AQ Restaurant & Bar
AQ Restaurant & Bar

AQ Restaurant & Bar

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.aq-sf.com/
  • Phone: 4153419000x
  • Hours of Operation:


    Dinner: Tuesday - Saturday 5:30pm-10:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Californian, Mediterranean, Contemporary American
  • Executive Chef: Mark Liberman
  • Dress Code: Business Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Chef's Table, Counter Seating, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Catering: AQ is available for catering requests. Please contact Daphne Lucas-Knox.
  • Private Party Facilities: AQ is available for private parties ranging from intimate, custom tasting menus for six, to a full restaurant buyout. Our seating layout is flexible and can be customized for your special occasion or business function. The Cellar Room is perfect for formal dinners or larger gatherings, while our Whiskey Lounge is ideal for intimate cocktail parties. We will work closely with you to develop a special menu and tailor the ambiance to your needs.
  • Private Party Contact: Daphne Lucas-Knox 4153419000x

Getting there

  • Cross Street: 7th and Mission
  • Public Transit: BART: Civic Center Van Ness

    Bus: 7th Street & Mission St
  • Parking: Street Parking
  • Parking Details: Parking is readily available on Mission street between 6th and 7th street. Parking on Mission street is free after 6:00 PM daily, and free on Sundays.
A word from AQ Restaurant & Bar
The term “AQ” (“As Quoted”) often appears on classic restaurant menus to describe fresh, seasonal or specialty items. For this restaurant we extended this concept one step further—As we update the menu to reflect the freshest produce, we also gradually transform the interior of the restaurant to reflect the palette and tone of the current season. Executive Chef/Owner Mark Liberman showcases the quality and diversity of local produce, meats, fish and dairy by employing classic French technique, elegant plating and an unwavering commitment to flawless execution. We offer a nightly 4 course Prix Fixe menu, or our spontaneously inspired tasting menu.
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AQ Restaurant & Bar reviews from OpenTable diners
132 reviews since May 26, 2014
Overall Rating4.2
  • Food4.4
    Service4.3
  • Ambiance4.2
    Noise LevelEnergetic
81% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (99)special occasion (68)notable wine list (45)hot spot (39)neighborhood gem (38)romantic (35)vibrant bar scene (23)good for groups (15)late-night find (5)great for outdoor dining (4)great for brunch (3)scenic view (2)great for lunch (1)Show More
  • Summer tasting menu
    SFOmnivore
    Dined on 9/18/2014
    Inventive tasting menu featuring locally sourced delicacies with innovative beverage pairings. Rooted in France, the menu also draws from Japanese and California cuisines. Service was excellent although felt a little rushed toward the end plates. Highlights included a braised heirloom celery with the beef course, a tofu custard with daichi broth, and a purple carrot with roe. Only points off are poor atmospheric control (owners need to invest in an air conditioner given the open kitchen format) and a 'cheese course' that featured a solitary blivot of fried cheese. Notable wine pairings included a 2004 Ramsey Chardonnay that drank like Meursault and an immaculate 1998 Dunn Cabernet. Will return for sure.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great spot
    User499493
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    Food was excellent. Service was outstanding. Bar scene vibrant.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Very disappointing meal
    SouthParkFoodieVIP
    Dined on 9/12/2014
    Surprisingly, the food here was extremely bland and somewhat boring from a taste standpoint. This restaurant is trying so hard to be artsy in food presentation, they forgot that most important food has to taste good. You only have 2 choices for this restaurant: a $98, 8 course fixed price or a $58, 4 course meal, with 4 choices for each course. My wife and I chose something different for each of the courses; not one course was memorable for either one of us. The wine list is very extensive, but extremely over priced, with few bottles under $100. The service was confusing and erratic; with many different people serving us during the meal. We eat out often and will not be returning to this restaurant.
