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Jul 25, 2012 09:24 AM

Friday dinner in SF with no reservations

I am looking for recommendations for restaurants in SF that do not take reservations and are on par in terms of food (not necessarily price or formality) with places I've frequented with reservations in hand, e.g. Bar Jules, Range, Flour + Water, Canteen, Cotogna, etc. I have a chance to show up on the early side someplace next week but don't know exactly when so cannot comfortably reserve. I thought I would try to take advantage of circumstances by trying a place where everyone has to wait in line. Needs to be accessible from Civic Center area by public transport or foot. Mission Chinese (polarizing, I know) springs to mind. I have been to Pizzeria Delfina so that's out. Will be a party of two so the bar is definitely an option. Thoughts?

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  1. I pretty much never bother with reservations anymore and opt for the bar so you have many, many options...

    My first thought would be to suggest Baker & Banker but it isn't as Civic Center-friendly as I would like. What does come to mind is:

    Bix - great tartare and sidecars
    Gitane - lovely cocktails and small plates
    Anchor & Hope - order the sea urchin!
    Ame - stick with the crudo

    1 Reply
    1. re: CarrieWas218

      Thanks for the list and feedback--I now recognize that by opening up the bar as an option I may have made my question too broad! Perhaps the right way to put this is to ask where to go where no reservations are accepted and/or where the bar is expansive enough for walk ins. For example, I eat at Wood Tavern at the bar regularly, but it fills up by 5:30 on a Friday and no tables will be unreserved, so I wouldn't count it as an option.