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Sashimi at Robin
Robin on Gough Street is just one of what Hayes Valley has to offer.
Pork Belly Studio

Where to Find Fantastic Food and Drink Around Hayes Valley

A guide to one of San Francisco’s very best dining and drinking neighborhoods

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Robin on Gough Street is just one of what Hayes Valley has to offer.
| Pork Belly Studio

There are few finer places in San Francisco for top-brass dinners, decadent bites of babka, powerful craft cocktails, and locals’ favorite scoops of ice cream than Hayes Valley. In fact, there are so many excellent options it can be hard to include everything in just one map. Kiln took over the former Cala space, plating venison in four ways and sending guests home with Polaroid photos of their experience. On the other end of things lies KitTea Cat Lounge, San Francisco’s destination cat cafe keeping feline fans fed and caffeinated for over a decade. And Hayes Valley has everything in between, such as a mega-popular Salt and Straw outpost and beer and kraut destination Suppenküche. These 16 businesses highlight the best of what the neighborhood has to offer, even if picking amongst the area’s options is a nigh impossible task.

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Smuggler's Cove

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There’s an ongoing push to reconsider the cultural implications of tiki bars — but for those who seek a tropical cocktail or a deep selection of rum, Smuggler’s Cove makes a logical choice. The bar, convincingly designed to look and feel like the inside of a ship, has won just about every award the bar and cocktail world has to offer including being named one of the best bars in the world by World’s 50 Best, Playboy, and Esquire on top of earning nods from both the James Beard Foundation and Tales of the Cocktail.

Robin joins a flood of omakase sushi restaurants but stands out from the rest with adventurous twists on classic nigiri: Think potato chip nigiri with grilled ramp aioli and caviar or seared canary rockfish, served with liver, grapefruit ponzu, and chives. This deeply personal restaurant of chef Adam Tortosa, is dramatic, moody, and definitely an experience.

Patricia Chang

Om Sabor

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This vegan Mexican restaurant, just down the street from fellow plant-based restaurant Baia, is the food arm of listening bar Phonobar. Grand slam dishes include truffle mac n’ cheese, hibiscus tacos, and furikake “crab” cakes.

Monsieur Benjamin

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The prices aren’t cheap at this popular French bistro from chef Corey Lee of Benu and San Ho Wan — appetizers average about $18 a piece while main courses are around $30 — but the refined, indulgent food with a modern spin has found an audience because this place is always packed.

Monsieur Benjamin

Hayes Street Grill

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For more than four decades Hayes Street Grill has been a go-to option for a pre-theater dinner or post-opera drink. This is your neighborhood destination for seafood — everything from grilled swordfish to pan-fried oysters — with sides built around seasonal produce like Brentwood corn.  

Hayes Street Grill

Rad Radish

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Are gluten-free and vegan chicken and waffles a thing? According to this Hayes Street all-day cafe, they sure are. This is yet another Adriano Paganini and his company Back of the House (which also owns, for instance, a Mano up the street), and the business focuses on fast-casual service. Creamy Vietnamese iced coffee, light but filling avocado toast, and crispy chilaquiles are just a few of the items on the menu. 

A photo of waffles.
Gluten-free and vegan chicken and waffles.
Paolo Bicchieri

If you’re looking for a great place to drink outside in Hayes Valley, Anina is here to help. The patio is a perfect venue for sipping any of the bar’s cocktails, which range from classics like a gin-and-maraschino Martinez to the Unfair Trade, a coffee cocktail built on a rum base plus banana and bitters. 

Anina

a Mano

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Instantly-trendy a Mano — yet another venture from prolific San Francisco restaurateur Adriano Paganini — is the spot for affordably priced but carefully prepared pasta and pizza from chef Freedom Rains, dishes like bucatini all’Amatriciana and agnolotti dal plin, or small, buttery ravioli filled with roast pork, chicken, and chard.

Doppio Zero

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From the crew behind the Meatball Bar, Doppio Zero fires up Neapolitan pies including classics like margheritas to fried and stuffed Pizza Napule. Besides pizza, there are small plates like croquettes, grilled octopus, and polpettine (Neapolitan meatballs), a full menu of pasta, and larger entrees like fish soup. To go with it all is plenty of Italian wine, local beer, and a full cocktail menu. Diners may be familiar with the restaurant's other two outposts on the Peninsula; this is the third location overall.

