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Torched filet mignon at the Vault Steakhouse Hardy Wilson

18 Grade-A Steakhouses in San Francisco

Where to satisfy the meatiest of cravings

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When the craving for a steak strikes, it should be satisfied in the meatiest of ways. San Francisco may not have a reputation as a meat-eating town, but there are enough places to provide relief to your itch. In fact, some of the oldest restaurants in town are focused on steak.

Some — like Tadich Grill and Bobo’s — have entire sections of their menu devoted to fish, while others, like Niku and Gozu, are obsessed with wagyu. There are the classic steakhouses, such as House of Prime Rib and Harris', and more modern takes on the genre. All of this to say: despite common beliefs, there are plenty of places in San Francisco to go primal on a piece of meat with a martini on the side.

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“The Crab” and “the Steak” are just the ticket at Bobo’s, a jester-inspired dining destination on Lombard. It’s named for Boboquivaris, the Venetian court entertainer, in a nod to the Italian roots of chef/owner Andrea Froncilio. Bone-in filet mignon is a no-fail order here — add a half-order of crab for $34.95 more.

Izzy's, open since 1987 in the Marina, proudly serves aged corn-fed American beef, and at reasonably affordable prices. Get the filet mignon for under $44, and that includes two sides of your choosing. The restaurant also boasts one of the largest parklets in San Francisco, strung with twinkle lights.

Original Joe's

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This North Beach institution is still bustling with jacketed waiters bringing big plates of steak and pasta to leather booths with white tablecloths. Dating back to 1937, the original location suffered a fire in 2007, but Joe’s finally reopened five years later on Washington Square. The generous Italian-American menu includes flame-grilled New York strip, ribeye, or filet mignon, which come with a side of spaghetti or housemade ravioli. Or try the prime rib roast, which includes classic mashed potatoes and creamed spinach.

Original Joe’s, Friday 6pm

The Brazen Head

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Brazen Head is not a flashy downtown steakhouse experience, it’s more like the village pub of Cow Hollow. Regulars have been coming back to this cozy wood-paneled dining room for more than 40 years, and the house special is the prime rib, cooked however you like it, and served simply with a baked potato, green veggies, and caramelized shallot jus. 

Brazen Head

Harris' Restaurant

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At Harris', you'll travel back to a time when steak with a martini was the go-to combo. And you'll like it, because the throwback quotient at this classic steakhouse is the best thing about it. That and the steaks, which are corn-fed and sourced from the Midwest, dry-aged for three weeks in the restaurant, and then mesquite-fire grilled.

House of Prime Rib

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This San Francisco classic (est. 1949) is a trip back in time. The restaurant's apropos name says it all — it serves one thing and one thing only, and it does that roast beef perfectly. The only choices you need to make are: meat temperature, cut thickness, mashed or loaded baked potatoes, and martini or Manhattan. Each plate comes with a salad prepared tableside, creamed spinach, Yorkshire pudding, and potatoes — and of course a hulking piece of beef cut from roving carts. Take visiting friends and family, celebrate big life occasions, or just satisfy steak cravings.

Tadich Grill

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Open since 1849, Tadich Grill is a San Francisco tradition, complete with a wood-fired grill that outputs satisfyingly charred steaks. The most famous dish is the Hangtown Fry (an oyster omelet), but the steaks are of equal mention. Just be prepared to wait, since this is a popular tourist destination, but bartenders will happily ply you with drinks until it's table time.

The Vault Steakhouse

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As of September 2021, the Vault Steakhouse has returned to its sexy underground locale, where FiDi diners can order Black Angus steaks with sauces like black truffle bordelaise or bearnaise to add on — as well as a few luxe sides like truffled mac n’ cheese, if they please. But it’s not just steakhouse classics here; fresh options include beef fat fried rice and fancy potato pave tots.

Raw steaks at the Vault Steakhouse Hardy Wilson

Gozu is not technically a steakhouse — but it is an all-wagyu tasting menu, for those who love their luxuriously marbled beef. Chef Marc Zimmerman worked at Alexander’s for years before opening Gozu in 2019. It’s a dramatic black box of a space, with a horseshoe counter centered on a live-fire grill. The chefs pass steak bites across the counter, breaking down how they use all parts of the animal, and 9 to 11 courses currently start at $195 per person. Alternately, there is a four-course tasting menu for $105 and items available a la carte, as well.

