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Great beer bars in San Francisco?

I'll be in SF for a few hours tomorrow evening after a long day of filming and my crew and I will need beer! Any and all types of establishments throughout the city are fine (I'll be back in SF for longer periods of time and will be able to explore) but for this trip, I'm looking for someplace scenic, maybe near the water or outside. I'll most likely be grabbing dinner in The Mission, so I'd be interested in any great bars in that neck of the woods too.

9 Answers

top answer by
JR from Manhattan Beach

I'd agree with Brew's answer. If basing your evalation of a beer bar on the quality of line up,  Toronado is tough to beat. Be prepared though, it's a dive. Nextdoor to Toronado you can pick up a proper sausage at  Rosamunde Sausage Grill. If you find yourself in the  Mission District they also have a  Rosamunde Sausage Grill there with a very respecatble line up as well. Have fun!

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Toronado (restaurant)
  2. Mission District (neighborhood)
  3. Rosamunde Sausage Grill (restaurant)
  4. Rosamunde Sausage Grill (restaurant)
6 thankscomments (2)

answered by
Nikolaj from Copenhagen

Mikkeller Bar is the newly opened outpost of the best beer bar in Copenhagen (and probably all of Europe). If the Copenhagen bar is anything to go by, you're in for a treat

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Mikkeller Bar (restaurant)
5 thankscomments (1)

answered by
Jay from Brooklyn

The Mission is crawling with great dive bars, which is definitely the forte of the area. If you want more of the craft beer scene, I would really recommend 21st Amendment Brewery & Restaurant in SoMa.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. 21st Amendment Brewery & Restaurant (restaurant)
5 thankscomments (2)

answered by
Brew from Manhattan Beach

Without a doubt, one of the best brew pubs anywhere is Toronado in the Haight.  Seriously, the lineup here is fantastic and if you like IPAs, you will be in heaven ... they almost always have Pliny the Elder and Blind Pig and you can often find Slow Boat to Bombay (which for a guy like me from SoCal, is a real treat).  

If you are a beer fan, this is the place you want to be.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Toronado (restaurant)
5 thankscomments (1)

answered first by
Debbie from San Francisco

I don't know about anything scenic in the Mission, but I do know some places with great beer in general.  Southern Pacific Brewing is a cool one. It's a huge place (used to be an old warehouse) with a patio and even so, it can get packed. Serves food, beer, wine, and cocktails. Just order at the counter and they'll bring it to you.  

I also really like  Monk's Kettle. Super nice fella behind the bar the last time I was there who really knows his beers and very patiently explained them and gave me tastings until I found one that I liked. It's a small place though. Don't know how big crew is, but I wouldn't bring more than half a dozen people. 

There's also  Pi Bar, which has a huge beer selection and also has good pizza (and other food). They have a nerdy happy hour that goes from 3:14 to 6:28 where you get a craft beer and slice of pizza for $6.28. 

If you're still interested in a place with a view, I suggest  MarketBar at the  Ferry Building. Awesome huge outdoor patio on the Embarcadero. In the day time, it gets a lot of tourists, but later in the evening, it can get crowded when locals get off of work. It might seem touristy and pricy, but their happy hour is decent and if it's nice out, it's totally worth it for the patio. 

Good luck with the shoot! :)

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Monk's Kettle (attraction)
  2. Ferry Building (attraction)
  3. Southern Pacific Brewing (attraction)
  4. Pi Bar (restaurant)
  5. MarketBar (restaurant)
5 thankscomments (2)

answered by
Samantha from Tenderloin

If it's a nice day, you'll love Biergarten - it's outdoors, off of a great little urban park area in Hayes Valley. When the sun is out, much of SF flocks there, so it might be a squeeze, but it's totally worth it!

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Biergarten (attraction)
3 thankscomments (1)

answered by
Janice from Golden, CO

Trevor, if you were here in Denver, I could point you to about half a dozen places that have the some of the best microbrews in the country.  Alas, it's been a while since I've been to a really good brewpub in the City.  If you're looking for a decent beer with a great waterfront view, Gordon Biersch on The Embarcadero Embarcadero is a pretty solid choice.  If you go there, you'll definitely have to order some garlic fries, which every Bay Area sports venue sells and got the inspiration from this place.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. The Embarcadero (attraction)
3 thankscomments (1)

answered by
Matty from Sacramento

Pi Bar is a pizza place in the Mission district. They have excellent pizza and an impressive selection of beers. 

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Pi Bar (restaurant)
2 thanks

answered by
Andy from San Francisco

The bars already mentioned are good choices, I'll just add a few to give you some more options. 

Gestalt is one of my favorite bars on 16th street. It's a German style bar with plenty of good beers on tap, sausages, and pinball machines. It also doesn't get nearly as crowded as the other bars, and you could often snag a table and chill for a while. 

Zeitgeist is beer garden in the Mission with a great selection of beers. They also have a big garden in the back that's perfect for sunny afternoon drinking. However, the tables get taken pretty quickly, so you'll want to get there early. 

Suppenküche is a place I've wanted to try for a while. It is also a German style beer bar. Best of all, they serve beer in a boot!

Cervecería de MateVeza is another chill bar that's right on the corner of Dolores Park. I'm not sure why but this bar also doesn't get very crowded and their beer selection changes every time I go. They also serve empanadas that are pretty delicious. 

Magnolia Gastropub and Brewery is known both for their food and their drink selection. They brew most of what they serve and you can get beer to go in a growler. It's a great place to go after a quick hike around Buena Vista Park

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Gestalt (restaurant)
  2. Zeitgeist (restaurant)
  3. Suppenküche (restaurant)
  4. Cervecería de MateVeza (restaurant)
  5. Dolores Park (attraction)
  6. Magnolia Gastropub and Brewery (restaurant)
  7. Buena Vista Park (attraction)

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