unique beer to be enjoyed with friends and savored around the seasonal table.
For all press inquiries please contact
Erin Riordan | Events & Marketing Manager
SF Gate published a piece on 21 great pizzas in San Francisco neighborhoods and flour+water was included.
Waddle wrote a pasta dough filled article about how flour + water inspires to make homemade pasta, that'll sure to ignite your very own pasta sense.
SFist put together a delicious list of the 13 most delicious pasta spot in San Francisco, including flour + water's campanelle pasta dish with braised oxtail, squash, and pistachio.
The Tasting Table wrote an article on the best professional pasta tips, referring to Chef Tom's flour + water cookbook.
Name one of Thrillist's 20 Best Restaurants in SF - July 2015
Zagat put together a delicious list of the 10 must-try pasta dishes in SF, including flour + water's Cappellacci dei Briganti With Polpettini.
Our wine directors, Sam Bogue & Geno Tomko were highlighted in a piece giving their advice on the best dive bars.
Zester Daily included flour + water's Tortellini with Pumpkin and Sage dish in a list of 8 recipes in light of the celebration of National Tortellini Day.
San Francisco's Top 25 Restaurants - March 2015
How to Score a Seat at SF's toughest Restaurants
The Tasting Table gave their top recommendations for tasting menus for two, giving a high rank to flour + water's pasting tasting menu.
7x7 put together a must-see list of the 100 things to eat in SF before you die, featuring the flour + water's Rabbit Pappardelle.
Inside Scoop SF mentions flour + water as it looks at the best $40 main courses around the city.
The Daily Meal wrote a mouth-watering piece on flour + water's classic marguerita pizza, ranking it #7 on their list of best pizzas in SF.
In the guide to the 21 best italian restraurants in SF, Thrillist claims flour + water to be "worth the wait" to visit the home to the "best pizza in town."
flour + water is honored join many other amazing eateries in SF Eater's list of 38 essential SF restaurants, ranking at #7.
Mission Local highlighted a story about where NTRG started, including a reference to central kitchen, flour + water, and the 20th Street Block Party.
SF Biz Times did a piece, in which they included flour + water, on places that usually have limited reservations, but are more available during the week when Burning Man is taking place and SF residents have flocked the city.
Food network completed a most excellent review for the flour + water cookbook and showcased a few recipes.
Chow.com did a wonderful photoshoot in the Test Kitchen highlighting a fall recipe from the cookbook, in which Chef Thomas took them step by step.
Food Republic pulled a piece from the cookbook surrounding Emilia Romagna highlighting pork, a great piece to show the diversity and stories behind the cookbook.
Eater National reviewed the flour + water cookbook and we received positive notes across the board, even a great new title for Chef Thomas…"pasta ninja."
2013 Finalist: Rising Star Chef
2012 Finalist: Rising Star Chef
2011 Finalist: Rising Star Chef
2010 Finalist: Best New Restaurant
SF Chronicle Top 100 Restaurant 2010-2016 "Thomas McNaughton knows his way around the kitchen, whether it's producing excellent pizza or seven nightly pastas"
Food & Wine Names Chef Thomas McNaughton a Culinary Icon
San Francisco's Best Pizzas - This noisy new restaurant has everyone trekking to an otherwise abandoned corner of the Mission, for dough peppered with flavor from the fire, dressed with whip-fresh tomato sauce and worthy of worship.
flour + water were featured as the leading story in a Zagat video piece showcasing “The Hottest Spots for Neapolitan Pies” in the country.
“This is serious pizza: light and crispy with great sauce, delicate crust, and toppings like sausage, summer squash, eggplant, and Padrón peppers. The changing tasting menu features light, well-crafted pastas with interesting off-center flavors: pickled veal tongue, rabbit, hen, and lamb shank.”
GQ’s food critic Alan Richman writes: “Flour + Water is sneakily sophisticated, with remarkable ingredients and stunning layers of flavor that don’t stray from easy-to-eat… Everybody loves informal Italian dining. Flour + Water might be as good as it gets.”
