Caffe Macaroni is a hidden gem in Little Italy. The trattoria is much smaller than the restaurants city dwellers are used to, but its small seating space creates a quaint and cozy experience. For a reasonable price, you can get a deliciously cooked dish, an unusual wine list, as well as the hearty Italian charm of its staff. Chef Mario’s Linguine di Mare is an absolute delight for pasta and seafood lovers. Take your significant other, indulge in an authentic and flavorful Neapolitan cuisine, and leave feeling well fed and well loved.
Caffe Macaroni, 59 Columbus Ave, San Francisco, CA, USA (415) 956-9737
E&O Kitchen and Bar
E&O Kitchen and Bar is a favorite for the Millennials that frequent the bustling city. An Asian fusion hotspot, E&O presents dishes that are bold, flavorful, and fresh. Its kimchi cocktail sauce served with fresh oysters is a delicious favorite, along with the tender ahi tuna tartare. If you’re dropping in for happy hour, E&O has a tasty selection of small bites accompanied by a unique cocktail list as well. The Zen ambience with a modern twist is an added plus.
E&O Kitchen and Bar, 314 Sutter St, San Francisco, CA, USA +(415) 693-0303
Located in Chinatown, the R&G Lounge is the ultimate destination for gourmet Chinese food in the city. Keeping its distance with the fast-paced change and experimentalism of the City’s culinary scene, the R&G lounge is a classic representation of old school Chinese fine dining. Despite the hustle and bustle atmosphere, this is the place to go if authentic Chinese dishes call your name. Their signature dish, the salt and pepper crab, is an absolute must try.
R&G Lounge, 631 Kearny St, San Francisco, CA, USA +(415) 982-7877
R&G Lounge, 59 Columbus Ave, San Francisco, CA, USA +(415) 956-9737
Hakkasan San Francisco
Hakkasan serves high-end Cantonese cuisine and cocktails in an urban, trendy, and sleek ambience. The Hakkasan chain is known for its unique dim sum dishes, and it does not disappoint in its San Francisco venue. Its braised kurobuta pork belly is a favorite, and served perfectly cooked and tender. The dessert menu is experimental, fun, and absolutely delicious. Though a tad pricey to become a frequent stop, Hakkasan is a great destination for those seeking to experience refined Chinese food in a relaxed, romantic setting.
Hakkasan San Francisco, 1 Kearny St, San Francisco, CA, USA +(415) 829-8148
Perbacco is a lively, upscale Italian restaurant in the heart of the financial district that recreates the taste of northern Italy. With any dish, you can taste the freshness of the ingredients, as well as the tangy deliciousness of the homemade pasta. Its lamb shank braised in tomato sauce melts in your mouth, leaving you craving for more. To accompany, Perbacco has an extensive wine list, and friendly staff that will explain and recommend as necessary.
Perbacco, 230 California St, San Francisco, CA, USA +(415) 955-0663
A high-end Japanese restaurant and bar, Pabu offers one of the best selections of fish in the city. From beginning to end, the service is warmly inviting but impeccably professional. Pabu offers a range of delectable small plates and skewers for good prices, as well as an expansive list of nigiri and sashimi. A particular favorite is the ‘Happy Spoon’ Oyster, which is a small, mouthwatering serving of sea urchin, two different types of caviar, and oyster in ponzu crème fraîche. If you are a lover of high quality Japanese food, Pabu will never fail to impress.
Pabu Izakaya, 101 California St, San Francisco, CA, USA +(415) 668-7228
Chef Michael Mina is a celebrity figure on the culinary scene, and for good reason. His courses are creative, complex in flavor, and carefully curated. The rib eye, one of Mina’s specialties, is absolutely outstanding, cooked to tender perfection while still preserving its layers of flavor. If feeling adventurous, try the foie gras. Bustling with energy, Michael Mina holds one Michelin star, and is well worth a visit for those with curious palates.
Michael Mina, 252 California St, San Francisco, CA, USA +(415) 397-9222
Boulevard offers a Michelin-starred new American cuisine that draws its inspiration from around the world. The restaurant resides in a historic Audiffred building that oversees a gorgeous view of the bay, which, with chef Nancy Oakes’ superb dishes, has earned the place the term ‘the jewel of the Embarcadero.’ Boulevard offers absolutely delightful lamb and quail dishes, always cooked to perfection. The menu is seasonal, with plenty of fresh local produce incorporated into the dishes. For those who seek a classic Bay Area ambience with top-notch cuisine, Boulevard is the place to visit.
Boulevard, 1 Mission St, San Francisco, CA, USA +(415) 543-6084
A meal at Benu is an otherworldly experience, from its impeccable service to its decadent dishes. Benu has a fixed tasting menu that draws its inspiration from Chinese and Korean cuisine, delivered in a clean, minimalist presentation. The coordinated drink pairings include wine, sake, and even beer selections, which accompany the dishes in subtle perfection. Benu holds three Michelin stars, and it will cost you a hefty sum; however, it will be an intensely memorable dining experience.
Benu, 22 Hawthorne St, San Francisco, CA, USA +(415) 685-4860
Kusakabe holds one Michelin star and offers one of the best omakase in the Bay Area. Chef Kusakabe’s tasting menu is seasonal and precisely designed, creating a sequence of flavors that are simultanerously strong, subtle, warm, and cool. In addition to the impeccable cooking and presentation of the best fish in the market, its ‘warm dishes’, usually an intense broth with pleasant garnishes, perfect the progression of its tasting menu.
Kusakabe, 584 Washington St, San Francisco, CA, USA +(415) 757-0155