1 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA
Soak in big, formal flower arrangements, jealous window gawkers and Willie Brown at the front table by the door. A San Francisco landmark, Boulevard is the Grandaddy of date spots. For nearly twenty years, Chef Nancy Oakes has been serving up some of San Francisco’s most magnifique French inspired cuisine with local flabor. Grab a seat at the sexy bar before your meal. And save room for dessert at this sweet spot. The pastries are divine.
230 California Street, San Francisco, CA
Ask to sit in the back of this modern Italian hot spot, away from the bar and close to the cheese cart. Perbacco is a Mecca for lovers of serious Italian cuisine, and a quick peek at the menu will let you know you’re in for a treat. The bar gets crowded, especially after work, so keep the date to dining here.
56 Gold Street, San Francisco, CA
Sam Spade woulda taken dames to this joint. You’ll want to sit upstairs, you’ll want to order a martini and you’ll want to wear pearls at this jazzy supper club. Order up some fun appetizers to share, especially the mini-grilled cheese. Of course, there’s always oysters. You know what they say about oysters. Don’t miss the nightly live music. The jazz band takes requests.
470 Pacific Avenue, San Francisco, CA
For the most special of special occasions, Quince is queen. This high-end, downtown spot is massive but inviting. Service is at it’s peak at Quince, where you’ll want to be sure to look as good as your surroundings. The space is almost as gorgeous as your guy or gal. And pasta is a must, it’s made this spot famous.
817 Sutter Street, San Francisco, CA
This tiny restaurant is a little bright for our hot date standards, but the food and the diner-vibe will give you and your date a lot to discuss. With new takes on old classics, Canteen’s unique take on dinner will surprise you. A bit of an adventure, you’ll be talking about your experience all the way home.
1911 Fillmore Street, San Francisco, CA
Small and casual, SPQR’s dark wood, candlelit interior is as sexy as the food. Everything is spectacular at this romantic Roman eatery, but pay special attention to the housemade pasta. And dessert is a must. After dinner, take a stroll along this charming stretch of Fillmore, with a number of bars just begging you to pop in for a nightcap.
3640 Sacramento Street, San Francisco, CA
There are always celebrities here. Always. But try and keep the focus on your hot date, even if Ben Affleck’s table is getting way too loud. Share the charcuterie before delving into your incredible entrees. Or sip cocktails at the chic bar and people watch. With stunning natural lighting, everyone looks luscious in this Pacific Heights palace.
5800 Geary Boulevard, San Francisco, CA
With nooks and cranies created by pillows and curtains, this romantic Moroccan spot is dark, sultry and adventurous. Order several items from this ecclectic menu and share. You’ll have lots to discuss at this surprising spot, on the “secret” list of every foodie in town. Reservations are a must, don’t be afraid to let your host know romance is on the menu.
606 Folsom Street, San Francisco, CA
Old school charm meets warm service, in our choice for THE best lighting. You will look like you’re in a Woody Allen movie and you’ll feel like a million bucks. Plus, this vintage spot is under new ownership with Chef Hoss Zare, whose award-winning Persion cuisine sets a very specific mood. The lamb shank is particularly special, but bar bites are great as well. Backed by a huge mirror, you can scope your sweetie and grab a glimpse of your look.
3316 17th Street, San Francisco, CA
This Mission spot is fun and casual, but with a vibe that encourages sparks to fly. Reasonably priced and casual, this is the perfect spot for a first or fifty-first date. If fried chicken is on the menu, go for it. It’s some of the best in town.
-Beth Spotswood, CBS San Francisco