The Oldest Restaurants In San Francisco, California

oldest restaurants in san francisco

One of the most vibrant cities in the United States, San Francisco attracts visitors from all over the world each year. The city is known for its diverse culture, amazing scenery, great climate, and let us not forget, amazing food! If you are in San Francisco, you should definitely go on a culinary tour and check out some of the oldest dining establishments. It is one of the best ways to learn more about the city’s rich history and culture. Read on to find out more about the oldest restaurants in San Francisco, that you definitely must visit during your stay.

1. Tadich Grill

tadich grill exterior
Source: Photo by user Krista used under CC BY 2.0

Located in the heart of the Financial District, Tadich Grill in San Francisco is California’s oldest, continuously-run restaurant, and the third oldest in the U.S. Essentially a seafood restaurant, Tadich Grill was originally started in 1849 and has been serving delicious fare for more than 160 years. Its charm lies in its old-school setting and an atmosphere that is always buzzing. If you want to taste delicious seafood made with the freshest ingredients and classic cocktails, Tadich Grill is the place to go.

Tadich Grill

Address: 240 California St, San Francisco, CA 9411

Website: Tadich grill

Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 11:30am - 9:30pm (closed on Sun)

2. Cliff House

Cliff House Restaurant - San Francisco, CA
Source: Photo by user Shelby L. Bell used under CC BY 2.0

Located on Point Lobos Avenue above the cliffs north of Ocean Beach, the Cliff House is an amazing San Francisco restaurant that serves Californian cuisine. Known as one of the city’s icons, the eatery has provided elegant meals and mesmerizing ocean views since 1863, making it one of the oldest restaurants in San Francisco. Apart from a seasonal California coastal menu, the Cliff House offers weekly specials such as Wine Lovers’ Tuesday, Friday Night Jazz and The Bistro Wednesday Night Prix Fixe.

Cliff House

Address: 1090 Point Lobos Ave, San Francisco, CA 94121

Website: Cliff House

Opening hours: 9am - 9:30pm (daily)

3. Tommy’s Joynt

tommy's joynt
Source: Photo by user Nan Palmero used under CC BY 2.0

In business since 1947, Tommy’s Joynt is a certifiable institution of San Francisco and a must-visit when you are in the city. This old-school bar and restaurant is famous for its inexpensive blue-plate specials and sandwiches. If you visit Tommy’s Joynt, do not forget to order the buffalo chili – it is a lip-smacking dish that outdoes everyone else’s recipe. If you want a casual restaurant to enjoy great food and drinks without spending a fortune, you should definitely go to Tommy’s Joynt.

Tommy’s Joynt

Address: 1101 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94109

Website: Tommy’s Joynt

Opening hours: 10am - 2am (daily)

4. The Old Clam House

Fish and chips at The Old Clam House
Source: Photo by user Dale Cruse used under CC BY 2.0

Opened in 1861 and still standing at the original location, The Old Clam House is another San Francisco icon that you must visit. This is a legendary seafood spot that serves up some of the most delicious and freshest clams, crabs and chowder. The Old Clam House is also known for its signature cioppino – a must-try when you are here. Seafood is not the only cuisine served here. You can also bite into the mouth-watering prime rib. Do not give this restaurant a miss if you are ever in San Francisco.

The Old Clam House

Address: 299 Bayshore Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94124

Website: The Old Clam House

Opening hours: 11:30am - 10pm (daily)

5. Sam’s Grill & Seafood Restaurant

Source: Pxhere

This quintessential San Francisco restaurant was established in 1867 and is known for its traditional San Francisco cuisine. The menu focuses on locally sourced ingredients, so you can always expect to bite into the freshest, most delicious seafood dishes and many others. Started as an open-air oyster market, Sam’s Grill & Seafood Restaurant turned into one of the most popular seafood restaurants in the city by the 1890s. Aside from superb food, you can also enjoy superb drinks – the bar has a great wine list – in a relaxed lounge with a patio.

