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What is your favorite restaurant in San Francisco?

Heading to San Francisco and I'm looking for the best restaurants to try while I'm visiting. Open to all types of food! What are your top places to eat?

19 Answers

top answer by
Topher from San Francisco

Hi Valerie! 

Here are some of my favorites, though which areas are you going to be in most often so I might be able to make some better recommendations?

Suppenküche in Hayes Valley. Their weiner schnitzel and potato pancakes are great! If you're craving burgers, I highly suggest Roam Artisan BurgersNopalito, great mexican food and the complimentary mexican wedding cookies are delicious. If you dig ramen, Orenchi Beyond or Ramen Underground are great choices. Lastly, another favorite is Mr. Pollo in the mission. Very cool, tiny spot that is run by the two owners. This place is quite the gem. The owners decide and make up the menu the day of. It's a 5 course meal, so it can get a bit pricey, but the food is absolutely delicious and both the owners are great. Would recommend calling ahead of time if you want to go since the seating is very limited.

And of course my personal favorite, brunch. Brenda's French Soul Food. Great little New Orleans styled place with some tasty beignets and delicious gumbo. If you've already been to Brendas, Out The Door is another great NO styled place. In somewhat similar fashion, Farmerbrown Restaurant, in SOMA has some great chicken and waffles. Wash it down with their home made sweet tea and you're in for a treat! Lastly another favorite of mine is the burmese place, B*Star, in the richmond. Some of my favorites are their Lychee ice tea, Pork Jook and the pork tocino fried rice. Also, their sister restaurant, Burma Superstar is another great spot.

I could keep going for days, but if you have any questions, more than happy to answer! Have a fun time eating :)



Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Suppenküche (restaurant)
  2. Roam Artisan Burgers (restaurant)
  3. Nopalito (restaurant)
  4. Orenchi Beyond (restaurant)
  5. Ramen Underground (restaurant)
  6. Mr. Pollo (restaurant)
  7. Brenda's French Soul Food (restaurant)
  8. Out The Door (restaurant)
  9. Farmerbrown Restaurant (restaurant)
  10. B*Star (restaurant)
  11. Burma Superstar (restaurant)
4 thankscomments (2)

answered first by
Kristal from San Francisco

Hi Valerie,

There are a ton of amazing restaurants, but there's one that I think is universally liked and always delivers amazing food...Kokkari Estiatorio, the lamb chops, the whole grilled fish and the grilled octopus are amazing. The atmosphere is cozy and inviting. The service is always great and you can count on a great dessert to end the meal! 

Enjoy and welcome to SF!

- Kristal

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Kokkari Estiatorio (restaurant)
3 thanks

answered by
Jackie from San Francisco

Frascati, Seven Hills, Foreign Cinema, Kokkari Estiatorio.. if you can get in, Sons & Daughters is one of the best in the world. It's TINY and very hard to get reservations. 

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Frascati (restaurant)
  2. Seven Hills (restaurant)
  3. Foreign Cinema (restaurant)
  4. Kokkari Estiatorio (restaurant)
  5. Sons & Daughters (restaurant)
2 thanks

answered by
Andy from San Francisco

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Dumpling Kitchen (restaurant)
  2. Hong Kong Lounge (attraction)
  3. Shanghai Dumpling King (restaurant)
  4. Sushi Time (restaurant)
  5. Tselogs (restaurant)
  6. Deja Vu Pizza & Pasta (attraction)
  7. Muracci's Japanese Curry & Grill (restaurant)
  8. Golden Gate Bakery (restaurant)
  9. PizzaHacker (restaurant)
  10. New Eritrea Restaurant & Bar (restaurant)
2 thankscomments (1)

answered by
Krista from San Francisco

Ah! Valerie - so exciting. When are you going to be in SF?! 