    Special Features:
    notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Attentive, timely and sweet
    ihackett
    Dined on 9/11/2014
    We chose the chef's tasting menu with the premier wine pairing. We noted that we default plant based (vegan-ish) with some seafood when the chef determined appropriate. Each plate was beautifully constructed, unique and delicious. The wine pairings were spot on and really complemented the food. The service team was simply outstanding - engaging but not intrusive, fun but professional. I would highly recommend AQ for a seasonal special date with your someone special.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Outstanding twice
    Vmalone
    Dined on 9/6/2014
    We were here for dinner pre-theatre two weeks in a row because I put the wrong date down on my calendar:) So, we got to try out different things on their summer menu. Both dinners were exceptional! Unusual, very tasty food. And the service is perfection. Lots of servers, but, never obtrusive. A new favorite place!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, notable wine list, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Don't waste your money or time
    Locke
    Dined on 9/5/2014
    Bottom line: 1-star because it's the food that matters, and you should not spend your hard-earned money on this food. The restaurant itself is very nice, with cool exterior and interior design. The service was not bad, but not great. The problem is that the food is simply NOT GOOD. Yes, it's well-presented with fancy tiny portions, and you're paying a lot for it, but that does not make it good. The dishes were half-baked ideas with no interesting flavors. My squid course was a tablespoon of seafood salad you could get at an Italian market plus a few slices of cucumber and blackberries. The fruit course was some melon with a dollop of cheese. You could honestly make this food at home, and better. Don't waste your money or time here.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • A Great Find
    OpenTable Diner Since 2004VIP
    Dined on 9/4/2014
    This was our first time at AQ and we caught the "summer" menu and decor. What a great room, great food, great staff. At $58 for a four course prix fixe AQ is excellent price/performance. Sort of a funny location, but we were going to a show at the Orpheum and it's really close. They also worked hard to get us through in 1.5 hours to make the show. We will for sure be going back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Menu
    Jerry
    Dined on 9/3/2014
    Having a choice between four different 1st, 2nd, 3rd and desert courses for a set price gives each diner a chance to customize his or hers meal. The choices are "real" in that they vary enough to be distinctive. The food matches expectations…excellent preparation as well as excellent presentation. The service is very good and enhanced by the knowledge of the wait staff. The table arrangement leaves a little to be desired. The tables are a bit too close to each other making conversation a bit confusing.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Consistently Good.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    Definitely wait to sit at the chef's counter. You really learn to respect the kitchen!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A Step Down
    EstrangeiroVIP
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    We thought the food had declined a bit since our last visit, with several dishes that didn't quite come together. Wine pairings were superb, the best part of the meal. But service issues shadowed the evening. At one point a previously unseen man appeared to ask whether I wanted more bread. I said yes, but no bread ever came (and the man wasn't seen again). And at the end of the meal, no one asked whether we wanted coffee; instead the check was brought abruptly. We still admire AQ and will come again, but they have too many people running around (we talked to four different servers of various kinds not including the sommelier) and not enough people taking responsibility.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • great food, excellent wine pairing
    fred06VIP
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Aq is a wonderful restaurant with an unique top chef menu. The 4 courses menu was incredible and the wine pairing insane. We have appreciated the bar with a wide whiskey selection. A great place and an excellent table !!!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Our new favorite before theater
    FoodieVIP
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    AQ was terrific and is an easy walk to Orpheium. We enjoyed the inventive options and fun cocktails. We will be back to try the 10 course sampling menu.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Service couldn't catch up with food
    sfsea
    Dined on 8/28/2014
    First of all, the food is good, not great, delicious yet interesting. However, poor service can seriously affect your dining experience, included the satisfaction towards to food. This review is mostly focus on the poor service we got from the host at that night. She wouldn't seat me until my friend's arrival when I am there first with my RESERVATION. She also told us we will have to wait 30 min to get a table otherwise bar seats were only option. It was Thursday night, tables are fairly empty. In the end, we got a table from our lovely server, and of course the host herself wasn't too thrill about our act. I would recommend invest money on somewhere have both good service and food.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Sommelier-Officer of Provisions
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    The server saved the evening.She was outstanding. Reg. Sat night out for dinner for two native SF. AQ dinning concept appeared intriguing. Lived up to expectations. A small detail to note. The Meat/Steak knife had a full tang and was balanced with weight in handle. Food Selection/ offerings adequate but not over bearing. Sommelier was only disappointment. Did not listen to my question and then charged for a bottle not ordered. AQ is well established and matured in SF Rest community. A must try for locals. Given the four season approach to menu, one should go 4 X per year. Do check your bill for errors.* ( sent private note to restaurant)
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Perfect pre-theater dinner!
