Things to do in Bay Area

Best Restaurants in the Bay Area

From steakhouses to cozy cafés, check out the best restaurants in the Bay Area to find your next unforgettable dining experience.

When searching for things to do in the Bay Area, exploring different types of cuisine has to be near the top of your list. The best restaurants in the region serve incredible dishes from around the globe. We'll take you on a tour of the most exciting places to eat in San Francisco Bay so you can start making reservations.

San Francisco

We love to check out the local dining scene whenever we go somewhere new. Here are a few of our favorite venues in San Francisco.

1. Quince

Quince Restaurant serves contemporary California cuisine in a sophisticated setting. You can choose between the gastronomy menu (10 courses) and the four-course menu or order à la carte.

Menus change seasonally to reflect the produce that's in season, but, in general, you can expect locally sourced seafood, market-fresh vegetables, meats cooked to perfection, and artisanal cheeses.

Reservations are released on the first of each month. They're usually snapped up quickly, so don’t delay booking.

Source: Quince Restaurant

2. Benu

Benu has three Michelin stars, and several publications have named it one of the world's best restaurants. It serves dinner Tuesday through Saturday and offers a fixed tasting menu that allows you to sample the chef’s carefully crafted dishes.

The food at Benu in San Francisco is something to savor — budget three hours for the experience, which takes you on a culinary journey. Dietary restrictions can be accommodated if you inform the chef in advance.

3. Scoma’s Restaurant

Scoma’s Restaurant has been serving fresh seafood in its waterfront location in Fisherman’s Wharf for over 50 years. When you sit down for dinner here, you’ll likely eat something caught and ferried to the pier that morning.

The Scoma family has worked hard to develop strong relationships with local fishermen. Be sure to linger over a cocktail as you soak in the sea views.


ABACÁ serves Filipino cuisine with a California twist. Chef Francis Ang fuses old family recipes with local, seasonal ingredients to bring fascinating flavors to the table. Try the house-made rice noodles with squid and cashews, or choose the tasting menu to sample a little of everything.

Visit restaurant ABACÁ for dinner, a lazy weekend brunch, or a quick weekday breakfast. Walk-ins are welcome, but booking a table is a good idea to avoid being turned away during busy times.

5. Golden Boy Pizza

Golden Boy Pizza sells cheese-smothered pizza to San Francisco’s hungry residents. Pizza starts at just $3.50 a slice and is always freshly made and delicious. While indoor seating is available, you get a better taste of the Bay Area culture if you order takeout and find somewhere to sit by the ocean to enjoy it.

6. La Taquería

When you crave Mexican food, head to La Taquería. Prepared using authentic Mexican recipes, the dishes here combine fresh ingredients with high-quality spices to ensure full flavors in every bite. This venue is featured in the Michelin Guide, reflecting its commitment to serving the best burritos in the Bay Area.

7. The Plant Cafe Organic

The Plant Cafe Organic serves healthy, local food that nourishes your body and soul. The menu is mainly plant-based, with a few dishes containing ethically raised meats. Everything is cooked using high-quality 100% olive oil, all egg dishes use cage-free eggs, and the seafood is sustainably sourced.

Sit indoors or outside on the patio to enjoy a meal that's good for you and even better for the planet.

8. Frances

Frances in SF is all about local, seasonally inspired food in a casual setting. Chef Melissa Perello serves delicious seafood, rich risotto, and flavorful soups. We recommend starting with house-made sourdough and then the lumberjack cake for dessert. Alternatively, opt for the chef’s tasting menu to sample the best dishes.

Source: Frances

9. Dragon Beaux

Dragon Beaux is the place to go for dim sum and hot pot in the Bay Area. Traditional Chinese treats, such as shrimp dumplings, are given a California twist, resulting in an explosion of flavors that leave you craving a return visit.

Founders Willy Ng and Jenny Huang are committed to using premium-quality ingredients, such as locally raised Wagyu beef.

10. Hog Island Oyster Co.

There’s no better place to go for oysters than Hog Island Oyster Co. The oysters served in the restaurants come from Tomales and Humboldt Bays and are harvested using sustainable methods. Enjoy outdoor waterfront dining, or dine indoors at the Ferry Building Marketplace in San Francisco.

