Canela Bistro Bar
Canela Bistro Bar

Canela Bistro Bar

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.canelasf.com/
  • Phone: (415) 552-3000
  • Hours of Operation:
    Tuesday-Thursday 5:30PM-10PM
    Friday 5:30PM-11PM
    Saturday 5:30PM-11PM
    Sunday 11:00AM-10PM
    Monday Closed
  • Payment Options: Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Spanish, Latin / Spanish, Tapas / Small Plates
  • Executive Chef: Mat Schuster
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cafe, Counter Seating, Gluten-free Menu, High Tea, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
  • Special Events: For special events please contact Canela's General Manager at 415-552-3000.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Noe St.
  • Public Transit: One block from Castro or Church Muni stations (K, L, M, J, T) Also two blocks from Noe and Duboce station for N. Multiple buses (22, 24, 23) run within a block distance of Canela.
  • Parking: Street Parking
  • Parking Details: Public parking lot on the same block.
A word from Canela Bistro Bar
We invite everybody to enjoy our Spanish inspired cuisine, made with the best and most natural ingredients available. Mat Schuster, Canela’s executive chef, has dedicated his life to create sophisticated and unforgettable flavors using only top of the line products. Canela also offers unique wines from Spain and California. Whether you want to have a formal dinner, a "tapa" or small plate with a glass of wine or a delicious coffee with one of our signature desserts, come to Canela and be assured that you will find what you are looking for.

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Canela Bistro Bar reviews from OpenTable diners
89 reviews since July 30, 2014
Overall Rating4.3
  • Food4.4
    Service4.3
  • Ambiance4.4
    Noise LevelModerate
96% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
neighborhood gem (59)fit for foodies (59)romantic (40)special occasion (25)good for groups (22)notable wine list (22)hot spot (21)late-night find (9)great for brunch (7)great for lunch (3)vibrant bar scene (2)great for outdoor dining (1)scenic view (1)Show More
  • Think Spain Not Mexico
    SFCAVIP
    Dined on 11/23/2014
    Too many folks think of Mexican food when they hear the word Spanish food. The food of Spain has no resemblance at all to that of Mexico. Spanish food is food that is more refined and grown-up. I always have the gambas, shrimp in a mildly spicy sauce served with a wonderful La Brea white bread. My other favorite are the coquettes, a fried ball of bechemel sauce with bits of ham, the two textures make for a nice contrast. Many of the items can be had as a tapas, small portions, or entree size, larger portions.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A lovely neighborhood gem
    KenHendSF
    Dined on 11/19/2014
    A lovely neighborhood gem with delicious Spanish tapas and good wines. Nice decor and friendly servers.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food and wine
    PrincetonVIP
    Dined on 11/15/2014
    Nice ambiance, delicious food (hard to chose, everything looked amazing), and a nice Rioja. Little bit pricy (at almost 200$ for two with wine and tip). The small dishes add up fast and the wine is good but a bit overpriced. Server was a point of criticism. We clearly we enjoying ourselves, talking and taking our time and after the 4th time she came by to ask in a short time, felt rush to order something. Could be a bad coincident, but there were two groups of at least 10 sequentially close to us. That is too large for a place this size. Way to noisy. The 'energetic' means one more level. Too much noise.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • First time at this restaurant.
    EretiredVIP
    Dined on 11/12/2014
    Like being in Spain once again; Wonderful meal. The food was inspiring. My wife and I will definitely come back
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Ambiance sells this place
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009
    Dined on 11/7/2014
    Went here for a romantic dinner with my husband. Loved the decor, vibe and service. Food was just OK. Decent but not really memorable in any way.
    Special Features:
    hot spot, neighborhood gem, romantic, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 11/5/2014
    Had a great night here celebrating my friends 40th birthday. Sweet place. Great food and personal. Lovely staff.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • steph
    Dined on 10/25/2014
    I have been to Canela a few times now, and have never been disappointed with the food. They had daily specials both times I have been, but the most popular items were gone by the time we arrived (reservations at 8pm and 8:30pm). The Chef came out to the table to see how everything was, he seemed to genuinely care about the product he was serving and wanted to make the most of the dining experience for the guests. You could definitely take the love in his cooking! It was a fantastic meal and I am sure to be back again.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • SFrdBiker
    Dined on 10/25/2014
    Food was great, but a bit overpriced for small portions.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • garyVIP
    Dined on 10/21/2014
    been twice and it's consistently good food - best in the Castro!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Simply the best!
