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Sep 5, 2003 10:16 PM

Great Kosher Food in San Francisco - Sabra Restaurant

  • k

I would like to share with all my kosher Chowhounds a great kosher restaurant in San Francisco. It is Sabra. The location is on 419 Grant Avenue, half a block past the entrance to Chinatown from Bush Street. The phone number is 415-982-3656. The cuisine is Middle Eastern, meat Va'ad HaKashrus of Northern California.

Now there are only three glatt kosher restaurants in San Francisco, so the demand is very high. The space is very small and the staff is even smaller. You would be wise to make reservations up to a week in advance and be there 5 minutes early. Also, you will probably have to wait an extra 15 minutes. You should know that the restaurant is halfway up a narrow staircase to Chabad so you will probably want to wait on the street. Bring your umbrellas if it's raining! Make sure one person waits by the door on the staircase and lets the staff know you're there or they will forget and you won't get your table!

Once inside, you can relax, but don't come too hungry since it may take two hours to get your food! This isn't because the staff is lazy or mean, it's just because the staff is very small and works very hard. The staff will do their best to please you with their limited resources. Meanwhile, relax and enjoy the atmosphere. Be sure to order appetizers before the main dishes come. It is not unusual for the dishes to come one at a time. So you should not all wait to start eating together since by the time the last person gets served, the first person's dish will be cold!

Remember, there are only three kosher restaurants in San Francisco and only three or four other kosher restaurants in the fifty or so miles outside of San Francisco. You would then have to drive at least another 300 miles to Los Angeles until you saw another kosher restaurant! Supply and demand is the rule for kosher restaurants in Northern California. According to an article I read a few years ago in the Jewish Bulletin of Northern California, Sabra has a difficult time being profitable. So be thankful it exists!

The food is very good. In spite of the wait, we all enjoyed ourselves! So enjoy, savor and relax. Don't expect five star service and everything will be fine. L'Chaim!

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  1. You must have gone on an unusally busy night. I've been there many times over the past 8 years and never made a reservation or waited for a table no matter what time I came. I agree that the food is excellent, albeit it a bit expensive, but well worth it. This seems to be the only restaurant, in San Francisco under a reliable hashgacha.

    1 Reply
    1. re: steve

      I am sure that there are nights at Sabra where there is no wait and the service is quick. However, when you bring 8 people to Sabra, and 4 are from out of town and staying in a hotel, you want to be sure to make a reservation. My family and the one that was visiting us was very thankful that we had reservations the Sunday night we went. Reservations are not required at Sabra, remember. It is your choice whether to make one or not. But if you choose not to make one, you do so at your own risk! Our families had a wonderful time at Sabra because we had a reservation.

    2. hey ive heard good things about sabra but i was wandering what are the prices like? if someone can just email me back naming some prices of some things that would be great thanx a bunch!another thing is it really fancy or is it on the casual side? if someone can just also email me some info about this place that would be great!