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Where to Eat Near BART: Your Guide From Glen Park to Downtown Berkeley

By Virginia Miller
August 27, 2014
Photo by: www.bart.gov

We realize the massive arms of BART spread off in multiple directions well outside of San Francisco, from Dublin/Pleasanton to the east to Richmond in the north. But on its heavily trafficked run through San Francisco, Downtown Berkeley and Oakland, you might find yourself hopping off at a stop in need of a quick bite or a place to meet someone up for drinks or a meal. Some stops, like every single one in Downtown San Francisco or the Mission, are packed with dozens of options within a few blocks, so we've called out just two per stop. Check out the slide show below for restaurant suggestions within five blocks of each station from Glen Park in SF to Downtown Oakland and Berkeley. 

  • Photo by: Virginia Miller

    Glen Park

    Gialina: Family-run, Neapolitan-meets-California pizza haven has been a Glen Park destination for years. 2842 Diamond St., 415-239-8500

    Cheese Boutique: A neighborhood favorite for over 20 years, this market is the spot to grab cheeses, sandwiches or house dolmas, hummus and Mediterranean dips to go. 660 Chenery St., 415-333-3390

  • Photo by: La Taqueria Facebook Page

    24th Street

    La Taqueria: The one, the only — the king of Mission taquerias. Burritos and tacos both shine, as they have for decades, particularly those fabulous carnitas, paired with the best aguas frescas in town. 2889 Mission St., 415-285-7117

    Misson Pie: For freshly baked desserts and coffee, Mission Pie is an easy stop one block off of BART. Pies and sweet or savory baked goods are seasonal, like their dreamy rhubarb or our favorite, lemon shaker pie. 2901 Mission St., 415-282-1500

  • Photo by: Virginia Miller

    16th Street

    La Oaxaquena: This tiny Oaxaca eatery has been a favorite of ours since the day it opened. Oaxacan specialties and products delight (yes, you can get a bag of chapulines — fried grasshoppers) as well as chapulines, venison or ostrich tacos. 2128 Mission St., 415-621-5446

    Dante's Weird Fish: Vegans and vegetarians love the array of creative dishes (seitan or yam tacos), while the focus on seafood (Dijon-almond-crusted rainbow trout) pleases the rest in this cozy, funky spot. 2193 Mission St., 415-863-4744

  • Photo by: Virginia Miller

    Civic Center

    Elmira Rosticerria: This clean-lined, modern cafe is a culinary gem with above-average cafe food for breakfast and lunch. Think the likes of crispy pork salad with Pink Lady apple and fennel or pistachio pesto chicken salad sandwich. 154 McAllister St., 415-551-7332

    Little Griddle: This humble, friendly corner breakfast spot and burger joint serves blue-collar workers and Civic Center government employees alike with hearty, gratifying scrambles for breakfast, massive griddle cakes (like chocolate chip) and an array of burgers. 1400 Market St., 415-864-4292

  • Photo by: Virginia Miller

    Powell Street

    Bartlett Hall: It doesn't get much convenient than Bartlett Hall, a downtown stop near BART and Union Square, happily open all day with a little something for everyone, from gourmet-fresh starters (think octopus watermelon salad) to their divine butter burger, plus a small brewery in-house. 242 O’Farrell St., 415-433-4332

    Mikkeller Bar SF: This all-day, world-class beer haven (the only other Mikkeller Bar outside the original one in Copenhagen), featuring 40+ revolving taps of the best and rarest craft beers in the world, also serves quality dishes, including housemade sausages and a hearty Reuben. 34 Mason St., 415-984-0279

  • Photo by: Virginia Miller

    Montgomery Street

    Trou Normand: If Europe met NY with a French-spirits cocktail menu (Cognac, Armagnac, Calvados, absinthe) paired with unbelievably good, housemade charcuterie platters from meats raised and butchered on a nearby farm — then add in all-day options from coffee and pastries in the morning to dinner and cocktails at night — it might look like this seductive hangout. 140 New Montgomery St., 415-975-0876

