The restaurants in San Francisco are reflective of the creative artisans and entrepreneurs that the Bay Area city attracts. Here, many dining destinations are seasonally driven, outfitted with communal seating, and minimally adorned with unfinished wood and exposed brick. As design aficionados and health-conscious foodies, we think that's a pretty phenomenal combination.
So where do these young professionals and chic natives go for lunch in the city by the bay? From a restaurant that shares a space with Heath Ceramics and bakery to a Greek restaurant that beckons an Instagram post, here are the six best places to have lunch in San Francisco (you can come for breakfast and can stay for dinner, too). Once your bellies are feeling satisfied, wondering what to do this weekend, try one of these Bay Area hikes, or opt for one of the activities from our roundup of the top 10 things to do in San Francisco.
Adjoining chef Michael Tusk’s Quince is Cotogna, a modern-meets-rustic Italian restaurant. The menu, which changes daily, includes house-made pastas to the likes of agnolotti dal plin; wood-oven pizzas including spring onion, pancetta, and fontina; and meats like quail with spinach and beets, and lamb with caponata (a dish of eggplant, olives, and onions).
490 Pacific Ave., San Francisco
Our mouths are watering at the sight of this French eatery’s English pea and house-made gnocchi (and everything, really, as you scroll through the restaurant's Instagram). For lunch, served à la carte Tuesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., try dishes like the popular Petit Crenn omelet, trout, and mushroom tartine inside the intimate all-white adorned restaurant.
609 Hayes St., San Francisco
Waterbar, which is situated on the waterfront in Embarcadero, specializes in seafood but has an expansive menu full of delicious dishes. It's a serious power lunch spot. Here, the menu changes daily to reflect the fresh-caught, sustainably raised fish, and an expansive selection of oysters from regions including California, Massachusetts, and Maine.
399 The Embarcadero, San Francisco
We're swooning over this expansive exposed concrete and mostly white decorated space. For lunch, served daily from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Tartine Manufactory offers a selection of flatbread and warm sandwiches, salads, and soups. Added bonus? Dishes like the stone fruit and burrata or roasted strawberry tartine (served for breakfast) will look beautiful on your Instagram feed.
595 Alabama St., San Francisco
With three locations throughout San Francisco, including in the Hayes Valley, this Greek restaurant is the perfect casual lunch destination. Enjoy spit-fired meats including chicken, and lamb (of course) and sides the likes of Greek fries with olive oil, lemon juice, parsley, and cheese.
517 Hayes St., San Francisco
531 Divisadero St., San Francisco
758 Valencia St., San Francisco
Where's your go-to lunch spot in San Francisco? Share with us in the comments below!