where foodies eat: san francisco


I absolutely love going out to eat and scoping out new restaurants in the city. I don't like to go back to the same place too often since there are so many amazing restaurants and chefs in San Francisco. I truly believe we have one of the best food scenes in the world. One thing to know about San Francisco is that there's a very exclusive aspect to the reservation systems. Some restaurants require you to get a reservation 2+ months out! I 💯 percent recommend getting a reservation at least a week out, no matter where you go. With a group, you'll wait hours without one. For just a pair, you should be able to put your name on a list and go somewhere nearby to grab a couple of drinks while you're waiting and still get in at most restaurants. You can also check out HackerTable to get elusive reservations that have opened up for tables of 2 or 4.

Here are a few of my favorite restaurant recommendations:

GIRLS DINNERS (4-8 gals)

  • HECHO (Castro): trendy Mexican restaurant | decently priced, great tequila drinks

  • Gioia Pizzeria (Russian Hill): cute little Italian restaurant on Polk Street | amazing pizza and yummy wine

  • Marlowe (SOMA): the most adorable modern-American restaurant with great food and the perfect ambiance for a girls night

  • Locanda (The Mission): trendy Italian restaurant and oysteria/bar in the heart of the mission

  • Blackwood (The Marina): Asian-American food that takes you out of your comfort zone slightly with their dishes | also great for brunch

  • Foreign Cinema (The Mission): cool outdoor patio with string lights hung across the courtyard where they project old black and white films at night | American food with some of my favorite chicken dishes

GROUP DINNERS (10-25 people, great for birthdays; require reservations in advance)

  • Berretta (The Mission): trendy Italian food, great whiskey drinks | private downstairs room that books out fast | so reserve a month or two in advance

  • Sabrosa (Cow Hollow): modern Mexican-American style food | decently priced | takes large reservations or you can rent the entire place

  • Credo (Financial District): yummy Italian, great for large reservations in the main dining room | you can also reserve a private room downstairs with a set menu

  • Nihon (SOMA): cool sushi restaurant known for their Japanese whiskey | one of my favorite sushi places in the city | upstairs private room you can reserve for a minimum spend

DATE NIGHTS (2-4 people)

  • State Bird Provisions (Western Addition): impossible to get into, but check their reservations online 60 days out to get in or get a task rabbit to wait in line for you || American food served dim sum style at reasonable prices || very casual ambiance | Michelin star (2016)

  • The House (North Beach): Asian-American fusion known for their fish noodles and steak | intimately small seating about 20 people total at a time

  • A16 (The Marina): Italian restaurant with an elegant yet casual vibe | their pizzas and burrata dishes are amazing

  • Seven Hills (Russian Hill): my favorite Italian places in the city -- hands down | must try their famous ravioli | has a sister restaurant in the mission called Plin

  • Stones Throw (Russian Hill): great ambiance | friendly service | modern American | a fun twist on their dessert menu of childhood favorites

  • Trestle (Jackson Square): sister restaurant to stones throw | set menu ranging from $35-45 per person that changes daily | farm to table food that tastes so fresh

  • Flour + Water (The Mission): great Italian in the mission known for their homemade pasta | have a sister restaurant right down the street that's a little bit easier to get into called Central Kitchen

  • Frascatti (Russian Hill): Italian restaurant on Hyde whose menu is more focused on meat and fish dishes than pasta | the gnocchi appetizer is a must

  • Wayfare Tavern (Financial District): a dark, speakeasy ambiance with classic American favorite dishes and cool drinks | known for their fried chicken dish

  • SPQR (Lower Pacific Heights): Italian inspired food with very rich flavors | sister restaurant to A16 | Michelin star (2016)

  • Rich Table (Hayes Valley): American restaurant opened by husband and wife chefs (too cute!) | most of their dishes are unique with both sweet and sour flavors and both crunchy and smooth textures to keep your mouth guessing

BRUNCH SPOTS

  • Sam's Anchor Cafe (Tiburon): take the ferry across the bay for brunch and sunshine on the water

  • Gospel Brunch @ 1300 on Fillmore (Western Addition): brunch with live soul music | try the grits

  • Don Pistos (North Beach): great for group brunches too | Mexican cuisine | great for bottomless, letting you choose from mimosas, sangria or wine-based margaritas

  • MyMy (Nob Hill): this charming little restaurant will always have a wait, but well worth it | the best savory pancakes I've ever had

  • Kitchen Story (Castro): amazing breakfast with must try eggs benedict dishes and millionaires bacon | check out their sister restaurant called Sweet Maple for a similar menu

  • Pat's (North Beach): A divey little find in North Beach with your classic American breakfast

SPOTS TO TRY WHEN YOUR PARENTS ARE IN TOWN 💰

  • Gary Danko (Russian Hill): as amazing as the food is, you also get a full experience with the servers coordination (you'll see what I mean) | set menu | dress code posted on their website | you leave stuffed and they give you appetizers and pack you breakfast for the next day, so the 3 course is plenty | Michelin star (2016)

  • Range Restaurant (The Mission): casual, yet pricey, American restaurant in the mission known for their meat dishes and cocktails

  • Spruce (Pacific Heights): a great place to ball-out and try everything you can | some of the best food in the city | top 3 on my restaurant list | famous for their burger if you're looking for a lower cost entree | Michelin star (2016)

  • Prospect (SOMA): sister restaurant to Bouelvard | American-French style restaurant with an upscale vibe

  • North Beach Restaurant (North Beach): the classic, old fashioned Italian restaurant with an authentic Italian wait and kitchen staff | must try the chicken parmesan

  • The Progress (Western Addition): State Bird Provisions' sister restaurant that's a little bit more upscale and pricey, but easier to get into | amazing food | you get to choose multiple small dishes and try a lot of different foods

PLACES ON MY LIST THAT I'M YET TO TRY

  • NOPA

  • Liholiho Yacht Club

  • MINA Test Kitchen <--since tried; read my review here.

  • Californios (Michelin star 2016)

  • La Folie

  • Sons & Daughters (Michelin star 2016)

#restaurant #sanfrancisco #northerncalifornia #northamerica

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