How to Eat Your Way Through San Francisco's Mission District | San Francisco Travel
Visitors enjoy authentic Mexican food in San Francisco's Mission neighborhood.

How to Eat Your Way Through San Francisco's Mission District

Explore the incredible diversity of authentic flavors in San Francisco's oldest and most exciting neighborhood, the Mission District.

The Mission is one of the most eclectic and multicultural neighborhoods in the city, which makes it one of the most interesting to dine in. Allow yourself plenty of time to walk up and down Valencia Street and 24th Street, two of the Mission's busiest streets, to take it all in. Consider riding a bike, since the neighborhood is flat and bike-friendly.

ABV

3174 16th St.

This renowned cocktail bar is celebrated for its innovative drinks, relaxed atmosphere, and exceptional food. With its large bar and trendy atmosphere, ABV is usually a busy spot on weekends with both locals and visitors. Explore their craft cocktail menu paired perfectly with delicious small bites and entrees like fried cauliflower, chicken chow mein, or gulf shrimp tacos. 

Belmar Meat Market – La Gallinita

2989 24th St.

If you want a true 24th Street experience, head to this Mission meat market that also serves tacos inside. The salsas are fiery and the meats are freshly cut (try the salty cecina and suadero). Try a trio of chorizo tacos and top them off yourself with condiments and salsa.

buddy

3115 22nd St.

Known for its warm, welcoming atmosphere and thoughtfully curated menu, Buddy offers a delightful dining experience that captures the heart and soul of San Francisco's culinary scene. Their wine bar is a standout feature, boasting an impressive selection of natural and biodynamic wines from around the world. Stop in, try something new, and enjoy quintessential SF vibes. 

Craftsman and Wolves

746 Valencia St.

Craftsman and Wolves is known for its innovative approach to traditional baked goods. Established by renowned pastry chef William Werner in 2012, it quickly became a beloved destination for both locals and visitors seeking unique and artfully crafted pastries. Stop by their location on Valencia Street or find them at many local stores, cafes, and restaurants that feature their iconic pastries. 

Delfina

3621 18th St.

A long-standing San Francisco classic for Cal-Italian, Delfina offers dishes that follow the Italian culinary ideology: simply prepared and letting the ingredients stand on their own. The spaghetti, trippa alla fiorentina (don’t knock it until you’ve tried it!), and hanger steak are all local faves, but the seasonal dishes really shine. The city’s best panna cotta awaits at the end of your meal. Next door, you’ll find the much-adored Pizzeria Delfina (Neapolitan-style heaven), and on Valencia Street is Locanda, their Roman-inspired restaurant with a full bar.

El Farolito

2779 Mission St.

Don't be surprised to find a line out the door at 2 a.m. at this Mission institution located right next to the 24th Street Bart station. Burritos, tacos and their special big fat super quesadilla "suiza" leave the crowds with full-bellied satisfaction. You can even get them served with a cold Tecate or giant margarita at the local dive bar of the same name next door.

flour + water

2401 Harrison St.

Wood-fired pizza and handmade pasta (from eggplant tortellini to hen polpettini) are the heart of the menu at this simple yet stylish Italy-meets-Northern California eatery. Pasta-making classes and culinary education events happen frequently at flour + water which lets you watch your meal being prepared while you down fine Italian vino and awesome antipasto.

Foreign Cinema

2534 Mission St.

One of the most atmospheric venues in the city, Foreign Cinema has a huge patio where films are screened on the back wall while you dine. The industrial chic interior still impresses after more than 15 years. The Cal-Med menu includes quality charcuterie, oysters, and their incredible fried chicken. The weekend brunch is one of the city’s best (they do magical things with eggs) and their Bloody Mary's have a cult following.

Lolinda

2518 Mission St.

This spacious restaurant is built for groups and birthdays, and the dim lighting makes it right for a date, too. The Argentine steakhouse menu at Lolinda features a variety of meats and cuts from the grill (including the 26 oz "Gaucho" ribeye), with salads, Latin American small plates, and good cocktails as well.

Lolo

974 Valencia St.

This lively Jalisco-style Mexican restaurant will hit you with a blast of color and playful décor. Lolo's cutting-edge cocktails then steal your attention, quickly followed by inventive dishes made with seasonal and local ingredients, like the taco tropical, panko avocado taco, chicken tinga tostadas, and tuna tacos. Brunch (vegetarian and gluten-free crispy chilaquiles anyone?) is also served Friday–Sunday.

Penny Roma

3000 20th St.

This casual offshoot from the popular Flour + Water restaurant group makes a huge statement! This chic restaurant and pasta shop is the perfect spot for everything from date night to weeknight dinners. Relax on their plant-filled patio and devour delicious hand-crafted pasta bowls, or try one of their mouthwatering mains, like their stripped seabass or braised pork shoulder. 

The Story of Ramen

3231 24th St

At The Story of Ramen, you'll find a unique culinary experience that not only lets you make your own ramen noodles but also teaches you about the culture, technique, and history of this tasty bowl of soup. Book a class with friends and enjoy this interactive food experience, perfect for a cold SF night or rainy day. 

Tacolicious

741 Valencia St.

This is a Valencia Street spot that’s popular with a younger crowd (it gets boisterous, especially around happy hour). Weekend brunch is also a scene. Tacolicious offers well-crafted margaritas to go with a variety of tacos (like beef short rib, Baja-style fried Pacific cod, or potato and chorizo), chile con queso, and other playful Mexican and Mexican-inspired dishes.

La Taqueria

2889 Mission St.

Anyone who comes to San Francisco and doesn’t experience one of the (off-menu) “tacos dorados” at this benchmark taqueria is missing out. A crispy taco comes wrapped in a soft one, stuffed with your meat of choice. Get their superlative carnitas or carne asada, and whether you want it "super" or not is up to your appetite. Their atomic salsa verde is pure magic. Pro tip: You can also get any of their burritos “dorado” style as well.

Aaron Danzig
Aaron Danzig

Aaron is the Manager of Digital & Social Media Marketing at San Francisco Travel. He has lived in San Francisco for over 9 years and has worked in Travel & Tourism for over 7 of those. He is usually exploring the Bay Area hunting for that new and unique experience and good food too! 


The Golden Gate Bridge at sunset with a multicolored sky and the San Francisco Bay in the foreground.
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