5 Stars

Osteria Al Mare

Address: 32 Cannery # 1H, Monterey, CA 93940
Osteria Al Mare
$ Recommended New Editor's Pick Private Room View Outdoor Seating
Down by the San Carlos beach on the edge of the pier, sits Osteria Al Mare (Restaurant at the sea, in Italian). Come enjoy the beautiful pier, sea lions, and the taste of the old country. All of our ingredients are locally sourced and are as fresh as could be found. While our menu does change to reflect the freshest of ingredients, we offer such stables as Fritto Di Calamari, Stinco di Maiale alla Birra (beer braised pork shank) and our Pan-seared salmon. These items Maurizio perfected in Italy more than 30 years ago.

Vim Dining & Desserts

Address: 2238 Mission St, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
Vim Dining & Desserts
$$ Recommended New Editor's Pick Outdoor Seating
Chef Jesikah Stolaroff brings the feeling of home together with local ingredients and refined technique to create food that fills the heart. She specializes in thoughtful, New American cuisine with a nod toward her family’s Italian roots, joined by unforgettable, innovative desserts. A native of Santa Cruz, Jesikah got her start as a teenager making incredible cakes for birthdays and weddings, before moving north to hone her craft. She studied both the science and the art of food, with degrees in Nutritional Science from UC Berkeley and Culinary Arts from the Culinary Institute of America in Napa. Jesikah cut her …

jeninni kitchen + wine bar

Address: 542 Lighthouse Ave, Pacific Grove, CA 93950
jeninni kitchen + wine bar
$$ Recommended Editor's Pick View
A coastal and southern Mediterranean cuisine. Our menu consist of many small plates and changes almost daily with focus on local and organic ingredients. Our diverse wine list designed by our owner sommelier offers high quality wines from our local Monterey County appellation and from around the world. The shims + session cocktail program is very well recognized as solid very innovative.

Gary Danko

Address: 800 North Point Street, San Francisco, CA 94109
Gary Danko
$$$$
Dinner at Gary Danko is as titillating as a night at the opera, from the dramatic 69 page wine list, to the choreographed service of the staff, to the series of complex acts that come streaming from the kitchen and the carefully calibrated intermissions between them. Gary Danko’s combination of artfully crafted food and service turns a meal into an event. World-class Executive Chef Gary Danko uses his classic training to reinvent French, Mediterranean and regional-American cuisine, and the numerous awards he has won reflect the quality of his food, placing him at the forefront of America’s best chefs.

Redd

Address: 6480 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599
Redd
$$$
Elegant, modern décor and ethnically inspired cuisine combine to create Redd of Napa Valley. The interior of this contemporary restaurant consists of a large dining room as well as one that is a bit more intimate. An outdoor patio allows guests to appreciate the seasons near some of Napa’s most picturesque vineyards. Some of the signature lunch and dinner dishes are Japanese inspired, such as the Sashimi of Hamachi on Sticky Rice, while others are more of a traditional American dish such as the Glazed Pork Belly. The brunch menu is equally diverse, with dishes such as the Huevos Rancheros …

Kiss Seafood

Address: 1700 Laguna Street, San Francisco, CA 94115
Kiss Seafood
$$$$
The interior of Kiss Seafood is characterized by clean white walls and delicate floral decorations. Upon entering, diners have the choice of sitting in the dining room or at the bar, where they can watch experienced sushi chefs prepare their meal. While this restaurant has many sushi and sashimi dishes to offer hungry patrons, its name makes it clear even to newcomers that their true specialty is seafood. As an appetizer, diners can try the Mushi-Uni and Japanese Green Shira-Ae, steamed sea urchin and green vegetables, or the Tai and Tofu Kabura-Mushi, a small dish featuring tai-snapper fish and tofu. …

Bistro Central Parc

Address: 560 Central Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94117
Bistro Central Parc
$$$
Bistro Central Parc of the NOPA neighborhood in San Francisco offers diners a unique atmosphere reminiscent of a French bistro in which to enjoy fine French dining. With a setting of quaint wooden tables and chairs, this restaurant strives to host a cozy, comfortable atmosphere for its guests. This restaurant offers guests varied dinner and brunch menus. Brunch guests can choose from a list of Omelets, Specialites du Petit Matin, and other French dishes, including Escargots Bourguignon and Moules Marinieres. This menu comes conveniently in a la carte style, placing no restrictions on the diner’s appetite. The dinner menu, a …

