Izakaya Kou
Izakaya Kou

Izakaya Kou

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.izakayakou.com/
  • Phone: (415) 441-9294
  • Hours of Operation:


    Dinner: T-Th 5:30pm-11:00pm

    Dinner: F-Sa 5:30pm-12:00am

    Dinner: Su 5:30pm-10:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Diners Club,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Bar / Lounge / Bottle Service, Japanese, Asian
  • Executive Chef: Nick Yoon
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Private Party Facilities: Our space offers private tatami rooms with a minimum seating of four and up to eight. The rooms feature sliding doors that connect to an adjoining room for larger parties. Each room requires a $200 spending minimum and can be used up to three hours. The largest room seats up to 8 and requires a $280 minimum.

    No shoes allowed in Tatami Rooms
  • Private Party Contact: James 415-441-9294x

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Fillmore Street and Geary Streets
  • Public Transit: We are located on the Southeast corner of Geary Street and Fillmore Street. Muni buses run regularly to the Japan town area.
  • Parking: Street Parking
  • Parking Details: Street parking is metered until 6 pm or there is one neighborhood parking facility a block away at The Japan Center garage at 1610 Geary Blvd.
A word from Izakaya Kou
Izakaya Kou is taking the idea of the traditional Izakaya and turning it into the modern gathering place where we offer high quality Japanese fusion tapas and various unique drinking beverages in a comfortable, modern and fashionable atmosphere. It is a place where people can linger with good friends, good food, and drinks in the heart of San Francisco.

*Happy Hour, Tues-Fri from 5:30 to 7:00p*

If you would like to reserve a Tatami Room, please be advised, each room requires a $200 minimum with 3 hours use of the space. The largest room, seating up to 8 is a $260 minimum.

