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A burrito on a paper plate with the Bay Bridge in the background. Daniel Beck

13 Actually Worthwhile Places to Eat and Drink on the Embarcadero

A vetted guide to dining and drinking along the bay

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San Francisco's stunning view of the bay and its bridges is part of what makes this city so special. The Embarcadero, a concrete boardwalk of sorts that runs along the Eastern shore of the city, is one of the city's best places to take in these vistas. Day in and day out, the pleasant stretch attracts crowds of both tourists and locals who come for the weekly farmers market, the wide sidewalks for strolling, the fresh air — and yes, the food and drinks. Embrace what the city has to offer by checking out these worthy restaurant and bar options on the Embarcadero.

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Hillstone

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Yes, Hillstone/Houston’s is a chain, but a reliably good one — the kind of place you can count on for perfectly executed steaks and dependable burgers and salads. This San Francisco location is supremely scenic, right across from Pier 33, and frequent live jazz performances set the scene for memorable meals.

Seafood lovers will rejoice in La Mar and its Peruvian take on fresh catch from the ocean. The vibe is festive, the setting is breezy, and the flavors are big and bright. In addition to a slate of fruity pisco cocktails, this restaurant serves plates with punchy flavors — think tiraditos, which are described as "Japanese sashimi Peruvian style," empanadas, and big portions of seafood or meat.

Señor Sisig (SF Ferry Building)

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Filipino-American pioneer Senor Sisig has been winning fans with its sisig-stuffed Mission-style burritos for more than a decade now and the Ferry Building outpost makes for an accessible and affordable dining option on the Embarcadero. Order a torta or the shop’s version of a Taco Bell Crunchwrap with a bottle of ube horchata to enjoy on the back patio just off the water.

Daniel Beck

Hog Island Oyster Co.

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Slurping down a tray of fresh oysters at Hog Island’s Ferry Building location is basically a rite of passage for San Francisco residents and visitors. There’s often a line, but if you queue up a little early (pro-tip: grab a Red Bay coffee to sip while you wait) you’ll be enjoying a glass of bubbles or bloody mary in short order. Besides an array of local oysters, choose from other seafood-centric options such as fried anchovies, clam chowder, and halibut crudo.

Oysters and caviar from Hog Island Hog Island Oyster Co.

Harborview Restaurant & Bar

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Run by members of the R&G Lounge crew, Harborview is more than just a swanky banquet space with nice views of the water. It also serves some of the city’s favorite dim sum, turning out consistently solid versions of all the standards including har gow, siu mai, and baked barbecue pork buns.

Harborview Restaurant & Bar

Terrene

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Terrene is the plant-filled restaurant inside the 1 Hotel just across the street from the waterfront, and it’s a great option for brunch or an al fresco happy hour on the large patio. The restaurant asserts a commitment to sustainability, and the menu sticks to familiar fare including flatbreads, salads, and a range of meat skewers for dinner.

Conor Hagen

Boulevard

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Following an uber-glamorous refresh from star designer Ken Fulk, Boulevard returned from its pandemic closure more gorgeous than ever. But it’s not just the stunning decor that makes this longstanding restaurant a worthy dinner option; chefs Nancy Oakes and Dana Younkin continue to impress with multi-course menus that showcase seasonal ingredients like Brentwood corn and soft shell crab in elegant and still-approachable preparations. Plus service is reliably warm and professional, an impressive feat in these times.

The renovated dining room at Boulevard. Patricia Chang

This sequel to Michelin-starred Saison is a stunner, with views of the Bay Bridge and a gorgeous open kitchen. The menu is served a la carte by suited servers, though it’s a casual atmosphere. An ever-changing selection of fresh seafood has included dishes like live scallop crudo, baby abalone, and hot fried rabbit that have garnered critical acclaim. It’s open for power lunches Tuesday through Saturday and for dinner seven days a week.

Perry's Embarcadero

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This classic after-work haunt is packed with happy hour drinkers and diners chowing down on Perry’s burgers. Expect basic but pleasing pub food like potato skins and fried calamari, with hearty dinners like pot roast and spaghetti with meatballs. It’s also a pleasant destination for brunch on the patio overlooking the Bay Bridge.

Epic Steak

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Among the city's contenders for best cut, Epic Steak impresses with romantic Bay Bridge views and surf and turf. Steakhouse favorites like Caesar salad, filet mignon, ribeye, and wagyu are all on the menu, plus other options such as oven-roasted halibut and lobster — though the biggest draw is probably the view. If seafood is more your thing, sister restaurant Waterbar next door has you covered.

Epic Steak

Red's Java House

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Opened in the 1930s and renamed Red’s in 1955, Red’s Java House serves a lot more than java — favorites include fish and chips, hot dogs, and burgers served on San Francisco sourdough rolls. It’s old school, classic, and typically busy as a before and after Giants game spot. If the timing is right, don’t miss Red’s Bloody Mary — it’s a good one, best enjoyed with views of the Bay Bridge in the background.

Lauren Saria

Delancey Street Restaurant

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Since 1991, Delancey Street Restaurant has served well-priced food that also supports a good cause — the Delancey Street Foundation, which offers jobs and training to those who need to rebuild their lives. Program participants learn to make some classics, like pizzas, rack of lamb, ribeye, grilled salmon, and a classic PB&J, which is served in a comfortable and classy white-tablecloth dining room.

