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San Francisco’s bustling food scene was anything but slow in 2016. We got NoLa cuisine with Michelin-star status. Hawaiian brunch. Paella that will transport you right to Spain. And fish flown in from Tokyo’s famous Tsukiji Fish Market. So here—drumroll, please—is our official list of the 47 restaurants you need to try. But you’ll have to click all the way through to find our favorite.
The city’s beloved Osha Thai chain expanded with a restaurant dedicated to Laotian cuisine. Larb and sticky rice, anyone?
149 Second St.; 415-278-9991 or laotablesf.com
Think green juice, French-toast holes and egg-and-cheese breakfast sandwiches in the morning, plus lunchtime favorites like fried chicken sammies and spicy noodle bowls.
2214 Broadway, Oakland; welocol.com
OK, health nuts, this one’s for you. The chain promises flavorful dishes based on an anti-inflammatory diet. We’ll let you decide.
180 El Camino Real, Palo Alto and 120 Broadway Lane, Walnut Creek; truefoodkitchen.com
All you really need to know is that it is near AT&T Park and it has one of the best burgers in town.
330 Townsend St.; 415-654-5001 or popsons.com
Baked oysters with onion confit and brown butter; a signature roast chicken with salsa verde; and cannoli with orange and butterscotch. A perfect cold-night meal.
900 North Point St.; 415-636-9700 or waxmanssfo.com
The new brasserie in the old Abbot’s Cellar space on Valencia is pouring a dozen or so in-house brews to help you wash down upscale pub fare like lamb tartare.
742 Valencia St.; 415-655-9868 or brasseriesaintjames.com
A former French Laundry chef and a tech entrepreneur joined forces to open a global-eats hot spot inspired by Avatar’s in Mill Valley (you know, of Indian burrito fame).
71 Stevenson St.; 415-236-3984 or dabba.com
We suggest the fried-chicken burrito and daily-rotating tater tots deluxe. In fact, you might want to go with friends who won’t mind sharing all of the above.
2240 Mission St.; wesburgernmore.com
Head north when you’re jonesing for a summer seafood fix in the middle of winter and indulge in classics like Crab Louis salad, ceviche and fish tacos.
935 Gravenstein Ave., Sebastopol; 707-827-5472 or handline.com
Snack on crispy fried sunchokes with black garlic dip or go big with grilled Spanish octopus with Manila clams, chorizo, Early Girl tomatoes and charred lemon salsa verde.
545 Post St.; 415-549-8008 or ramblersf.com
This jewel-toned restaurant is modern Indian defined—as evidenced by traditional dishes with a California flair, like lobster with curry leaves and coconut milk and the tamarind beet sliders.
524 Van Ness Ave.; 415-771-5900 or august1five.com
The food is simple (deviled eggs; fried-chicken sandwiches) and the drinks are strong (a Ball and Chain with bourbon and honey). Yep, this place lives up to its 1850s Gold Rush inspiration.
2551 Market St.; finntownsf.com
Here, everything on the menu is either dairy-, gluten-, nut- or soy-free, so there’s literally something for everyone.
3613 Sacramento St.; 415-914-0689 or eatasquoted.com
This is where you take your boyfriend to watch sports and where you can actually enjoy the food (we recommend the jalapeño-popper tacos). It’s a win-win.
3198 16th St.; 415-649-6077 or barsanpancho.com
Itani’s broth skims the fat and uses ingredients like fennel oil for earthier, more nuanced flavors. It's open until 12 a.m. on Friday and Saturday, making it perfect for late-night bar crawls.
1736 Telegraph Ave., Oakland; 510-788-7489 or itaniramen.com
Izakaya-style fare, plus a binchotan grill and an omakase chef’s counter. Order the chicken tonkatsu with an Asahi and save room for dessert (the black sesame soft-serve is everything).
821 Coombs St., Napa; 707-254-9464 or miminashi.com
Add this California-inspired yakitori restaurant to your list—for when nothing but grilled chicken skewers will satisfy the urge.
3020 St. Helena Hwy., St. Helena; 707-302-3777 or twobirdsonestonenapa.com
Savory monkey bread to start; ’nilla pudding tart to finish.
100 Van Ness Ave.; 415-400-4979 or corridorsf.com
Let us introduce you to arancini, Asian-meets-Italian breaded-and-fried rice balls with mushroom, shrimp and Chinese sausage. Get it?
1735 Polk St.; 415-829-8226 or buffalotheorysf.com
It’s a neighborhood hidden gem that we’re spilling the beans about. Think zucchini pizza and Ligurian fish stew, both dishes the chef learned from his Italian nonno.
2339 Clement St.; 415-340-3049 or fiorella-sf.com
It’s a more casual spinoff of the Michelin-starred Omakase. Go for the Jidori egg chawanmushi (an umami-rich crab custard) and anago tempura with saltwater eel and burdock root.
669 Townsend St.; 415-865-9788 or okanesf.com
A colorful Mexican spot offering seasonal sangria (think rosé, strawberry and mint). Order a carafe and munch on grilled pineapple adobo, queso fundido and grilled flank steak.
1077 Mission St.; 415-431-1826 or fenix-sf.com
This place might take the prize for most expensive sushi restaurant in town. But hey, what do you expect for fresh fish delivered straight from Tokyo’s famous Tsukiji market?
