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A Guide to Election Day Freebies and Specials in the Bay Area

Free fries, one cent cocktails, and a high-end happy meal are all on the menu for November 3, 2020

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In Bay Area, elections have always occupied a spot somewhere between politics and a sporting event, a hybrid beast marked by huge annual parties at local bars and restaurants, with participants drinking and dining in celebration or out of grief. This year, it goes without saying, is different. According to the Bay Area Reporter, officials in typical election night hot spots like San Francisco’s Castro District are telling people to stay home, to avoid the spread of COVID-19. Elsewhere in the city, landlords are boarding up storefronts at bars, restaurants, and businesses, the SF Business Times reports, an effort to avoid damage from any civil unrest that follows.

All this to say that on November 3, 2020, the best election day specials are the ones you pick up during the day, or enjoy during a watch party at home. Here are some of the top offerings we’ve seen — and keep checking back, we’ll continue to add to this guide up to election day, as additional freebies and deals roll in.

Eater is part of Vox Media. Find more coverage of the 2020 election across its other 13 networks: how to vote, in-depth analysis, and how policies will affect you, your state and the country over the next four years and beyond.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Press

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587 St Helena Hwy
St Helena, CA 94574

Wine country-based voters can score a special election night “happy meal” from chef Philip Tessier for $25, comprised of a fried chicken sandwich, black truffle tries, a chocolate chip cookie, and a soda. Pickup time is between 5-8:30 p.m. Tuesday night, preorder here.

2. 1951 Coffee Company

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2410 Channing Way
Berkeley, CA 94704
(510) 280-6171
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The flagship location of 1951 Coffee Company is handing out free drip coffee from its flagship location all day on November 3, hours are 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

3. Balboa Cafe

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3199 Fillmore St
San Francisco, CA 94123
(415) 921-3944
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from 5-9 p.m. Tuesday, Balboa Cafe and sister restaurant White Rabbit have some taco deals on deck: for $5, Balboa Cafe will hand guests who order at their walk-up window two carnitas tacos with pineapple salsa, and White Rabbit’s offering barbacoa tacos with tomatillo salsa for $2 each. Folks with “I voted” stickers get an extra $2 off. (Fun fact: both restaurants are owned by Governor Gavin Newsom’s Plumpjack group, so you know they take their elections seriously.)

4. Shake Shack

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3060 Fillmore St
San Francisco, CA 94123
(415) 405-4618
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Shake Shack is honoring the work of folks staffing the polls by offering any badged poll worker a free burger.

5. Palm House

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2032 Union St
San Francisco, CA 94123
(415) 400-4355
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Sister restaurants Palm House and the Dorian are offering one cent drinks to Instagram-savvy voters: Those who tag @palmhousesf in an “I voted” post on Instagram will score a 1 cent slushy (that’s two kinds of rum and your choice of fruit, typically $9.95). Those who tag @thedoriansf, are eligible for a 1 cent frosé. In both cases, the offer is running from now through November 3, 2020.

6. Super Duper Burgers

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346 Kearny St
San Francisco, CA 94108
(415) 677-9936
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Every location of Bay Area burger chain Super Duper is offering a free order of fries to any patron who comes in with an “I voted” sticker. The offer is running all day on November 3, 2020, is limited to one order of fries per person, and is available to walk-up or drive-through customers, only. You can see all the details here.

7. Santino's Vino

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2101 Fillmore St
San Francisco, CA 94115
(415) 922-4700
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The classic Pac Heights red sauce and pizza joint is offering a free dessert add-on for diners with “I voted” stickers. With purchase of dinner, voters can get a free order of loukoumades, a comforting Greek fried dough dish served with gelato, walnuts, raw honey, and cinnamon.

8. Canela Bistro & Wine Bar

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2272 Market St
San Francisco, CA 94114
(415) 552-3000
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For $99, Canela is offering an election night to-go menu for two that includes two bottles of wine (your choice), veggies and labneh dip, a selection of Spanish cheeses, Catalan coca with vegetables, fried chicken drumettes, freshly-made bread, and an apple tart. While supplies last, they’ll also throw in an election-themed Mad Libs book. Orders must be placed by 5 p.m. on Monday, November 3, you can do so here.

9. Media Noche

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3465 19th St
San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 655-3904
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The Mission District fast casual spot is offering an off-menu freebie to voters: with any purchase from the restaurant’s menu, folks with “I voted” stickers can get a free order of their “fuego fries” served with a side of green sauce.

