in San Francisco is buzzing with locals and business owners, creating a homey yet urban area. Some of the best places to eat can be slightly hidden from plain sight, adding to the area’s allure. Discover 10 of the best places to dine here.
After its opening in 1999, Blue Plate has continued to satisfy customers with locally grown ingredients. Serving up traditional American dishes with a Mediterranean infusion, such as macaroni and drunken Spanish goat cheese, the restaurant is a bona fide pillar of fancy comfort food. Chef/owner Cory Obenour shows his dedication to creative culinary practices through his peculiar meals. Try it out for a dining experience that will make you re-think Mediterranean cuisine.
Blue Plate, 3218 Mission St, San Francisco, CA +1 (415) 282-6777
Blue Plate © Sarah Dilbeck
For a taste of Belgium beer, you don’t have to get on a plane. At Bel, owners Richard Rosen and Jennifer Garris administer an assortment of Belgian-style beers. The gastro-pub serves small and large European plates like house-made foie gras terrine and steak frites. Get your beer buzz on with a taste of Brussels-style hospitality.
Bel, 3215 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA +1 (415) 206-1000
Bel © Sarah Dilbeck
With the option to order online, Mandarin House caters to those who want a quiet dinner at home. The friendly staff makes sure to provide fast service and fresh food. In addition to pick up and delivery options, the small bar and table seating offers a quaint dining experience. For a classic Chinese food fix, this place, with its ceramic Buddha decor is a good pick.
Mandarin House, 3452 Mission St, San Francisco, CA +1 (415) 282-6898
Mandarin House © Sarah Dilbeck
At AQ, innovative chef/owner Mark Liberman presents California cuisine at its finest. Their menu is synchronized with the four seasons, upholding farm fresh integrity. The restaurant keeps up with the changing weather by updating their menu as well as their ambience. This place is worth a visit.
AQ, 1085 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA +1 (415) 341-9000
Baby Blues BBQ
In a rustic atmosphere, Baby Blues BBQ is cooking quality meats smothered in soulful sauces. Their menu exhibits a cross between Memphis, North Carolina, and Mexican styles. As well as casual dining, they also do catering. Sink your teeth into their succulent baby back pork ribs for a blast of smoky spice.
Baby Blues BBQ, 3149 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA +1 (415) 869-4250
Baby Blues BBQ © Sarah Dilbeck
After its opening in 1986, Zante Pizza has maintained its success with their Indian twist on pizza. Try the one topped with chicken masala sauce for a non-conventional yet delicious pie. Traditional Indian art adorns the walls of the spacious atmosphere, and make sure to enjoy the lavish table settings that make you realize this isn’t your typical pizzeria. Dine out or order in for a flavorful treat.
Zante Pizza, 3489 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA +1 (415) 821-3949
Zante Pizza © Sarah Dilbeck
San Miguel Restaurant
In a festive setting, San Miguel Restaurant is serving authentic Guatemalan cuisine. Radiating with warm Latin American hospitality, taking a step inside makes you forget you were just in a bustling city. Their menu presents traditional lunch and dinner dishes, as well as a small breakfast menu. Try some of their Guatemalan style ceviche de camarones for an ethnic dinner out.
San Miguel, 3263 Mission Street, CA +1 (415) 641-5866
San Miguel Restaurant © Sarah Dilbeck
Emmy’s Spaghetti Shack
Embellished in unicorns and animated drawings, Emmy’s Spaghetti Shack puts a magical twist on your average spaghetti. The colorful menus and photo-booth strips create a fun, whimsical feel, that perfectly pairs with their outlandish dishes. At this place, they don’t discriminate against gluten-free or vegan customers, with their zesty ‘zoodles’ option. Family- and couple-friendly, this place provides a spaghetti entrée out there for everyone.
Emmy’s Spaghetti Shack, 3230 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA +1 (415) 206-2086
Emmy’s Spaghetti Shack © Sarah Dilbeck
Mi Lindo Peru
For top of the line seafood and spicy sauces, give Mi Lindo Peru a try. The hole-in-the-wall serves traditional Peruvian food in large portions for cheap prices. The simple setting makes for an impromptu place to kick back with some friends after a day of exploring the area. Your belly and wallet will thank you.
Mi Lindo Peru, 3226 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA +1 (415) 642-4897
Mi Lindo Peru © Sarah Dilbeck
Restaurant, American, $$$
Foreign Cinema | Foreign Cinema © Roland Tanglao/Flickr
A vintage theater-themed setting, Foreign Cinema is a place you don’t want to miss out on. Listed in the San Francisco Chronicle’s ‘Top 100 Restaurants,’ for the past 16 years, Chefs Gayle Pirie and John Clark keep the place rolling with the glamorous decor and an exquisite menu. For a West Coast take on a romantic night, this is a restaurant experience that is sure to move you.
Foreign Cinema, 2534 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA +1 (415) 648-7600