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Close to the St.Regis.......... [San Francisco]

I will be spending a weekend in San Francisco soon and staying at the St.Regis.I am looking for 3 great restaurants to have dinner at, that are not a huge cab fare away.We like all kinds of food(especially Italian) and money is not an issue: just looking for fantastic food for a very special weekend with my wife.Please if you could give some options, I would be most appreciative...Thank you in advance!

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  1. keikos a nob hill - more french than italian, but the cooking is light.

    farina - casual-but-expensive authentic italian

    perbacco - is good / good value italian

    quince - upscale cal italian / french. formal.

    jai yun - authentic shanghaiese

    kappa - authentic japanese counter-kaiseki

    there's of course also benu, saison, atelier crenn, coi. they are the michelin 2 star places in town. i personally think they are a lot like other 2-star places in other big cities.

    1. I'd also recommend La Ciccia in Noe Valley, maybe a $13 cab ride. Very good Sardinian food.

      http://www.laciccia.com/

      1. The Japanese fusion restaurant (forget the name!) inside the lobby of The St. Regis is really excellent as well.

        4 Replies
            1. re: ipsedixit

              I ate there last spring and would disagree. I had a delicious meal.

              1. re: OliverB

                I ate there about a year ago and thought it had gone downhill a little.

          1. Not Italian, but try Sons & Daughters.

            7 Replies
            1. re: ipsedixit

              really? of all the places in sf, with money no object, you think sons and daughters is a good choice?

              isn't the whole point of sons + daughters to serve michelin star tasting menu styled dishes at a slightly lower price point, neglecting fancy decor and service to do this?

              1. re: Dustin_E

                Yes, especially because the OP wants to stay close to the St Regis.

                1. re: ipsedixit

                  i would choose room service over sons and daughters.

                  1. re: Dustin_E

                    Ok, I get that Dustin_E doesn't like Sons & Daughters.

                    But I really don't think the understanding about them offering Michelin star dining at a lower price has been true for a while. That may have been the idea at the start—I first went 2 and a half years ago and it was 4 courses for $48. But now that it's 12+ courses for $110, and that's a price cut from what it was before, I think they have firmly grown into Michelin starred fine dining. Yes, the decor and service are nothing impressive, but their model is more like a less ambitious and cheaper version of Saison or Brooklyn Fare...kind of like EL Ideas and Schwa in Chicago.

                    Now that the price is more of a "special occasion," I don't go back as much even though it's nearby. Furthermore, at those prices, the competition, and my expectations, are higher than they were a couple years ago.

                    That said, I still like the food at Sons & Daughters—it's just that it's not longer a "steal" or "good value," say like Commis, AQ or Commonwealth.

                    1. re: W42

                      If "money is not an issue", as the OP specified, why would someone want a

                      >> less ambitious and cheaper version of Saison

                      when you can instead go to Saison itself?

                      Similarly, how does "good value" AQ fit with "money is not an issue"?

                      1. re: Dustin_E

                        Because they said they are looking for "fantastic food," which I think AQ and Sons & Daughters delivers. There are plenty of places in town that are less expensive than Saison that I would recommend, even if someone can afford a dinner at Saison.

                        1. re: W42

                          fair enough.

                          i guess i think of both aq and sons&daughters as similar enough to the 2-star places that the more reasonable (but still really expensive) price is the only reason to choose them..

            2. La Ciccia is a good choice, especially if you want to try something other than northern Italian. But it is farther away than most other options - not a cheap cab ride.

              If I were to pick one Italian restaurant in SF it would be Acquerello.