The Top 10 Restaurants In Cow Hollow, San Francisco

Photo of Adriana Jones
9 February 2017

It’s hard to disguise the fact that the Marina and the whole of its surrounding area have been and probably always will be a foodie haven. While this list is far from complete, and the area has plenty more delicious spots to get a bite to eat, this is a great place to start your dinner search. Here are 10 places to try in Cow Hollow, San Francisco.

The Brixton

Restaurant, American, $$$
Known for its cocktails, this restaurant has a unique ambiance. Besides its alcoholic beverages, The Brixton has American style food, including various burgers, salads, and pasta options. The restaurant can be busy, especially on weekend nights, but reservations can be made and there is plenty to do in the area if you end up having a slight wait.

Palm House

Restaurant, American
Not only is the atmosphere at the Palm House killer, but once you try the food (and cocktails), you will quickly become an even bigger fan. The Caribbean restaurant serves tropically inspired dishes with a California twist, such as vanilla brined pork chops and ‘drunken’ fish tacos, but no trip would be complete without a chipotle mango margarita or their five spice dark-n-stormy. Atelier Crenn

Atelier Crenn is far from the cheapest restaurant on this list, in fact it’s the second most expensive restaurant in San Francisco, but it certainly is the best food in the area. One of the few restaurants in the Bay Area with two Michelin stars and a female head chef, Atelier Crenn provides modern French cuisine with a double digit long wine menu. Reservations can be made online as well as by phone.


Restaurant, Mexican, $$$
Nick Fasanella’s well-known taco spot is a staple of Cow Hollow. From street style, as well as ‘Nick’s Way’ tacos, to burritos, quesadillas, and tortilla soup, Tacko is one the best spots for a delicious and quick meal. The restaurant’s open front allows you to enjoy the fresh air if you choose to sit inside and the nautical themed decorations are whimsical and enjoyable.


Restaurant, Japanese, $$$
Sister restaurant to Mamacita, Padrecito, and the Tipsy Pig, Umami features Japanese cuisine with a welcoming interior. From a wide range of sushi to Kobe steak, Umami has plenty of options, including a gluten-free menu. The restaurant can get busy during happy hour but it does accept reservations.

Balboa Café

Bar, Cafe, Cocktail Bar, American, $$$
A classic spot for American cuisine, including the Balboa Burger, Balboa Café is worth trying at least once. Besides their extensive dinner and bar bites menus, Balboa Cafe is part of the PlumpJack wine program, meaning that their wine is sold at the retail price instead of being marked up. If you are looking for good food and sweet wine deals, as well great atmosphere, head to Balboa Café.


Bar, Restaurant, Italian, Mediterranean, $$$
This Italian restaurant is a casual place to get authentic Italian food, including many pizza options. They have a fairly diverse wine menu, and the cozy setting is date perfect, although occasionally the service can be slightly slow. Give the restaurant a try for your next romantic night out, or even if you’re grabbing a bite with some good gal or guy pals.


Restaurant, Mexican, $$$
Exterior of Sabrosa
Exterior of Sabrosa | Courtesy of Adriana Jones
A warm, welcoming restaurant, Sabrosa serves high quality and upscale Mexican dishes made from organic Northern Californian ingredients. Chef Jose Ramos’s delectable dishes, including street tacos and green chile hamburgers, are perfectly complemented by mixologist Matt Stanton’s drinks. Reservations for Sabrosa can be made online and should be recommended for weekend nights.

Pane e Vino

Restaurant, Pizzeria, Italian, $$$
Another Italian restaurant, the Pane e Vino trattoria is run by Chef Bruno Quercini of Valtellina in Italy. He has been cooking since his elementary days and it shows. Pane e Vino has consistently become one of the best Italian restaurants in the area, and with a welcoming atmosphere and fantastic food there can be no doubt as to why.


Restaurant, Mediterranean, $$$
Terzo takes a little bit of everything from Mediterranean coastal cuisine, meaning that the variety of options are really quite amazing, from hummus and lamb keftas to meatballs and linguine. The menu at this cozy and homey location does change daily because of the efforts that the restaurant makes to utilize local ingredients.

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