    Jaybellan
    Dined on 10/21/2014
    What can I say it's my favorite restaurant. Each time I return the croquettes are even better than I remember. The atmosphere is fun, relaxed and intimate. The decor is classy:pretty but subtle. The service is super friendly and helpful. I love that Matt , the owner/chef comes and checks on the customers- it makes you feel special. It never fails to impress anyone I bring. Thanks Matt and thanks Canela!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Delicious as always….
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007VIP
    Dined on 10/18/2014
    … and the new waiter was great. Also loved the new chocolate dessert! It is always a pleasure to return to Canela.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Good addition to the hood
    foodforthoughtVIP
    Dined on 10/10/2014
    Good food, very authentic, very helpful wait staff. My only criticism is that the restaurant was hot.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Excellent food and service
    Sara
    Dined on 10/2/2014
    Had a fantastic meal and exceptional service. Definitely looking forward to coming back with my husband soon!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Neighborhood Gem
    LRReviewsVIP
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    The title says it all, We are are from Palm Springs and look forwared to visiting San Francisco and make a Reservation at Canela. The food is outstanding a great find.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • not consistent
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/18/2014
    I have been there 3 times now, the food seems to be really good one night but not the next time. It's frustrating to say the least. I hope that the chef can pull his team together. The place was not that busy on my last visit there were several open tables. I enjoyed my guest so that part of the evening was awesome.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great Food, Great Ambiance
    French4Me
    Dined on 9/10/2014
    Canela Bistro Bar is a fantastic neighborhood bistro with wonderful ambiance and superb food. In addition to its standard menu, Canela offers a Daily Specials and Features menu, and I selected all, but my dessert, from the Specials Menu. Each course was superb, perfectly seasoned and prepared, the ingredients fresh and delightful, and each bite a taste sensation. The Bistro also offers a good selection of Spanish wines which truly compliment the menu offerings. The only negative was the quality of service. As my meal drew to an end, my server forgot about me in preference to newly arrived guests, and as a result my dessert arrived after I had finished my coffee. Had I waited for my dessert to arrive, my coffee would have gone cold.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Food From Spain
    SFCAVIP
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    The quality of the food at Canela is consistent and good. The rabbit and seafood paella are superb. My favorite is the seafood paella. I have never taken a friend there that they did not like the food. Service is friendly.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Vibrant and robust
    LuluVIP
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Relaxed but sophisticated ambiance, friendly staff. The room got full on a Friday eve but not too noisy to talk. Anchovy flatbread. Duck meatballs. Choc almond cake.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great place!
    New2SF
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    We had never had Spanish tapas before and the wait staff was helpful to offer suggestions. All the food was delicious, the sangria was very good, and the atmosphere was nice for a quiet, romantic dinner for 2. We will definitely go back and save some room for dessert this time!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • well-thought out flavor combos!
    michaelbaaron
    Dined on 8/26/2014
    Canela is a solid tapas experience. Great ambiance, excellent and original flavor combos and many standard tapas (boquerones, etc.), combined with a solid Spanish wine menu. Mel was our waitress, and she was delightful!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Canella Great as usual
    Acme2
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    Great spot love the restaurant, I have to say the I prefer when Rachel to serve us, because she does an excellent job. The person that served us was fair, came back to the table a couple times. I had to take my partners water because he never offered us any ...8((( and the restaurant was out Rose wine... But the food is so gooooood. The new lamb w couscous great addition to the menu.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, late-night find, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Tasty but pricey
    MissV
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    The food is really wonderful. And our server gets points for really knowing the wine list well. I found the price tag to be a little high for what we got, but that didn't make me regret going. It's just not going to be somewhere I go often. Highly recommend the wild boar stuffed peppers!
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Very good unusual food
    Hadley
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    We had a very nice dinner with another couple at Canela last night. The menu had a large variety of dishes, vegetable, seafood, and meat, both small dishes and entrees, so we tried 6 different dishes. They ranged from good to excellent and included prawns, clams, lamb, zucchini, chicken, and a salad. I am loath to recommend Canela because I do not want it to become overly popular and difficult to get into!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great decor!
    DineroutVIP
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    Beautiful setting. The dishes were hit or miss. Meatballs and shrimpe were fantastic, ink squid and salad just okay.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • UnhappycamperVIP
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    Food and service were both a little off this time at brunch. It took 35-40 minutes for the first tapas plate to arrive. Patatas bravas were absolutely swimming in a thick brown sauce, topped off with even more sauce (that resembled remoulade). Absoltely swimming in sauce and soggy to boot. Tortilla espanola came late (and last) and was warm - evidently it had just been made before serving... Sandwiches were very good however.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Great experience
    Lovetoeat
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    My husband and I really enjoyed our dinner - everything from the service to the food was excellent! For the two of us we ordered 5 tapas which was a perfect amount - the portions are quite good tapas. The churros as other have indicated were delicious and a must have. Canela will definitely be on our list to visit again.