    Sebdanca
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    I can't think of another place where the presentation was as artistic, the food as delicious, the service so outstanding, or the prices so reasonable. We each chose different items from summer prix fixe menu and had 8 courses between the two of us... each one more delicious than the previous one. We had a 5:30 reservation which gave us plenty of time to have a leisurely dinner before a 10 minute walk to the Orpheum for a show. A perfect night. Thank you AQ!!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great all around
    JustinVIP
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    Loved our meal, and the venue was great. We liked the concept of a sub-70 dollar prefixe. Not cheap by any means, but reasonable for 4 courses. Each course was above average, and something new. Service and staff was extremely professional.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Amazing food marred by poor service
    dan7000VIP
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    First, The food was truly amazing. But We probably won't be back because the service was so bad and the number of staff crowding around our table all the time was truly bizarre. It was an expensive dinner with cheap, frustrating service. We sat for at least 15 minutes before anybody took our drink order. When the waiter did take our drink order, he pushed us to order dinner at the same time. For the price I'd expect to get a drink order taken really quick followed by some time to look at the menu. The rest of the evening was similar - long waits followed by being rushed. Also, there was a bizarrely large crowd of staff in the room. Most stood around waiting for food to come up or water to filll. A very weird dining experience.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The Art of Food and Fine Dining
    LovesToDine
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    This place really delivered an evening of fine dining...it looks cool, it feels open and cool, the service was excellent and knowledgeable, the menu was simple enough to be readable but exotic enough to be interesting, the food itself was outstanding both for its beautiful presentation and its flavor/flavor combinations. I will go back the next time I'm in San Fran.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Dxbnyc
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    We tried the summer menu. Will definitely be back for the Fall!
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Winner!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2001VIP
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    I heard good things about this place but was not sure about the pre-fixe menu. Turned out every item on the menu was tasty! Can't wait to go back and try their Fall menu. I highly recommend this place.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Pretty Bad and Very Expensive
    Lynne
    Dined on 8/12/2014
    I had a $90, 4 course tasting menu in NYC the previous week that was probably one of the best meals that I have ever had with a very reasonable priced bottle of wine. AQ at $85 for 4 courses was way over-priced for the quality of the food and the wine list for a SF restaurant was a joke. All of the California reds were extremely over-priced for the quality of wine that is available in CA and they were pushing Chilean, Australian and Argentinean wines that were also over priced. Why in the world would you pay the import tax on a foreign wine when CA has the best wines in the world including Bordeaux. Coming from NYC, this restaurant was a very rude awakening in terms of lack of quality for a similar price.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Unforgettable!
    Red19
    Dined on 8/8/2014
    I went there with my family. We where in front of the kitchen as it's an open kitchen. The food was AWESOME, I was in heaven!!! Every single dish was different but soooooo good, with different flavors and sensations! Guys, you should go there, that one was the best restaurant I've ever tried. The only negative thing is that there were too much noise.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • AQ is the best
    Exclamation
    Dined on 8/6/2014
    Best dinner we have ever eaten! We will return for every season's selections,
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Imaginative food and great service
    Borntoeat
    Dined on 8/6/2014
    The food continues to amaze! It's imaginative and beautifully presented. The idea is to serve seasonal foods. We loved the lobster "bomba" and the chocolate dessert. The bar meister prepared a tasty dark rum drink for me. Allegra was attentive and friendly throughout.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • ChowciaoVIP
    Dined on 8/5/2014
    Everything about this would be great if the value were better. I have no complaints about the food, service or space, it is just not a great value unlike many other restaurants in SF.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Tasting Menu
    Karen
    Dined on 7/31/2014
    I didn't realize there is really only an option of the Tasting Menu or a "selection" menu, both at set prices. The set prices were ok, its just that there weren't many options. The food was outstanding, but my two teenagers didn't appreciate the gourmet food. I would go here with an adventurous friend who likes any type of food, as that is what you'll get. Surprise!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Outstanding food at reasonable prix
    RobTomVIP
    Dined on 7/30/2014
    Imaginative 4 course tasting menu, impeccably served at the high-stools overlooking the kitchen made for a delicious, fascinating meal for an all-too-rare date night. The food was prepared with care and excellent, seasonal, local produce. Several times we asked the chefs about the ingredients or techniques as they worked away just a few feet from us. Superb fish and meats, fruit and veg. Reasonable corkage and attentive wine service. And remarkable dessert, featuring huitlacoche ice cream (yes, made from corn smut fungus). All for $55 4-course prix fixe. We will be back!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Price Fixe heaven
    BB55
    Dined on 7/29/2014
