In case you didn’t know, some of the country’s finest female impersonators used to perform in North Beach at clubs like Finocchio’s and the Black Cat, starting back in the 1930s. Hollywood celebrities on vacation here, like Bing Crosby and Doris Day, used to frequent these places to watch renowned performers like LaVerne Cummings, and the "Male Sophie Tucker," Lucian Phelps, who regularly appeared at Finocchio’s for 27 years. North Beach has changed a great deal, but now the Penthouse Club & Steakhouse (412 Broadway) is bringing drag back to the neighborhood for the first time in over a decade with a new Sunday cabaret brunch called Divas. This will, of course, not feature any toplessness, and as their rep tells us, "the only breasts you might see might be boneless chicken breasts in a chafing dish."
The weekly event is hosted by Katya Smirnoff-Skyy — a character created by local performer J. Conrad Frank who frequently does one-woman shows, Russian accent and all, at and includes three shows between 11:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. It’s a prix fixe of $35, including a mimosa or Bloody Mary, and an all-you-can-eat buffet featuring a roast beef carving station, a sushi station, and made-to-order omelettes.
Let’s hope they don’t steal too much business away from the long-running Sunday’s a Drag brunch hosted by Donna Sachet at Harry Denton’s Starlight Room.
The fun kicks off this Sunday, September 16. Make reservations here.
Penthouse Club & Steakhouse - 412 Broadway at Montgomery - 415-391-2900