As one of the world’s finest culinary destinations, San Francisco continually prides itself in its diverse and ever-changing collection of specialty dishes and world-class restaurants. Those dishes includes high quality seafood selections, where a sizable portion are acquired directly off local fishing boats returning to Fisherman’s Wharf. Although many of the famous and long-standing wharf restaurants can lay claim for serving the freshest seafood, there are several other culinary establishments all over the City that are surging in worldwide recognition.
Here is a just a small sampling of the very best seafood restaurants for in San Francisco.
Fog Harbor Fish House
San Francisco, CA 94133
With tremendous views of the San Francisco Bay from Pier 39, Fog Harbor Fish House is described as the quintessential San Francisco waterfront experience, offering 100 percent sustainable seafood. Founded by Pier 39 developer Warren Simmons, Fog Harbor Fish House is now led by his son Scooter and has won multiple awards from TripAdvisor and Opentable, among others.
Continuing the proud tradition to deliver the finest quality menu items, Fog Harbor Fish House was the first restaurant in the Fisherman’s Wharf area to offer 100 percent sustainable seafood. Current and seasonal menus are offered, with popular dishes like Ahi Tuna, Pacific Sole and Seared Pacific Cod. There is also an outstanding collection of other dishes, like baked oysters, whole Dungeness crab and its award-winning clam chowder. The Simmons family operates two other outstanding restaurants at Pier 39 – Pier Market and Wipeout Bar and Grill.
Hog Island Oyster Bar
One Ferry Building, 11A
San Francisco, CA 94111
Recently named one of the world’s best restaurants by Travel+Leisure, Hog Island Oyster Co. offers some of the freshest oysters in the entire San Francisco Bay Area. With four locations, including its lively oyster bar inside the historic Ferry Building, Hog Island Oyster Co. hand raises its own sustainable shellfish at its 106-acre farm in Marin County. This means its “Bay to Bar” philosophy offers fresh shellfish from its farm and other sources like Humboldt Bay and Washington State. Other fresh seafood items are offered are Beer Battered Rock Cod Sliders, San Francisco Fried Softshell Crab and SF Halibut Crudo.
888 Howard St.
San Francisco, CA 94103
One of just a few Michelin-starred San Francisco restaurants inside a hotel, Luce has long been acclaimed for its fabulously inventive dishes. Located within the luxurious and completely renovated InterContinental San Francisco, Luce has received the coveted Michelin star for 10 consecutive years and also the recipient of Wine Spectator’s prestigious Best of Award of Excellence since 2015.
Led by Chef Daniel Corey, talented protégée of famed local Michelin 3-star Chef Dominique Crenn, Luce specializes in stylish modern American cuisine. Luce utilizes locally sourced produce, fresh seafood and high quality meats. Recent seafood offerings from the dinner menu include Shigoku oysters with Siberian caviar, Pacific halibut and yellow fin tuna.
165 O’Farrell St.
San Francisco, CA 94102
Located just one block from Union Square, ONE65 is an extraordinary new multiple concept French restaurant led by renowned Michelin-starred and James Beard Award-winning Chef Claude Le Tohic. Housed within a six story Beaux-Arts building at 165 O’Farrell Street, ONE65 features multiple culinary options, with a fabulous patisserie on the ground level. The equally remarkable ONE65 Bistro on the third level, Elements Lounge & Bar on the fourth level and truly exceptional fine dining at Restaurant O’ by Claude Le Tohic on the fifth and six levels.
Every level of this historic building presents a uniquely remarkable experience, but ONE65 Bistro, led by Chef Le Tohic and rising star Chef de Cuisine Jennifer Dewasha and Restaurant O’ by Claude Le Tohic are particularly noted for its exquisite, French-inspired cuisine.
1965 Al Scoma Way
San Francisco, CA 94133
Of the several outstanding seafood restaurants in Fisherman’s Wharf, not many can claim it owns its own private fishing boat and fish receiving station. However, Scoma’s can make that claim and in doing so, can guarantee its catches of the day are absolutely fresh. Located near Anchorage Square shopping center at Pier 47, where commercial fishermen sell fresh fish right off their boats, Scoma’s has been family owned and operated since 1965.
399 The Embarcadero
San Francisco, CA 94105
With an incredible bay view unmatched by any other restaurant other than its sister restaurant next door, Waterbar is often considered the finest sustainable seafood restaurant in San Francisco. Led by acclaimed Chef Park Ulrich, Waterbar features an exceptional variety of sustainably-sourced seafood items from local and international waters. Chef Ulrich, who also serves as executive chef next door at his EPIC Steak, offers a menu that changes daily in order to provide the freshest produce and seafood, with recent dishes like Hamachi Tataki and Oak Roasted White Bass.
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About The Author:
Randy Yagi is an award-winning freelance writer who has covered national/international travel for CBS Local and all things San Francisco for CBS San Francisco. He is a Media Fellow of Stanford University and a member of the Freelance Council of the Society of American Travel Writers (SATW).
He is a lifelong resident of Santa Cruz County, in California.