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best pancakes

kazmodo Jun 8, 2011 02:00 PM

Hi all -- going to San Fran for some baseball games in August. Have our dinner places picked out: Delfina, Perbacco, Nopa...but would love some good places to have breakfast that include yummy pancakes...
Staying at the hotel Vitale, and won't have a car.
Where are the best pancakes in San Francisco???

230 California St, San Francisco, CA 94111

Delfina Restaurant
3621 18th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

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  1. wolfe RE: kazmodo Jun 8, 2011 03:20 PM

    Judging by the lines Sears Fine Food and Mama's on Washington Square both within 1.3 mile walk.

    Sears Fine Food
    439 Powell Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

    1. m
      margieco RE: kazmodo Jun 8, 2011 06:27 PM

      Citizen's Band in SOMA has a great pancake (when it's on the menu) and Rocco's (across the street) has a classic diner pancake. Both of them are a little out of your way but not too far from the ballpark.

      Rocco's Cafe
      1131 Folsom Street, San Francisco, CA 94103

      Citizen’s Band
      1198 Folsom St, San Francisco, CA 94103

      1. Windy RE: kazmodo Jun 8, 2011 07:18 PM

        I don't think San Francisco has very good pancakes honestly.

        Can we point you somewhere better for breakfast? Brenda's, Plow, many other options for pastries, grits, omelets, chilaquiles, etc.

        1. g
          gmk1322 RE: kazmodo Jun 8, 2011 08:06 PM

          More traditional style: thick/fluffy at Ella's
          For more a Dutch Baby: Canteen

          1. m
            ML8000 RE: kazmodo Jun 8, 2011 09:11 PM

            A lot of people like It's Tops Coffee Shop on Market. Nothing fancy or gourmet but they have variations, blueberry, buckwheat, banana, etc. It's a bit of a dive actually. I'm not sure I'd go there, although the Metro street car runs by it from downtown. As mentioned, SF isn't much of a pancake town, no ethnic tradtion, no hardcore winters or fields to plow at 5 a.m. like the Midwest (which probably has the best pancakes in general).

            1. ipsedixit RE: kazmodo Jun 8, 2011 09:16 PM

              I like Dottie's, but that's more a function of the hotel I stay at when at SF than anything else.

              1. alanbarnes RE: kazmodo Jun 8, 2011 10:43 PM

                My wife gets the Big Pancake at Canteen every time we go there for brunch. It isn't your typical short stack, and it's not my favorite item on the menu, but it sure is tasty.

                The pancakes at Dottie's are pretty good, too. The lines tend to be out of control, though. If there's a line with more than a few people out the door, IMO it isn't worth the wait. You're better off going elsewhere.

                As far as the elsewhere goes, the Olympic Flame is close by. It's nothing special, but you can get a seat and the food isn't bad. The Pinecrest Diner is no less mediocre, but the crowds are bigger and the prices higher. Ditto for Lori's. Sears is a serious step down, though.

                817 Sutter St, San Francisco, CA 94109

                Lori's Diner
                149 Powell St, San Francisco, CA 94102

                Sears Fine Food
                439 Powell Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

                Olympic Flame Cafe
                555 Geary St, San Francisco, CA 94102

                Dottie's True Blue Cafe
                522 Jones St, San Francisco, CA 94102

                Pinecrest Diner
                401 Geary St, San Francisco, CA

                1. a
                  absc RE: kazmodo Jun 9, 2011 06:01 AM

                  My favorite pancakes in SF are the lemon ricotta version at Plow but without a car that is not easy from your hotel.

                  1. v
                    vulber RE: kazmodo Jun 9, 2011 08:43 AM

                    what abotu stacks? (i'm asking, not suggesting). i've always been curiosu about the lines there....

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: vulber
                      wolfe RE: vulber Jun 9, 2011 09:00 AM

                      501 Hayes St


                    2. artychokeasana RE: kazmodo Jun 9, 2011 09:33 AM

                      Serpentine is walking distance from ATT Park and is in general very good. I haven't tried their buckwheat pancakes yet-but maybe someone else has? Also Public House which is adjacent/in the park just started serving brunch last weekend and has Lemon Ricotta pancakes on the menu. I plan to try them this weekend and will try to remember to report back.