    Sushiritto: Despite the long lines for this quick take-out trio in the Financial District, Downtowners continue to flock to all three locations (two are within five blocks of BART) for freshly gratifying, large sushi burritos. Three locations

  • Embarcadero

    Hard Water: Besides one of the best (most extensive, filled with rarities and out-of-production spirits) American whiskey collections in the world, Hard Water is also source for excellent cocktails, fried chicken and waffles and New Orleans-influenced plates right on the water. Pier 3, The Embarcadero; 415-392-3021

    Amawele's South African Kitchen: Housed inside the cavernous office building of Rincon Center, this take-out counter (you can eat in the food court or better yet, take your food to the water for Bay views) serves some of the most heartwarming South African food in the city from twin sisters Pamela and Wendy Michaelson. Try flaky, creamy, curry-laden chicken masala pie. 101 Spear St., 415-536-5900

  • Photo by: Virginia Miller

    12th Street Oakland

    You can kill all birds with one stone (but let's not kill any birds here) by walking five blocks to historic Old Oakland and Swan's Market (aka Housewives Market). Inside this market, buy the best Louisiana, Southern-style sausages around — like a proper Louisiana-style boudin blanc sausage laden with rice — to take home and grill from Taylor's Sausages. You can also eat at two casual spots within the market:

    Cosecha: Excellent Mexican food and daily specials are a constant draw in this airy, open space where wild-shrimp tacos and horchata lattes are all made with the highest-quality ingredients. 907 Washington St., 510-452-5900

    Miss Ollie's: Barbados-born chef Sarah Kirnon draws crowds to sparse-yet-warm Miss Ollie’s for Caribbean food influenced from her home island and beyond, from curry goat to her long popular fried chicken. 901 Washington St., 510-285-6188

  • 19th Street Oakland

    Duende: There's the bodega and the restaurant, so whether you want to stop in for coffee, bites and Spanish wines, or you want to sit down with cocktails and paella, Duende has got you covered. 468 19th St., 510-893-0174

    Stag's Lunchette: An all-day hipster cafe that churns out quality coffee and excellent sandwiches, all made from locally sourced, hormone and "cruelty-free" meats, thank you very much. 362 17th St., 510-835-7824

  • Photo by: Virginia Miller

    Downtown Berkeley

    Gather: It doesn't get much better than Gather, a shining example for years of how to do the ubiquitous "organic" and "local" right (with a decidedly nonhippie chic), from meats and cocktails to that ever-fabulous vegan "charcuterie" platter. 2200 Oxford St., 510-809-0400

    Brazil Fresh Squeeze Cafe: If you're looking for cheap and delicious, you'd do well to head straight to this colorful stand with outdoor seating for legendary tri-tip sandwiches and mango smoothies.  2161 University Ave., 510-845-8011

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Places Mentioned

Gather

Californian • Berkeley

Food23 Decor21 Service21 Cost$37
 
 
 
Gialina

Pizza • Glen Park

Food25 Decor17 Service21 Cost$30
 
 
 
Dante's Weird Fish

Seafood • The Mission

Food22 Decor18 Service20 Cost$29
 
 
 
La Taqueria

Mexican • The Mission

Food25 Decor11 Service17 Cost$12
 
 
 
Duende

Oakland

Food- Decor- Service- CostE
 
 
 
Miss Ollie's

Chicken • Oakland

Food- Decor- Service- CostI
 
 
 
Mikkeller Bar

Bar • Tenderloin

Atmo.- Decor- Service- CostM
 
 
 
Hard Water

American • Embarcadero

Food- Decor- Service- CostM
 
 
 
Trou Normand

New American • SoMa

Food- Decor- Service- CostE
 
 
 
Bartlett Hall

Tenderloin

Food- Decor- Service- CostM
 
 
 
 
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