Town's End Brunch

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Town’s End Brunch reopened under new ownership in late 2022, but the restaurant retained its classic breakfast and brunch fare including Benedicts, waffles, French toast, and omelets. What’s new, however, are Ghirardelli chocolate milkshakes and the behemoth Warriors Breakfast, a mountain of hash browns, biscuits, and chicken-fried steak.

A plate of food with two fried eggs on top. Town’s End

Hillstone

Yes, Hillstone/Houston’s is a chain, but a reliably good one — the kind of place you can count on for perfectly executed steaks and dependable burgers and salads. This San Francisco location is supremely scenic, right across from Pier 33, and frequent live jazz performances set the scene for memorable meals.

La Mar

Seafood lovers will rejoice in La Mar and its Peruvian take on fresh catch from the ocean. The vibe is festive, the setting is breezy, and the flavors are big and bright. In addition to a slate of fruity pisco cocktails, this restaurant serves plates with punchy flavors — think tiraditos, which are described as "Japanese sashimi Peruvian style," empanadas, and big portions of seafood or meat.

Señor Sisig (SF Ferry Building)

Filipino-American pioneer Senor Sisig has been winning fans with its sisig-stuffed Mission-style burritos for more than a decade now and the Ferry Building outpost makes for an accessible and affordable dining option on the Embarcadero. Order a torta or the shop’s version of a Taco Bell Crunchwrap with a bottle of ube horchata to enjoy on the back patio just off the water.

Daniel Beck

Hog Island Oyster Co.

Slurping down a tray of fresh oysters at Hog Island’s Ferry Building location is basically a rite of passage for San Francisco residents and visitors. There’s often a line, but if you queue up a little early (pro-tip: grab a Red Bay coffee to sip while you wait) you’ll be enjoying a glass of bubbles or bloody mary in short order. Besides an array of local oysters, choose from other seafood-centric options such as fried anchovies, clam chowder, and halibut crudo.

Oysters and caviar from Hog Island Hog Island Oyster Co.

Harborview Restaurant & Bar

Run by members of the R&G Lounge crew, Harborview is more than just a swanky banquet space with nice views of the water. It also serves some of the city’s favorite dim sum, turning out consistently solid versions of all the standards including har gow, siu mai, and baked barbecue pork buns.

Harborview Restaurant & Bar

Terrene

Terrene is the plant-filled restaurant inside the 1 Hotel just across the street from the waterfront, and it’s a great option for brunch or an al fresco happy hour on the large patio. The restaurant asserts a commitment to sustainability, and the menu sticks to familiar fare including flatbreads, salads, and a range of meat skewers for dinner.

Conor Hagen

Boulevard

Following an uber-glamorous refresh from star designer Ken Fulk, Boulevard returned from its pandemic closure more gorgeous than ever. But it’s not just the stunning decor that makes this longstanding restaurant a worthy dinner option; chefs Nancy Oakes and Dana Younkin continue to impress with multi-course menus that showcase seasonal ingredients like Brentwood corn and soft shell crab in elegant and still-approachable preparations. Plus service is reliably warm and professional, an impressive feat in these times.

The renovated dining room at Boulevard. Patricia Chang

Angler

This sequel to Michelin-starred Saison is a stunner, with views of the Bay Bridge and a gorgeous open kitchen. The menu is served a la carte by suited servers, though it’s a casual atmosphere. An ever-changing selection of fresh seafood has included dishes like live scallop crudo, baby abalone, and hot fried rabbit that have garnered critical acclaim. It’s open for power lunches Tuesday through Saturday and for dinner seven days a week.

Perry's Embarcadero

This classic after-work haunt is packed with happy hour drinkers and diners chowing down on Perry’s burgers. Expect basic but pleasing pub food like potato skins and fried calamari, with hearty dinners like pot roast and spaghetti with meatballs. It’s also a pleasant destination for brunch on the patio overlooking the Bay Bridge.

Epic Steak

Among the city's contenders for best cut, Epic Steak impresses with romantic Bay Bridge views and surf and turf. Steakhouse favorites like Caesar salad, filet mignon, ribeye, and wagyu are all on the menu, plus other options such as oven-roasted halibut and lobster — though the biggest draw is probably the view. If seafood is more your thing, sister restaurant Waterbar next door has you covered.

Epic Steak

Red's Java House

Opened in the 1930s and renamed Red’s in 1955, Red’s Java House serves a lot more than java — favorites include fish and chips, hot dogs, and burgers served on San Francisco sourdough rolls. It’s old school, classic, and typically busy as a before and after Giants game spot. If the timing is right, don’t miss Red’s Bloody Mary — it’s a good one, best enjoyed with views of the Bay Bridge in the background.

Lauren Saria

Delancey Street Restaurant

Since 1991, Delancey Street Restaurant has served well-priced food that also supports a good cause — the Delancey Street Foundation, which offers jobs and training to those who need to rebuild their lives. Program participants learn to make some classics, like pizzas, rack of lamb, ribeye, grilled salmon, and a classic PB&J, which is served in a comfortable and classy white-tablecloth dining room.

Town's End Brunch

Town’s End Brunch reopened under new ownership in late 2022, but the restaurant retained its classic breakfast and brunch fare including Benedicts, waffles, French toast, and omelets. What’s new, however, are Ghirardelli chocolate milkshakes and the behemoth Warriors Breakfast, a mountain of hash browns, biscuits, and chicken-fried steak.

A plate of food with two fried eggs on top. Town’s End

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