The stigma of dull American hotel restaurants is easily avoided in San Francisco, where we're never starved for choices of places with personality and quality food. What are your favorite hotel restaurants in SF? Share your picks in the comments.
Just over two years ago, the Ritz-Carlton transformed its stale, fuddy-duddyish old dining room into a modern restaurant with urban edge called Parallel 37. Chicago-pedigreed chef Michael Rotondo presides over an approachable yet refined and world-wise menu.
600 Stockton St.; 415-773-6168
The Serrano Hotel has practically been eclipsed by the popularity of its own casual watering hole and restaurant, which debuted in the summer of 2011. Chef Mike Ransom serves pumped-up gourmet takes on bar fare like bangers and mash, deviled eggs and pretzels. Some of the best craft cocktails in the city and 18 beers on tap flow from behind the bar to wash it all down.
401 Taylor St.; 415-775-7979
Longtime Four Seasons executive chef Mark Richardson ran the hotel's restaurant when it was Seasons and he's still at the helm of MKT. The spot's swanky new identity opened – with the help of AvroKo – in June of last year. What has emerged is a more fun take on a steakhouse, with an emphasis on shared plates and a locally sourced bar program.
757 Market St.; 415-633-3838
Could there possibly be a cooler and more delicious restaurant at any other Best Western around the country? Millennium has long been the leader for high-end vegan food, thanks to longtime chef Eric Tucker's relentless pursuit of produce.
580 Geary St.; 415-345-3900
Located in the Taj Campton Place in Union Square, Campton Place has been a launching pad for culinary stars such as Daniel Humm (who now runs Eleven Madison Park and The Nomad), Bradley Ogden and Jan Birnbaum. The current executive chef, Sri Gopinathan, creates a very personalized take on California-Indian cuisine that's well worth investigating.
340 Stockton St.; 415-781-5555
The refined hotel restaurant options tend to dwindle once you go South of Market, but the modern American restaurant at the InterContinental Hotel is an exception. While the stereotypical hotel restaurant might use frighteningly large and corporate food sources, chef Daniel Corey actually leans heavily on local farms for his menus.
888 Howard St., 415-616-6566
One of Michael Mina's lavish steakhouses is located inside the Westin St. Francis, where it provides respite from the tourist-driven swarm outside in Union Square. Yes, it's a chain, but you wouldn't know it. Chef Omri Aflalo pours his particular style into everything from the raw bar to the Snake River Farms tasting menu to the seasonally rotating dessert cart.
335 Powell St.; 415-397-3003
Tapping into the Nordic food boom, chef-owner Roberth Sundell marries the flavors of California to those of Scandinavia in his two-year-old restaurant inside Inn at the Opera. Pronounced play, it's a place for dishes like Swedish meatballs, grass-fed elk loin and flights of herring.
333 Fulton St.; 415-863-8400