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Jillian
Los Angeles

Jillian from Los Angeles asked

Best food in the city while eating solo at the bar?

Heading to San Francisco on business for a few days, and need some places for solo eats. Meetings are all over town, so I'm open to most areas.

Ideally, I'm looking for:

  • Bar seating (eating solo at the bar)
  • Best food in the city (menu favorites?)
  • Good wine and cocktail list
  • Trendy vibe always a plus


Thanks!

San Francisco

16 Answers
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answered by
Jeff from Portland

Check out the following

State Bird Provisions - very difficult to get a seat but amazing food

Hakkasan - Trendy Chinese food and they have great cocktails. Crispy duck salad is awesome.

Coqueta - on The Embarcadero a few blocks north of the Ferry Building. This is a Michael Chiarello restaurant. The food and drinks really are great. 

La Mar - Peruvian mainly seafood. Right near there is a bar called Hard Water which is a nice little trendy place

SPQR - Italian and great wine selection

RN74 - it is nice. I know they have a lounge, but not sure about a bar nice wine selection and great variety of food. 


Comments (3)

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Debbie
Great to see you here again and great suggestions, Jeff! I've been to all but State Bird Provisions, so I'll have to check that out. By the way, I've helped you highlight the places in your answer on a map! In the future, you can do this yourself as you answer a question by simply typing the @-symbol followed by the name of the place. Take a look at the cool map next to your answer! :)
 

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Jeff
Thanks Debbie. I normally do that, but the answer editor was causing issues so I had to write this in a different program and paste it in. Thanks for fixing that!
 

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Jillian
Thanks Jeff! The pancakes at State Bird look really good. It all does! Will definitely check these places out.
 
 
 

Mentioned in this answer:

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  1. State Bird Provisions (restaurant)
  2. Hakkasan (restaurant)
  3. Coqueta (restaurant)
  4. The Embarcadero (attraction)
  5. Ferry Building (attraction)
  6. La Mar (attraction)
  7. Hard Water (attraction)
  8. SPQR (restaurant)
  9. RN74 (restaurant)
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answered by
Anthony from New York City

Comments (1)

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Jillian
Thanks, Anthony! I just so happen to LOVE seafood, so will definitely check this out.
 
 
 

Mentioned in this answer:

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  1. Swan Oyster Depot (restaurant)
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answered by
Miles


There are more options but Ed has a great list on there.


Comments (2)

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Jillian
Thanks Miles. Trick Dog honestly looks perfect for me. I mean, drinks made for your astrological sign, YES please!
 

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Carina
I love that you included Trick Dog- this is one of my favorites!
 
 
 

Mentioned in this answer:

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  1. Piccino (restaurant)
  2. Trick Dog (attraction)
  3. Rosamunde Sausage Grill (restaurant)
  4. Toronado (restaurant)
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answered first by
Ed from Oakland

Comments (2)

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Chris
http://www.yelp.com/biz/chubby-noodle-san-francisco-2 i see more solo travelers eating at this place than anywhere else. It's a fantastic pop up restaurant that caters to solo orders. And, it's in a killer bar as well.
 

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Jillian
Ed! Thanks for sharing your favs! Looking forward to checking these out . :)
 
 
 

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  1. Umi (attraction)
  2. Suppenküche (restaurant)
  3. Bourbon and Branch (restaurant)
  4. Roam Artisan Burgers (restaurant)
  5. Sweet Woodruff (restaurant)
  6. Bourbon Steak (attraction)
  7. Presidio Social Club (attraction)
  8. Lers Ros Thai (restaurant)
  9. Absinthe (restaurant)
  10. Bar Agricole (attraction)
  11. Tony’s Pizza Napoletana (restaurant)
  12. Umami (restaurant)
  13. Yank Sing Restaurant (restaurant)
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answered by
Matthew from New York City

I go to SF for work and I just sat at the bar of Bar Crudo and had an amazing meal. If you like oysters, mussels, and amazingly fresh sashimi, this is a great spot. They have happy hour specials that start at 5 and it's pretty busy by 6 so try and get there early. Swan Oyster Depot is great too but it's only open until around 4:30 so it's not really a dinner spot. Lastly, Tadich Grill has been around forever, isn't far from the Financial District and is known for their Cioppino. All have good bar areas for the solo diner.


Comments (1)

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Jillian
Thanks, Bar Crudo sounds perfect. Will check it out on my next business trip!
 
 
 

Mentioned in this answer:

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  1. Bar Crudo (restaurant)
  2. Swan Oyster Depot (restaurant)
  3. Tadich Grill (restaurant)
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answered by
Kenneth from San Francisco

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Carina
Coqueta really is a good one- I feel like a lot of people miss it because it's so tiny, but that's part of what makes it charming!
 

