Ask a sample of tourists what they are looking to eat while in San Francisco, and eight in ten will likely say “seafood.” You can try telling them that it is a world class city filled with diverse cuisines, with an array of Japanese, Italian, Chinese, Mexican, Moroccan, German, and French restaurants, all of excellent caliber, and plenty of. between them will still end up in the Fisherman’s Wharf scan menus.
With that in mind, and for seafood lovers who live here in the Bay Area but don’t always know the perfect place to enjoy a perfectly cooked halibut fillet or deliciously buttered Dungeness Crab Pasta, SFist brings you our verified, definitive list of the best seafood establishments in SF.
Alamo Square Seafood Grill
This 21-year-old unassuming neighborhood spot exudes the air of a tucked-away French bistro – and that’s largely because of its owner Andre Larzul, former butler at the very French Baker Street Bistro in the Marina. The menu, largely unchanged for two decades, is anchored by a do-it-yourself fish appetizer where diners can choose from half a dozen types of fish, four cooking methods (grilled, sautÃ©ed, poached or blackened) and five sauces (white butter, green pepper, provenÃ§ale, maitre d ‘butter and bÃ©arnaise). Value is what keeps Alamo Square neighbors coming back to this location, with a daily fix price that’s a jaw-dropping $ 17.50. Head there on Monday or Tuesday for half-price wine deals, and on Wednesdays there’s a $ 0 corkage fee if you order two courses.
803 Fillmore Street in Grove
Anchor Oyster Bar
There are only a few restaurants that I would shed a tear if they ever closed, and this is one of them. Anchor Oyster Bar has been a mainstay of the Castro, just up the hill from 18th Street, since 1977, which makes it older than the Zuni Cafe and proves they are doing something right. With only around 25 seats, Anchor packs diners every night, all of whom are ready to wait outside in the cold until their names are called on the whiteboard. And they come, year after year, for the best cioppino in town, an always delicious crab Caesar salad and fish specials that change every night, always simply prepared and perfectly cooked.
579, rue Castro near the 19th
By far the most stylish new SF restaurant of the past year, Angler is the predictable and delicious offspring of Season co-owners Mark Bright and chef Joshua Skenes. And now that Skenes is no longer in the kitchen for the Season, fans can still find here his love for real-fire cooking and his talents for teasing flavors and showcasing fresh seafood. The menu has ballerina options like a $ 165 caviar set, but some of the simpler dishes are best, including a grilled head of radicchio dipped in a radicchio-based “XO” sauce and a whole Petrale sole served. with smoked butter. Additionally, there are top-notch cocktails, a vintage spirits menu, and one of the city’s longest and richest wine lists.
Former Bar Crudo Executive Chef Melissa Perfit opened this place in Union Square at the end of 2018, and it’s about as seafood-focused as it gets. On the menu, a classic Louie salad with crab and shrimp, a dish of nori spaghettini with Dungeness crab, a whole red snapper with Thai spices served with a lobster pho broth and a chilled seafood platter at $ 54 with an assortment of crustaceans. Union Square isn’t such a foodinista destination, but this place is a shining light amidst a host of tourist traps.
398 Geary Street in Mason
It might seem a bit ’90s kitsch in this 22-year-old seafood-focused dining haven (designed by local legend Pat Kuleto, with jellyfish chandeliers), but the restaurant still offers great food for its mostly clientele. touristic . Fans are coming back here for the big one Sea food turns ($ 240), grilled Hawaiian swordfish and perfectly cooked scallops. And they know how to mix a drink and there’s plenty to choose from for showers / seafood allergies too.
450, rue de la Poste
Hook Fish Co.
Opposite the ambiance spectrum of Angler or Farallon is this humble and tiny fish market / restaurant in the Outer Sunset. Interior woodwork captures the neighborhood beach style, and the brief menu includes fish and chips, ceviche and chips, and a fish burrito. There’s also, of course, fish tacos, and diners can grab fresh fish to take out from the market cashier on the way out.
4542 Irving Street at 47th Avenue
Leo’s oyster bar
This chic Boca Raton-style FiDi restaurant from the Marlowe / Park Tavern team screams âexpense account lunch,â with its $ 100 seafood rounds, caviar service, and champagne menu. But it’s also just a solid choice for a romantic dinner, with a great lobster roll and great paella. Also, this champagne list.
