clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile
Epic Steak

Where to Eat and Drink on the Embarcadero

A vetted guide to dining and drinking along the bay

View as Map

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’ markets, 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 great restaurant and bar options on the Embarcadero.

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it may pose a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission.

Read More
Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.
If you buy something or book a reservation from an Eater link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics policy.

Hillstone

Copy Link

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 — surprise! — pisco cocktails, it serves plates with punchy flavors, like tiraditos (described as "Japanese sashimi Peruvian style"), empanadas, and big portions of seafood or meat.

Cholita Linda

Copy Link

Tacked onto the back of the Ferry Building, Cholita Linda serves a solid menu of Mexican favorites to diners looking for a sit-down meal at the bustling transit center and marketplace. The Baja fish tacos topped with shredded cabbage and crema make a reliable choice, but feel free to explore other options including sandwiches, salads, and plates of chicken tights served with rice and beans. Snag a table on the patio and enjoy your meal with a view of the bridge and bay. 

Fish tacos from Cholita Linda Jenya Chernoff Photography

Hog Island Oyster Co.

Copy Link

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 alike. 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 while you take in view of the bay 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

Copy Link

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, from har gow to siu mai to baked barbecue pork buns.

Harborview Restaurant & Bar

Grande Crêperie

Copy Link

The Le Marais team, known for bringing incredibly flaky croissants to Mill Valley and the Castro, put down roots at the Ferry Building earlier this year, taking over a narrow space on the back of the building. It’s a walk-up and order at the counter situation, but you can step out onto the small patio for a view of the team spinning sweet and savory crepes on one side, and on the other, of the water. Owner Patrick Ascaso channels his childhood memories into a menu of Brittany-style buckwheat crepes layered with good ham and gooey cheese or smoked salmon and creme fraiche, all served along with fresh pastries and hot coffee for breakfast and lunch.

A view of the counter and bakery case at Grande Creperie. Photos courtesy of Grande Creperie

One Market Restaurant

Copy Link

Tried-and-true upscale dining — think Dungeness crab cakes and prime rib dinners with a piano accompaniment — have sustained One Market restaurant since 1993. Wine director Tonya Pitts and chef/partner Mark Dommen have been holding it down at the restaurant nearly that long, keeping up with the changing times (Google, for instance, wasn’t always the anchor tenant of the space above the restaurant) with menu tweaks and fewer white table cloths. These days it’s also home to Mark n’ Mikes, a permanent pop-up serving Jewish deli favorites like pastrami sandwiches, latkes, and matzoh ball soup during limited hours.

Boulevard

Copy Link

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 tasting menus that showcase seasonal ingredients like Brentwood corn and soft shell crab in elegant and still-approachable preparations. Plus service is reliability warm and professional, an impressive feat in these times.

Recently renovated dining room at Boulevard Patricia Chang

Chef Joshua Skenes’ sequel to three-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. Though it's now open six days a week, from Tuesday to Sunday, reservations are recommended.

Perry's Embarcadero

Copy Link

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.

Located just off the Embarcadero on a quiet block in SoMa, Gozu offers a luxurious all-wagyu tasting menu with 13 to 15 courses currently starting at $195 per person — though there’s also a new abbreviated option that costs $105 for four courses. Everything gets prepared in front of guests by chefs at a live-fire grill that’s surrounded by a horseshoe counter. For a different dining option, guests can book a “drinking appointment” in the Whisky Lounge and sample a variety of rare Japanese whisky and a la carte food items.

Gozu
Patricia Chang

Epic Steak

Copy Link

Among the city's contenders for best cut, Epic Steak puts itself in the game with its 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.

Epic Steak

Waterbar

Copy Link

Though Hog Island down the street is the more popular destination for oyster diehards, Waterbar provides an even classier setting — your choice of a patio, modern dining room, or bar seat with a bay view. As is the case for most Embarcadero hot spots, the tall bridge-facing windows open up to impressive views of the bay.

Waterbar

Prospect

Copy Link

A solid example of San Francisco cuisine, Prospect serves well-executed plates of what are now modern American classics: beef tartare, tuna crudo, pork chop, and strip steak. The quiet dining room is upscale but comfortable, filled with modern chandeliers and a large concrete fireplace that divides the room, which makes it perfect for business meetings and intimate dates alike.

