Cafe Claude - Downtown
Cafe Claude - Downtown

Cafe Claude - Downtown

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.cafeclaude.com/
  • Phone: 4153923505
  • Hours of Operation:
    Monday - Saturday: 11:30am - 10:30pm; Sunday: 5:30pm - 10:30pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Carte Blanche,Diners Club,Discover,JCB,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: French
  • Executive Chef: R. Patrick Kelly
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cafe, Counter Seating, Entertainment, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Smoking Area, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
  • Catering: For unique dining experiences and special events, please contact Leila Seppa leila@claudelane.com, hosted in 5 Claude Lane Gallery, catered by Cafe Claude
  • Entertainment: Live Jazz! Thursday through Saturday from 7:30pm - 10:30pm. Find our calendar online at www.cafeclaude.com

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Bush & Kearny
  • Parking: Street Parking
  • Parking Details: Parking is readily available at the Sutter Stockton Garage, which is one block away from the restaurant.
A word from Cafe Claude - Downtown
Close to Union Square and closer to Paris, Cafe Claude has remained an unpretentious neighborhood meeting place nestled amongst the urban skyscrapers. Cafe Claude is a classic Bistro featuring a zinc bar, Gallic waiters, and Paris cafe style food. Enjoy a lively atmosphere, weekend jazz, and a traditional Parisian cafe menu while seated in a cozy banquette or outdoors on charming Claude lane.

Signature menu items at Cafe Claude include, at lunch, Niçoise Salad, Steak Tartare, Coq au Vin, and Moelleux au Chocolate.
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Cafe Claude - Downtown reviews from OpenTable diners
228 reviews since May 1, 2014
Overall Rating4.1
  • Food4.1
    Service4.3
  • Ambiance4.2
    Noise LevelModerate
94% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
romantic (110)fit for foodies (105)neighborhood gem (100)special occasion (83)great for outdoor dining (68)great for lunch (56)notable wine list (41)late-night find (21)vibrant bar scene (19)great for brunch (19)good for groups (17)hot spot (14)kid-friendly (8)scenic view (2)Show More
  • Very Good, As Always!
    janesingsVIP
    Dined on 8/27/2014
    I have eaten at Cafe Claude many times over the years, and it is always very good. The food is delicious and the service is very good. The ambiance and location are nice.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great romantic French Restaurant
    goodcouple
    Dined on 8/26/2014
    This was a great French restaurant. The staff is attentive and they have a nice menus selection.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good Food
    DinerInDisguise
    Dined on 8/26/2014
    Love this little place! The food is always good.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great place
    Raphdraw
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    I love this place! Everything about this restaurant is wonderful. Very French like cafe.
    Special Features:
    romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fabulous!
    comingagain
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    Loved the food, service was outstanding. Waiter heard us sing to our companion a happy birthday and when desert arrived so did a candle. It was first class. And I love sitting outside in the alley.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good food for special occasion
    Shana723VIP
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    Good food, excellent service. But a bit crowded if you don't mind. Great for special occasion !
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • ElliotSF
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    Fantastic as always. Very welcoming and consistently great service and fod
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • open late, perfect
    saxo
    Dined on 8/18/2014
    Great to find a romantic spot open late on a Monday night. I love the little European-style back alley places in SF. Service was excellent -- our waiter was friendly and knowledgable about the wines, and gave us just the right amount of attention. We really just had a snack and drinks so I can't speak with much authority on the food, but I enjoyed my salad with chevre -- fresh and substantial. Will definitely come back for a full dinner -- a little earlier next time so that they let us sit outside. That was my only disappointment.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Amazing duck
    MariposashelVIP
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    Over the past years, I have ordered duck in many restaurants. It is a difficult protein to prepare properly. Too well, and it's tough; too rare and it's raw. Without question, this was the finest duck dish I have ever had the privilege to enjoy. Perfectly cooked, tender an flavorful, it was a joy. Add to that a glass of Zaya rum, my first taste and suggested by the bartender, it was perfect.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Wonderful meal
    JimAVIP
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    We went here for a birthday celebration, and requested a nice table for the event. We had never really heard of it, just found it on open table and read thru the reviews. We were very happy with the results. The service was quite personable, they made note of the birthday as we were seated and enhanced our dessert at the end. The food selection was limited, but we each found a couple things to choose from and everything tasted good, although the pork chop was a bit dry (hard to avoid). We arrived for an early seating and the noise grew as it got busier, but nothing that prevented conversation. We will definitely add it to our list of good places and go back.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • fantastic
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    The food and service was excellent. The live jazz trio was fun. It was a bit hard to hold any kind of serous conversation, but very romantic. It is down this little restaurant filled ally close to Union Square. I will be going back sometime soon.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Declining
    GeneralVIP
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    I've been here a couple of times and the last one was not very good. The food was very poor and the ambience was not as it used to be.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Overrated
    UgonorreA
    Dined on 8/11/2014
    Coming from Europe you know you have a high restaurant standard. Anyway I went there with my girlfriend, the ambient was really comfotable but the dinner was everything but remarkable, and the price way too high to what served. You pay the ambience and the location, but to eat good look somewhere else.
