Need Dinner Recommendations Near Cafe Du Nord in Castro
Looking for a dinner suggestion near Cafe Du Nord in the Castro. There are 4 of us and we are open to types of food except for chinese, thai, and indian. Some of the places we're considering are Home, 2223 Restaurant, Destino, Catch, but open to other ideas. Please let me know your favorite place in the area.
Cafe Du Nord is located at 2170 Market St. (between Sanchez and Church).
both Home and Chow are good with standard cuisine, nothing notable.. good standbys.
No Name-2223 Market will be more of a scene and a longer dinner, Destino is great if you can get in. I would not gamble and try to make a reservation at Destino, good food and a fun place. I would not go to Catch, the food is bland and not worth it.
If you cannot get into Destino then Home would be the spot.
If you want something fancy, Mecca is still pretty good too and nearby. For casual, then Chow is better than Home.
I'd probably go with the recommendations of Chow or Home if you're on a time restriction. I feel that Mecca is priced far too high for what they offer. The food at Lime is decent; however, I really look at their food as "bites with drinks" vs full dinner. Destino and 2223 are good options if you have the time to spare. Also, if you get there early enough, or put your name on their list and grab a drink while you wait, Sushi Zone is good sushi option for the neighborhood.
I have the best meals at both Destino and 2223 Market. Destino for the tapas servings with delicious wines (you must try the Ceviche sampler with one of their many crisp white wines), and 2223 Market for the comfort foods (and fun people watching). Two very good choices, and nice and close to Cafe du Nord. Enjoy.
When I go to the Du Nord, I go to Lime. Stumbled in randomly one evening, because I've never liked high-end-comfort-food concept @ Home, even though my sister is nuts for the place. For some reason, chowhound doesn't like Lime. Even went there for my birthday last year --- it's just plain comfortable, by which I mean I like all-white modern decor.
Lime does pan-tapas, including mini-sliders, a nice pizza, often some kind of tangine, a rotating "good for you greens" dish that's often excellent, a bunch of good mexican small plates. I always want half of what's on the menu. Like Fonda with more tongue in cheek., and more range. You might think of it as bites-with-drinks, but I'd disagree --- the food stands on its own very, very well --- I think of it as better than the drinks. Do your drinking at Du Nord - they know how to mix a drink. The one strike I'll give it it can be loud, and the bar isn't as good as it thinks it is.
Mecca is good, but is just three notches too pretentious for my taste. Not a good spiritual match for the du nord --- but you may have a different flow in your evening. If you're arriving in a limo, Mecca is perfect.
I can't speak to 2223 Market or Destino. I've peered in; they seem more of a committement than I want when I go out for music.
"no name sushi" is also fun - the one in the middle of church street. There's actually lots on church street of the tasty but more casual.
I think Lime is the best match for the du nord, being a little more "night on the town" than just about any of these.
There's also great Thai around the corner - Thai House, right? Haven't been in 5 years, though. I miss Zodiac, but it was only good for about a year before food went downhill.
Du Nord may or may not be serving food any more; call before counting on it. The Ahi Burger is about the only thing really worth ordering, but it is very good.
Sometimes I end up eating after a show, and end up at Baghdad Cafe. Waffles are great after a few bourbons; can't tell you why. Sweet on sweet, likely.
I live about a block away from Cafe du Nord (and have fond, nostalgic memories of when that place itself would have been an excellent dining option in the neighborhood). Most of the above suggestions are spot on, though I personally don't feel that Home is worth considering. Chow is much better for that sort of thing, IMO.
You don't mention when the show is, but if there's time, I'd suggest reserving at Destino. If you schedule your evening, you could even reserve at Zuni and have time for a leisurely stroll up to CdN. I'm a big fan of Lime, as well.
Mecca delivers, but is rather pricy, I think. 2223 I quite like, but is approximately equidistant from CdN as Zuni, and, if I were wanting a special dinner with the show, Zuni would be my choice. I'd steer away from Catch, also.
Edit: When I said "Mecca delivers" I didn't mean to one's door. I meant they deliver a solid, enjoyable dining experience!
I prefer Blue to Home. At least I prefer their Mac and Cheese. I'm not a local, but I also had a nice meal at a place called Sauce in Hayes Valley when I visited in December and i don't remember having to walk too far to pass by the Cafe du Nord.
Woodhouse is diagonally across the street a little east across from the Safeway Parking lot...Fish, Shellfish, clams...chowder..do a search if you're interested...there are a number of posts.
Woodhouse Fish Company
2073 Market St
San Francisco, CA 94114
Seafood shack with unmistakable character on the unlikely urban corner of Market and Church.
Strangely we've had good food at Cafe du Nord itself. A couple years ago the "super crispy calamari" was exactly that--fresh, crispy, but not rubbery inside. We were thinking the breading had some leavening in it and maybe a mix of rice flour with wheat flour. Plenty of tentacles, a nice garlicky aioli, and some veggies tossed in too made for an excellent dish.
This was 2 years ago, so who knows what's available now...
I ate at Cafe Du Nord about 3 or 4 months ago and it wasn't even edible. I'm a HUGE fan of Mac n Cheese, theirs is the worst I've had in San Francisco, and maybe anywhere. Cold, soggy, and almost completely uneaten. And I was starving, too! So perhaps things have changed, as I'd only eaten garlic fries there in the past. Which, by the way were quite good, if I remember correctly.