    Found this restaurant using Google Maps. The high ratings are justified, although the food and beverage prices are hefty. Each of the four courses was a wonderful mix of flavors and textures. The portions are just enough to make you satisfied, yet wanting something more.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Rawlins
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    It's one of these places that could surprised you in a good way. All was super good.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Outstanding, even for SF
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006VIP
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    Sommelier Allegra Angelo's wine pairings are elegant, ingenious, and astonishingly reasonably priced. A Moselle with a thin dusting of chili powder on the rim of glass was especially inspired & memorable. Amazing food, beautifully served.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • DocBGR
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    Great food with tremendous service. Colorful neighborhood is far outweighed by food and service
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Extremely disappointing
    pupsterVIP
    Dined on 7/24/2014
    Had attenpted to get into AQ before on a walk in basis and was never seated. When friends were coming from out of town, AQ was my first choice. We were a party of 4 who had the 4 course menu at $75 per person. I have never given this comment before, but the portions were ridiculously small. The food was ok, but really nothing special. When something was interesting, there was so little of it that you couldn't figure how and why. The grilled peach desert had real potential. It had one small peach silce and another half a slice. The service was pleasant. The room nice and on a hot evening was pleasantly cool. Unless something major changes, I would never return. My wife was of the same opinion. TBD is a much better experience.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Disappointed
    HonestVIP
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    This is a highly talked about restaurant, and our expectations were high. We selected the 4 course testing menu. The descriptions provided by our waiter of the food items within each course sounded incredible. But the food itself was bland, the flavors were so-so and the portions were laughably small. In particular, the lobster bomba, the swordfish and the crudite left us wondering where the rest of the flavors went. Several of our courses came on very hot plates, which usually means that the food was sitting. We would not recommend this restaurant to any of our friends. Our expectations were high and AQ may have delivered 50% of what we expected. In summary, we felt as if we had expensive appetizers at a mid-level restaurant.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Gourmet, but courses = only option
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    The kitchen takes great care with the composition, flavor and design of the dishes. Good food all around. The restaurant only offers tasting menus - 4 or 7 courses for dinner. It's an expensive evening with wine/cocktail added. Recommend that a few a la carte dishes be added to the offering and that the tasting menu-only profile be elevated so that it's clear on OpenTable and any other communications that the diner is signing up for this experience.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Themasterbaker
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    Always a great meal with interesting choices that always delight. Inspired drinks and a lengthy spirit collection.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Fixed Price Winner
    KatyVIP
    Dined on 7/15/2014
    I loved the two choices of fixed price menus. We had the lesser expensive of the two with four courses, and we were very, very happy. The staff is quite friendly, the service is the best, and the food is a work of art -- not to mention fabulous. I look forward to returning.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • lv2lv
    Dined on 7/12/2014
    Food was well presented and had great flavor combinations. I appreciated the effort and talent to put the dishes together but the four course prix fixe courses were too small to fill up even a moderate appetite. Needed to get a late night Bi Rite ice cream afterward. Our server was attentive, freindly and the flow of the meal was smooth. We wanted to wait to order dessert and keep the menus but were told the kitchen liked the order all at once so they could determine (something?) more easily, which was the only time in our eveining that felt a little jarring. Creative industrial and organic loft space. Noisy, so lean in.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Had an Amazing Date Night!
    JDre
    Dined on 7/11/2014
    The four course meal was amazing. The meal was fun, the cocktails fresh, and the service very accommodating.. Not at all intimidating in any way. The food was amazing, and the presentation impressive. If you are the type of couple that enjoys watching chef shows at home you will love this place.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • No longer a fan
    sfdinerVIP
    Dined on 7/10/2014
    AQ was one of my favorite and most recommended restaurants until my visit last week. I had no idea they had changed to a prix fixe menu forcing each diner to order a 4-course meal! (That is unless you choose the 9 or so course chef's tasting menu.) It took away the fun of sharing small plates and having complete control of how you order. Somehow in this change (or maybe it's the fact I haven't been there for many months) the quality of the dishes went down. At the higher price point I would expect much more. They are trying too hard with the dishes with all of these different elements and they just don't work. Very strange turn at AQ and very disappointing.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Lovely place!
    ErikaSFVIP
    Dined on 7/5/2014
    We really enjoyed the four course tasting menu. The food was well presented and delicious. The cocktails and wine were good too. The dining room is casual yet beautiful.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.