Benu

Address: 22 Hawthorne Street, San Francisco, CA 94105
Benu
$$$$
A relaxing blend of neutral colors adorns the interior of Benu, a classy restaurant located in the SOMA neighborhood of San Francisco. An extensive wine list is hand selected, and provides an ideal complement to the different menus available. Although both menus are subject to change with the availability of fresh ingredients, the Tasting Menu features unique dishes such as Thousand-Year-Old Quail Egg and “Shark’s Fin” Soup. The A La Carte dinner menu offers diners the option of building their own meal, with entrée categories such as Fish and Shellfish and Pasta and Rice. Carnivores and vegetarians alike can find …

Betty Zlatchin Catering

Address: 1177 Indiana Street, San Francisco, CA 94107
Betty Zlatchin Catering
$$$
“Food is our passion.” If your passion is food as well, look no further than Betty Zlatchin Catering; their slogan speaks to their creative flair for presentation and commitment to using locally-grown, organic foods. The happy result is delicious, fresh dishes that aim to please every palate. Specializing in weddings, the company tailors each menu to match the needs and style of their clients and have been praised by Food and Wine Magazine. Dedicated to buying from sustainable sources and local vendors, you may find one of Betty Zlatchin’s staff at the farmer’s market looking for produce or collaborating with …

Saison

Address: 2124 Folsom Street, San Francisco, CA 94110
Saison
$$$$$
Saison, meaning season in French, strives to serve up the best flavors of the season: a practice for which this Michelin starred restaurant has been acclaimed. The food isn’t the only thing that patrons rave about, however. The hip and swanky décor elevates the status of this restaurant, while fireplaces used for cooking expertly crafted dishes allow Saison to glow with homey warmth. With an open kitchen, guests can keep an eye on how their meal is being created. A lucky few can even opt for the Chef’s Table, which also comes with a prix fixe menu equipped with plenty …

Commis

Address: 3859 Piedmont Avenue, Oakland, CA 94611
Commis
$$$$ New
Commis’ cuisine strives to combine the classic and traditional with the modern and refreshing. The restaurant’s seasonally changing menu achieves this goal by infusing balance and ambition into each of its dishes. Located in Oakland, Commis sits central to most areas of San Francisco, allowing a variety of clientele to experience this chef’s new avant-garde vision. Commis creates this distinctive perspective by combining ingredients that come together in an almost unexpected harmony.

The French Laundry

Address: 6640 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599
The French Laundry
$$$$$
Since its opening in 1994, Thomas Keller’s The French Laundry has brought a small piece of the French country side to Northern California. The French Laundry’s philosophy is to have guests experience an emotional journey as they dine. The staff strives to leave the guest’s palate at the very height of pleasure and curiosity wherein patrons are surprised and riveted by the culinary experience and creativity with which they are presented. It is for this reason that Thomas Keller’s team crafts 2 new menus daily: a chef’s tasting menu and a vegetable tasting one. Each is a pre fixe menu …

Bouchon

Address: 6534 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599
Bouchon
$$$$
Bouchon of Yountville comes from the family of Thomas Keller Restaurants and strives to bring the French tradition of cozy, family owned bistros to the area. A dark, intimate interior starts diners off on their quest for traditional French cuisine as they are given a menu that consists of classic dishes. A list of Fruits de Mer, Caviar, and other Hors D’Oeuvres guide guests through a beginning course, leading up to the stars of the meal: Les Plats Principaux. This section of the menu features the French bistro classic, Steak Frites, as well as traditional entrees like Croque Madame and …

Cetrella

Address: 845 Main Street, Half Moon Bay, CA 94019
Cetrella
$$$ Top 10
Just south of San Francisco on the Pacific Ocean lies the city of Half Moon bay where agriculture and big wave surfing are the popular attractions in town. When it comes to food, Cetrella is the areas destination point. With French and Mediterranean undertones, Cetrella draws from local growers and purveyors to seasonally create dishes from land and sea. Freshly harvested Oysters on the Half Shell, Mussels, Grilled Octopus and the Beet Salad are light items that represent its closeness to the ocean and plentiful fields. Entrees like the Lamb Shank, Pork Chop, Duck Confit and Gnocchi Parisienne also allow …