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Jillian
Thanks, Kenneth! These all look amazing. If you have any insider tips about what to try or best times to go, I'd love to hear them! Really appreciate your help - I'm going to be happily dining solo on this trip. :)
 
 
 

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  1. Nopa (restaurant)
  2. Bar Tartine (restaurant)
  3. Marlowe (restaurant)
  4. Nojo Restaurant (restaurant)
  5. Bar Agricole (attraction)
  6. Coqueta (restaurant)
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answered by
Eric from San Francisco

Chaya (Japanese) and Hard Water (whiskey bar) by The Embarcadero are easy to get to, have great atmosphere, small plates and drinks


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Jillian
Thanks, Eric! The Hard Water bar is exactly what I'm looking for. I also love Whiskey, so right on. Will check this for sure.
 
 
 

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  1. Chaya (restaurant)
  2. Hard Water (attraction)
  3. The Embarcadero (attraction)
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answered by
Daniella from San Diego

Everything that's been mentioned are great, since you're from LA and looking for a trendier vibe I would definitely say to check out:

Mas Sake Freestyle Sushi

The Brixton

Sabrosa


Comments (1)

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Jillian
Awesome. Going to try as many of these as I can. Love the local/organic vibe to Sabrosa and the Brixton bar looks perfect for a lively, trendy spot for solo eats. Always in for recommended sushi too. Thanks!
 
 
 

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  1. Mas Sake Freestyle Sushi (attraction)
  2. The Brixton (restaurant)
  3. Sabrosa (restaurant)
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answered by
Jonathan from San Francisco

Check out Beretta in the Mission which has both a bar and a communal table, which is great for socializing while solo, and has some of the best food and cocktails in town.


Comments (1)

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Jillian
Thanks Jonathan! This is exactly what I'm looking for, and I've really enjoyed the Mission when in town, so can't wait to check this out!
 
 
 

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  1. Beretta (restaurant)
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answered by
Christina

Swan Oyster Depot for lunch!


Comments (2)

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Jillian
Thanks, Christina. This seems to be a must-try place for solo eats. Any thoughts on what to order?Can't wait!
 

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Christina
Definitely go, try to get there early as a line forms. Everything is great but you can't go wrong w/ the crab salad.
 
 
 

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  1. Swan Oyster Depot (restaurant)
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answered by
Jesse from Oroville

Alioto's Restaurant off Embarcadero


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  1. Alioto's Restaurant (restaurant)
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answered by
Adam from Tenderloin

You should check out Bar Agricole or Nopa, both great choices!!


Comments (1)

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Jillian
Thanks Adam! Both of these places look delicious and perfect for what I'm looking for on my trip - appreciate the help!
 
 
 

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  1. Bar Agricole (attraction)
  2. Nopa (restaurant)
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answered by
Fred from Tenderloin

Spruce in Presdio Heights


Comments (1)

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Jillian
Thanks Fred! That lobster ravioli looks insane. Appreciate the recommendation!
 
 
 

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  1. Spruce (restaurant)
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top answer by
Michael from San Francisco

If you're in SF for business, I'm going to guess you're going to be in the Downtown / Financial district. In that area, (places with bar seating) I would suggest.

  • Sens Restaurant in the Embarcadero. Mediterranean food. The bartender, Matt, is a great guy, and the view of the Embarcadero is fantastic.
  • Ozumo just south of Market.  Japanese food. Nice bar area with happy hour specials on their grilled skewers.
  • Barbacco@ 220 California St.  Italian food, always a popular lunch and happy hour spot. 
  • Waterbar is trendy happy hour favorite, with $1 oyster specials from lunch until 530.  Great views of the bay.

Another suggestion (not in the Financial district) that is what I consider the ultimate bar style eating, would be  State Bird Provisions.  Reservations take forever for this Michelin starred joint, but since you're visiting, and I assume your schedule is flexible, get there on a non-weekend night, around 430, wait in line for about 30 mintues, get a seat at the chef's counter, or put your name down and come back at a later time.  The menu is constantly changing, and everything is good.  Make friends along the counter and share your food. 


Comments (1)

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Jillian
Thanks Michael! State Bird looks insane. I really appreciate your tips to get in - can't wait to try this place!
 
 
 

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  1. Sens Restaurant (restaurant)
  2. Ozumo (restaurant)
  3. Barbacco (restaurant)
  4. Waterbar (restaurant)
  5. State Bird Provisions (restaurant)
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answered by
Steven

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  1. Gary Danko (restaurant)
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answered by
Adam from Nottingham

Lou's Fish Shack At Pier 47 - http://www.lousfishshacksf.com/

300 Jefferson St. San Francisco, CA 94133


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Jillian
Thanks Adam! I'll be sure to check it out. I bet their bread bowls are so good!
 
 
 

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  1. Lou's Fish Shack (restaurant)
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