11. Maison Nico

Experience the best of French cuisine at Maison Nico. Michelin-starred Chef Nicolas Delaroque specializes in pâté en croûte (pâté inside a pastry crust), sweet brioche, satisfying terrines, and seasonal tarts. Enjoy these French treats and more at its gorgeous location on Montgomery Street in San Francisco.

12. Mister Jiu’s

Mister Jiu’s serves contemporary Chinese American cuisine in the heart of Chinatown. Executive Chef Brandon Jew oversees a team that’s passionate about bringing the Chinese banquet dining experience to the Bay Area.

Order individual or shared dishes to enjoy bold flavors and seasonal produce. Diners find a warm and welcoming atmosphere here. Order the seasonal tasting menu if you can’t decide between all the delicious à la carte options. You won’t regret it.

13. Zuni Cafe

Zuni Cafe is no spring chicken. They have been at this for more than forty years and don’t seem to be losing any steam. This Michelin-starred cafe is known for its laid-back California vibe, locally sourced ingredients, and, of course, its wood-fired, whole chicken.

Napa Valley

Napa Valley is home to some of the best restaurants in Northern California, including the French Laundry, one of its most prestigious restaurants. Pricing for such an exquisite culinary experience can be high, so we included some other options that are just as delicious.

14. Joella’s Deli

Soups, sandwiches, and salads are waiting to satisfy your appetite at Joella’s Deli. Savor the crunch of fried chicken inside soft sourdough, or lick fresh mozzarella from your fingers as you devour the meatball parm. Don’t miss the PB & J bread pudding for dessert. You can find the red Joella’s food truck at 2485 Stockton Street in Napa.

15. Entrecot Napa

Entrecot Napa serves Argentine cuisine in a beautiful setting. Enjoy riverside dining with empanadas and other specialties from Chefs Mercedes Solis and Luciana Arjol. Accompany your meal with a carefully paired wine, and relax in this warm and welcoming setting.

16. ZuZu

ZuZu restaurant serves tapas and paella every day of the week. Indoor and outdoor dining areas provide the perfect setting, regardless of the weather. Experience the culinary traditions of Northern Spain, recreated in California using produce from local farms and ranches. After your meal, relax with a gin and tonic from ZuZu's extensive list.

Source: Zuzu Napa

San Mateo

San Mateo is a melting pot of culinary traditions, from Italian restaurants to trendy bistros.


At PAUSA Bar & Cookery, Chef Andrea Giuliani crafts authentic Italian dishes from scratch. Take a break from your busy life and relax with a craft cocktail on the outdoor patio.

Whether you choose pasta, risotto, pizza, or something else from the menu, you’re sure to have a satisfying meal. Finish with the house selection of cheese, served with seasonal compote, truffle honey, and oat crackers.

18. Central Park Bistro

When you visit Central Park Bistro, we recommend you try the warm toffee bread pudding. This restaurant's menu is chock-full of fresh seafood and meats cooked to perfection. Visitors praise the friendly service and large selection of wines.

After we finish eating here, we linger over an iced tea. It gives us the pick-me-up needed to continue exploring the Bay Area.

Santa Clara

Take a break from visiting San Francisco Bay Area theme parks to check out Santa Clara’s best restaurants.

19. Chaat Bhavan

Thalis, tandoori, and other traditional fare are served at Chaat Bhavan, the most popular Indian vegetarian restaurant in the Bay Area. At this family-run establishment, plants are the star of the show, spiced with sauces and accompanied by traditional bread. The puffed rice, samosas, potato patties, and hakka noodles served here are delicious.

20. Birk’s Restaurant

Come to Birk’s Restaurant for juicy chops, seafood, and steaks cooked on a hardwood grill. At this classic Americana restaurant, you can also enjoy all your favorites, from oysters to prime rib.

For over 25 years, Birk’s has proudly served uncomplicated American cuisine in an understated but elegant environment. Children are welcome to dine here, and they'll find familiar favorites on Birk’s junior menu.

Sonoma County

Sonoma County provides much of the produce used in the region’s restaurants. Savor a meal here to sample the fresh, local flavors.

21. The Tides Wharf & Restaurant

Enjoy dinner in a beautiful setting at The Tides Wharf & Restaurant. Watch the sun set over the sea from its gorgeous dining room on the northern California coast, featured in Alfred Hitchcock’s film The Birds. The menu is packed with fresh, locally caught seafood and house-made desserts.

