314 bars and restaurants opened in SF this Spring, according to WeJustMadeUpThatNumber.com. But just 17 of those were worthy enough to be on our list of the season's best openers, which's flush with roof decks, potato chip-stuffed burgers, and 24-packs of beer served in porcelain bathtubs.
San Francisco's 17 best Spring openings
Palm House (address and info)
Not sure how you feel about Caribbean food? Well, it doesn't matter when Gayle Pirie from Foreign Cinema is making it. Delectables like kalua shredded duck tacos and sweet & sour baby back ribs with katsu slaw are married with three flavors of boozy slushies (prickly pear, passionfruit, or strawberry), plus there's that burger you heard so much about.
The Commissary (address and info)
Traci Des Jardins' new restaurant in the Presidio awesome-ifies a former Montgomery St barracks mess hall (check out the lighting, it's from a historic army gymnasium), and loses the sloppy joe's in favor of Spanish-y/California cuisine like salt cod fritters and homemade churros served with chocolate sauce.
Urban Putt (address and info)
You've probably heard about this food-and-drink-equipped mini golf course in The Mission by now (likely after reading about it in some super-handsome article online), but what you may not have heard is that they just-last-week got their full liquor license! Adult sippy-cups for everyone!
Chino (address and info)
The newest edition to the Tacolicious/Mosto empire, Chino offers up a new, more Mexican-y take on Chinese food that results in stuff like bao de chicharron (pork belly-stuffed tacos with sweet rice buns for shells), and the awesomely named "Nick Balla's Dope Ass Japan-O-Mission Wings", which're indeed dope ass, thanks to a fishy, limey, hot-n-sour sauce. PLUS, they've got a full cocktail program that includes alcoholic boba teas. Game on.
Belcampo Meat Co. (address and info)
In addition to that one burger, Belcampo Meat Co'.s first San Francisco storefront's also packing seating for 34 at marble tables with old-school, blue leather banquettes (made from the company's own cow hides), Belcampo Farms egg yolk-topped beef tartare, and a fried half guinea hen.
Bartlett Hall (address and info)
Just off of Union Square, this "very new SF bar"-looking restaurant (exposed I-beams, dark wood, Edison bulbs... clocks?) helmed by a Maverick alum is serving comfort food (mmm... miso- and maple-glazed ribs) and, thank God, bringing back the Maverick butter burger with cheddar, stout rarebit, crispy onions, and Kennebec fries. They also have barrel-aged cocktails and a beer program that includes brews being made on-site.
San Francisco Athletic Club (address and info)
Lower Pac Heights
You never wanna see an awesome place like Tortilla Heights close, unless of course it's making way for an even awesome-er place with 28 TVs, actual, functioning bleachers for big games, and friggin' porcelain bathtubs they'll pull up to your booth and fill with ice and 24-packs. This sports bar is already shaping up to be one of the city's best.
Red Dog Restaurant & Bar (address and info)
Three words: Pork. Trotter. Burger. A bunch of other words: this restaurant from the woman behind the already-amazing Il Cane Rosso is stacked on the food and drink front with house-made beer bread, bacon/caramel popcorn with smoked almonds and peanuts, plus the "Coffee and Cigarettes" (Scotch, Amaro Nonino, FireLit, and grapefruit bitters).
Homeskillet (address and info)
Even if you're not in the mood for a potato chip burger, you're gonna want to hit up the restaurant from the same guy behind Little Griddle, if only to try one of his 13 other burgers (and nine sandwiches)... all of which highlight the old-school, diner-style comfort foods SF both needs and deserves.
Aveline (address and info) & The European (address and info)
The bar menu is a must (homemade Cheetos!), but that barely scratches the surface of the food at this Top Chef-helmed restaurant in the TL, which's also doing a yolk beignet with Wagyu beef, lardo, and trotter sauce, and fried chicken with kimchi powder. Seriously though, check out those Cheetos.
Trou Normand (address and info)
The not-to-be-missed follow-up to Bar Agricole in SOMA is a large, airy restaurant with high ceilings, exposed brick, and a (drawn) naked lady on the wall. The only two things you need to know: 1) the drink menu is from the award-winning BA team and involves booze from hand-selected European barrels, and 2) the food menu has more than 40 different types of charcuterie.
Woodbury (address and info)
Oh, this? It's just our favorite new bar by the Caltrain with playable Super Nintendo, a Frito pie served in a Fritos bag, and a dedicated shots-only bar. Yep. That's it.
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Joe Starkey is Thrillist's San Francisco Editor and can't believe how good Fritos and melted cheese taste together. Follow him on Twitter.
1. Palm House2032 Union St, San Francisco
2. Urban Putt1096 S Van Ness Ave, San Francisco
3. Chino3198 16th St, San Francisco
4. Belcampo Meat Co.1998 Polk St, San Francisco
5. Bartlett Hall242 O'Farrell St, San Francisco
6. San Francisco Athletic Club1750 Divisadero, San Francisco
7. Dirty Habit12 4th St, San Francisco
8. Uno Dos Tacos595 Market St, San Francisco
9. Magnolia Brewery and Smokestack665 22nd Street, San Francisco
10. Schroeder's240 Front St, San Francisco
11. Red Dog Restaurant & Bar303 2nd St, San Francisco
12. Homeskillet1001 Market St, San Francisco
13. Aveline490 Geary St, San Francisco
14. The European490 Geary St, San Francisco
15. 4505 Burgers & BBQ705 Divisadero, San Francisco
16. The Commissary101 Montgomery, San Francisco
17. Trou Normand140 New Montgomery St, San Francisco
18. Woodbury685 3rd St, San Francisco
This skylit, tropics-channeling Marina go-to offers island-influenced fare (and a beverage program to match) that'll have you quickly putting your mind into vacation mode. Sip a mai tai while nibbling on tuna poke, coconut crusted prawns, and macadamia-topped mac and cheese. Groups will want to tackle a boozy punch bowl complete with rubber ducky garnishes that make drinking even more fun.
