Best Tasting Menus In San Francisco

July 24, 2013 5:00 AM
Tasting menus – what a great idea. How many times have you been in a great restaurant and the menu was so enticing that you wished you could order all of it? Well, the tasting menu is the answer to this dilemma. Many fine restaurants now offer tasting menus, allowing you to sample a wide variety of their wares without damaging either your waistline or your budget. San Francisco is replete with excellent restaurants, some of the finest in the world, and many now offer tasting menus. Below are but a few samples.

See our previous Best Tasting Menus In The South Bay here.

1722 Sacramento St.
San Francisco, CA 94109
(415) 567-5432
For more than two decades, Acquerello has been offering fine Italian food in its upscale dining venue in San Francisco’s Knob Hill neighborhood. Remember, there is a lot more to the cuisine of Italy than pasta. Acquerello’s talented young blood takes great pride in introducing you to the diversity of this county’s cuisine. And, if you’re looking for a tasting menu, well Acquerello has that and then some. It suggests that you order the tasting menu in advance. The chef’s surprise seasonal tasting menu, which changes daily at the chef’s whim, is absolutely fantastic. This pièce de résistance might include such creations as lightly grilled prawn with white balsamic, fresh ginger bud and the freshest of basil, or the signature red pepper budino with sun-dried cherry tomatoes, marcona almonds and the rare manchego cheese from Spain, or perhaps the risotto of green Romano beans, parsley, garlic and mussels. Still not tempted? How about the ridged pasta artfully enhanced with foie gras, black truffle and marsala. At $125 per person, it is something to reserve for that very special night. Wine parings are available for an extra charge.

Related: Best Sangria Spots In San Francisco 

Millennium Restaurant
580 Geary St.
San Francisco, CA 94102
(415) 345-3900
Millennium Restaurant is committed to supporting the concept of sustainable agriculture, organic food production, small local farms, recycling and composting. Its outstanding menu is prepared from daily delivered organic produce, which guarantees you excellence in gourmet vegan dining combined with produce by environmentally friendly methods. Be sure to ask to see the tasting menu which offers you a delectable romp through Millennium’s delightful vegetarian and vegan cuisine. Wine and food parings are also available. Whoever said vegetarian food was boring obviously has never been to Millennium.

1320 Castro St.
San Francisco, CA 94114
(415) 285-0250
If you want to talk about tasting menus, then tapas are where it’s at, and the tapas at Contigo are outstanding. This Noe Valley restaurant features a menu inspired by the rustic flavors of Catalan. It’s the only place in San Francisco where you can sample the legendary jamón iberico de bellota as well as delectable fresh flatbread baked daily in the wood-burning oven. Tender, sweet, pink ham and the freshest of fresh bread; it just doesn’t get much better than that. Check out the paella Tuesday tasting menu. This innovative offering includes paella and four of the night’s chef’s specials. At $32, it’s a real treat.

Related: Best Grilling Gadgets For Your Summer Cookouts

Mezés Kitchen & Wine Bar
2373 Chestnut St.
San Francisco, CA 94123
(415) 409-7111
Freshness has always been the foundation of the Greek cuisine and if you’re looking for fresh, well, you needn’t look further than Mezes. Its menu changes frequently depending on availability of fresh, locally produced ingredients. The Greek commitment to using only the finest ingredients and California’s bounty combine to make a memorable dining experience. At Mezes, you may design your own tasting menu from such traditional offerings as: spanakopita – that delectable Greek creation of delicate filo dough and spinach; tzatziki – a cooling concoction of yogurt, cucumber, dill, garlic and olive oil, blended and served with grilled pita; elies – feta, kalamata olives, olive oil and oregano; kefalograviera saganaki – dry goat cheese drizzled wih olive oil and lemon; melitzanosalata – smoked eggplant, onions, tomatoes and yogurt blended and served with grilled pita; and of course don’t forget dolmathes – rice, tomato and pine nuts rolled up in preserved grape leaves.

Dosa South Indian Cuisine
1700 Fillmore
San Francisco, CA 94115
(415) 441-3672
Fine Southern Indian cuisine is served at both Dosa locations. Although the cuisine is not limited to vegetarian, vegetarians and vegans will be at home in this outstanding restaurant. The delectable cuisine features the freshest fruits and vegetables. Be sure to try the delectable idlis, duplings made of steamed rice, as well as the Dosa and uttapas, roasted rice crepes and pancakes. Add zest to your meal with the tantalizing wide selection of interesting chutneys and other condiments. And be sure to try the delicate coconut water with its elegant cooling effect. Your experience is bound to be rewarding. The three-course tasting menu is an affordable $39 with an option for wine pairings for an additional $20.

Geraldine Duncann is a freelance writer covering all things San Francisco. Her work can be found on

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