568 Sacramento Street between Montgomery and Sansome
While not strictly a seafood restaurant, this modern and cozy neighborhood spot in Outer Richmond by co-chefs Joyce Conway and Mel Lopez emphasizes raw vegetables, seafood pasta and roast fish. In bestowing “Rising Star” honors on the pair earlier this year, Chronicle Food Editor-in-Chief Paolo Lucchesi wrote that Pearl 6101 has joined the “legendary tradition of transcendent neighborhood restaurants”, comparing her to Frances and Outerlands. Don’t miss the excellent salted cod brandade fritters, the terrific cocktails or the whole family-style roasted Mont Lassen trout.
6101 California Street to 23rd Avenue
With a daily tasting menu priced at $ 105 (tip included), Dominique Crenn’s four-year ode to Hayes Valley to his Breton homeland is one of the most luxurious places on this list. But this concentration on the northwest coast of France means delicious seafood dishes paired with hard cider, and the welcoming little restaurant is a perfect place for meetings and occasions of all kinds. There is often a whole roast fish on the menu, served family style, but also look for creative preparations of octopus, oysters, etc.
609 Hayes Street
Dungeness Island PPQ
This Viennese staple from the Outer Richmond serves Dungeness crab all year round, but the only time you’ll find them serving fresh, actually local crab is when Dungeness crab season kicks off at the end of the season. autumn. There are set menu options for groups, but if not, you can choose from six different roast crab preparations: pepper, roast, drunk, curry, and spicy. Special homemade garlic noodles are a must-have to accompany any crab order, as is the fried soft shell crab appetizer.
2332, rue ClÃ©ment at 25th Avenue
The only Chinatown restaurant on this list, the R&G Lounge is famous for its salt and pepper fried crab, but it’s also known for its delicious baked black cod, Maine lobster, and an array of oyster dishes. and shrimp. It is undoubtedly a must-see place for Chinese food lovers who also love seafood.
631 Kearny Street
It might be called Fisherman’s Wharf, but the only restaurant in this very touristy part of town that we can in good conscience recommend is Scoma’s. Culinary adventure won’t be here, but you’ll find plenty of classic Italian charm, with dishes like clam linguine, Thermidor Dungeness crab, and the restaurant’s version of Rockefeller oysters, called oysters alla Scoma. It’s also one of the most revenue-generating restaurants in town, thanks in part to its location, but also to consistent good reviews.
1965 Al Scoma Road
This North Beach mainstay resides in a space that has been an Italian restaurant for something like 80 years old, originally called Isle of Capri. Currently owned by North Beach native Rich and Laura Azzolino, the interior walls are covered in memorabilia and photos, and the place is full of laid-back charm and Old SF – plastic bibs and all. Don’t miss the buttery sand nuts, seafood risotto or their version of cioppino crab, which is served with penne at the bottom of the bowl to help use up the thick and spicy tomato broth.
552 green street
Swan Oyster Depot
No SF seafood restaurant gathering would be complete without Swan, which is easily one of the most famous restaurants in town on TV – thanks in part to the late Anthony Bourdain, who totally loved the place. During Dungeness Season, you go here to indulge in pure steamed crab legs straight out of their shells served like a “chrysanthemum” on a plate (pictured above) with a side of Louie sauce for dipping. . Otherwise, fans return for the afternoon treats with shrimp, oysters and smoked salmon, drizzled with chilled beer (note they are only open for breakfast and lunch and close at 5:30 p.m. ).
1517 Polk Street near California
Waterbar is Farallon’s waterfront sister restaurant, and was also designed with a certain flair by local restaurateur and restaurant designer Pat Kuleto. With stunning views of Bay Bridge and Bay Lights, and a large semicircular bar, Waterbar screams “special occasion” and is also a perfect place to get treatment from out-of-town relatives – it’s expensive. , however, then I hope your parents are prepared for it. Chef Parke Ulrich offers a range of chilled shellfish – like Farallon, there’s a large tiered platter for $ 240, but also smaller platter options – and entrees include oak-grilled Tombo tuna and oak-roasted swordfish.
Woodhouse Fish Co.
The laid back Woodhouse Fish Co. comes alive with Dungeness Crab season every year, but this place can be relied on year round for excellent seafood pasta, lobster rolls, fish and chips and Baja-style fish tacos. There are two locations – one at the market and church near the Castro and one on the upper part of Fillmore – and both also offer a solid take on the classic SF cioppino.
2073 Market Street and 1914 Fillmore Street