10. Krispy Kreme

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1575 Sullivan Ave
Daly City, CA 94015
(650) 985-5615
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Every guest is eligible for a free original glazed donut at any participating U.S. location of this reliable doughnut chain. You can find a list of local Krispy Kremes here.

11. Chili's Grill & Bar

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899 El Camino Real
San Bruno, CA 94066
(650) 952-2692
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Chili’s has knocked its Presidente Margarita down to $5 for the day, and they’re even available to-go.

1. Press

587 St Helena Hwy, St Helena, CA 94574

Wine country-based voters can score a special election night “happy meal” from chef Philip Tessier for $25, comprised of a fried chicken sandwich, black truffle tries, a chocolate chip cookie, and a soda. Pickup time is between 5-8:30 p.m. Tuesday night, preorder here.

587 St Helena Hwy
St Helena, CA 94574

2. 1951 Coffee Company

2410 Channing Way, Berkeley, CA 94704

The flagship location of 1951 Coffee Company is handing out free drip coffee from its flagship location all day on November 3, hours are 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

2410 Channing Way
Berkeley, CA 94704

3. Balboa Cafe

3199 Fillmore St, San Francisco, CA 94123

from 5-9 p.m. Tuesday, Balboa Cafe and sister restaurant White Rabbit have some taco deals on deck: for $5, Balboa Cafe will hand guests who order at their walk-up window two carnitas tacos with pineapple salsa, and White Rabbit’s offering barbacoa tacos with tomatillo salsa for $2 each. Folks with “I voted” stickers get an extra $2 off. (Fun fact: both restaurants are owned by Governor Gavin Newsom’s Plumpjack group, so you know they take their elections seriously.)

3199 Fillmore St
San Francisco, CA 94123

4. Shake Shack

3060 Fillmore St, San Francisco, CA 94123

Shake Shack is honoring the work of folks staffing the polls by offering any badged poll worker a free burger.

3060 Fillmore St
San Francisco, CA 94123

5. Palm House

2032 Union St, San Francisco, CA 94123

Sister restaurants Palm House and the Dorian are offering one cent drinks to Instagram-savvy voters: Those who tag @palmhousesf in an “I voted” post on Instagram will score a 1 cent slushy (that’s two kinds of rum and your choice of fruit, typically $9.95). Those who tag @thedoriansf, are eligible for a 1 cent frosé. In both cases, the offer is running from now through November 3, 2020.

2032 Union St
San Francisco, CA 94123

6. Super Duper Burgers

346 Kearny St, San Francisco, CA 94108

Every location of Bay Area burger chain Super Duper is offering a free order of fries to any patron who comes in with an “I voted” sticker. The offer is running all day on November 3, 2020, is limited to one order of fries per person, and is available to walk-up or drive-through customers, only. You can see all the details here.

346 Kearny St
San Francisco, CA 94108

7. Santino's Vino

2101 Fillmore St, San Francisco, CA 94115

The classic Pac Heights red sauce and pizza joint is offering a free dessert add-on for diners with “I voted” stickers. With purchase of dinner, voters can get a free order of loukoumades, a comforting Greek fried dough dish served with gelato, walnuts, raw honey, and cinnamon.

2101 Fillmore St
San Francisco, CA 94115

8. Canela Bistro & Wine Bar

2272 Market St, San Francisco, CA 94114

For $99, Canela is offering an election night to-go menu for two that includes two bottles of wine (your choice), veggies and labneh dip, a selection of Spanish cheeses, Catalan coca with vegetables, fried chicken drumettes, freshly-made bread, and an apple tart. While supplies last, they’ll also throw in an election-themed Mad Libs book. Orders must be placed by 5 p.m. on Monday, November 3, you can do so here.

2272 Market St
San Francisco, CA 94114

9. Media Noche

3465 19th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

The Mission District fast casual spot is offering an off-menu freebie to voters: with any purchase from the restaurant’s menu, folks with “I voted” stickers can get a free order of their “fuego fries” served with a side of green sauce.

3465 19th St
San Francisco, CA 94110

10. Krispy Kreme

1575 Sullivan Ave, Daly City, CA 94015

Every guest is eligible for a free original glazed donut at any participating U.S. location of this reliable doughnut chain. You can find a list of local Krispy Kremes here.

1575 Sullivan Ave
Daly City, CA 94015

11. Chili's Grill & Bar

899 El Camino Real, San Bruno, CA 94066

Chili’s has knocked its Presidente Margarita down to $5 for the day, and they’re even available to-go.

899 El Camino Real
San Bruno, CA 94066

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