    Special Features:
    romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • great management
    dsfourni
    Dined on 8/10/2014
    Service and management was outstanding. Even after a misunderstanding on the meal choice, the waitress and manager made the third meal for free to go as a compensationm great food and great people
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • JC
    JCetc
    Dined on 8/6/2014
    Nice location and polite and pleasant staff. Food was acceptable but not outstanding. Music was great but the congestion and voice-noise of the venue diminished from the experience. It seemed as if it was trying to do too much with too little. I intend to return but with a different approach and expectation.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Really good food; intimate setting
    leftcoastlove17
    Dined on 8/2/2014
    Cafe Claude had a nice intimate feel. Crafted cocktail menu options were delicious and my husband and I both enjoyed our dinner selections; our food was fresh, flavorful and prepared nicely. Enjoyed the live jazz in the background as well. I would definitely dine here again.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • French Cuisine Perfection
    NatashaSFVIP
    Dined on 7/30/2014
    I love this spot, and we brought my company here for lunch last week. Lovely cheese plate. Great salads (love the Chevre Salad) and chicken. Will come back again and again.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Delightful Lunch
    RobBVIP
    Dined on 7/28/2014
    Claude Lane and Cafe Claude in particular make for a lovely lunch spot on a sunny day. Our server was outstanding and the food was delicious.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • My birthday lunch 7/28
    mrgoodman
    Dined on 7/28/2014
    Everyone was very accommodating, given that my dad and I sat for a while waiting for the 2 others to join us; at some restaurants there can be an "attitude" about staying at the table for so long, but not at Claude! It was really a delightful birthday lunch for me, and the waitress was delightful and patient with us. Also, the bartendress made me a vesper (not on the menu anymore) and was equally delightful (though I did miss Horacio!) Thanks also for the dessert with a candle with it; I like that stuff :-)
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • So - So
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    Second time at Claude. Pasta dish good, Chicken dish horrible. Waiter forgot 1 dessert which we had removed from the charges. Far to pricey for what you get. The music was good. We will not be returning a third time.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great for lunch
    POBoxVIP
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    Truite Amadine was a perfect selection for lunch. Trout was cooked perfectly. Visited in mid-afternoon, quiet with a cozy table in the corner.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Excellent food and service!!!
    love2lunch
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    I wanted to take my friend to a french restaurant for her birthday. Cafe Claude had great online reviews so I decided to make reservations. We were both impressed with the incredible food and fantastic service. The steak tartare was delicious and the Epinard (creamed spinach) was to die for. I had the Onglet. The steak was perfectly cooked. Our server suggested a beautiful rose for the meal and the creme brulee for dessert. We enjoyed everything. I will be back for lunch the next time I come into the city!!!
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good French foods in downtown!
    tq525VIP
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    Nested inside a small alley, the location is convenient, but hard to find. The foods are very good, escargots with puff pastry tops are excellent, so is the pate sampler. The rotisserie chickens very good as well. The service is very nice. Definitely recommended!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A hidden gem.
    pattiVIP
    Dined on 7/21/2014
    Tucked away down an alley way, this place would be hard to stumble upon but is worth seeking out. The food was wonderful.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • A quick trip to Paris😃
    Luv2escapeVIP
    Dined on 7/21/2014
    I've been eating at Cafe Claude for over 20years. Never once had a bad experience. Everyone I invite to join me loves it. Indoor or outside it's a gem.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good French, Cramped, So-so Service
    sfbets
    Dined on 7/20/2014
    The food and live music at Cafe Claude still shine, but you will sit inches from the next table and might not see your server for long, long stretches. Since the restaurant is so small it's tempting to wonder where the staff congregates (a secret nightclub through the kitchen?). Yes, tables all pushed together is tres chic, but less alluring when your neighbor bumps your table and knocks your water over trying to get out. Coq au vin very good.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Not recommended
    ThoughtforFood
    Dined on 7/16/2014
    Order a glass of Chenin Blanc only to be told they were out. Had the French Onion soup that was almost tasteless. For my entree I order the duck confit that was dry. Very disappointing meal...
