A culinary talisman for over thirty years, Zuni Cafe on the ever-bustling Market Street continues to serve New American cuisine with French and Italian influences. With a menu that changes daily, the element of surprise is never lost -- all while using the freshest, most sustainable ingredients.
Zuni’s light, airy space is perfect for a leisurely meal with friends. You might be tempted to order the famous Roast Chicken for two, and you can because it is on the brunch menu, but the ultimate move is to get the burger (house-ground, grass-fed, and on grilled rosemary focaccia) that isn’t on the dinner menu. If you’re a breakfast-at-brunch, not a lunch-at-brunch person, there are several delicious egg dishes to choose from, including a tasty frittata. And, finally, don’t sleep on the Balsamic Bloody Mary, which substitutes a six-year-old balsamic for Worcestershire, something you’ll wish every bartender did after just one sip.
How to enjoy: Brunch is available on Sundays from 11 am to 2:30 pm. Reservations are available on OpenTable.
This glass-encased flat-iron-shaped restaurant is still crowded with locals and tourists over 40 years after it opened. That’s partly because of the laid back—but not too laid back—SF vibe and the quality cocktails served at the zinc bar, but primarily because of the phenomenal California cuisine—the most popular of which is cooked in the wood-burning oven. For those looking for a romantic evening, a seat in the corner on the second level overlooking the street is ideal. What to order? Why, the Zuni Caesar salad to start, followed by the famous roasted chicken for two with warm bread salad, of course.
How to book: To make a reservation for outdoor dining, call 415-552-2522 or reserve a table online.
The house-ground, grass-fed hamburger on grilled rosemary focaccia with aioli and pickles is not as well-known as Zuni’s famous roast chicken for two, but is just as delicious. The aioli and pickles perfectly complement the salty, fatty meat, and even though focaccia sounds like an inferior choice for a hamburger bun, it’s light and airy in a way that miraculously works. It’s not cheap—$20 for the burger, another $3 for cheese, and, if you want shoestring fries, another $9 on top of that. That’s over $30 for a cheeseburger and fries, but as a special occasion burger, it’s well worth it. You’ll just have to make sure you’re celebrating that special occasion at lunch because the burger isn’t on the dinner menu.