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Oct 26, 2009 06:21 PM

Suggestions for a quieter restaurant

Folks -

A buddy of mine is coming in from Philadelphia. We haven't seen her in quite a long time and about 6 of us have a lot of catching up to do. We'll be getting together next Monday, so that will help somewhat, but several places that I'd like to go to are simply too loud. So help me think of a few places where a) our group will be able to actually hear one another and not shout; b) we won't be rushed in and out; c) has terrific food and nice ambience; d) isn't in the Outer Richmond.

Right now, all I can think is trying to get a corner table at Aziza (although I have to say, in the last couple of recent visits, food has been fine but not mindblowing and it's pretty far out in the Richmond); one of the nooks at Kokkari; ....umm, any more suggestions?

Zuni, A16, Delfina, Bar Tartine - way too loud. Anyone have thoughts on how loud it will be at L'Ardoise or Gitane?


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      1. re: Robert Lauriston

        La Folie may be my favorite restaurant in SF, but if you want something less expensive and quiet with good food L'Ardoise is an excellent choice.

        1. re: mc2

          mc2 you have good taste!

          I'll fourth La Folie.

          But I live around the corner from L'Ardoise and it's lovely too. Not as quiet as La Folie, but you can hold a conversation there. They certainly won't rush you out.. If I recall, they wait for you to ask the check, just like in actual Franceland.

          Have not been to Fringale in years, but I used to love it.

          Another quiet spot:
          2223 has a room in the back that is quieter than the front area. I think they have a nice oversize square table that would fit six back there (but I'm not 100% sure, worth asking about).

        2. re: Robert Lauriston

          Speaking of french that starts with F, what about good ol' Fringale?

        3. The Dinning Room at the Ritz Carlton Hotel will fit the bill perfectly. Tables are spaced not too close together. The cieling is really high (so no sound bounce) and there are curtains on the walls to deaden the sound. The food is also very good and you shouldn't be rushed out. If you have a choice get a lobster dish and you will see why Ron Siegel won Iron Chef Lobster on the original Iron Chef show in Japan.

          1. You could try some smaller restaurants, like Allegro (Jones and Broadway in Russian Hill), Le Charm (SOMA), Fino (624 Post, near Union Square). These are relatively casual and moderately priced, with good food, and atmospheres where you can still hear those at your table.

            House (Grant Ave. in North Beach) is also very good, and shouldn't be too loud.


            1 Reply
            1. re: waldrons

              Not sure where you want to be specifically but I took my parents for a 10-person dinner at Garibaldi's in the Laurel Heights area and it was great. It's not as pricey as La Folie (and definitely does not have the same cache) but it was perfect for us. Very good food, great service and quiet enough for us to have an intimate evening while also being relatively packed the entire time we were there. It's got kind of an upper east side neighborhood cafe kind of feel to it.


            2. Funny, Aziza is what first came to my mind.

              If you are willing to shell out the $$$, I will 5th the La Folie suggestion as excellent and probably your best option.

              Boulevard also comes to mind. Louder, but not too loud, imo.

              Another poster mentioned Fringale -- love it but it is a bit cramped and not too quiet.

              1. I agree with the recommendation of Le Charm. The food is good, the room is not too loud, the prices are moderate. You might also consider Venticello on Nob Hill, a small Italian place tucked into a residential neighborhood.


                2 Replies
                1. re: DandySF

                  We went to Venticello about a year ago, and the food was awful. aw-ful...nothing about the food served to recommend this restaurant...

                  1. re: DandySF

                    Thanks everyone - we're on the same wavelength and all of these are terrific suggestions. Le Charm was on the list and La Folie may be perfect since it's a special occasion and I've yet to try it. Hopefully the reservation situation will be ok given that we've now grown to 7 people. On a side note, had dinner at Gary Danko last night and that wouldn't be a bad choice either (the bar area is deafening though), although curiously, I found the service good and the food solid but not amazing, which was slightly disappointing. Maybe it was an off night.

                    La Folie
                    2316 Polk St., San Francisco, CA 94109