Food With A View – Breathtaking Encounters of the San Francisco Kind
Ingredients for a magical meal on the town: Take one of America’s most vibrant cities. Add 5,360 restaurants. Mix thoroughly with romantic waterfront vistas, towering bridges, and mysterious lingering fog. The result is San Francisco, voted "America’s Favorite City" by readers of Condé Nast Traveler magazine for the past 18 years.
San Francisco is a 49-square-mile peninsula bordered by the Pacific Ocean and San Francisco Bay, offering spectacular vantage points from many different points in the City. The San Francisco Convention & Visitors Bureau, www.sanfrancisco.travel, suggests these "rooms with a view" to diners who want a San Francisco dining experience that is a feast for the eyes as well as the mouth.
Carnelian Room Soaring 52 floors above the City at 781 feet above ground, diners savor a panoramic view of San Francisco while enjoying contemporary continental American cuisine. It provides the highest man-made perspective from which to view San Francisco and the surrounding areas. Its bar was used as a setting in the movie "Dirty Harry" with Clint Eastwood. Carnelian Room, Top of Bank of America, 555 California St., 52nd Floor, 415-433-7500. Media contact: Mr. Philip Ip, 415-296-5585.
Top of the Mark In 1939 hotelier and owner, George D. Smith, transformed the 19th floor penthouse suite of the Mark Hopkins Hotel into a glass-walled cocktail lounge. The menu includes an intoxicating selection of martinis (100, to be exact), and a three-course prix-fixe dinner offered with an amuse-bouche, choice of starter and entrée, and dessert. Option for wine pairing is also available. Top of the Mark, InterContinental Mark Hopkins San Francisco, One Nob Hill (999 California St.), 415-616-6916. Media contact: Connie Perez, 415-616-6964.
The View Lounge Guests may enjoy cocktails, light snacks and a panoramic view of the City on top of the San Francisco Marriott, including great views of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Contemporary Jewish Museum, Yerba Buena Gardens and other jewels of South of Market. The View Lounge, San Francisco Marriott, 55 Fourth St., 415-896-1600. Media contact: Nancy Uber, NÜ PR, 415-672-2950: Nancy Uber
Grandviews at the Grand HyattSituated high above the city on the 36th floor, guests enjoy American cuisine with a French flair made from local ingredients while viewing the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz, Nob Hill and other famous sights. Grandviews, the Grand Hyatt, 345 Stockton Street, 415 398 1234. Media contact: Molly Blaisdell, 925-631-7971.
Cityscape With 14-foot high windows as walls on the 46th floor of the San Francisco Hilton, Cityscape is a showcase for San Francisco’s most famous landmarks including the Golden Gate Bridge, Coit Tower, Alcatraz, Union Square, the new Giants Ball Park, City Hall and other landmarks as well as the contemporary Californian cuisine. Cityscape, the San Francisco Hitlon, 333 Ofarrell St., 415-771-1400. Media contact: Debbie Larkin, 415-923-5072.
Alioto’s No. 8As one of the first restaurants on Fisherman’s Wharf, number eight, to be exact, Alioto’s has been a seafood fixture since 1925 and is the birthplace of “cioppino,” a savory fish stew that has become a San Francisco tradition. The restaurant has views of both sides of the bay. On one side, diners can look up at Coit Tower and straight ahead at the Bay Bridge, and on the other, is a clear view of the Golden Gate Bridge. Diners see everything just above sea level, with the hustle and bustle of Fisherman’s Wharf around them, but within the confines of a fine restaurant. Alioto’s No. 8, 8 Fisherman’s Wharf, 415-673-0183. Media contact: Trévar Booking, 415-673-8300, ext. 1306.
Bistro BoudinSourdough bread is as unique to San Francisco as its scenic landscape, so it is only fitting that the flagship store showcase other iconic landmarks. In 1849, the Boudin family used wild yeasts in the San Francisco air, which imparted a unique tang to their traditional French bread. The restaurant at Fisherman’s Wharf offers “only in San Francisco” views of the wharf, the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz, Angel Island and other sights. Bistro Boudin, 160 Jefferson St., 415-351.5561. Media contact: Amie Rubenstein, Glodow Nead Communications, 415-394-6500.
Castagnola RestaurantWith scenic views of San Francisco Bay, Fisherman’s Wharf, fishing boats, Coit Tower and the downtown skyline, Castagnola is credited with creating the first crab cocktail for the 1915 World’s Fair, and is renowned for its seafood and steak. Castagnola Restaurant, 286 Jefferson St., Fisherman’s Wharf, 415-776-5015. Media contact: Robert Brooks, 415-776-5015.