A few recs:

Let me know if you're planning to spend time in certain neighborhoods, and I can tailor these suggestions for you. :)

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Loló (restaurant)
  2. Zazie (restaurant)
  3. Plow (restaurant)
  4. B. Patisserie (restaurant)
  5. Tartine bakery (restaurant)
  6. Mr. Holmes Bakehouse (restaurant)
  7. Outerlands (restaurant)
  8. Judahlicious (attraction)
  9. Basik Cafe (restaurant)
  10. Smitten Ice Cream (attraction)
  11. Humphry Slocombe (restaurant)
  12. Il Casaro (restaurant)
  13. Tony’s Pizza Napoletana (restaurant)
  14. Coqueta (restaurant)
2 thankscomments (1)

answered by
Jennifer from San Francisco

Love Locanda in the Mission.  Lolo in the Mission is good too.  Nopa is always popular.  Humphry Slocombe ice cream.  Slanted Door in the Ferry Building.  I would stay away from Union Square and go to Fillmore St, Noe Valley, Pacific Heights, the Mission District, and down by the water in the Marina District.  

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Locanda (restaurant)
  2. Humphry Slocombe (restaurant)
  3. Slanted Door (restaurant)
  4. Union Square (attraction)
  5. Fillmore St (attraction)
  6. Noe Valley (neighborhood)
  7. Pacific Heights (neighborhood)
  8. Mission District (neighborhood)
  9. Marina District (neighborhood)
1 thanks

answered by
Michael from San Francisco

My favorite restaurant in San Francisco is Coqueta, a Spanish (with California influences) restaurant right on the bay/Embarcadero, near Broadway St. It has great food, wine/cocktails etc., but it's such an inviting space with a professional/friendly staff, that it feels like you're not at a restaurant, but at someone's cool home, where everyone is eating & drinking well and having fun.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Coqueta (restaurant)
1 thanks

answered by
elaine from San Francisco

my favorite place in SF is State Bird Provisions, however reservations are hard to come by. You could try out The Progresstheir sister restaurant but State Bird is my favorite. Another good place is The House in North Beach or try the dry fried chicken at San Tung Chinese Restaurant.  If you have money you could also check out the michelin rated restaurants too..

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. State Bird Provisions (restaurant)
  2. The Progress (restaurant)
  3. The House (restaurant)
  4. San Tung Chinese Restaurant (restaurant)
1 thanks

answered by
Natalie from San Francisco, California

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Cotogna (restaurant)
  2. Yank Sing (restaurant)
  3. Kokkari Estiatorio (restaurant)
  4. Acquerello (restaurant)
1 thanks

answered by
Leonard from Minneapolis

One more to add.  State Bird Provisions is amazing and unique.  Food is served more-or-less dim sum style: staff will come by with carts or trays with food and you pick what looks interesting. But this ain't no dim sum! The food is inventive and not of any particular style or cuisine.  It sometimes seems it's whatever strikes the chefs' fancy. Or if you see something interesting on the ever-changing menu, you can ask for it.  Not cheap by any means.  But a great dining experience if you're adventurous and open-minded.  

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. State Bird Provisions (restaurant)
1 thanks

answered by
Scott from San Francisco

Sotto Mare is my favorite, the best cioppino I've ever had + great atmosphere and real character.  Also Yank Sing Restaurant has the best dim sum I've ever eaten - hands down.  It's pricey, but worth it.  

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Sotto Mare (restaurant)
  2. Yank Sing Restaurant (restaurant)
1 thanks

answered by
Leonard from Minneapolis

What's your level of culinary adventurousness? Yamo is a tiny (and I mean tiny, like 10 counter stools), cramped, hot place.  Not even a hole-in-the-wall, but a hole-in-the-hole-in-the-wall. But some amazing food from Burma.  The ladies who run the place have steaming plates of food and flaming woks flying all over the place.  No other place like it!

