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Dec 24, 2011 08:52 AM

NEW: Roostertail, SF review w/ pic

Roostertail is new, only opened about 2 weeks. It's a casual place & pretty small. You order at the cashier, pay, get a number & someone brings your food to you.

I got:

Quarter chicken dark $5.75 - a la carte! It's the smallest quarter I've ever seen. Small leg & thigh - I finished it in 10 minutes, chicken was very tender & good. Comes with 2 sauces - the reddish-brown one was sweet, the green one tangy & a bit spicy. I liked the green one.

Small cup of mac & cheese $5.50 - didn't taste all 3 cheeses, crunchy topping. Cup was super hot, but noodles were still cold, so had to ask to have it re-heated. Hot when brought back to me.

Sauteed chard $5.50 - this was a small cup too. I think it had lots of chopped up red onions which I don't like but ate them anyways. kinda salty & a bit cold, but just ate it anyways.

I charged my meal. One unisex bathroom in the back. There's some seating in the front & about 3 tables in the back. Patio - no tables/chairs there.

Muni bus Lines 2 & 3 stop nearby.

1963 Sutter St, SF 94115


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  1. I've yet to try the place, but the good news, from what I've read, is that it has Magic Hat #9 on tap.

    1 Reply
    1. re: soupçon

      Magic Hat #9 also on tap at Oz Lounge ( and they will gladly serve you one with breakfast. I was very happy to find this beer available!

      Cannot recommend the chicken wings there, though. I was expecting Buffalo style, but they were altogether different - basically served from the fryer with some Sriracha smeared on them.

    2. I've been meaning to try Roostertail. Mrs. Wineguy and I finally made it in for lunch recently. We split a Rooster Salad as well as a BBQ Chicken Sandwich with Cole Slaw. We probably would have had enough food without the salad.
      The salad ($9.00) was comprised of romaine, radicchio, bacon, spiced walnuts, apple, beets, and goat cheese. Very fresh, and huge.
      The sandwich ($10.75) was lightly sauced pulled chicken with pieces of portobello mushroom and small chunks of cheddar on a nice roll. Accompanied by a tasty cole slaw.
      The draft root beer was good, though it seemed overpriced ($4.25).
      We liked Roostertail and will go back.

      1 Reply
      1. re: wineguy7

        I've been there a couple of times, and they're a little bit uneven in quality, from what I remember. I do remember that I enjoyed their wings very much, though. Those were great, among the best wings in the city, if you go for that.

      2. I've been here three times in the last month. I've had a ton of work, not enough time to cook, and landed on their chopped salads as a great neighborhood option worth seeking out if you live/work nearby or are going to an event at the Kabuki or The Fillmore.

        There are four regular chopped salads and one seasonal chopped salad special per day. I've had the seasonal twice and enjoyed it; the Rooster is my favorite from the regular menu. Nice bitterness from radicchio and never over-dressed. The chicken meat is pre-chopped and refrigerated, and I wish it were warm to contrast the cold greens, but it's a minor quibble for an overall very satisfying meal.

        I had the chicken plate once and wasn't as happy with it--didn't seem like a great value (because you have to buy the sides extra, they're not cheap, and yet I don't want to just eat a hunk of meat on a plate).

        1. After three meals from Roostertail, I've formed some definite opinions.

          I agree with those who feel the prices are steep for what it is. Yet, I can't deny the freshness of the chopped salads. I liked the Green Goddess dressing quite a bit, but it's just a bit small for the price. The vinaigrette for one of the seasonal special salads was too sweet, a problem that I also found with the beans.

          With the salads, one can add chicken, wings or deviled eggs for $2.50 more. The deviled eggs are very good with a very lemony brightness. Three wings, doused with green herb sauce, were good for the price.

          The baked beans seemed like straight out of the can with tough, dry bits of brisket added. Won't get those again. Brussel sprouts with bacon were pretty good other than the bacon being tough and hard. Cole slaw is heavily coated with a creamy dressing, if you like that style. Mac n cheese topped with bread crumbs was satisfying if on the bland side despite the four cheese components.

          Besides the salads, the Wednesday half-price special on the quarter chicken is worthwhile. Not so crazy about the red barbecue sauce with a vinegary kick, but I loved the green sauce of capers, cilantro, garlic, scallions, and more. I also doused the chicken with some of the bottled mojo-like spicy and sour sauce. The chicken's overcooked to the point where it falls off the bone, yet it stays moist and was served with some drippings. The crispy skin's wonderful. The dark quarter is a bargain at $2.75 on Wednesdays.

          Nice selection of beers on tap and cans.