Eagle CafeA favorite restaurant and bar with locals since 1928, this historic waterfront hangout was a popular seamen’s pub when PIER 39 was a freight pier. It has since been renovated and has views of San Francisco Bay and fresh seafood. The Eagle Café, PIER 39 Level 2, 415-433-3689. Media contact: Courtney Cvetko, 415-705-5541.
Fog Harbor Fish HouseBreathtaking views of the Golden Gate and Alcatraz accompany fresh seafood and clam chowder. Formerly Chic’s Place Seafood (one of the original restaurants on PIER 39), it’s now newly renovated with a fresh menu and features outdoor dining on the waterfront, and at most times of the year, near visiting sea lions. Fog Harbor Fish House, PIER 39 Level 2, 415-421-2442. Media contact: Courtney Cvetko, (415) 705-5541.
Greens Greens Restaurant is located in a converted warehouse at historic Fort Mason and was a pioneer in establishing vegetarian cuisine in the United States. It’s also famous for using locally sourced wines and produce. Greens, Fort Mason, Building A, 415-771-7955. Media contact: Sally Shepard, 415-435-3571.
McCormick & Kuleto’s McCormick & Kuleto’s, a traditional seafood restaurant with an extensive menu, offers a view of San Francisco Bay, including Alcatraz, Angel Island, Aquatic Park and the historical Balclutha sailing ship anchored at Hyde Street Pier. The menu also includes sirloin steak and pastas for guests who would rather turf than surf. McCormick & Kuleto’s, Ghirardelli Square, 900 Northpoint St., 415-929-1730. Media contact: Tom Walton, 510-548-1097.
Neptune’s Palace Seafood RestaurantEvery table at Neptune’s Palace Seafood Restaurant has views of San Francisco Bay from Fisherman’s Wharf to the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz Island to Oakland and the Bay Bridge. Featuring fresh seafood, including lobster, crab and grilled fish. Neptune’s Palace Seafood Restaurant, PIER 39 Building K, Level 2, 415-434-2260. Media contact: Alicia Vargas, 415-705-5541.
The Pier Market Seafood RestaurantBreathtaking views of the Bay and award-winning clam chowder and mesquite grilled fresh seafood and meats contribute to The Pier Market’s popularity. The Pier Market Seafood Restaurant, PIER 39 Building F, Level 1, 415-989-7437. Media contact: Alicia Vargas,415-705-5541.
Bay Bridge View
Dante’s Seafood Grill and California Wine Bar Floor-to-ceiling windows frame the panoramic view of Oakland and the Bay Bridge, PIER 39, Coit Tower, the Embarcadero Center and the City skyline. An outdoor heated deck seats guests on the Marina’s edge. Alicia Vargas; 415-705-5541.
ButterflyStunning waterfront views and whimsical décor are a perfect complement to the California-Asian cuisine that stays true to the flavors of Southeast Asia. Butterfly, Pier 33, The Embarcadero, 415-864-8999. Media contact: Amie Rubenstein, Glodow Nead Communications, 415-394-6500.
Slanted DoorThe Slanted Door is a modern Vietnamese restaurant overlooking the San Francisco Bay in the Ferry Building. Executive chef Charles Phan’s family opened the original Slanted Door in 1995 on Valenica Street in the Mission District with a vision to blend Vietnamese cooking technique with local ingredients. Featuring a Riesling-driven wine list, full bar with premium brands and fresh squeezed juices, and hard-to-find Chinese teas, the menu also ecologically farmed meat, game and poultry found at farms around the San Francisco Bay Area. The Slanted Door, One Ferry Building, #3, 415-861-8032. Media contact: Faith Wheeler, 415-775-9773.
Sinbad’s RestaurantSinbad’s Restaurant sits on the Bay with panoramic views of Treasure Island, sailboats and the Bay Bridge so that guests may dine while watching ferries dock at the Ferry Building, large ships en route to Oakland and playful seagulls and pelicans. Sinbad’s Restaurant, Pier 2, The Embarcadero, 415-781-2555. Media contact: Duane Stinson, 415-781-2555.
The Waterfront RestaurantIn 1969, Al Falchi converted a former San Francisco longshoremen’s bar into a restaurant called The Waterfront. A mile from Fisherman’s Wharf, it features a view of the entire bay that has made it a favorite of local politicians and business people. The Waterfront Restaurant & Cafe, Pier 7, The Embarcadero, 415-391-2696 (reservations). Media Contact: Al Falchi, 415-398-7541.
