7 San Francisco restaurants where the wine is as good as the food



When it comes to drinking well, San Francisco lives up to New York and any European city you can name. Many restaurants in the bay offer superb wine programs. It is a dilemma of which ones are more deserving. At the end of the day, it’s all about quality, originality and diversity within its scope, and these seven restaurants have raised the bar higher.

Here are 7 San Francisco restaurants for great wine:

1. Brassiere and absinthe bar (398, rue Hayes)

When it comes to French wines, Absinthe offers the most complete and qualitative selection in San Francisco. Champagne, Burgundy and Jura are particularly strong with options for lovers of classic wines and those who wish to take a more esoteric path. Plus there are loads of fantastic traffic jams from Italy, Germany, Austria, Spain and California. Even though this is a French bistro, you can still cross the border.

2. Commonwealth (2224 Mission Street)

Commonwealth calls itself a “progressive American restaurant” and the same could be said for the wine list, but it has a fascinating international assortment. The menu is full of small production, artisanal and often organic wines from here and elsewhere with producers on the verge of celebrity. Finally, the food and wine pairings with the tasting menu are excellent and if you want to take control of the wheel and change lanes, the selection by the glass is a lot of fun.

3. Hillside Supper Club (300 Precita Street)

Hillside Supper Club is a neighborhood haunt in Bernal Heights, but wine industry professionals from across the Bay Area show up here to check out its wonderfully idiosyncratic and reasonably priced list. How many places serve Albilla (Bodegas Ponce “Reto”, 2013 – $ 12 / $ 46), an extremely obscure white Spanish grape, by the glass, let alone by the bottle? The selection of 50 wines is impeccably chosen, with a concern for diversity and food pairing. If you want to drink like a local wine connoisseur, Hillside is the place to go.

(Also read: Where to Find the Best Clam Chowder in San Francisco)

4. NOPA (560, rue Divisadero)

NOPA is very popular and the wine list is just one reason; yet what reason it is. As is the case with most of the best Bay Area wine lists, durability and minimal additives are emphasized. However, he’s not as geeky as some of the others, which makes him more accessible to a wider range of diners. Those who claim to be “in the know” might think this is a bit safe. On the contrary, it is courageous to include famous names that make honest and solid wines. And, given its size, somewhere between 250 and 300 lists, anyone who wants an adventure can get lost for hours.

5. The slanted door (a ferry building)

The slanted door helped make the Riesling cool and it was no small feat, but the wine list at this famous institution is much more than that. Beyond the aromatic white grape varieties, it offers one of the most diverse sparkling selections you can find, along with an abundance of grapes and wine regions condensed into a manageable supply of 140 wines.

6. Spruce (3640 Sacramento Street)

Spruce only sources the freshest local ingredients and the best wines from around the world. The personal relationships they have established with some of the world’s best winemakers have been attributed to their growing list of over 2,500 wines! From German Riesling to California Cabernet, new flavors never fail at Spruce.

7. Café Zuni (1658, rue du marché)

As is the case with the restaurant itself, Zuni’s wine list is always reliable. Focused on France and California, you can always count on a good representation of wines from Burgundy, the Rhone Valley and emerging and top-notch local producers.

About the Author: Pamela Busch is an acclaimed food and wine writer based in San Francisco.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are the personal opinions of the author. NDTV is not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, adequacy or validity of the information contained in this article. All information is provided as is. The information, facts or opinions appearing in the article do not reflect the views of NDTV and NDTV assumes no responsibility in this regard.


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