Executive Chef & Partner
CEO and Culinary Director
Erin Vogel Riordan
Director of Events and Marketing
Creating a book that covers the spectrum of pasta production and menu creation circling around seasonality and the deep-rooted Italian traditions was important to Chef Thomas McNaughton. Readers can jump through the year, season-by-season experimenting with different shapes and ingredients.
With over 50 unique recipes that cover all aspects of pasta, extensive how-to photography and insights and wisdom from people who practice the art of pasta creation every day, we think this book will appeal to professionals and ambitious home cooks alike!
The book is available for purchase at the Ne Timeas Restaurant Group restaurants located in the 20th street corridor (central kitchen, salumeria & flour + water). Be sure to pop in and pick-up a copy! Additionally, books can be purchased at all of these fine online booksellers:
From intimate dinners to elaborate celebrations, we've got you covered! Check out all of our private dining options.
The Dough Room serves as a prep kitchen where fresh handmade pastas are rolled and extruded by day, transforming at night into an intimate private dining space.
The Test Kitchen serves as a culinary hub of information where our cooks are encouraged to learn and create. It is also where Executive Chef Thomas McNaughton tested recipes for his cookbook flour + water: pasta. At night, the space turns into an intimate and cozy private dining room.
The Upstairs above central kitchen is an industrial chic space for culinary adventures, knowledge exchange, private dining experiences as well as cocktail-style events for up to 45 guests. With large windows overlooking 20th street, the space is transformative in nature, with the availability for the space to take on many different forms and seating arrangements. submit inquiry
By day, salumeria is the neighborhood deli and larder specializing in handcrafted, artisan sandwiches and locally-sourced charcuterie. By night, it turns into central kitchen's private dining space for parties of up to 16 guests, focused on bringing groups together over a family-style dinner. submit inquiry
Events & Classes
World of Williams Sonoma Dinner Series: San Francisco
Thu, October 24, 2019
6:30 PM – 9:00 PM
About this Event
Williams Sonoma’s World of Williams Sonoma Dinner Series has traveled across the country, with exciting dinners at some of America’s Best Restaurants!
In October, the series will come home to San Francisco with a multi-course dinner featuring dishes from Flour + Water at Central Kitchen with Chef Thomas McNaughton
Guest Chef Series - Celebrating 10 years of pasta
10 chefs - 10 charities - 10 months
To celebrate our 10th birthday, flour+water will feature a special a la carte pasta dish from one guest chef each month with a portion of the proceeds benefitting the guest chef’s preferred charity.
- July - Ravi Kapur, Liholiho Yacht Club – $1681 raised for Larkin Street Youth Services
- August - Traci Des Jardins, TDJ Restaurants – $3986 raised for La Cocina
- September - Nicole Krasinski & Stuart Brioza, State Bird Provisions & The Progress
- October - Sarah & Evan Rich, Rich Table & RT Rotisserie
- November - Val Cantu, Californios
- December - Mourad Lahlou, Mourad
- January - Melissa Perello, Frances & Octavia
- February - Pim Techamuanvivit, Kin Khao
- March - Reem Assil, Reem’s & Dyafa
- April - Brandon Jew, Mister Jiu’s & Moongate Lounge
October - Sarah & Evan Rich
During the month of October, flour+water welcomes Guest Chefs Evan and Sarah Rich of Rich Table. Sarah and Evan have created a unique pasta dish to be sold in our dining room: Rich Table Potato Gnocchi with douglas fir, delicata, chive & parmigiano crema. Proceeds of the dish will go to Doctors without Borders, their charity of choice!
CUESA Sunday Supper - October 6th
Chef Thomas McNaughton will be participating in Cuesa's annual Sunday Supper!
flour+water offers seasonal pasta classes concentrating on different styles and techniques. These classes will take place in our premier event space, The Upstairs, at central kitchen.
We do not have any public pasta classes scheduled for the remainder of 2019. Please add your name to our mailing list to be among the first to know when we release our next series!
Prosecco & charcuterie boards upon arrival
Instruction and demonstration by one of our chefs
Hands-on exercises rolling out dough and shaping pasta
Three-course family style dinner with wine pairings
Fresh pasta from the class to take home