Restaurants on the Embarcadero, but not on the waterfront
- Americano 8 Mission Street 415-278-3777 Media contact: Dawn Shalhoup 415-773-1067
- Boulevard One Mission St., the Embarcadero 415-543-6084 Media contact: Tom Walton 510-548-1097
- Chaya Brasserie 132 The Embarcadero 415-777-8688 Media contact: Lawrence Moore 310-859-8858, ext. 18
- One Market Restaurant 1 Market Street 415-777-5577 Media contact: Quinn McKenna 415-777-5588 ext.38
- Palomino 345 Spear Street, Suite 100 415-512-7400 Media contact: Victor Lorenzi 415-512-7400
Pacific Ocean View
The Beach Chalet Brewery & RestaurantThe Beach Chalet faces Ocean Beach – where the Golden Gate Park meets the Pacific Ocean. It features dramatic and historic WPA frescoes created by Lucien Labaudt in the 1930’s, and romantic views of the Pacific Ocean’s surf. The Beach Chalet is known for its hops and barley creations – the Seal Rock Bock, a full-bodied, dark and malty German-style beer; or the Ocean Beach Oktoberfest, a German-style amber beer, are just a few examples of the brews served. The Beach Chalet Brewery & Restaurant, 1000 Great Highway, 415-386-8439. Media contact: Lara Truppelli, 415-386-8439.
The Cliff HouseBreathtaking views from the cliffs overlooking Seal Rocks, the Pacific Ocean and Marin coastline. The first Cliff House was built in 1863 and catered to three U.S. presidents and prominent San Francisco families. In 1894, a fire destroyed the original building and it has since been rebuilt three times – 1896, 1909 and its final completion in 2004. It is now a part of the National Park Service and Golden Gate National Recreation Area. The Cliff House, 1090 Point Lobos, 415-386-3330. Media contact: Susie Biehler, 415-771-9975.
Foggy Bridge Wine Cruise, LLC Enjoy wine tasting and gourmet meals sailing on the historic Presidential Yacht of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the USS Potomac, against a backdrop of shimmering city lights and the spectacular scenery of San Francisco Bay. Foggy Bridge Wine Cruise, departures are from the San Francisco Ferry Building Pier “E”. Media contact: John T. Kontrabecki, 650-372-1222.
Hornblower Cruises & EventsElegant yachts are floating restaurants offering everything from dinner dance and weekend champagne brunch cruises, to private custom yacht charters on the San Francisco Bay. Hornblower Cruise & Events, Pier 3, On the Embarcadero, 415-788-8866. Media contact: Tegan Firth, 415-983-8208.
Marin (15 minutes north of San Francisco)
Gaylord Indian RestaurantViews of the Marin headlands and Bay accompany authentic, award-winning Indian cuisine including tandoori curries and vegetarian dishes. Gaylord India Restaurant, 201 Bridgeway, Sausalito, 415-339-0172. Media contact: Pina Patel, marketing/events manager, 415-948-8894.
GuaymasDiners enjoy authentic regional Mexican cuisine just a short ferry ride from the City with views of the Bay in Tiburon and Angel Island on the outdoor patio. Known for its margaritas and fresh salsas. Guaymas, 5 Main St., Tiburon, 415-435-6303. Media contact: Carmen Castillo, 415-435-6303.
Scoma’s of SausalitoIn the heart of Sausalito and featuring romantic views of the City and the Bay, this historic landmark on the waterfront serves up fresh seafood and pasta. Scoma’s of Sausalito, 588 Bridgeway, Sausalito, 415-332-9551, www.scomassausalito.com. Media contact: Sandi Smith, general manager, 415-332-9551.
###For general information on hotel packages and reservations; events; activities and transportation in San Francisco, visit www.sanfrancisco.travel. For lodging reservations, call 800-637-5196 within North America or 415-391-2000 elsewhere.
The San Francisco Visitors Planning Guide is available at the Visitor Information Center, 900 Market St., at the corner of Powell and Market streets, lower level, Hallidie Plaza. To receive a copy by mail, order the free visitors kit online at www.sanfrancisco.travel, call 415-391-2000, write to the San Francisco Convention & Visitors Bureau, 900 Market St., San Francisco, CA 94102, or send an email to Visitor Information Center. International shipping charges will apply for requests from outside the United States.
More Recent Articlesview all
Tourism Leaders Step Up to the Plate with NLCS Wager
What’s New in San Francisco | October/November 2014
San Francisco Travel Board Chair Stephen Revetria joins Hostelling International USA to “Sleep for Peace”
San Francisco Travel Board Chair Stephen Revetria joins Hostelling International USA to “Sleep for Peace”
Media Assistance Form
> For assistance with story ideas or travel itineraries to San Francisco, please complete and return the Media Assistance Form.
> Once submitted, a member of the San Francisco Travel Media Relations team will respond via email within 24-48 hours. For immediate assistance with U.S. and Canadian requests, please contact Laurie Armstrong at firstname.lastname@example.org. For all requests outside of the U.S. and Canada, please contact Angela Jackson at email@example.com.
Sign up now to receive the latest news and story ideas from San Francisco.
San Francisco Travel publishes updates monthly and quarterly with news, ideas and trends in and around San Francisco for five different types of readers.