Epic Steak

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The view of the shimmery Bay Bridge is the top draw here — perfect for impressing a date or clients — and the steaks and seafood are a close second. Sister restaurant next door Waterbar is seafood-focused, and that overflows onto Epic's menu, with lots of surf and turf options.

EpicSteak.com

John's Grill

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Focused on steak and seafood, John’s Grill is a San Francisco institution favored by local politicians and filled with literary romance. Featured in Dashiell Hammett’s detective novel the Maltese Falcon, the restaurant has played up the connection — they’ve got a model Maltese Falcon and some Sam Spade lamb chops on the menu, for instance. But the strongest order might be steak: All cuts are dry-aged Black Angus from the Midwest.

Alexander's Steakhouse

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Another Japanese-focused steakhouse, Alexander's dry ages its Omaha prime beef for 28 days and offers imported and domestic wagyu from nine Japan prefectures. Its small plates go much further than Caesar salad, offering wagyu pate or uni toast. If you really want to go all out, you can do the five-course chef’s tasting for $211 per person, or the very meaty A5 Hitachi tasting for $275.

Espetus Churrascaria

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It’s one thing to order a steak entree for dinner, but it’s a completely different experience when various cuts of meat are paraded past your table and carved at-will, such as is the case at Espetus Churrascaria. There’s picanha, filet mignon, sausages, and yes, chicken hearts, all ready to be cheerfully eaten until you’re stuffed. A word to the wise: Don’t skip the grilled pineapple, it’ll be a nice sweet addition to your meal after all the protein.

Niku Steakhouse

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The Omakase Restaurant Group’s steakhouse specializing in wagyu beef sets itself apart with its own in-house butcher next door, serving hard-to-find menu items like Mt. Lassen trout cured in koji; a wagyu meatball; and huge, dry-aged imperial tomahawk steaks. The facts that more than 100 wines are available by the bottle or glass and that the menu includes excellent non-beef items, put Niku Steakhouse over the top.

Miller & Lux Restaurant

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If you’re looking for a particularly luxurious steakhouse experience then celebrity chef Tyler Florence’s newest offering is clearly a fit — it’s right there in the name (although technically the “Lux” refers to Charles Lux, half of the duo known as “the Cattle Kings of California.”). The 7,000-square-foot waterfront restaurant is ensconced at Thrive City, just outside of Chase Center, with a stunning leather and brass dining room by San Francisco design darling Ken Faulk. The pricey menu tempts with options like dry-aged tomahawk ribeye and filet mignon.

Burger at Miller & Lux Miller & Lux

Lolinda

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Restaurateur Adriano Paganini (Beretta, Super Duper Burger) puts his spin on the Argentinian steakhouse, offering top-notch food at fair prices, in a very sexy, boisterous room. Consider this restaurant for birthday parties, bachelorettes, and more, as it's the perfect celebratory spot with a modernized steakhouse feel.

Prime Steakhouse SF

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It’ll take a little bit of planning to snag a table at Prime Steakhouse, the unexpected and permanent prime rib pop-up that burst onto the scene in late 2021. Owner and chef Edward Dang says he started Prime to serve all the people who can’t get a coveted reservation of House of Prime Rib or don’t want to leave the foggy Sunset streets just to get a great cut of beef. Now he’s serving thick slices of prime rib with sides like creamed spinach, mashed potatoes, and corn three nights a week by reservation only.

Edward Dang

Bullshead Restaurant

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An affordable, very casual, populist steak and burger spot, Bullshead Restaurant has held it down in West Portal since 1979. For a simple ribeye and baked potato dinner, a big chuck burger, or a ground buffalo steak in a place that feels miles away from the bougie San Francisco scene, this is the spot.

Bobo's

“The Crab” and “the Steak” are just the ticket at Bobo’s, a jester-inspired dining destination on Lombard. It’s named for Boboquivaris, the Venetian court entertainer, in a nod to the Italian roots of chef/owner Andrea Froncilio. Bone-in filet mignon is a no-fail order here — add a half-order of crab for $34.95 more.

Izzy's

Izzy's, open since 1987 in the Marina, proudly serves aged corn-fed American beef, and at reasonably affordable prices. Get the filet mignon for under $44, and that includes two sides of your choosing. The restaurant also boasts one of the largest parklets in San Francisco, strung with twinkle lights.

