6 New Restaurants to Book in San Francisco

Build your own gin and tonics at Terra - Eataly Silicon Valley. | Credit: Terra - Eataly Silicon Valley

A slew of hot new spots have debuted across the Bay Area including two rooftop restaurants, an overhauled neighborhood tavern, and a wine country gem. Click open that calendar, it’s time to get serious—here are half a dozen highly anticipated restaurants worth booking this season. 

The Palm Court at RH San Francisco (Dogpatch)

Medjool date palms tower over the atrium at The Palm Court at RH San Francisco. | Credit: The Palm Court at RH San Francisco

RH San Francisco (formerly known as Restoration Hardware) spent years refurbishing the historic, 80,000-square-foot Bethlehem Steel building on Pier 70 before opening doors in May. Before or after browsing the store’s stunning home furnishings collection, ascend the columned staircase to the atrium for a glass of sparkling wine, French omelet with boursin and herbs, or wagyu ribeye with truffle fries. The gold marble accents, glittering chandeliers, and towering Medjool date palms serve a visual feast. 

Handroll Project (Mission)

The same team behind Ju-Ni, the MICHELIN-starred omakase restaurant in NoPa, opened a relatively more affordable and laid-back spot in Mission Dolores in May. Handrolls are the name of the game here, with tidily folded smoked hamachi and fatty tuna standing upright for full attention. Diners can choose from sets of five, seven, or 10 hand rolls, plus a la carte options, starting at $35 and swimming upwards. There are no reservations, and judging from the line down the block all summer, the waitlist fills up fast.

Maybeck’s (Marina) 

The new smashburger at Maybeck’s. | Credit: Maybeck’s

This beloved neighborhood tavern, which reopened in June, was recently treated to a deep polish. Lori Baker and Jeffrey Banker—the duo behind the dearly departed Baker & Banker—grabbed the keys as the new owners, though they haven’t sacrificed Maybeck’s distinct brand of clubby comfort. There’s a fresh coat of moody blue and burnished copper paint, plus a totally reimagined menu starring Banker’s fresh pasta and crudo and Baker’s tall, elegant cakes. The one throwback, by popular demand, Welly Wednesday—a beef Wellington special—is slated to return in August, so book accordingly. 

Members Only (Lower Nob Hill)

Cocktail lovers mourned the mysterious passing of the Saratoga, a beloved spirit-driven spot, circa 2020. Thankfully, a new team, led by Phil Chen (owner of the Alchemist and the Woodbury in SoMa) is now shaking martinis and cracking oysters in the swanky lounge space, which opened with a new identity in May. Snag a reservation upstairs for supper at Members Only, then head downstairs for drinks at Finders Keepers, the clandestine bar-within-a-bar. 

Terra – Eataly Silicon Valley (Santa Clara) 

A floral canopy at Terra – Eataly Silicon Valley | Credit: Terra – Eataly Silicon Valley

This iconic Italian food emporium, with locations in New York City, Chicago, and more, officially landed in Silicon Valley this June, offering more pasta and pizza than one could possibly crave—plus an array of over 10,000 imported products. Though there are plenty of casual cafes and counters, Terra is the rooftop restaurant where it’s worth nabbing a sit-down reservation. Expect handmade pastas, tomahawk steaks, and a grill that fires smoky calamari and assorted skewers. Bonus points for the gelato cart and extra-large wine list. 

Animo (Sonoma)

Animo might be an unexpected mashup, serving up both Korean and Basque flavors. The cultural balancing act is a testament to the restaurant’s chef/owner: Joshua Smookler was born in Korea and adopted and raised Jewish in New York. He served as a ramen chef in NYC before moving cross-country and opening Animo, a renovated taqueria in wine country, with his wife, Heidi He. Smookler’s kimchi-pastrami fried rice, one of the star players on his inventive menu, has been charming locals and critics alike.

Tried them all? Check out other options here.

Becky Duffett is a food writer living and eating in San Francisco. Follow her on Instagram at @beckyduffett.

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San Francisco Restaurant Week

San Francisco Restaurant Week

October 23, 2020 - November 1, 2020