Best Restaurants Near the Panhandle

September 24, 2013
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by Zagat Staff

Headed out to Golden Gate Park? Check out our top restaurants on the east side.

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."
Koo
Sushi · Inner Sunset · $$$
Food 4.4 · Decor 3.6 · Service 3.9

With its "fresh-from-the-ocean" sushi and "creative" grilled plates, this Inner Sunset sleeper offers "top-of-the-line" Japanese dining with a "neighborhood" feel; the decor and service take a backseat to the cuisine, but the happy-hour deals are among "the best" around.
Ebisu Restaurant
Japanese · Inner Sunset · $$

Magnolia Gastropub and Brewery
Gastropub · Haight-Ashbury · $$
Food 4.1 · Decor 4.1 · Service 4.0

"Craft beer heaven" is what hopsheads call this Haight-Ashbury hang staffed by bartenders as "knowledgeable" as "cicerones" , where a "magnificent" selection of cask ales and "unique" home brews is presented along with "fancified" seasonal pub grub; "it's always noisy and crowded" , but there's "plenty" of seating both inside and out, making it a natural choice "for a bro brew brunch" or "casual date" ; P.S. the namesake brews are also offered at Smokestack, a BBQ restaurant and taproom offshoot in Dogpatch.
Pacific Catch
Seafood · Inner Sunset · $$
Food 4.2 · Decor 4.0 · Service 4.1

“Fresh” is the operative word at this “casual” seafood chain offering a “delicious” variety of Pan-Pacific–accented catch – along with signature Hawaiian poke starters – at an “affordable” price point; “handy” locations and “knowledgeable” staffers complete the “pleasant” picture.