Original Joe's

Original Joe’s, Friday 6pm

This North Beach institution is still bustling with jacketed waiters bringing big plates of steak and pasta to leather booths with white tablecloths. Dating back to 1937, the original location suffered a fire in 2007, but Joe’s finally reopened five years later on Washington Square. The generous Italian-American menu includes flame-grilled New York strip, ribeye, or filet mignon, which come with a side of spaghetti or housemade ravioli. Or try the prime rib roast, which includes classic mashed potatoes and creamed spinach.

Original Joe’s, Friday 6pm

The Brazen Head

Brazen Head

Brazen Head is not a flashy downtown steakhouse experience, it’s more like the village pub of Cow Hollow. Regulars have been coming back to this cozy wood-paneled dining room for more than 40 years, and the house special is the prime rib, cooked however you like it, and served simply with a baked potato, green veggies, and caramelized shallot jus. 

Brazen Head

Harris' Restaurant

At Harris', you'll travel back to a time when steak with a martini was the go-to combo. And you'll like it, because the throwback quotient at this classic steakhouse is the best thing about it. That and the steaks, which are corn-fed and sourced from the Midwest, dry-aged for three weeks in the restaurant, and then mesquite-fire grilled.

House of Prime Rib

This San Francisco classic (est. 1949) is a trip back in time. The restaurant's apropos name says it all — it serves one thing and one thing only, and it does that roast beef perfectly. The only choices you need to make are: meat temperature, cut thickness, mashed or loaded baked potatoes, and martini or Manhattan. Each plate comes with a salad prepared tableside, creamed spinach, Yorkshire pudding, and potatoes — and of course a hulking piece of beef cut from roving carts. Take visiting friends and family, celebrate big life occasions, or just satisfy steak cravings.

Tadich Grill

Open since 1849, Tadich Grill is a San Francisco tradition, complete with a wood-fired grill that outputs satisfyingly charred steaks. The most famous dish is the Hangtown Fry (an oyster omelet), but the steaks are of equal mention. Just be prepared to wait, since this is a popular tourist destination, but bartenders will happily ply you with drinks until it's table time.

The Vault Steakhouse

Raw steaks at the Vault Steakhouse Hardy Wilson

As of September 2021, the Vault Steakhouse has returned to its sexy underground locale, where FiDi diners can order Black Angus steaks with sauces like black truffle bordelaise or bearnaise to add on — as well as a few luxe sides like truffled mac n’ cheese, if they please. But it’s not just steakhouse classics here; fresh options include beef fat fried rice and fancy potato pave tots.

Raw steaks at the Vault Steakhouse Hardy Wilson

Gozu

Gozu is not technically a steakhouse — but it is an all-wagyu tasting menu, for those who love their luxuriously marbled beef. Chef Marc Zimmerman worked at Alexander’s for years before opening Gozu in 2019. It’s a dramatic black box of a space, with a horseshoe counter centered on a live-fire grill. The chefs pass steak bites across the counter, breaking down how they use all parts of the animal, and 9 to 11 courses currently start at $195 per person. Alternately, there is a four-course tasting menu for $105 and items available a la carte, as well.

Epic Steak

EpicSteak.com

The view of the shimmery Bay Bridge is the top draw here — perfect for impressing a date or clients — and the steaks and seafood are a close second. Sister restaurant next door Waterbar is seafood-focused, and that overflows onto Epic's menu, with lots of surf and turf options.

EpicSteak.com

John's Grill

Focused on steak and seafood, John’s Grill is a San Francisco institution favored by local politicians and filled with literary romance. Featured in Dashiell Hammett’s detective novel the Maltese Falcon, the restaurant has played up the connection — they’ve got a model Maltese Falcon and some Sam Spade lamb chops on the menu, for instance. But the strongest order might be steak: All cuts are dry-aged Black Angus from the Midwest.

Alexander's Steakhouse

Another Japanese-focused steakhouse, Alexander's dry ages its Omaha prime beef for 28 days and offers imported and domestic wagyu from nine Japan prefectures. Its small plates go much further than Caesar salad, offering wagyu pate or uni toast. If you really want to go all out, you can do the five-course chef’s tasting for $211 per person, or the very meaty A5 Hitachi tasting for $275.

Espetus Churrascaria

It’s one thing to order a steak entree for dinner, but it’s a completely different experience when various cuts of meat are paraded past your table and carved at-will, such as is the case at Espetus Churrascaria. There’s picanha, filet mignon, sausages, and yes, chicken hearts, all ready to be cheerfully eaten until you’re stuffed. A word to the wise: Don’t skip the grilled pineapple, it’ll be a nice sweet addition to your meal after all the protein.