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North Beach - I can't believe I have to ask...

I am so bad in that I never get to North Beach and the last time I was there (a year ago?) I ate at Rose Pistola.

Now I have a friend coming in Wednesday night from Portland and his hotel is nearby so North Beach seems to be the easiest meeting place.

I'd like it affordable (Rose Pistola is just too pricey for my current budget) and a place with little or no corkage would be brilliant; I have a '91 Nebbiolo I'd like to share with my pal without having to pay a huge corkage fee.

Good food goes without saying, right? What are the current fav's?

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  1. Their corkage is $20, but I think Ideale is the best bet in North Beach - solid cucina Romana.

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    Ideale
    1315 Grant Ave, San Francisco, CA 94133

    1. Tomasso's, what can I say that hasn't already been said, pizza and home-made ravioli's.

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      Tommaso Ristorante Italiano
      1042 Kearny St, San Francisco, CA 94133

      1. L'Osteria del Forno? My guess is no corkage, but I'm not sure.

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        L'Osteria del Forno
        519 Columbus Ave, San Francisco, CA 94133

        3 Replies
        1. re: Paul H

          If it's just the two of you, I second L'Osteria. Their roast pork with potatoes is still among my favorite meals in SF.
          (If you have 4 or more, L'Osteria can be a challenge.)

          1. re: Paul H

            A third, L'Osteria is also reasonably priced.

            1. re: Paul H

              I had lunch at L'Osteria del Forno yesterday and the food was wonderful, as usual, but my serving of roast pork was huge. I don’t know what the corkage is, however, they serve wine in water glasses. Like you I assume, I would never serve a ‘91 Nebbiolo in anything but a burgundy glass, so bring your own if you go.

            2. Don't know what their corkage is, but we had an spur of the moment dinner recently at Figaro and it was really good and reasonably priced.

              I did a write up here:

              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/597087

              http://www.figaroristorante.com

              Deb

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              Figaro Ristorante
              414 Columbus Ave, San Francisco, CA 94133

              1. We ended up going to Sotto Mare. I'm sorry I couldn't get my friend to share a Cioppino ($27 was too pricey for me alone and too much food). He had the fettuccine with smoked salmon and I had the daily grilled fish, Petrale Sole. My fish was swimming in a BIT too much butter, even for me. With a $10 corkage, our bill came to $30 each.

                I would go back and share a Cioppino with someone and could hopefully get the individual cost to $20.

                4 Replies
                1. re: Carrie 218

                  I've read the oysters are a deal there.

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                  Sotto Mare
                  552 Green St, San Francisco, CA 94133

                  1. re: Carrie 218

                    Carrie, how was the '91 Nebbiolo and which one was it?

                    1. re: BN1

                      It was a Seghesio and I'm working on finishing my last few bottles; I found a case and they only have a short drinking window left. It was quite nice, though!

                      1. re: Carrie 218

                        Thanks, I’m jealous. Interestingly, their Barolo was rated 3-glass in the Gambero Rosso Guide for '91, which was evidently an off year in Italy like 2002. Their '02 Barolo was also highly rated, so it appears their vineyards perform exceptionally well under trying conditions.