22. Barndiva

Barndiva restaurant has been featured in the Michelin Guide for three years running. The restaurant began as a way to showcase produce from the family farm, including apples, figs, and chestnuts. Today, it offers European-style dining in a gorgeous setting.

Walk-ins are welcome, but if you want to avoid disappointment, plan ahead and make a reservation.

23. SingleThread Farms

Tables at SingleThread Farms' restaurant are in high demand. Bookings open on the first of each month, so mark your calendar. This three-star Michelin restaurant uses produce from local farms, including wines from across Sonoma Wine County.

Meals are colorful and beautifully presented, ensuring your senses are stimulated by this incredible dining experience.

Source: Single Thread Farms


In Alameda, also known as The Island City, you can find one of the best steakhouses in the SF Bay Area.

24. Saltbreaker

Saltbreaker restaurant is known for its fresh, seasonal food and signature cocktails. It opens for brunch and dinner and serves seafood, burgers, pasta, and salads. Try the twists on classic cocktails, or choose one of the house’s creations.

25. Ceron Kitchen

Ceron Kitchen serves New American cuisine, including chowders, steaks, seafood, and burgers. Under the careful direction of Executive Chef Juan Jaquez, the kitchen carefully crafts every meal from fresh ingredients. Book a table for brunch, lunch, or dinner in this sophisticated Alameda restaurant and bar.

26. Chez Panisse

If you are looking for something a bit more organic, Chez Panisse is a must-visit. Famous for its locally sourced ingredients, robust community and pioneering the farm-to-table movement, this Michelin star hot spot is a little piece of California history.

Contra Costa County

Sample the diverse cuisines available in Contra Costa County.

27. Gotta Eatta Pita

Gotta Eatta Pita whips up hand-baked pitas stuffed with feta cheese, falafel, organic veggies, and more. Every pita is baked from scratch the same day it's served. Choose a pita or a bowl, pick your protein, and stuff it with other goodies. The venue is conveniently located in Pleasant Hill.

28. Aung MayLiKa

Aung MayLiKa serves authentic Burmese cuisine. The restaurant is run by a family born and raised in Burma (now called Myanmar) passionate about spreading their traditional recipes far and wide. Try the house specials, including tea leaf salad, purée catfish chowder, chicken biryani, and coconut chicken noodle soup.


Just north of San Francisco, Marin is home to some of the friendliest Bay Area restaurants.

29. Poggio

Stepping into Poggio restaurant feels like walking into the home of an old Italian friend. Make yourself comfortable and prepare to enjoy classic North Italian antipasti, primi, and secondi.

The clam fettuccine is rich without being heavy, while the Della Fattoria wood-fired artisan bread is some of the best baking you’ll ever taste. Poggio is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner seven days a week.

30. Buckeye Roadhouse

Buckeye Roadhouse has been feeding hungry locals and travelers since 1937. Over the years, some dishes have been marked favorites, including the house-smoked BBQ baby back ribs and s’more pie. You can reserve a table inside or on the outdoor patio. A small number of walk-in tables are also available.


Take a trip inland to Solano County to experience the food culture in the Sacramento Valley.

31. Zaytoon

Savor the flavors of the Mediterranean at Zaytoon restaurant. The venue combines produce from Jerusalem's olive orchards with locally raised meats to create a culinary experience that’s hard to beat.

Swing by at lunchtime to enjoy shawarma, wraps, and maza platters, or visit in the evening for grilled kebabs, moussaka, calamari, and more. Finish your meal with a traditional Middle Eastern spirit or delicious dessert.

Source: Zaytoon

32. Solano Junction

Solano Junction serves excellent food, fine wine, and carefully crafted cocktails. Enjoy healthy menu options featuring free-range chicken, organic mixed greens, and local produce.

Solano Junction is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and until 3 p.m. on weekends. Order a locally roasted coffee or organic tea and enjoy a relaxed meal with friends or family.

Discover the Diverse Culinary Delights of the Bay Area

Bay Area restaurants take you on a journey through various food cultures. For a journey of a different kind, book tickets for one of our Bay Area shows. Our writers craft stories with the same care as a Michelin Star chef creating a meal.

Our performers train hard, molding their bodies to perform tricks that make audiences gasp. Prepare to be taken on an emotional roller coaster that will set your heart racing and leave you with memories that last a lifetime.

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