Nojo Ramen Tavern

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Unlike most of San Francisco’s ramen restaurants, which focus on pork broth, Nojo Ramen uses rich chicken paitan broth as the base for its noodles. The small plates are also a signature for this restaurant, which has more than 200 locations in Japan though the Hayes Valley restaurant is its first in the U.S. Be sure to start with some toripan (curry seasoned ground chicken on baguette), corn on the cob, and teriyaki chicken buns.

nojo ramen tavern sf

Nightbird

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Kim Alter’s first solo project is an elegant boutique restaurant that delivers the type of whimsical culinary experience that’s become so popular in San Francisco these days, with a $125 tasting menu featuring layered flavors and surprising combinations intended to celebrate California’s cultures and landscapes.

San Francisco’s Hometown Creamery

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An Inner Sunset favorite for years, this Hayes Valley location marks the second permanent location for the Halil brothers’ scoop shop. Fans know to look for the maple bars and waffle cones, alongside classic flavors such as Rocky Road and inventive takes such as Apple Honey Cake for Rosh Hashanah.

Hometown Creamery. Hometown Creamery

This La Cocina graduate and pop-up mainstay found a permanent home in September 2023 at the SF Jazz building on Franklin Street. That means Venezuelan fare, including numerous arepas,  tostones, and plantains is in the neighborhood to stay.

Food. Andina

Dumpling Home

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The neighborhood got a destination for flaky scallion pancakes and hand-pulled noodles with the debut of Dumpling Home in late 2020. Already recognized by the Michelin Guide for its skillfully prepared dumplings of all shapes, sizes, and fillings, Dumpling Home also earned a shout out for making some of the city’s best xiao long bao — no small feat in town stacked deep with options. 

The breezy atmosphere of the former 20th Century Cafe space is an earth-tone-laden testament to what makes cafes a delight: ease. The tahini chocolate cookie is a treasure, and the babkas are not to be missed. The coffee comes from Four Barrel Coffee, which is the same company founded by Jeremy Tooker that has yet to change its name or transition into worker-ownership despite prior plans.

Cookie and tea.
The chocolate-tahini cookie at Loquat.
Paolo Bicchieri

Rich Table

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Rich Table is everything California fare should be: inventive, approachable, locally sourced, and damn tasty. Owners Evan and Sarah Rich’s neighborhood staple is a favorite for new American fare including sweet potato pierogi, 21-day dry-aged black cod, and Dungeness crab.

Rich Table.
Rich Table.
Aubrie Pick

Smuggler's Cove

There’s an ongoing push to reconsider the cultural implications of tiki bars — but for those who seek a tropical cocktail or a deep selection of rum, Smuggler’s Cove makes a logical choice. The bar, convincingly designed to look and feel like the inside of a ship, has won just about every award the bar and cocktail world has to offer including being named one of the best bars in the world by World’s 50 Best, Playboy, and Esquire on top of earning nods from both the James Beard Foundation and Tales of the Cocktail.

Robin

Robin joins a flood of omakase sushi restaurants but stands out from the rest with adventurous twists on classic nigiri: Think potato chip nigiri with grilled ramp aioli and caviar or seared canary rockfish, served with liver, grapefruit ponzu, and chives. This deeply personal restaurant of chef Adam Tortosa, is dramatic, moody, and definitely an experience.

Patricia Chang

Om Sabor

This vegan Mexican restaurant, just down the street from fellow plant-based restaurant Baia, is the food arm of listening bar Phonobar. Grand slam dishes include truffle mac n’ cheese, hibiscus tacos, and furikake “crab” cakes.

Monsieur Benjamin

The prices aren’t cheap at this popular French bistro from chef Corey Lee of Benu and San Ho Wan — appetizers average about $18 a piece while main courses are around $30 — but the refined, indulgent food with a modern spin has found an audience because this place is always packed.

Monsieur Benjamin

Hayes Street Grill

For more than four decades Hayes Street Grill has been a go-to option for a pre-theater dinner or post-opera drink. This is your neighborhood destination for seafood — everything from grilled swordfish to pan-fried oysters — with sides built around seasonal produce like Brentwood corn.  

