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recommendations for an under-the-radar-not-too-late-to-make-reservations restaurant?

cholulo1 Mar 26, 2009 07:38 AM

hello chowhounds,

just made last minute plans to come to SF to see the de Young YSL show Sat. April 4th and i was unable to make reservations at Delfina, Zuni, or Slanted Door. Gee whiz, what's a hungry guy to do? since i will only be in SF for a couple of days I don't want to spend too much time waiting for a table but i do want to have a truly great SF culinary dinner experience before heading back to LA.

any recommendations for an under-the-radar-not-too-late-to-make-reservations restaurant?

any suggestions are welcome!!!

sincerest thanks!!!!!!

  1. c
    Calvinist Mar 27, 2009 02:44 PM

    Given you've looked at Delfina & Zuni, I'd take a gander at Incanto or the smaller, more casual, La Ciccia

    La Ciccia
    291 30th Street, San Francisco, CA 94131

    Incanto Restaurant & Wine Bar
    1550 Church St, San Francisco, CA 94131

    1. m
      Mola Mar 26, 2009 03:56 PM

      Not sure this qualifies as "under-the-radar," but why not try The Moss Room right across the park at the Cal Academy?

      1 Reply
      1. re: Mola
        Robert Lauriston Mar 27, 2009 01:04 PM

        I've heard mostly discouraging things about that place. One report here:


      2. s
        sfbing Mar 26, 2009 01:32 PM

        Incanto, Aziza (nearish the exhibit and maybe a neighborhood you haven't been to), Canteen, Kokkari?

        1. tvham Mar 26, 2009 11:48 AM

          Not under the radar but in the same class as the three places you mentioned I'd suggest Spruce, Quince and Bar Crudo.

          3 Replies
          1. re: tvham
            Robert Lauriston Mar 26, 2009 11:52 AM

            Bar Crudo's a great idea.

            Spruce and Quince are even harder to get into than Zuni and Slanted Door.

            1. re: tvham
              carfeng Mar 31, 2009 01:19 PM

              I second Bar Crudo. I used to walk in on Friday nights without reservations and usually got seats for 2 within 20 min. I love everything abvout Bar Crudo (great food - amazing chowder, casual but upscale ambiance, friendly waitstaff, GREAT selection of beer).

              I've also walked into Range and gotten seats for 2 at the bar right away. Bar Tartine is another idea.

              1. re: carfeng
                carfeng Mar 31, 2009 01:21 PM

                Sorry, links

                Bar Crudo
                655 Divisadero Street, San Francisco, CA 94117

                842 Valencia Street, San Francisco, CA 94110

            2. f
              foodlove Mar 26, 2009 10:14 AM

              You could try Quince. http://www.quincerestaurant.com/
              Conduit. http://www.opentable.com/rest_profile...

              Conduit is really fun while Quince is more elegant.

              6 Replies
              1. re: foodlove
                Frosty Melon Mar 26, 2009 10:18 AM

                What do you like at Conduit? I live nearby and went once soon after it opened, honestly can't remember much about it. I never hear anyone talk about it nor see many people inside when I pass by.

                1. re: Frosty Melon
                  foodlove Mar 26, 2009 10:42 AM

                  I loved everything about it. However, the service was a bit pretentious. I loved the wine list, impressive prices. They don't mark up much and have great choices. I loved our beet salad and wouldn't let hubby have any even though we were sharing our appetizers. The entree was a pork dish, can't remember the sauce but it was cooked perfectly.

                  It was a bit loud but I really enjoyed the atmosphere, very fun.

                  1. re: foodlove
                    Scott M Mar 26, 2009 11:17 AM

                    I have been to Conduit several times and the food is decent enough but the service more than offsets for the food. For the prices they are charging I never leave feeling like my business was appreciated.

                    1. re: foodlove
                      Robert Lauriston Mar 26, 2009 11:23 AM

                      Their wine list is great, but the markup looks like typical 2X undiscounted retail to me.

                      1. re: Robert Lauriston
                        foodlove Mar 26, 2009 11:39 AM

                        Hum, maybe they've raised the prices. I did go when it was first open... However, still a great list.

                        1. re: foodlove
                          rworange Mar 31, 2009 12:15 PM


                          280 Valencia Street, San Francisco, CA 94103

                2. m
                  ML8000 Mar 26, 2009 09:38 AM

                  Bocadillos (tapas) doesn't take reservations, so if you're there it's a matter of time.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: ML8000
                    Robert Lauriston Mar 26, 2009 09:46 AM

                    Same goes for SPQR.

                  2. Ruth Lafler Mar 26, 2009 09:01 AM

                    Did you call, or did you just check Open Table? Because we tried to get lunch reservations at Slanted Door this week and there weren't any reservations on Open Table, but we walked in figuring we might have to wait and got a table no problem. Plus, we could have eaten at the bar. Not that I'm recommending Slanted Door, but I wouldn't give up too quickly on your first choices.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: Ruth Lafler
                      cholulo1 Mar 26, 2009 09:31 AM

                      i just checked opentable. lazy boy, right! i showed up at the Slanted Door without reservations a few months ago and it was hectic to say the least. so i think calling might be a good option. THANKS!

                      1. re: Ruth Lafler
                        Robert Lauriston Mar 26, 2009 09:33 AM

                        When opentable says a place is full, I often get a reservation by phoning.

                      2. Frosty Melon Mar 26, 2009 08:19 AM

                        I would try Range, Foreign Cinema or Perbacco.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Frosty Melon
                          cholulo1 Mar 26, 2009 09:30 AM

                          thanks! i havent tried Range or Perbacco. i've been to Foreign Cinema and it was great but looking to try something new so thanks for the recommendations!!! ciao!

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