Farm to Table Restaurants in San Francisco (and bay area)
In some places, farm-to-table restaurants are a rarity. In California, however, we’re blessed with many farm-to-table restaurants to dine at. Why is this cuisine so much easier in California? According to Slate, “California produces a sizable majority of many American fruits, vegetables, and nuts: 99 percent of artichokes, 99 percent of walnuts, 97 percent of kiwis, 97 percent of plums, 95 percent of celery… (and the list goes on and on). Some of this is due to climate and soil. No other state, or even a combination of states, can match California’s output per acre.” Whether you’re looking for a breakfast spot, a refreshing lunch, or decadent dinner, there’s a farm-to-table restaurant in San Francisco for you. Here are 11 of our favorites.
Chef David Kurtz’s second restaurant in California, Homage, takes farm-to-table cuisine to heart. As shared on their website, “Each week, our team travels to the market, building farm relationships, and gathering produce in perfect ripeness. We then prepare a concise, monthly changing menu, spotlighting and focusing on one single-origin farm.”
Lunch currently includes options like Warm Calamari and Roasted Chickpea Salad and Golden Summer Squash Soup. Their featured partner in July 2019 is K&J Orchards, about 67 miles from Homage.
Photo Courtesy of Homage on Yelp
Photo Courtesy of Shoshana G of Yelp
- Address: 2 Marina Boulevard Fort Mason, Building A San Francisco, CA 94123
- Hours: Lunch Tue-Fri 11:30am – 2:30pm, Dinner Mon-Thurs 5:30pm – 9:00pm and Fri-Sun 5:00pm – 9:00pm, Brunch Sat & Sun 10:30am – 2:30pm
- Farm fact: Green Gulch Farm is part of the San Francisco Zen Center
While you’re sitting by the dock of the bay, dine at Greens Marina for farm-to-table vegetarian food that’s consistently winning awards. Greens almost always makes the top 100 Bay Area restaurant list published by the San Francisco Chronicle, has been recognized as one of America’s best restaurants by Zagat, and is a Michelin Guide recommendation.
Their organic farm, Green Gulch, is in nearby Marin County. It’s also a residential Zen community that takes summer interns who want to learn about farming and Zen practices. They also source from local growers and organic farmers’ markets. Try their summer red curry with Hodo soy tofu, haricot verts, carrots, and cauliflower.
Outerlands is a mainstay in the by-the-beach eating scene as well as farm-to-table cuisine in San Francisco. The long lines for brunch on the weekends may leave you feeling like it’s maybe not worth the wait, but try it out. Venture to the Outer Sunset and see why Outerlands has lasted a decade. While they don’t have their own farm, their connection to local purveyors runs deep.
Owner Dave Muller speaking about the 10-year success of Outerlands says, “Our sourcing, relationships to our purveyors, that’s always been the unspoken, understood thing. We want to highlight that, because that’s something we’ve never changed. It feels good to buy produce and meat from the same people this whole time: K&J Orchards, Toby at Free Spirit farm…” Try the mussels or new moon legumes.
Photo Courtesy of Tiffany on Yelp
Photo Courtesy of Joyce C on Yelp
Joel Bleskacek and Maxine Siu brought Plow to the Potrero Hill neighborhood in 2010. They focus on no-fuss recipes and have a great menu just for kids. Breakfast and lunch are the stars here with options like lemon ricotta pancakes and soft-shell crab blt.
Farms and purveyors used at this farm-to-table restaurant include Brokaw Avocados, Five Mountains Tea, and Far West Fungi. Get ready for a wait – brunch lines can take about two hours, but it’s worth it.
A quaint spot in Nob Hill, we couldn’t make a list of farm-to-table restaurants in San Francisco without featuring Farm:Table. Their coffee is fresh and their menu rotates to highlight what’s in season. You can hang outside on their parklet with their pooch, and be sure to say hello to resident pugs Francisco & Nisha if you see them around.
They source veggies, fruits, milk, and cheese locally through Greenleaf, who work with farms like Christopher Ranch, Full Belly Farm, and more. Their coffee is roasted at Roast Co Coffee of Oakland and they provide tea from local T-WE Tea Company.
