Best Brunches in San Francisco

You can't go wrong at these 10 brunch warriors
April 25, 2016
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by Zagat Staff

San Francisco's favorite meal has no shortage of delicious options, whether it's eggs and mimosas or elaborate versions of pancakes and French toast. From a casual daytime-only spot in Potrero Hill to a Bloody Mary-focused "temporary" restaurant in Cow Hollow, here are our picks for the 10 best brunches in San Francisco.

Nopa
New American · Alamo Square · $$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.3 · Service 4.4

"The overall buzz has not subsided" at this Alamo Square Californian that’ll "rock your socks" with "earthy" locavore dishes to "dream about" (including "acclaimed" wood-fired burgers) delivered alongside "outstanding cocktails" in an "energizing" duplex space manned by an "efficient" crew; prices are "decent" , brunches are "fantastic" and it's a "favorite late-night spot" , so the "only disappointing thing is the wait."
Foreign Cinema
Californian · The Mission · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.3

This "semi-hidden" "hipster" Mission stalwart may be known for its "fun drive-in movie accents" , but the "inventive" , locally sourced Cal-Med dinners (and "amazing" brunches) get a "standing ovation" too; whether dining alfresco on the "awesome patio" beneath the "twinkly lights" – while the likes of "My Dinner With Andre" screens "on the wall behind you" – or nestled inside by the fire, the "festive" vibe, "delicious" cocktails and "accommodating" service all help make it the ultimate "first-date" or "special-occasion" go-to.
Boulettes Larder
New American · Embarcadero · $$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.0 · Service 4.0

Owners "Amaryll and Lori clearly do what they love" at their Ferry Building eatery overlooking the bay, where they've "raised the bar" with the likes of "warm morning buns" and other "beautifully prepared" (and relatively "expensive" ) New American breakfast and lunch fare out of the open kitchen, plus the "absolute best beignets" at Sunday brunch; the communal tables are an "experience" , and you can also pick up "delicious" premade meals to go (now on Saturdays only); P.S. the adjacent Bouli Bar offers more seating plus full lunch, dinner and drink menus.
Plow
Californian · Potrero Hill · $$
Food 4.4 · Decor 3.9 · Service 4.2

"Delicious" , "locally sourced" breakfast and lunch bites (including "amazing home fries" and lemon ricotta pancakes "to die for" ) have insiders arriving "early" to avoid "torturous" waits at this Potrero Hill Californian cafe; while the nothing-fancy interior belies the spendy tabs, "friendly service" and a no-pressure vibe help make it a "favorite" of a "hip young crowd."
Marla Bakery Restaurant
New American · Outer Richmond · $$
Food 4.4 · Decor 4.0 · Service 4.1

"Run by maniacs for quality" , this Outer Richmond "discovery" produces "excellent" breads and pastries along with "delicious" New American fare for breakfast, "light lunch" and weekend brunch; the "friendly service" , "sweet" interior and "amazing backyard" help distract from "higher than typical prices."
Mission Beach Cafe
Cafe · The Mission · $$
Food 4.4 · Decor 3.7 · Service 4.0

Weekend noshers show up "early" at this Mission Californian for the "fantastic brunch" featuring "bold, reinvented classics" and "huge mimosas" ; at other times, it turns out lunch and dinner for "midrange prices" while "kind servers" make even a newcomer "feel like a regular."
Outerlands
American · Outer Sunset · $$
Food 4.2 · Decor 4.1 · Service 4.1

Done up in "weather-beaten-chic" style, this Outer Sunset New American rolls out "delicious" , "affordable" fare served by a "nice-as-pie" team; there’s a decided "hipster" vibe in the air and "more space" since they remodeled, though you still might experience "long lines" at prime times.
1300 On Fillmore
Southern American · Fillmore District/Western Addition · $$$
Food 4.2 · Decor 4.3 · Service 4.2

Known for its "legendary" Sunday gospel brunch, this "sophisticated" , "even sexy" Western Addition "standby" lures a "lively" crowd with "tasty" "haute soul" and Southern food plus "hospitality" to match; with a "cool" bar scene and "bonus live jazz" Friday-Saturday nights, it’s also a "nice dinner option" for music lovers already "heading to a show" on Fillmore Street ( "if a little on the pricey side" ).
Mina Test Kitchen
Eclectic · Cow Hollow · $$$

Star chef Michael Mina leads this "innovative" test kitchen in a cozy Cow Hollow space, hosting guest chefs for "excellent" pop-ups centered on specific cuisines, often highlighting personal dishes rooted in their cultural heritage; it's a "great example" of "super-delicious" "family-style dining" (with wine pairings available), though the limited number of tickets sold through the website can be "hard to get."