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Saturday nite North Beach

Looking for dinner after Beach Blanket Babylon--8:30pm. We would like a place that takes reservations. Taste and proximity are top priority--any cuisine /price ranges welcome.

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  1. La Trappe Cafe, Capp's Corner, and Da Flora come to mind. You can walk over to Stella after. I don't know about the reservations policy, or if you'll need them.

    1. Capp's Corner

      Capp's Corner
      1600 Powell St, San Francisco, CA 94133

      1. I've lately been enjoying Ideale Restaurant, on Grant near Vallejo.


        1315 Grant Ave, San Francisco, CA 94133

        5 Replies
          1. re: DandySF

            I'm curious why you qualified your suggestion with "lately"? I was letdown by my meal here, and thought it was pricey for what it was, but does this mean it's possibly improved?

            1. re: sugartoof

              I didn't mean for "lately" to imply that it has improved. It's just a place with food and service that I enjoy. The crowd appears to be largely locals, which is something I also like.

            2. re: DandySF

              Ideale and Da Flora both come to mind.

              1. re: Pei

                Da Flora is closed until Jan 19

            3. I third Caps Corner

              Capp's Corner
              1600 Powell St, San Francisco, CA 94133

              1. I vote for Capps too. We had a wonderful dinner last August for our anniversary. Very old school with very good service.

                1. I vote for Rose Pistola on Columbus, it's only around the corner from BBB.

                  I ate at Capp's Corner a few nights ago; sorry, not impressed. Very ordinary food; my DP had pasta with alfredo sauce - not good. The salad was all iceberg lettuce, the minestrone: watery.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: toitoi

                    I tried Capp's Corner for lunch this Sunday (visiting from LA) based on the recs from this thread. Great old feeling. Lots of wood and a real bar. Quiet at noon, but by 12:30 there were lots of regular locals as well as the Beach Blanket Babyloners, who started to pile in before the first matinee.

                    I ordered the chicken parmesan meal for $14. It came with penne in red sauce, carrots and zucchini. Also the minestrone soup came in a tureen, even though I was dining alone.

                    The food was basic. I certainly could make a chicken parmesan of this caliber at home. However, it was just the kind of homey food to fill my belly on a rainy day, in a cozy place with a great vibe. The food was not spectacular, but it was just what I needed.

                    Mr Taster

                    Capp's Corner
                    1600 Powell St, San Francisco, CA 94133

                  2. I am a big fan of Da Flora, for which you would need reservations. Since crab is in season, they may have crab tagliatelle on the menu. It makes me not want to order crab tagliatelle from any other restaurant ever again. Their radicchio salad is also superb.

                    1. The House...not Italian but in North Beach.

                      16 Replies
                      1. re: vis

                        The House is a gem. The only downside is the small space where you really don't have a place to hang out while you wait to be seated. But it's certainly a fresh breath when compared to the run-of-the-mill Italian places that make up much of the dining scene in North Beach.

                        1. re: nocharge

                          i also named a none Italian place, but I'm a little confused by the idea that the heavy concentration of Italian places isn't a a great tradition that is the heart and soul, and point of North Beach. Not the run of the mill part, of course, which is why we're attempting to name places which are near the destination without being run of the mill.

                          1. re: sugartoof

                            I agree that the Italian places are the heart and soul of North Beach. And suggestions for better than run-of-the-mill places are obviously useful, no argument there. But I don't think it was a complete coincidence that while the Chronicle's Top 100 Restaurant list for 2009 had 19 Italian places on it, not a single one was in North Beach.

                            1. re: sugartoof

                              North Beach isn't a very Italian neighborhood any more. All but two (Capp's Corner and Green Valley / Sodini's) of the old-school Italian restaurants have closed. All but one (Molinari's) of the delis have closed. The grocery store closed. I think the concentration of relatively new Italian restaurants has less to do with the neighborhood than with tourists going there looking for Italian food.

                              That said, Ideale is good, and Rose Pistola has been, off and on. L'Osteria is good, but takes no reservations.

                              1. re: Robert Lauriston

                                That's false, and misleading.

                                Cafe Roma, Trieste, Tosca, Gino and Carlo, French American Bakery, Victoria, Graffeo, Greco, Vesuvio, Savoy Tivoli, Mario's Bohemian, Cigar Shop, Mr. Bing's, Capp's, Curly's, Tomasso's, Washbag, North Beach Restaurant, Luguria, Caffe Sport, Columbus Cafe, Golden Boy, The Saloon, ALL remain.

                                That's not even a complete list of old North Beach places, most of which are San Francisco treasures in their own way....even if they'll never win a place on the top 100.

                                1. re: sugartoof

                                  Washbag is not Italian btw. One could argue whether the 1970s qualifies as "old school" in a neighborhood as old as North Beach (especially given this current version of Washbag is not the original).

                                  1. re: sugartoof

                                    Many of those places aren't all that old and/or have no connection with the old Italian community. Mr. Bing's dates from the 1960s and isn't Italian. Caffe Sport was opened in 1969 by a guy from Sicily. The Washbag was opened in 1973 by a couple of guys from St. Louis who wanted to create a New York-style atmosphere, went out of business a couple of years ago, and was reopened by an Irish couple. Golden Boy was opened in 1978 by a neighborhood guy who later bought and restored Green Valley. The Saloon dates to 1860, and is an awesome blues club, but there's nothing Italian about it.

                              2. re: nocharge

                                it is tiny but it's the one place i seem to want to keep returning to when i'm in the neighborhood...no offense to all the italian spots, some of which I like as well.

                                1. re: vis

                                  The House is a great place. It is a nice change of pace from the Italian joints too. For an after theater spot, it's a great call.

                              3. re: vis

                                Can someone give me more details on House? Address, times, reservations?

                                1. re: Ms. Verde

                                  This is their website. I believe they are open until 11 on Saturdays. Reservations are strongly suggested.

                                  1. re: Ms. Verde

                                    Here's the link for the CH info too

                                    The House
                                    1230 Grant Ave, San Francisco, CA 94133

                                    1. re: Ms. Verde

                                      Ate at The House last year, highly recommend it.

                                      1. re: toitoi

                                        Thank you all for your spirited suggestions! We have reservations for The House, thanks to you. I think we stumbled onto it for lunch on our last visit, but could not remember the name/address. I'll be sure to share how it goes Saturday night. We got to thinking that fusion might be a better, lighter choice--given we will be attending the Fancy Food convention on Sunday.

                                        Any suggestions for lunch on Saturday--we will be staying at the Sir Francis Drake, but are willing to take public transit within reason. My partner would love some fresh local Dung. crab. Is it still in season and if so, where would you suggest?

                                        1. re: Ms. Verde

                                          Saturday lunch, graze the stands and vendors at the Ferry Plaza farmers market. Some of the restaurants in the building will have crab.

                                          1. re: Ms. Verde

                                            Had a wonderful crab louie in the Ferry Building at Ferry Plaza Seafood, Then, of course, there's Swan Oyster Depot at 1517 Polk Street (between California and Sacramento) but be prepared for a long wait - no reservations.

                                            Tadich Grill at 240 California (between Front & Battery) is wonderful, but, also no res.

                                    2. Nobody every seems to mention Firenzi at Night--I've only been there once but thought it was pretty decent and seemed to be very popular. It was actually recommended by an Italian family in my neighborhood as being their favorite in North Beach. Good gnocchi!

                                      1. How about Trattoria Contadina???

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. I second Firenze at Night...fantastic rabbit papparadelle.