    Special Features:
    romantic, late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great experience
    PleasantVIP
    Dined on 8/8/2014
    Canela is a wonderful restaurant. The food was excellent, from a delicious flatbread crostini with ham and arugula, to a lovely salad with shaved vegetable, then hearty, but delicate meatballs and pork, to two scrumptious desserts. The atmosphere is warms and welcoming.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Lacks flavor
    cedricb
    Dined on 8/8/2014
    Obviously the restaurant focuses a lot on using fancy ingredients and creating good-looking dishes, but the flavors are just not there. The calamari cooked in their ink were flat, and the sauce/seasoning of the gambas was quite strange. The flatbreads were Ok, and the savior of my dinner was the pepper stuffed with wild boar. Sangria was OK but not great. The restaurant has potential but needs to shift the focus from presentation to flavors. Tapas are simple and small dishes, they are not supposed to look good but to taste good. Service and ambience were both good.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • great spot
    DoctorWho1VIP
    Dined on 8/5/2014
    Had a terrific dinner at Canela - outstanding selection of tapas and treats, with a very interesting wine list. Cozy, but not cramped, and very accomodating service. I look forward to returning there soon.
    Special Features:
    late-night find, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2007VIP
    Dined on 8/3/2014
    Great atmosphere, friendly staff, amazing food- absolutely loved it! The best tapas and paella around!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Tapas for brunch or dinner
    worgrl
    Dined on 8/3/2014
    Love this place. This is the second time I've been there and it's great to go with one or two other people in order to share as many tapas as possible. My favorites are the mambas, tortilla and croquettes. The only thing I'd improve is the coffee service.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great tapas, good wine
    patron
    Dined on 8/2/2014
    Our party of 5 had a lovely 2-1/2 hour dinner Satrurday night, with lots of excellent tapas and Spanish wine. Service was pleadant and not at all rushed, and the noise was low enough to allow us all to participate in our conversation and laughter. (perhaps by modern standards this is a noise level lower than moderate). We will definitely go here again.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great!
    Mike
    Dined on 8/1/2014
    Been here a few times and it is equally goo every time. Food and service are amazing. Definitely a keeper.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, late-night find, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Canela Bistro review
    Bms14
    Dined on 7/29/2014
    Didn't know much about Tapas so our Server was very patient and gave suggestions about what to pair with what. The meal was very relaxed and our Server was not hovering but appropriately present when needed. The area we were in was relatively quiet so the conversation was not having to shout at each other.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Delicious Tapas
    RosieAVIP
    Dined on 7/23/2014
    This little neighborhood bistro serves surprisingly authentic and delicious tapas! Our waiter suggested a few dishes - the squid, a piquillo de pimento - and we added more. The flatbreads are huge and make a good start to the meal. The servers and host were sooo friendly!
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 54 ratings-only reviews submitted since July 30, 2014
    • Overall Rating4.4
    • Food4.5
    • Ambiance4.4
    • Service4.4
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The following 311 reviews are from the Canela Bistro Bar reviews archive.
  • Tapas in The Castro
    Xochi
    Dined on 7/22/2014
    This was our second time here. Service was warm and friendly. We asked for a table in the back, and were moved with no issues. Our server explained the menu and various options for our group of 4. We shared a lot of different plates. The tapas are authentic and made with fresh ingredients. We loved the coca flatbread with squash and blue cheese. We even ordered a 2nd one with jam and peaches. The sangria was very good as well. The ambiance is modern and comfortable. It's definitely a neighborhood gem.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Dinner Experience
    JPFoodieVIP
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    Had a reservation but waited for 15mins to get seated. I had a better experience during late afternoon/early evening.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Solid neighborhood spot, good tapas
    bayareaeater
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    Canela is a fun neighborhood restaurant with good food and a trendy ambiance. The Spanish tapas menu is extensive, and various sizing options make this place a good spot for group dining, as the table can order a variety of dishes so that everyone can sample a bit of everything. Service was attentive and helpful.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Good, but just that.
    Maggie
    Dined on 7/12/2014
    We liked everything we orderd. Everything was rich, and just the right amount to share. There was only ONE thing that blowed us out: the churros. Nice place, nice food, nice wine. Just that simple.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • A little bit of Spain in SF
    SanneHVIP
    Dined on 7/12/2014
    Intimimate ambiance, great winelist and good tapas. We especially liked the cava, croquetas de jamon, manchego cheese and lamb skewers.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.