Photo Courtesy of Hana B on Yelp
Photo Courtesy of Fish & Farm
Originally located inside the Mark Twain hotel, this San Francisco farm-to-table restaurant has relocated into a bigger space in the Financial District. In addition to great food (like grilled calamari and cioppino), they now offer an expanded happy hour and cocktail menu, live music, and private events.
They source most of their fish, meat, and produce within a 100 mile radius and only serve sustainably harvested seafood, and naturally fed, antibiotic, hormone, and steroid free meats. They default to organic produce, and offer wines from small, biodynamic producers.
One of 100 winners of Wine Spectator’s Grand Award in 2018, Spruce not only makes great farm-to-table food, but pairs it with excellent wine as well (over 2,500 selections!). Executive Chef-Partner Mark Sullivan cultivates a personal relationship with local farmers and ranchers to bring the Bay’s best food to life.
“We take our food philosophy one step further by working directly with the farmers at SMIP Ranch, a private farm located in the hills above Woodside that grows a special selection of organic, ethically-grown, hyper-seasonal vegetables, fruits and herbs for the Bacchus Management Group’s family of restaurants,” say Spruce on their website.
Photo Courtesy of Anne S on Yelp
In Solano County California, you’ll find Be Love farm, which provides ingredients for San Francisco vegan restaurant Gracias Madre. Their farm store is open 10-5 daily, and you can even stay overnight for a price (check out their listing on Airbnb.)
At Gracias Madre, enjoy dishes like Pozole, Cesar salad, and my personal favorites, Coliflor Frito and seasonal Cobbler. Terces and Matthew created their restaurant to fill the void in organic, plant-based, non-GMO Mexican food, and they continue to deliver.
With a focus on organic wood-fired cuisine and a menu that changes seasonally, Nopa is one of San Francisco’s most well known farm-to-table restaurants. Their open-air kitchen gives diners a chance to see their team of chefs at work.
Their popular weekend brunch includes classics like Cinnamon Roll, made unique with the addition of Kadota Fig Compote, Navel Orange and Ricotta Frosting. For something more substantial and savory, try Garlic Oregano Sausage with Parmesan Potatoes, Cherry Tomatoes, Calabrian Chile and Poached Eggs.
Photo Courtesy of Alex T on Yelp
- Address: 499 Dolores Street at 18th, San Francisco, CA 94110
- Hours: Tues – Thurs 5:30pm – 10:00pm, Fri 5:30pm – 10:30pm, Sat 5:00pm – 10:30pm, Sun 5:00pm-10:00 pm LUNCH Wed – Fri 11:30am-3:00pm, Sat-Sun 10:30am-4:00 pm
- Farm fact: Namu’s farmer Kristyn Leach, uses organic, biodynamic, and permaculture practices without any fossil fuels
Recently reopened after seismic retrofitting, Namu Gaji offers Korean food that satisfies. Get gamja fries, hand cut potato, kimchee relish, gochujang kewpie mayo, teriyaki, bulgogi beef (also available vegetarian) and delicious stone pot and ramen with a cold cocktail on the side.
When we watched a short video about the farm we heard from their farmer, Kristyn. “We have integrity in the way we do things,” says Kristyn. “At the end of the day, no matter how stressful it is, I pick up dirt from the farm and know that positive things are going on. We’re farming in a way that emphasizes people’s relationship with a place that they care about.”
Salads, soups, sandwiches, and pizza, the cuisine at Stem Kitchen & Garden is familiar and flavorful. Try the kale salad with burrata, avocado, strawberries, smoked paprika vinaigrette or a spicy pizza topped with grilled corn, green garlic, queso fresco, and jalapeno aioli.
About their farm Stem shares, “Dedicated and experienced farmers oversee the planting, growing, and harvesting of the produce, freeing up the chefs to do what they do best – create delicious menu items that feature produce grown a tomato’s throw away.” In addition to their restaurant, they offer Health Kids Saturdays in the garden to teach children about farming and preparing their own food.
Photo Courtesy of Leonardo A. on Yelp
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