4 Mint Plaza, 415-908-1919 or hashirisf.com
The “mole and mezcal” motto pretty much says it all. We’d even go so far as to say it’s the best mole in the Bay Area. Don’t eat here without ordering it.
2135 Franklin St., Oakland; 510-288-3668 or agaveuptown.com
So popular, the restaurant had to start a reservations-only policy to accommodate hangry patrons demanding their share of xiaolongbao.
2855 Stevens Creek Blvd., Santa Clara; 408-248-1688 or westfield.com
Tartine’s famous morning buns and sourdough loaves meet Roman-style pizzas, salads and porchetta, plus coffee and ice cream—all under one roof. Brace yourself for the line around the block.
595 Alabama St.; 415-487-2600 or tartinemanufactory.com
Some of the freshest pasta you ever will eat…brought to you by a Flour+Water alum, naturally.
1270 Valencia St.; 415-285-1200 or barzotto.com
The eco-conscious fare is as delicious as it is responsibly sourced. Try the cauliflower toast, the potato confit with clam bagna cauda and the trout with bone marrow and mussels broth.
59 Ninth St.; 415-500-7788 or theperennialsf.com
Expect Southern staples dolled up with an upscale NorCal-inspired flair. Pair your grub with a classic NoLa cocktail (or two), such as a Sazerac, gin fizz or milk punch.
532 N. Santa Cruz Ave., Los Gatos; 408-560-9639 or thebywaterca.com
A bar-centric subterranean companion to Liholiho Yacht Club…but just as hard to get in to. Don’t miss the okonomiyaki waffle with house-made Spam.
871 Sutter St.; 415-440-5446 or liholihoyachtclub.com/gengen
Can’t make it over the bridge to Sausalito’s Sushi Ran? No problem. Now you can check out this Castro spin-off offering the same Michelin-star-quality sashimi.
2223 Market St.; 415-655-3280 or nomicasf.com
Only chef Chris Cosentino can make offal look so good. Expect more of his weird meat creations and much more in the vegetarian department, too.
1915 Main St., St. Helena; 866-716-8136 or lasalcobasnapavalley.com
A dozen nigiri selections, plus some other surprises based on what looks good that day. Did we mention the sake pours from a Gary Danko master sommelier?
1335 Fulton St.; 415-655-9924 or junisf.com
The swanky, supper-club-style restaurant plates elevated comfort classics—like ’Toga Tots with Fiscalini cheddar, chorizo and scallions—plus a burger with taleggio cheese and slaw on an onion bun.
1000 Larkin St.; 415-932-6464 or thesaratogasf.com
Bar Tartine went bye-bye (RIP), but everything’s OK because now we have Motze’s family-style meals rooted in Japanese flavors. Nare rice porridge is exactly what the rainy weather calls for.
983 Valencia St.; 415-484-1206 or motze.xyz
Another great burger…plus smoked and roasted Muscovy duck in case you’re feeling extra fancy.
2501 Mariposa St.; 415-612-8480 or themorris-sf.com
Dip into oysters with pickle butter, Thali-style curry platters or more elaborate dishes like scallop coconut curry at this new Indian joint.
280 Valencia St.; 415-525-4857 or babujisf.com
Inspired by the state’s earliest settlers, the menu of California cuisine here takes on subtle nuances of Spain, Mexico and Portugal. Order the irresistible sweet-and-salty chicharrones with a gravity-dispensed Basalt negroni to start.
790 Main St.; Napa; 707-927-5265 or basaltnapa.com
Pork belly with poached eggs and kimchi, plus taro French toast with applewood smoked bacon, macadamia nut crumble and coconut caramel should be enough of a teaser to make your mouth water.
900 22nd St.; 415-814-3815 or ainasf.com
Replete with lesser-known delicacies prepared at homes in Turkey, Greece, the Levant and Iran. The musakhan (a wood-roasted chicken slathered in allspice and sumac) miiight change your life.
206 Valencia St.; 415-814-2704 or tawlasf.com
The tasting-menu-focused restaurant is finally here. Featuring dishes like lobster with hearts of palm and chanterelles, we’d say it was well worth the wait.
330 Gough St.; 415-829-7565 or nightbirdrestaurant.com
The 12-course, $195 prix fixe menu reads like the esoteric compilation of obscure ingredients (e.g., sea moss and foie gras soup). It’s a special gem you have to experience for yourself.
1552 Fillmore St.; 415-735-7303 or mosusf.com
Nothing says Spanish like a piping-hot skillet of paella with wood-oven-roasted morel mushrooms, snow peas, rhubarb and green garlic sofrito.
888 Brannan St.; 415-430-6580 or bellotasf.com
The family-style banquet menu features plates like Peking duck, uni-topped rice noodle rolls and salty daikon cakes. Did we mention that the cocktails make use of Chinese ingredients like jasmine tea?
28 Waverly Place; 415-857-9688 or misterjius.com
Go for the oysters on the half shell and stay for the New England-style lobster roll and fries—a delicious mess not fit to devour in front of the boss.
568 Sacramento St.; 415-872-9982 or leossf.com
Art and food intersect at SFMOMA’s new restaurant. A rotating menu of 15 dishes reads like a best-of collection of famous plates from around the world.
151 Third St.; 415-941-6050 or insitu.sfmoma.org
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