Andalé Mexican Bar and Restaurant
International Terminal at San Francisco Airport
Concourse G, near Gate G91
The only late-night option in the International Terminal, Andalé is open until midnight, which is good news when the departure board posts a lengthy delay. Andalé’s full bar offers whatever you fancy paired with a taco or two or perhaps a spicy bloody mary with a breakfast burrito. If jet lag has your internal clock messed up, no worries as the bar is open at 8 a.m. No need to miss your favorite team while you wait as large-screens at the bar televise sports events, although the sound may be muted. Nevertheless, expect to find strong pours and a good liquor selection in this Mexican-inspired place.
Various locations throughout San Francisco Airport
This thin-crust, oven-baked pizza place hits the spot. Firewood Café does not have large drinks but does have a full-service bar and corner windows with a good view of the various airplanes’ comings and goings. The bar is well stocked and reasonably priced, with a glass of wine starting at $5.95. Passengers will find a large selection of beers on tap and a large TV. So for those who need to pass the time, this will do nicely. Firewood Café is not to be confused with Firewood Grill, located pre-security, which does not have a bar.
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Buena Vista Café
Terminal 3 at San Francisco Airport
Area F, Gate 82
Here’s good news for fans and visitors who may have missed this San Francisco landmark on Hyde Street, birthplace of the Irish coffee in America. It’s interesting to note that the Irish coffee served at Shannon Airport in 1952 is how the whole enterprise began. Of course, at the airport, the cable car’s ring-a-ding-ding at the turnaround above that gorgeous bay view will be absent but BV’s signature hot drink remains. Aside from the famous brew, there’s a full bar with over a dozen beers, the BV margarita, two gimlets, four martinis, a Ketel One cosmo and more. Enjoy American cuisine with table service where, considerately, the breakfast menu is available all day.
Lark Creek Grill
Terminal 2 at San Francisco Airport
Area D, Gate 50
In a good location at the airport’s nicest and newest terminal, this place looks fresh and inviting. Eco-friendly casks are used to serve selected local wines on tap, a concept which means no unnecessary bottles, corks or cardboard boxes are required. Enjoy a glass from one of your favorite vineyards starting at $8. Speciality and classic cocktails range from $9 to $13. Choose from three local beers on tap, four Bay Area beers by the bottle and the international standbys, such as Stella, Guinness, Heineken and Corona at $6. Hungry passengers with time to spare can relax with the restaurant’s white linen tablecloth and napkin service.
Terminal 1 at San Francisco Airport
Area C, Gate 42
Perry’s is the only sit-down spot with table service and a full bar in Terminal 1, which is home to Delta, Northwest and Frontier Airlines. With three additional locations in the city, Perry’s is a long-established San Francisco tradition, founded in 1969 on Union Street. Expect strong drinks, a good beer selection and fast service at the bar if you let your server know your tight schedule. Aside from everyone’s carry-on bags, Perry’s tries hard to not really feel like an airport bar. Restrooms are conveniently located across the corridor.
Laurie JM Farr is a freelance writer covering all things San Francisco. A transplanted New Yorker, she has traveled throughout the world as the Big Apple’s official tourism representative. She served as organizer for three Royal Visits to America. As an international relocation consultant, Laurie assisted more than 400 families with overseas moves and is a proud mother of two, thoroughly bi-cultural children. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.