Startup Restaurants in San Francisco

The food scene in San Francisco is always bustling, with new restaurants constantly emerging in the contest to make a name for themselves. While the city has its share of established venues, startup restaurants best exemplify the city’s diverse and creative tastes. Here are some of the hottest new eateries in San Francisco:

  • Little Gem: Pioneered by Eric Lilavois from the Thomas Keller Group and Dave Cruz of Ad Hoc, this restaurant eschews gluten, dairy and refined sugars. Located in Hayes Valley, Little Gem serves soups, salads and wraps. Best of all, you can order any meal at any time; there’s no shame in an evening breakfast meal. Stop in on Grove Street and treat yourself to a healthy, delicious meal.
  • Brasserie Saint James: This restaurant-brewery combo is picking up where Abbott’s Cellar left off, incorporating a seven-barrel brewhouse into its southern cuisine. Brasserie Saint James offers more than a dozen beers, as well as a mixed grill for small groups up to four. If this sounds like your kind of fare, pay a visit on Valencia Street in Bernal Heights.
  • Volta: Serving French-Scandinavian dishes, Volta is a good choice for diners looking for a taste of the Old World. The restaurant features an elegant ambiance and dishes including pickled herring and köttbullar. Situated in South of Market on Mission Street, Volta offers a different kind of restaurant experience with a distinctly European flair.
  • Whitechapel: John Park of Novela and Martin Crate from Smuggler’s Cove have teamed up to bring Tenderloin a pub fashioned after an abandoned London subway station. Serving Bangladeshi food and a wide variety of gin-based cocktails, Whitechapel is a great place to grab a drink and a bite to eat if you’re feeling adventurous. Located on Polk Street, this spot is worth visiting for its drinks alone.
  • Del Popolo: The popular food truck has opened its own pizzeria in the Nob Hill neighborhood. Del Popolo has expanded beyond its pizza-based menu to offer Neapolitan-style pies, small dishes, beer and wine. If you liked the food truck, you’ll love the restaurant. Consider stopping by on Bush Street.
  • The Perennial: Embracing sustainability doesn’t mean sacrificing your taste buds, and The Perennial is here to prove it. The venue specializes in eco-friendly comfort food, and sources its ingredients from environmentally-conscious providers like Stemple Creek Ranch and their own aquaponic greenhouse in West Oakland. If you’re looking for a meal you can feel good about, visit The Perennial on 9th Street near Mid-Market.

San Francisco’s restaurants cater to every interest and appetite, from traditional American fare to international favorites. With a continual influx of new restaurants and ideas, the city enjoys a vibrant culinary culture. Check out our take on the best coffee shops in the City by the Bay here.