10 Best Places To Get Clam Chowder In San Francisco, California

Jon Sullivan/Wikimedia
Jon Sullivan/Wikimedia
Photo of Susan Blick
6 December 2016

In a place that is known for both its seafood and its sourdough bread, it shouldn’t be a surprise that San Francisco has some of the best clam chowder in the world. These 10 restaurants are sure to satisfy your chowder craving.

Boudin Bakery and Café

Bakery, Cafe, American, $$$
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San Francisco’s most famous sourdough bread is a perfect pairing with their most excellent clam chowder. Try Boudin’s crab and corn bisque or their traditional clam chowder in a warm and flakey bread bowl.

Blue Mermaid Chowder House & Bar

Bar, Restaurant, Seafood, $$$
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An elegant chowder spread
An elegant chowder spread | Courtesy of Blue Mermaid Chowder House & Bar
The Blue Mermaid Chowder House is decorated to perfection with vintage posters and beautiful mermaid statues that will transport you back to the Barbary Coast of old San Francisco. They offer a whopping six different kinds of homemade chowders so bring a friend and order the sampler trio to try them all.

Sabella & La Torre

Restaurant, Seafood, $$$
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As one of the oldest restaurants in San Francisco, Sabella & La Torre has their chowder recipe down to a science. Try a cup of their clam chowder with a delicious crab or shrimp sandwich or go all in with a bowl of their Boston style, Manhattan style, or traditional clam chowder.

Fog Harbor Fish House

Restaurant, Seafood, $$$
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A delicious sourdough bread bowl
A delicious sourdough bread bowl | © Marit & Toomas Hinnosaar/Flickr
With 100% sustainable seafood and fresh sourdough bread baked in-house every hour, the Fog Harbor Fish House is a must-visit for a delicious cup of chowder. Try their award-winning clam chowder in a cup, bowl, or sourdough bread bowl.

Nick’s Lighthouse

Restaurant, Seafood, $$$
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Outside Nick’s Lighthouse
Outside Nick’s Lighthouse | © Clotee Allochuku/Flickr
Arguably the best clam chowder on the Wharf, Nick’s Lighthouse offers delicious chowder and a wine and beer list full of local brews. Stop by for their clam chowder and stay for their fun and friendly atmosphere.

Fishermen’s Grotto

Restaurant, Seafood, $$$
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This bread bowl looks almost too perfect to eat
This bread bowl looks almost too perfect to eat | © Krista/Flickr
Another oldie but goodie, Fishermen’s Grotto opened its doors in 1935 on Fisherman’s Wharf. If the weather is nice, make sure to get a table outside so you can take in the views of the city while you enjoy your pick of Boston or Coney Island clam chowder.

Scoma’s Restaurant

Restaurant, Seafood, Italian, $$$
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For the ultimate San Francisco experience, head to Scoma’s for their famous clam chowder and hideaway feel. In 1965, Scoma’s began as a coffee shop for weary fishermen looking for a good breakfast after early mornings out on the Bay. Today, it has become one of the most successful independent restaurants in America, as well as a San Francisco hotspot.

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