Michael Mina

Address: 252 California Street, San Francisco, CA 94111
Michael Mina
$$$$ Top 10
With its white marble stairs, towering Roman-style columns, and expansive dining room, Michael Mina is a monument to gastronomy. Its décor, awash in a subdued mauves, brown leathers, and soft creams, manages to be highly modern and chic, while still evoking a timeless, stately elegance. Chef de Cuisine Chris L’Hommedieu, who has had extensive experience working under Executive Chef Michael Mina in the past, expertly executes Mina’s New American culinary vision, presenting decadent prix-fixe menus showcasing fresh ingredients, culinary creativity, and epicurean artistry at its finest. Michael Mina’s namesake restaurant delivers a decadently pleasurable culinary romp in a calmingly demur …

La Folie

Address: 2316 Polk Street, San Francisco, CA 94109
La Folie
$$$$ Top 10
With colorful flower boxes, large picture windows, and a sunny saffron-colored sign, La Folie exudes a charming Frenchness. Inside, a luminous dining room in warm hues and lush fabrics is an elegant canvas for the presentation of Executive Chef Roland Possat’s French and California-inspired creations. The prix-fixe menu whimsically explores the interplay between tradition and experimentation: classic French ingredients like foie gras, frog legs, and snails mingle with dishes featuring lobster vanilla sauce and oxtail stuffed calamari. While, as its name suggests, La Folie has a playful streak of madness, it is more the result of a masterful and supremely …

Chez Panisse

Address: 1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709
Chez Panisse
$$$$
When Chez Panisse was conceived in 1971, it was the most atypical of restaurants in America, designing its menu daily based on the freshest seasonal and local ingredients. Though this unique approach to food has since gained momentum, Chez Panisse is still one of the most influential proponents of the move towards a more sustainable approach to food. With Alice Waters at the helm, Chez Panisse stays true to its initial vision, serving one fixed price menu daily, based on what is freshest at the moment. Still in its birthplace in a converted house in liberal-minded Berkeley, Chez Panisse retains …

Coi

Address: 373 Broadway, San Francisco, CA 94133
Coi
$$$$$ Top 10
Although Coi’s décor exudes a soothing calm in shades of earthy minimalism, its cuisine is a jolt of culinary electricity. Chef Daniel Patterson’s tasting menus take diners on a sensuous adventure reflective of his diverse culinary background, which includes a stint at the infamous El Bulli. A meal at Coi is an exercise in the revelry of the unexpected: a starter might include the application of essential oils to the wrist, while a dessert might be couched in smoked yogurt. The result is an experience that embodies the doe-eyed wonder of childhood with the poise and refinement of haute cuisine.

Jardiniere

Address: 300 Grove Street, San Francisco, CA 94102
Jardiniere
$$$$ Top 10 Recommended
The French tradition of amuse bouche is in full bloom at Jardiniere, but diners will find the execution at this one-of-a-kind restaurant to be refreshingly far from traditional. This San Francisco gem, from cuisine to decor, makes any dinner a meal to remember and is sure to leave guests longing to return for more. Foodies will adore the attention to detail and regulars are able to enjoy an ever-changing menu of seasonal specials that reflect the power of fresh, sustainable ingredients. The restaurant's proximity to the city's symphony and opera are another draw for many diners. Experience indulgence at the …

Acquerello

Address: 1722 Sacramento Street, San Francisco, CA 94109
Acquerello
$$$$$ Top 10
Housed in a former chapel, Acquerello is simply heavenly. The stunning pitched roof and calm, peaceful setting offer a cheerful and elegant setting, but it is the service and cuisine that keep guests returning. Chef Suzette Gresham offers tantalizing renditions of modern Italian cuisine, with vibrant, creative dishes such as wide ranch egg pappradelle with moist duck ragu, beet tortelloni filled with spinach and beet greens in gorgonzola cream sauce, and pancetta wrapped diver scallops over wilted Swiss chard. Co-owner Giancarlo Paterlini oversees an impressive wine program, graciously complimenting everything that comes out of the kitchen. Prix fixe menus allow …