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Arriving on Friday evening, looking for a dinner spot...

d
delikado Apr 14, 2010 02:10 PM

Hello all,

My boyfriend and I will be flying in from New York on Friday, and we'll be staying in the Union Square area. Assuming we get to our hotel at around 8:30-9PM, could anyone suggest a place for dinner? We'd prefer not to venture out *too* far from our hotel, but any place that is within a short train ride or walk would be okay with us.

The ideal place would be lively, entrees in the $20s, good wine/cocktails. We aren't picky about cuisine, but would love to try something that is "quintessentially SF," if that makes any sense.

Thanks!

  1. bbulkow Apr 15, 2010 05:06 PM

    You want a *reservation*? That changes the calculation.

    If you're willing to go down to the mission, you're willing to cover most of the interesting parts of SF.

    Here's a common list of good food + great cocktails:
    Aziza, Range, NOPA, Beretta, Alembic, Serpentine, RN74, 15 Romolo, Slanted Door.

    I have not checked the hours of all these places. In general, good cocktails means late hours. *eat at the bar*, no reservation required, just sliiiide up, unless you are > 2. Gitane has a somewhat miniscule bar that gets crowded, so might in fact be a bad choice if they don't have any tables.

    To a lesser extent, Salt House, Absinthe, Slow Club, Heaven's Dog, Town House. [Each has different flaws: Heaven's Dog has off-the-hook grade cocktails but average food. Town House is loud. Absinthe the food is only OK. Salt House's cocktails are weak when placed in that company'].

    Coi Lounge might be a good choice - not even that far.

    Foreign Cinema has OK cocktails but is not in the same league as the above. Not by a long shot. Last time I ate upstairs and didn't find it loud at all, mid-range for SF.

    The mission bars are generally divey but have some range: the place next door directly to FC is trendy DJ, Medjool two doors down is a bit more 20-something beautiful, Doc's Clock across the street is straight up dive. Beauty Bar has an outpost in NYC, I think on 14th. Lots of bars in the mission have live music, such as the Elbo Room, the Makeout Room, etc.

    Range for cocktails and FC for an entree and desert would be a nice evening. Also look up Bruno's, which has gotten strong upswing reports recently.

    Oysters and cocktails is *very* SF. Make sure you get some Tomales Bay, as long as whatever else you find on the menu.

    -----
    Slanted Door
    Ferry Slip, San Francisco, CA 94111

    Slow Club
    2501 Mariposa Street, San Francisco, CA 94110

    Medjool
    2522 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94110

    Foreign Cinema
    2534 Mission St., San Francisco, CA 94110

    15 Romolo
    15 Romolo Pl, San Francisco, CA 94133

    RN74
    301 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94105

    Doc's Clock
    2575 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

    Salt House
    2 Shaw Aly, San Francisco, CA 94105

    4 Replies
    1. re: bbulkow
      Robert Lauriston Apr 15, 2010 06:09 PM

      The pork belly sandwiches at Heaven's Dog are great.

      -----
      Heaven's Dog
      1148 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94103

      1. re: Robert Lauriston
        bbulkow Apr 15, 2010 08:58 PM

        Bet that would go well with the Biarritz Monk Buck.

      2. re: bbulkow
        v
        vulber Apr 16, 2010 09:47 AM

        Medjool charges a $10 cover after 10pm. Doc's Clock is one of the bigger dive bars, and while still divey in drink selection/price/ambience, Mission Bar (the one that just says "BAR") at 23rd in Mission is more of a straight-up dive

        -----
        Medjool
        2522 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94110

        Doc's Clock
        2575 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

        1. re: vulber
          mariacarmen Apr 16, 2010 09:49 PM

          oh, just saw this.

      3. d
        delikado Apr 15, 2010 06:10 AM

        I realize now that my request was ridiculously vague :( After reading up on the neighborhoods in SF, I was thinking that the Mission would be a cool place to visit on our first night... How is Foreign Cinema? I keep hearing that it's a great place for brunch, but the dinner menu looks interesting, as well. Again, we're looking for a lively (but not deafening) spot that serves good food *and* cocktails.

        On a side note, how are the bars in this area? Dive-y?

        -----
        Foreign Cinema
        2534 Mission St., San Francisco, CA 94110

        4 Replies
        1. re: delikado
          mariacarmen Apr 15, 2010 09:37 AM

          I love Foreign Cinema, and the Mission is indeed a good place to land. As for noise, if you sit inside, you will be deafened. If you can get an outside table (they have heating lamps) do it - noise level is not an issue, plus you get to see the movie that plays quietly as a backdrop. Get some oysters, the carpaccio is good here, always love whatever version of pork tenderloin they're doing. Range is also nearby, at 20th and Valencia, if you wanted to stop by there for cocktails first.. Afterwards, walk on Valencia (as opposed to Mission St. where Foreign Cinema is located) back toward 16th street to get a flavor of the nightlife. You can either catch a cab there or take Bart (if before midnight) at 16th & Mission back to your hotel area.

          -----
          Foreign Cinema
          2534 Mission St., San Francisco, CA 94110

          1. re: delikado
            Robert Lauriston Apr 16, 2010 12:26 PM

            Most of the bars in the Mission that used to be dives have turned into hipster "dives."

            1. re: Robert Lauriston
              mariacarmen Apr 16, 2010 09:48 PM

              Mission Bar at 23rd is still pretty divey.

              1. re: mariacarmen
                v
                vulber Apr 17, 2010 12:25 AM

                As is Delirium.

          2. bbulkow Apr 14, 2010 11:55 PM

            Gitane. Lively, top 20 cocktails, small plates, upscale hole in the wall.

            You're not getting many responses because your query is pretty seriously broad, but at least you've got one rec now.

            -----
            Gitane Restaurant & Bar
            6 Claude Lane, San Francisco, CA 94108

            1 Reply
            1. re: bbulkow
              d
              delikado Apr 15, 2010 06:11 AM

              Thanks, bb! Gitane's menu does look lovely...but they don't have anything till 9:45PM :(

              -----
              Gitane Restaurant & Bar
              6 Claude Lane, San Francisco, CA 94108

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