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Yamo (restaurant)
1 thanks

answered by
Pooja from Bangalore

Caffe Greco. They have such good tiramisu it makes your heart cry.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Caffe Greco (restaurant)
1 thankscomments (1)

answered by
Jacey & Scott from Fort Collins

For fun, outdoor enjoyment and variety-you can't bee the SoMa StrEat Food Park! Everyday is a different combination of trucks-

As everybody does, I adore Tartine bakery-it is pure heaven.

Can't beat oysters at Hog Island Oyster Co., Inc, and great views.  Two amazing Chinese restaurants to give a go are R & G Lounge (Peking Duck) and Oriental Pearl Restaurant.

For excellent views, amazing popovers and excellent crab cakes-I loved the history and setting of Cliff House.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. SoMa StrEat Food Park (restaurant)
  2. Tartine bakery (restaurant)
  3. Hog Island Oyster Co., Inc (restaurant)
  4. R & G Lounge (restaurant)
  5. Oriental Pearl Restaurant (restaurant)
  6. Cliff House (attraction)
1 thanks

answered by
Chiara from San Francisco

After leaving the SF Bay Area (probably for good), I decided to create a list of my favorite places to eat: from fancy restaurants, to good and affordable, swinging by quick healthy breaks and guilty pleasures.

East Bay:

Chez Panisse(First Restaurant Farm to Table in the US – Fancy Dinner), Angeline's Louisiana Kitchen(Southern), Comal(Mexican – Great Patio), Kirala(Japanese), Taste of Himalaya (Indian, Nepalese), Burma Superstar(Burmese).

San Francisco:

Waterbar(Fresh Seafood – Fancy Dinner), Hops & Hominy(Southern), Ryoko (Japanese), Ristorante Umbria(Authentic Italian), Una Pizza Napoletana(Wood fired pizza), Gracias Madre(Vegan Mexican).

Best fast food – East Bay:

Sliver Pizzeriaand Cheese Board Pizza(Pizza – every day different flavor. Cheeseboard is famous for long lines, Sliver has the same quality but no line).

Best fast food – San Francisco:

Eastside West Restaurant & Bar(Best Taco Tuesday), Super Duper Burger(Best burgers and veggie option), Soma Eats(Addictive salad dressing), Cafe Madeleine(Good sandwiches and salads).

Visit my Travel Blog for more travel tips!

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Chez Panisse (restaurant)
  2. Angeline's Louisiana Kitchen (restaurant)
  3. Comal (restaurant)
  4. Kirala (restaurant)
  5. Burma Superstar (restaurant)
  6. Waterbar (restaurant)
  7. Hops & Hominy (restaurant)
  8. Ristorante Umbria (restaurant)
  9. Una Pizza Napoletana (restaurant)
  10. Gracias Madre (restaurant)
  11. Sliver Pizzeria (restaurant)
  12. Cheese Board Pizza (restaurant)
  13. Eastside West Restaurant & Bar (restaurant)
  14. Super Duper Burger (restaurant)
  15. Soma Eats (restaurant)
  16. Cafe Madeleine (restaurant)

answered by
Erik from San Francisco

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Cotogna (restaurant)
  2. Coqueta (restaurant)
  3. Alta CA (restaurant)

answered by
Kim from San Francisco

San Francisco has great restaurant no matter where you go. 

I like Burger BarPizzeria Delfina and Tommaso's Ristorante Italiano and Slanted Door

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Burger Bar (restaurant)
  2. Pizzeria Delfina (restaurant)
  3. Tommaso's Ristorante Italiano (restaurant)
  4. Slanted Door (restaurant)

answered by
Yanush from San Francisco

Try Central Kitchen - it's been around for a few years. The menu is always fresh, portions are good, and the food is delish. It's CA fusion food. 

La Mar - if you like Peruvian, this is the place to go. Food has been consistent for years. Full bar too. 

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Central Kitchen (restaurant)
  2. La Mar (attraction)

answered by
Sally from San Francisco

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. NoPa (neighborhood)
  2. Tartine bakery (restaurant)
  3. Ironside (restaurant)

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