This maze of genius design features an unbelievable, realistic mini-golf course that's also an accurate portrayal of the city, as well as delicious eats like fried olives and chicken thighs, smoked pork sausage pizza, and boozy drinks served in adult sippy cups.
Chino's a Chinese dumpling haven serving all of your wonton desires. They just opened their doors, so Spring into action already and give them a visit.
Equal parts cafe and butcher shop, Belcampo Meat Co. sources organic meat from its own farm to prepare some of the finest burgers in the city. The hamburger patties are juicy and marbled with the right amount of flavorful fat. BMC's cheeseburger is a standout, sandwiched on a toasted brioche bun with a thick slice of cheddar, caramelized onions, and house sauce. The restaurant is outfitted with old-school blue leather banquettes made from the company's own cow hides.
Upscale bar bites and classic American fare are served with house-brewed beers and barrel-aged cocktails at this Union Square establishment. The butter burger, with with cheddar, stout rarebit, crispy onions, and Kennebec fries is the must-try item on the menu.
San Francisco Athletic Club is your destination for beer in a bathtub. For real. Small ceramic tubs full of beer bottles on ice are delivered straight to your table, and if that weren’t enough of a draw for game night, this sports bar on Divis also boasts pool tables, shuffleboard, and bleachers, plus a range of bar food. The menu features nontraditional healthy options like poached salmon salad and veggie chili to the not-so-healthy: one-third pound burgers, bacon-wrapped hot dogs, and crinkle-cut fried pickles.
Dirty Habit is intimately hidden away on the fifth floor of Union Square's Hotel Palomar. The sultry bar and restaurant features seasonal cocktails (plus all of the classics) and an extensive selection of spirits, especially whiskey. Standout bar bites include house-made bar nuts and finger-licking good chicken wings doused in sweet soy and chili vinaigrette. The back patio has tons of seating, a fountain, and a fire pit. Take our word: this place is cool.
Hailing from the creators of Super Duper, this taco/tequilaria is SOMA's Mexican hotspot, and Tacolicious' fiercest competitor. Their fresh corn tortilla roller is doling out delicious tacos daily, and's got delicious veggie options.
The folks who brought you Magnolia have expanded their famous digs into this Dogpatch spot that boasts smoked-in-house BBQ options like chopped pork and brisket, plus a huge, on-site brewing system that can produce 30 barrels. Don't miss out on the ahhh-mazing cocktail program either, whipping up speciality cocktails like the Dutchman's Flat which involves rye, ginger, honey, lemon, toasted Nori, and beef bouillon.
This Financial District beer joint is one of the oldest in SF, but after a refurbishing, it's been able to keep all of its classic qualities (22-draft beer program, beer boots, old murals, impressive taxidermy) while adding pleasing aspects like a drop-down projector screen, an improved food menu, and rentable stein lockers.
This massive 120-seat resto and bar features a full cocktail menu, and serves brunch, lunch, AND dinner to the masses. And if you wanna go for one of their signature eats, try the Crispy Pork Trotter Burger, which uses a fried pigs-feet patty and is topped off with pickled red cabbage.
This American comfort-foodery is doling out serious burgs in Union Square. They're even taking it as far as putting potato chips in a melted cheese-cheeseburger, to bring back fond memories of childhood.
Chef Casey Thompson puts on a show for diners at this new open kitchen resto. Plus, she's pals with lots of famers and food artisans so the food's comes from the local community.
From a Top Chef competitor and a drinksmith formerly behind the program at Beretta comes two glorious spots in one: Aveline (an amazing restaurant), and immediately next to it, The European (a complimentary bar). The cocktails are updated takes on Prohibition-era drinks designed to pair beautifully with a menu of shareable snacks and bar food, like smoked trout fritters and burrata that's served with pears and a balsamic reduction.
An offshoot of the original 4505 Meats, this burger and 'cue shack is one for the Divis books. This butcher-owned and operated spot takes meat and barbecue seriously, with loaded platters of pulled pork, smoked ribs, and hot sausage, and quarter-pound grass-fed burgers. No matter if your main is in the form of a sandwich or platter, don't overlook the fixin's -- the fried mac & cheese with a hot dog inside is an insanely delicious creation.
This former Montgomery St barracks mess hall in the Presidio is brought to you by award-winning chef Traci Des Jardins, and features Spanish-influenced California cuisine.
Trou Normand focuses on whole-animal butchery and offers 40 types of salumi and charcuterie made from high quality meats such as rare Mangalitsa pigs. This SoMa eatery offers sandwiches and coffee for lunch, chophouse style cuts of meat for dinner, and also has an extensive cocktail list based on classic, turn-of-the-century recipes. Trou Normand is pricey and popular (reservations are accepted), but has a large outdoor space to complement its cozy, den-like interior.
Right below Alchemist Bar & Lounge is this taxidermy-adorned cocktail bar. It's complete with wood paneling, chandeliers made of antlers, delicious poutine, and a second back bar serving just beer and shots.