Nader Khouri

Red's Java House

Copy Link

Opened in the 1930s and renamed Red’s in 1955, Red’s Java House serves a lot more than java — favorites include its 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

Copy Link

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.

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 — surprise! — pisco cocktails, it serves plates with punchy flavors, like tiraditos (described as "Japanese sashimi Peruvian style"), empanadas, and big portions of seafood or meat.

Cholita Linda

Fish tacos from Cholita Linda Jenya Chernoff Photography

Tacked onto the back of the Ferry Building, Cholita Linda serves a solid menu of Mexican favorites to diners looking for a sit-down meal at the bustling transit center and marketplace. The Baja fish tacos topped with shredded cabbage and crema make a reliable choice, but feel free to explore other options including sandwiches, salads, and plates of chicken tights served with rice and beans. Snag a table on the patio and enjoy your meal with a view of the bridge and bay. 

Fish tacos from Cholita Linda Jenya Chernoff Photography

Hog Island Oyster Co.

Oysters and caviar from Hog Island 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 alike. 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 while you take in view of the bay 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

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, from har gow to siu mai to baked barbecue pork buns.

Harborview Restaurant & Bar

Grande Crêperie

A view of the counter and bakery case at Grande Creperie. Photos courtesy of Grande Creperie

The Le Marais team, known for bringing incredibly flaky croissants to Mill Valley and the Castro, put down roots at the Ferry Building earlier this year, taking over a narrow space on the back of the building. It’s a walk-up and order at the counter situation, but you can step out onto the small patio for a view of the team spinning sweet and savory crepes on one side, and on the other, of the water. Owner Patrick Ascaso channels his childhood memories into a menu of Brittany-style buckwheat crepes layered with good ham and gooey cheese or smoked salmon and creme fraiche, all served along with fresh pastries and hot coffee for breakfast and lunch.

A view of the counter and bakery case at Grande Creperie. Photos courtesy of Grande Creperie

One Market Restaurant

Tried-and-true upscale dining — think Dungeness crab cakes and prime rib dinners with a piano accompaniment — have sustained One Market restaurant since 1993. Wine director Tonya Pitts and chef/partner Mark Dommen have been holding it down at the restaurant nearly that long, keeping up with the changing times (Google, for instance, wasn’t always the anchor tenant of the space above the restaurant) with menu tweaks and fewer white table cloths. These days it’s also home to Mark n’ Mikes, a permanent pop-up serving Jewish deli favorites like pastrami sandwiches, latkes, and matzoh ball soup during limited hours.

Boulevard

Recently renovated dining room at Boulevard Patricia Chang

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 tasting menus that showcase seasonal ingredients like Brentwood corn and soft shell crab in elegant and still-approachable preparations. Plus service is reliability warm and professional, an impressive feat in these times.

Recently renovated dining room at Boulevard Patricia Chang

Angler

Chef Joshua Skenes’ sequel to three-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. Though it's now open six days a week, from Tuesday to Sunday, reservations are recommended.

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.

Gozu

Gozu
Patricia Chang

Located just off the Embarcadero on a quiet block in SoMa, Gozu offers a luxurious all-wagyu tasting menu with 13 to 15 courses currently starting at $195 per person — though there’s also a new abbreviated option that costs $105 for four courses. Everything gets prepared in front of guests by chefs at a live-fire grill that’s surrounded by a horseshoe counter. For a different dining option, guests can book a “drinking appointment” in the Whisky Lounge and sample a variety of rare Japanese whisky and a la carte food items.

Gozu
Patricia Chang

Epic Steak

Epic Steak

Among the city's contenders for best cut, Epic Steak puts itself in the game with its 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.

Epic Steak

Waterbar

Waterbar

Though Hog Island down the street is the more popular destination for oyster diehards, Waterbar provides an even classier setting — your choice of a patio, modern dining room, or bar seat with a bay view. As is the case for most Embarcadero hot spots, the tall bridge-facing windows open up to impressive views of the bay.

Waterbar

Prospect

Nader Khouri

A solid example of San Francisco cuisine, Prospect serves well-executed plates of what are now modern American classics: beef tartare, tuna crudo, pork chop, and strip steak. The quiet dining room is upscale but comfortable, filled with modern chandeliers and a large concrete fireplace that divides the room, which makes it perfect for business meetings and intimate dates alike.