As one of the world’s finest culinary destinations, San Francisco continually prides itself in its diverse collection of specialty dishes. Indeed, among those are seafood selections, with much acquired directly from local fishing boats. Although many famous wharf restaurants can lay claim as the best, others are gaining recognition. Take a look at just five of the very best seafood restaurants in the City by the Bay.
Fog Harbor Fish House
San Francisco, CA 94133
With tremendous bay views, Fog Harbor Fish House is the quintessential San Francisco waterfront experience. In fact, it serves 100% sustainable fresh seafood. Founded by Pier 39 developer Warren Simmons, Fog Harbor Fish House is now led by son Scooter. Over their many successful years as restaurateurs, the Simmons have won multiple awards. For instance, Fog Harbor is among the Top Restaurants in Fisherman’s Wharf. That’s not to mention a TripAdvisor award as Top 5 Everyday Dining in the U.S. What’s more, they get consistent praise on Google Reviews and OpenTable.
History of Fog Harbor Fish House
Fog Harbor Fish House was the first restaurant in Fisherman’s Wharf to offer 100 percent sustainable seafood. Current and seasonal menus are offered, with popular dishes like ahi tuna poke ($19) Tuna, petrale sole ($29) and seared Pacific cod ($28). Of course, there are many other noteworthy dishes, like whole Dungeness crab ($55) and its award-winning clam chowder. In fact, the chowder is known as the best in the City. The Simmons family operates two other great restaurants at Pier 39 – Pier Market and Wipeout Bar and Grill.
Hog Island Oyster Bar
One Ferry Building, 11A
San Francisco, CA 94111
Hog Island Oyster Co. offers some of the freshest oysters in the entire San Francisco Bay Area. With four locations, including the popular oyster bar inside the Ferry Building, Hog Island Oyster Co. hand raises its own sustainable shellfish. Equally impressive is the “Bay to Bar” philosophy, with fresh shellfish from its farm and sources like Humboldt Bay and Washington State. With this in mind, seafood items you may like are beer battered fish ($26) and Hog Island Sweetwater (6 for $21). At the Ferry Marketplace restaurant, you cannot make a reservation. On the other hand, you can place an order online.
San Francisco Ferry Plaza Farmer’s Market
On Saturdays, you can purchase live oysters and shellfish to go. However, if you wish to purchase a large order of over five dozen, you must call ahead. Simply call the oyster bar at the number listed above. The Saturday farmer’s market is open from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Related: InterContinental San Francisco
888 Howard St.
San Francisco, CA 94103
Luce has long been acclaimed for its fabulously inventive dishes. Located within the luxurious 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.
Chef Daniel Corey
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 menu include Shigoku oysters with Siberian caviar, Pacific halibut and yellow fin tuna.
Note: Daniel Corey is now the executive chef at the Cliff Royal Sonesta Hotel in San Francisco. Taking his place at Luce is chef Rogelio Garcia.
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.
Multi-level Culinary Destination
The equally remarkable ONE65 Bistro on the third level, Elements Lounge & Bar on the fourth level. What’s more is Michelin star dining at O’ by Claude Le Tohic on the upper levels. In fact, every level of this historic building presents a uniquely remarkable experience. Also part of the star are rising star Chef de Cuisine Jennifer Dewasha. Restaurant O’ by Claude Le Tohic is particularly noted for its exquisite, French-inspired cuisine.
1965 Al Scoma Way
San Francisco, CA 94133
Not many restaurants can claim it owns a private fishing boat. Equally impressive is a private fish receiving station. However, Scoma’s can make that claim. As a result, they can guarantee its catches of the day are absolutely fresh. In light of this, you may like Oysters alla Scoma ($25) and their famous clam chowder ($12/$14). That’s to say nothing of entrees like “Lazy Man’s Cioppino and Pasta Diplomatica. Of course, there are other options beside fresh seafood, like wagyu bistro filet ($36).
Located near Anchorage Square at Pier 47, Scoma’s has been family owned and operated since 1965.
399 The Embarcadero
San Francisco, CA 94105
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. In fact, it sources items from both local and international waters. Chef Ulrich offers a menu that changes daily. This enables him i to provide the freshest produce and seafood. Among the recent dishes are ahi tuna tataki ($17) and oven roasted swordfish ($43). Chef Ulrich is also executive chef at the sister restaurant, Epic Steak.
About The Author
Randy Yagi is an award-winning freelance writer who served as the National Travel Writer for CBS Local from 2012-2019. More than 900 of his stories still appear in syndication across 23 CBS websites, including CBS New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and San Francisco. During his peak years with CBS, Randy had a reported digital audience reach of 489 million and 5.5 million monthly visitors. Additionally, his stories have appeared in the Daily Meal, CBS News, CBS Radio, Engadget and Radio.com. He earned a media fellowship from Stanford University in 2012.