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • finding this place....worth it
    reservation
    Dined on 7/14/2014
    it took 3 staff members to give us sufficient directions as out of towners we could not find the elusive "Claude" ally way "street"...finally, it was worth the search....food excellent, staff fantastic (w/ one notable exception of a neophyte searching for his rhythm)....very seasoned...felt like European fine dining....a bit pricey but again worth it....
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Restoluvr
    RestoluvrVIP
    Dined on 7/12/2014
    Our evening at Cafe Claude was delightful. A warm greeting, quick seating, an informed and helpful (but not intrusive) waiter! We were off to a good start. The Chèvre salad was wonderful, and generous enough for a satisfactory split. I had the trout - perfect. The sauce was so good. The raisins and capers added a lot of interest. My husband had the steak with fries. Perfectly prepared and very tender. We split the special Bastile dessert. Yummy. Having been to Claude several times for lunch as well as for dinner, we were happy to be impressed again. I am sure we will keep this on our list of faves. Oh, and the live Jazz on Sat night is just another bit of panache.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Confit and Vieux Carré
    louiseknowsVIP
    Dined on 7/11/2014
    Delicious! the Duck Confit, the Coq au Vin, the Escargot and the Vieux Carré cocktail all made up for a wonderful meal at CC.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • A wonderful lunch
    Robert
    Dined on 7/11/2014
    I took a friend for lunch after 1:00 on a Friday aftertoon and the restaurant was perhaps half full. We had great service. For daytime meals I like to be seated in the front area, which is light and airy. The wine list is full of interesting wine choices. We selected the trout almondine and the salade Niciose as our entrees. Both dishes were beautifully presented and tasty. I worry that this ownership group's expansion into other restaurants will damage Cafe Claude, but happily so far that has not happened. I highly recommend this restaurant for a bit of France.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A great French Bistro
    ttommyVIP
    Dined on 7/8/2014
    The food here is terrific, as is the attention given to each of us by the servers. We came for a special birthday, and it could not have been better.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Tres bon
    AdventurousFoodieVIP
    Dined on 7/7/2014
    Such a little gem. Has the feel of the neighborhood bistro in Paris. Shared a bottle of Bourgonne (Burgundy) and the pate, both great. The duck confit was very good. Plate du Jour was Article Char, very much like salmon, sadly a little over cooked. Best entree was the trout.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Excellent cozy French
    HleighVIP
    Dined on 7/5/2014
    Cozy atmosphere, excellent food, excellent service. The pate appetizers were excellent, as was trout armandine. Very good wine selection.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Food & Presentation but Noisy
    Steveo
    Dined on 6/29/2014
    Come here for the food and service but not to have a quiet conversation unless you eat outside in the covered dining area.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Food still outstanding
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005VIP
    Dined on 6/27/2014
    Been here many times and the food is still as good as ever. Our table of 4 had the asparagus soup and steak tartare to start, both of which were excellent. We had the monkfish, rabbit parpadelle, salad nicoise and poulet roti all of which were as good as we remembered. Oh, and the chocolate souffle..died and gone to heaven. Only watch out..if you are a party of 4 it is possible to get a table that is cozy enough that it becomes an issue simply fitting everything on the table.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Just ok
    Foodie
    Dined on 6/27/2014
    My husband and I ate at Cafe Claude before going to the theater. I found the tables very close and the party of 4 next to us unaware of others. We found the starter good; a great French Onion soup and solid walnut/goat cheese salad. Sadly, the entrees were unremarkable. Following our main course, I was surprised they do not offer nonfat milk for lattes. Timing was good for our event but with the number of choices downtown, we won't be back.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Unusually spotty service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005VIP
    Dined on 6/27/2014
    Cafe Claude does not usually disappoint - the food is always very good, and the staff is professional and on top of things. But this time around, our waitress was a ditz. She took my drink order then completely forgot to put it in. (Our party of two sat inside, and the section was three quarters-full. It's a good think the manager was attentive.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Fine Time
    Jaysan
    Dined on 6/26/2014
    All good. Happy, crowded, place. Worth the wait at the bar with friendly lady bartender and fine wine.
    Special Features:
    romantic, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Lunch-food decent, hostess snotty
    Dari
    Dined on 6/26/2014
    Was running late (10 minutes) so I called 15 minutes ahead of time and the hostess gave me attitude..I mean jeez, I'm your guest? And I'm courteously calling? Wtf! When I got there (5 minutes late), got a cool/unwelcome reception. The owner(?) a French woman, though, was gracious. Hard to shake off the reception!
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate