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Apr 1, 2009 08:54 AM

please help me find good grub near union square

So twice a week, from now till June, I am spending two nights a week at Sutter & powell. Frankly the food options I have found for fast, take out style food are seriously lacking. That is why I am turning to you, chow hounds. Please help me find food, and maybe a decent non-touristy bar. Thank you

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  1. It might be helpful to know what places you've tried and found lacking.

    1. The question of dining around Union Square gets asked on this board once or twice a month. Be sure to do a "Search this board" search to access the many helpful prior recommendations that are already available for you here.

      Some dinner options are Scala's Bistro on Powell Street, Fino on Post Street and 4 or 5 spots on Belden Place (off Bush/Pine Streets). Cafe Claude (off Bush Street) is good for French bistro fare. The Irish Bank (on Mark Lane, off Bush Street) is good for pub food (burgers, fish & chips, etc.) and watching soccer on TV.

      1. Johnny Foleys, good grub and beer.

        1. How about the Tunnel Top? That's not touristy.

          1. I have been living at one of the Union Sq. hotels for six weeks (am mid-way through a work assignment).

            If you don't mind walking to the Westfield Mall there are a ton of great take-out food options in the basement as well as a great Bristol Farms. But, sometimes after a long day getting there feels like a trek through the crowd.

            I had take-out once from Piraat Pizza & Rotisserie -- thinking about it now I realize I need to go back -- the chicken was delicious! Pizza didn't look so great. But that chicken, oh, man.

            I've tried Cafe Mason and that was decent, not thrilling; Daily Grill is an option, but expensive; I've only been to one of the Lori's Diners around and it was just okay.

            Wish I could be of more help. I will keep checking to see if you've had better luck.

            2 Replies
            1. re: JLF

              Asuka Ramen is just up the hill 883 Bush and is both decent and reasonable, we thought after one visit. Here's my post from November 2008:

              Cafe Bean is solid for breakfast.

              Canteen is not cheap but good value and very close -- you do need to book but it is great for a single diner if you sit at the bar. Try it for breakfast/brunch on the weekends if it is too dear for dinner.

              I recall reading there is a decent Thai place that does takeout but I think the name changed fairly recently from King of Thai Noodles. Anyway it's at Powell and O'Farrell.

              There was also a post a while back about "great but casual Thai" at Ar Roi 643 Post, particularly the tom yum soup and the green curry.

              I've read at least one recco for Sanraku at 701 Sutter and I bet they do takeout sushi.

              The best "secret" in this area to my mind is Sutter Café for tamales. The owner is from Guangzhou but learned how to make tamales in Mexico City. This is a tiny coffee shop that you have to search for a bit as it's down a little corridor. The tamales are $2.25 each and they are delicious, spicy chicken and olives, moist and well proportioned with toothsome masa. One is a perfect snack, two would be lunch. All you need is access to a microwave and you could take them back for a later dinner at the hotel... and I suspect they would even be good at room temp though I haven't tried that yet :-).

              If you are flexible on location, may I suggest you turn your attention to the Tenderloin? So many great, cheap, quick options out that way, and it's not that far...

              817 Sutter St, San Francisco, CA 94109

              Cafe Bean
              800 Sutter St, San Francisco, CA 94109

              Sutter Street Cafe
              450 Sutter St Ste Lbby, San Francisco, CA 94108

              Asuka Ramen
              883 Bush St, San Francisco, CA

              Ar Roi Thai Noodles
              643 Post St, San Francisco, CA 94109

              1. re: JLF

                Thanks for mentioning Piraat. I've driven by it countless times and always wondered how the food might be there. Good to know.

                Currently, I'm high on the Turkish cooking at Eden's on Jones near Geary. It's open late too.

                Cafe Mason
                320 Mason St, San Francisco, CA 94102

                Daily Grill
                347 Geary St., San Francisco, CA 94102

                Eden's Turkish Food
                552 Jones St, San Francisco, CA 94102

                Piraat Pizzeria
                696 Sutter St, San Francisco, CA 94102