Hayes Street Grill

Rad Radish

Are gluten-free and vegan chicken and waffles a thing? According to this Hayes Street all-day cafe, they sure are. This is yet another Adriano Paganini and his company Back of the House (which also owns, for instance, a Mano up the street), and the business focuses on fast-casual service. Creamy Vietnamese iced coffee, light but filling avocado toast, and crispy chilaquiles are just a few of the items on the menu. 

A photo of waffles.
Gluten-free and vegan chicken and waffles.
Paolo Bicchieri

Anina

If you’re looking for a great place to drink outside in Hayes Valley, Anina is here to help. The patio is a perfect venue for sipping any of the bar’s cocktails, which range from classics like a gin-and-maraschino Martinez to the Unfair Trade, a coffee cocktail built on a rum base plus banana and bitters. 

Anina

a Mano

Instantly-trendy a Mano — yet another venture from prolific San Francisco restaurateur Adriano Paganini — is the spot for affordably priced but carefully prepared pasta and pizza from chef Freedom Rains, dishes like bucatini all’Amatriciana and agnolotti dal plin, or small, buttery ravioli filled with roast pork, chicken, and chard.

Doppio Zero

From the crew behind the Meatball Bar, Doppio Zero fires up Neapolitan pies including classics like margheritas to fried and stuffed Pizza Napule. Besides pizza, there are small plates like croquettes, grilled octopus, and polpettine (Neapolitan meatballs), a full menu of pasta, and larger entrees like fish soup. To go with it all is plenty of Italian wine, local beer, and a full cocktail menu. Diners may be familiar with the restaurant's other two outposts on the Peninsula; this is the third location overall.

Nojo Ramen Tavern

Unlike most of San Francisco’s ramen restaurants, which focus on pork broth, Nojo Ramen uses rich chicken paitan broth as the base for its noodles. The small plates are also a signature for this restaurant, which has more than 200 locations in Japan though the Hayes Valley restaurant is its first in the U.S. Be sure to start with some toripan (curry seasoned ground chicken on baguette), corn on the cob, and teriyaki chicken buns.

nojo ramen tavern sf

Nightbird

Kim Alter’s first solo project is an elegant boutique restaurant that delivers the type of whimsical culinary experience that’s become so popular in San Francisco these days, with a $125 tasting menu featuring layered flavors and surprising combinations intended to celebrate California’s cultures and landscapes.

San Francisco’s Hometown Creamery

An Inner Sunset favorite for years, this Hayes Valley location marks the second permanent location for the Halil brothers’ scoop shop. Fans know to look for the maple bars and waffle cones, alongside classic flavors such as Rocky Road and inventive takes such as Apple Honey Cake for Rosh Hashanah.

Hometown Creamery. Hometown Creamery

Andina

This La Cocina graduate and pop-up mainstay found a permanent home in September 2023 at the SF Jazz building on Franklin Street. That means Venezuelan fare, including numerous arepas,  tostones, and plantains is in the neighborhood to stay.

Food. Andina

Dumpling Home

The neighborhood got a destination for flaky scallion pancakes and hand-pulled noodles with the debut of Dumpling Home in late 2020. Already recognized by the Michelin Guide for its skillfully prepared dumplings of all shapes, sizes, and fillings, Dumpling Home also earned a shout out for making some of the city’s best xiao long bao — no small feat in town stacked deep with options. 

Loquat

The breezy atmosphere of the former 20th Century Cafe space is an earth-tone-laden testament to what makes cafes a delight: ease. The tahini chocolate cookie is a treasure, and the babkas are not to be missed. The coffee comes from Four Barrel Coffee, which is the same company founded by Jeremy Tooker that has yet to change its name or transition into worker-ownership despite prior plans.

Cookie and tea.
The chocolate-tahini cookie at Loquat.
Paolo Bicchieri

Related Maps

Rich Table

Rich Table is everything California fare should be: inventive, approachable, locally sourced, and damn tasty. Owners Evan and Sarah Rich’s neighborhood staple is a favorite for new American fare including sweet potato pierogi, 21-day dry-aged black cod, and Dungeness crab.

Rich Table.
Rich Table.
Aubrie Pick

Related Maps