Looking for the perfect spot to have a romantic dinner in San Francisco? Look no further – whether you’re celebrating your 50th anniversary or just trying to start your first date off right, we’ve curated a list of the best spots for a date in the City by the Bay.
Located just off the Embarcadero on the easternmost edge of the city, Boulevard is a French-American restaurant combo. The establishment has been around since 1993, offering an elegant but warm atmosphere. Chef Nancy Oakes serves American food with a French twist that you can enjoy while overlooking the waterfront of San Francisco, with gorgeous views of the Bay Bridge. The service is exceptional and the food is widely acclaimed, winning the restaurant many awards over the years including the James Beard Award for Outstanding Restaurant. Be warned, though – this spot is on the pricey side.
Foreign Cinema is revolutionizing the outdated dating concept of ‘dinner and a movie’ by rolling them together into one exceptionally romantic experience. The restaurant has been around since 1999, offering evolving menus including dinner, brunch, desserts and cheese, and cocktails. The restaurant has won a multitude of awards, never failing to be named a San Francisco Chronicle Top 100 Restaurant, and even having a California state senator-acknowledged Foreign Cinema Day declared city-wide in its honor. Food offered includes a variety of Mediterranean and Californian cuisines.
Firefly was established in 1993 by Brad Levy and Veva Edelson with the dream of offering a combination of great food, attentive service, and magical atmosphere. Nestled into a corner of the Noe Valley neighborhood, the restaurant is relaxed and rarely overcrowded. The food strikes the perfect balance between deliciousness and health-consciousness, while also prioritizing environmental sustainability. The menu offers a huge variety of vegetarian and vegan options, as well as gluten-free choices and an affordable prix fixe menu on certain days of the week.
Acquerello is an Italian restaurant offering superior fine-dining in the Nob Hill neighborhood. The restaurant has won a number of awards, including two stars in the Michelin Guide and the Wine Spectator Grand Award for three consecutive years. The restaurant offers a prix fixe menu featuring a range of options from classic Italian dishes to contemporary interpretations of Italian flavors, as well as a seasonal tasting menu that combines the freshest possible ingredients and innovative takes on contemporary Italian cuisine.
Just off Jackson Square in the Financial District stands a mysterious brick-covered alley with an unassuming neon sign that casually announces the location of Bix. Inside, you’ll find a restaurant filled with gorgeous architectural features and artworks. Bix offers the atmosphere of a classy speakeasy or an elegant saloon, serving up modern American cuisine with ingredients from local farms. Enjoy dinner and a cocktail here while listening to the lively sounds of jazz music, played live at the restaurant every evening. Sunday and Monday feature a solo piano act, Tuesday through Thursday a performance with piano and vocals, and Friday and Saturday a jazz trio.
Frascati is a Russian Hill bistro serving up Mediterranean food in a cozy, homey environment. The restaurant feels very European, with high ceilings, warm colors, and antique lighting. The food offered is Mediterranean with a California twist, with a menu often evolving to accommodate the best ingredients of the season. Enjoy a selection from a varied wine list with your food, and finish off your meal with one of Frascati’s house-made desserts. The view of Russian Hill, with natural light and a glimpse of cable cars passing by, creates a lively atmosphere.