                      Public House
                      24 Willie Mays Plaza, San Francisco, CA 94101

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: artychokeasana
                        Windy RE: artychokeasana Jun 9, 2011 11:50 AM

                        It may only be a mile or so, but I'd recommend taking the T train between the ballpark and Dogpatch rather than walking. That's a not very pretty industrial stretch.

                        Of course you could park by Serpentine and take the T to the game.

                        1. re: Windy
                          artychokeasana RE: Windy Jun 9, 2011 02:07 PM

                          Good point-it is a rather dreary walk- through condos, University mid-rises and Ballpark parking lots.

                      2. k
                        kazmodo RE: kazmodo Jun 9, 2011 09:42 AM

                        wow, thanks for all of the great suggestions, I'm super hungry now. Mama's looks great. going to researtch the others now!

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: kazmodo
                          alanbarnes RE: kazmodo Jun 9, 2011 10:07 AM

                          Mama's serves a good breakfast, but IMO it isn't worth the wait that's often required. Spending Saturday morning in a line is no way to experience the city. If you're going to eat there, go early or go on a weekday. Better yet, go early on a weekday.

                          Mama's On Washington Square
                          1701 Stockton St, San Francisco, CA 94133

                          1. re: alanbarnes
                            vulber RE: alanbarnes Jun 9, 2011 12:36 PM

                            i wasn't even that impressed on a weekday; i find zazie to be better. although my favorite for tha tstyle of brunch is kate's kitchen.

                            1. re: vulber
                              nsheth RE: vulber Jun 10, 2011 01:27 AM

                              I'm a fan of Zazie's pancakes. Easy muni ride, but will have a wait if it's on the weekend.

                              941 Cole St, San Francisco, CA 94117

                              1. re: vulber
                                Atomica RE: vulber Jun 10, 2011 12:11 PM

                                I think the pancakes at Kate's are awful. After 2 recent visit, my pancake-loving kid wouldn't touch them.

                          2. s
                            stacyc RE: kazmodo Jun 10, 2011 07:13 AM

                            Best pancakes are at Chloe's Cafe. Great every time. Small place and not close at all to where you're staying. It's just the perfect stack of pancakes.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: stacyc
                              m00se1111 RE: stacyc Jun 10, 2011 09:22 AM

                              Agree with StacyC

                              Chloe's has awesome pancakes.

                              Located at 1399 Church Street, its an "easy" ride on the J line from the Embarcadero station. Leaves you right at the door!

                            2. artychokeasana RE: kazmodo Jun 10, 2011 09:21 AM

                              No pancakes but have a look at the Brunch menu at Foreign Cinema-it's a SF Modern classic and the homemade Pop Tarts are great. You can also make a reservation which in this town full of LONG lines for brunch. The location would be a BART or Taxi ride for you if you do BARY there and would like a smallish walk-get off at 16th-walk quickly to Valencia and walk up Valencia where you can explore the quirky boutiques, galleries and stores before crossing back to Mission.

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

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: artychokeasana
                                Windy RE: artychokeasana Jun 10, 2011 11:55 AM

                                To get to Foreign Cinema on BART, get off at 24th Street. It's both closer and pleasanter than Mission between 16th and 18th.

                                1. re: Windy
                                  artychokeasana RE: Windy Jun 10, 2011 12:53 PM

                                  That would work too. My main point was to get off of Mission and walk on Valencia-from either direction Valencia is much more enjoyable than Mission.

                              2. lessleyellen RE: kazmodo Jun 16, 2011 04:14 PM

                                Agree that Chloe's has great pancakes. Just ate them this morning in fact.

                                Another very, very, very hole-in-the-wall option, if you are a pancake whore like me, is Sunrise Cafe on 24th Street. They do a flatter Swedish-style pancake that's really great.


                                Chloe's is more the traditional fluffy kind.

                                Bugaloos on Valencia is decent - they have a blueberry ricotta pancake that's good. But their syrup sucks.

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