Sam’s Grill & Seafood Restaurant

Address: 374 Bush St, San Francisco, CA 94104

Website: Sam’s Grill & Seafood Restaurant

Opening hours: 11pm - 9pm (daily)

6. Fior d’Italia

Ristorante Fior d'Italia
Source: Photo by user Justin Ennis used under CC BY 2.0

Opened in 1886 by Angelo Del Monte to feed the gold miners and fortune hunters who roamed the Barbary Coast, Fior d’Italia is one of San Francisco’s famous landmarks. If you are in the mood for authentic Italian cuisine, there is no better place to go. This is where you will find Italian fine dining at its best. Fior d’Italia’s location is charming, and the ambiance and service are excellent as well. You can feast on classic Italian dishes like the rabbit in a mushroom and red wine sauce served on perfectly-cooked polenta, ravioli stuffed with pumpkin, and loads more. When it comes to the oldest restaurants in San Francisco, this is one place you should not miss.

Fior d’Italia

Address: 2237 Mason St, San Francisco, CA 94133

Website: Fior d’Italia

Opening hours: 11:30am - 9:30pm (daily)

7. Schroeder’s

Restaurant Schrøder Oslo with painting of Torggata bad
Source: Photo by user Helge Høifødt used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Open since 1893, Schroeder’s is a historic German beer hall in San Francisco and has been serving world-class German fare for the past 120 years. In fact, it is reinventing the way the city views German cuisine. The first thing you will notice when you enter Schroeder’s is the eye-catching décor with Historical Wall of Steins, Herman Richter murals and the original millwork throughout, paying homage to its Bavarian heritage. You can bite into delicious dishes on the menu including wursts and schnitzels, versperplatte, schwings, and many more. You can also enjoy 1 of the 22 German beers on tap as well as a great selection of wines and cocktails at the bar.


Address: 240 Front St, San Francisco, CA 94111

Website: Schroeder’s

Opening hours: 4pm - 10pm (daily)

8. John’s Grill

San Francisco - John's Grill 03
Source: Photo by user Joe Mabel used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Opened in 1908, John’s Grill is one of San Francisco’s most historic restaurants and one of the city’s oldest and most famous ones too. In fact, it is so famous that it has hosted celebrities from across the globe for over 100 years. When you go to John’s Grill, you will be impressed not only by the food but also the dark paneled walls framed with pictures of famous patrons and period furnishing. The eatery serves amazing steaks as well as fresh seafood expertly prepared by great chefs. Do not forget to go to the upper-level dining room for live jazz every night.

John’s Grill

Address: 63 Ellis St, San Francisco, CA 94102

Website: John’s Grill

Opening hours: 11am - 9:30pm (daily)

9. Alioto’s

Source: Photo by user Rick used under CC BY 2.0

Located in the heart of the famed Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco, Alioto’s was opened in 1925 and has been serving local seafood at the same location since then. It is undoubtedly the oldest family-owned and operated restaurant in the city. With its three-tiered dining room, this splendid restaurant gives every guest jaw-dropping views of the Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco Bay, or the Wharf. The menu includes recipes that have been passed down through the generations, including Matriarch Nonna Rose’s world-renowned cioppino, San Francisco’s Finest Calamari, Dungeness crab, and a whole lot more delicacies.


Address: 8 Fishermans Wharf, San Francisco, CA 94133

Website: Alioto’s

Opening hours: 11am - 11pm (daily)

10. Sabella & La Torre

Grilled Garlic Prawns
Source: Pixabay

Established in 1927, Sabella & La Torre is one of the few original restaurants in Fisherman’s Wharf that exists to this day. If you are looking for fantastic seafood in one of the oldest San Francisco restaurants, this is the place to go. You can enjoy exquisite seafood platters like Fettuccini with Bay Shrimp and Grilled Garlic Prawns, just to name a few. There is also a stand outside the main restaurant where they serve Half-Shelled Oyster and Clam Chowder for those on the go. The dining area is quaint and cozy and has the unique feel of bygone San Francisco traditions that not many restaurants in the city have.

Sabella & La Torre

Address: 2809 Taylor St, San Francisco, CA 94133

Website: Sabella & La Torre

Opening hours: 10am – 10:45pm (daily)

Treat your taste buds to an extravagant feast

As you can see, there are quite a few historic establishments in San Francisco where you can enjoy some of the most delicious dishes, whether it is steaks, seafood, Italian cuisine, etc. When you are in the city, you should definitely take the time to visit the oldest restaurants in San Francisco and treat yourself to all of the culinary delights that they have to offer.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

Get Trip101 in your inbox

Unsubscribe in one click. See our privacy policy for more information on how we use your data

 Want to contribute as a Local Expert?
Explore San Francisco
Good things are meant to be shared!