Parties of 6 and more, please contact the restaurant directly between the hours of 4pm-10pm.
Continued
Foodspotting photos
See all photos
Izakaya Kou reviews from OpenTable diners
37 reviews since July 30, 2014
Overall Rating4.2
  • Food4.2
    Service4
  • Ambiance4.3
    Noise LevelModerate
80% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (19)good for groups (18)neighborhood gem (11)romantic (10)special occasion (10)hot spot (7)vibrant bar scene (3)late-night find (2)notable wine list (2)Show More
  • Great Happy Hour
    annette720
    Dined on 11/18/2014
    We stopped in here for Happy hour-$3 Sapporo pints. The food specials are good for seafood lovers but not a huge selection for non seafood eating folks. We ordered other dishes not on the Happy Hour menu-the Frisco roll was outstanding. Very nice decor as well.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, late-night find, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great experience
    DukeEarl
    Dined on 11/12/2014
    We needed a place to meet some friends before a show at The Addition and picked Izakaya Kou for the location. Parking was convenient at the garage at Filmore and Geary. Our server was very patient as we asked too many questions about the menu. We had a variety of excellent sushi ($10-$14), seaweed, and a pitcher of Sapporo ($10). The interior is a modern wood and plate glass mix which divides the space while keeping an open feel, and keeps the noise down. We'll go back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Perfect dinner before a show
    Tngal1961
    Dined on 10/30/2014
    This restaurant is right across the street from the Fillmore. Food was delicious with a beautiful presentation and reasonably priced. Service was exceptional.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Delightful experience
    RockyS
    Dined on 10/18/2014
    We were looking for a nice dinner spot before catching a film at the movie theatre down the street on Fillmore, chanced upon Isakaya Kou through abn Open Table search. The food, service, ambiance and location were all ideal for the situation,.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Great service!
    SFGal
    Dined on 10/1/2014
    The restaurant is beautiful and service was excellent. Just about everything we ordered were tasty, except for the sashimi platter (very average) and beef tataki (4 slices of overly salted and overcooked beef). The remaining items were kobacha croquette, miso eggplant, hamachi kama, black cod, and a big bowl of seafood ramen. Will return again.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Better than I expected
    bklinsenbigler
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    I had never been there before, but I really enjoyed it, fast service and the interesting menu items all made for a lovely evening with friends.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Delicious japanese tapas
    yummyfoodie
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    We had dinner before going to the Clean Bandit concert at The Fillmore across the street. Our service was excellent and we will return. The menu was quite extensive so it is good to review what you would like to order before you go so you are not overwhelmed. Light level is low and menu may be hard to figure out if you are not familiar with japanese terms. Foods to try: Kaki fry oysters $7, Kabocha Croquette $8, Geso tempura $7 (squid legs), fried Korean Kalbi tempura $10, Frisco roll $13. They had adequate portions for 3 persons to share. For 9 orders, 1 sake, 1 dessert and a rice totalled $112 + tip. If you choose from their chef suggestions, you can't really go wrong.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Pretty Place but Ok
    JonBill
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    I'd say the ambiance was great. Beautiful decor and good service. It's just that the food portions were so tiny that it's was a disappointment. It was pretty clear that it was not a Japanese-owned establishment. For the price, a true izakaya would not make their portions THAT tiny relative to the food quality. I know this place is trying to be fancy, but that tiny of a portion is just not tasteful considering the prices were not exactly low. I wish this restaurant references Kappou Nami Nami or Gochi in the south bay to see how true Japanese-owned nice izakaya restaurants operate. Also, they "recommended" kalbi tempura, but the meat was so hard that it was just not pleasant. Calpis Chuhai barely had alcohol in it.Everything else tasted ok.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • not for vegetarians
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 8/6/2014
    very little for those who don't eat meat or seafood.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 28 ratings-only reviews submitted since July 30, 2014
    • Overall Rating4.2
    • Food4.3
    • Ambiance4.3
    • Service3.8
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The following 24 reviews are from the Izakaya Kou reviews archive.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 7/29/2014
    Should not have bothered with making a res prior to arrival. Not knowing the restaurant we hoped by reserving that we'd have a decent place to sit. Quite the contrary. They put us in the worst possible location where we saw the back side of the kitchen and prep area (trash cans,etc.) Once we saw how bad the seats were, we asked if we could sit in any of the open tables (there were tons and they never filled up!!) that were better situated for 4 but were told we've have to spend over $200. We'd actually have been inclined to doing this but what a rude way to introduce 4 new guests? We sat in the horrible seats while other tables all remained empty. In the end we racked up a $200+ bill. We will NEVER return!
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Fantastic!
    opentablerVIP
    Dined on 7/15/2014
    Always reliable for fantastic service, and solid food at a reasonable price. Great for group dinners.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The best sashimi!
    Green
    Dined on 7/3/2014
    It's the 2nd time to get to Izakaya Kou. Everything is perfect, price is moderate. The only I can complain is hard to find a parking spot, but SF...you know. The sashimi is so fresh and taste perfect, staffs are very nice. I have no idea why it could not become one of the recommended Michelin.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, romantic, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • A really cool spot with great food
    LaytonVIP
    Dined on 7/2/2014
    I was initially taken by the environment. Lots of modern wood art, dark (but not too dark), and multiple dining options (closed off private spaces, a more open dining area, dividing glass walls that were open while providing group privacy). The food was great. My wife went with some random options that I can't remember and a giant mochi-like ice cream dish. I went with the sushi, and was very happy. Very attentive service. We'll be back for sure.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great place
    yumminess
    Dined on 6/28/2014
    Had a nice dinner before our show at Yoshi's. Tried the Frisco roll and Ramen-both good.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • BusinessDrunk
    Dined on 6/28/2014
    We reserved a tatami room for a bachelorette dinner and it was great. Fun environment, private. We spent about $45/person on food, beer, and sake.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Izakaya Kou
    Csq168
    Dined on 6/17/2014
    Their menu and cuisine selection is very fresh, creative, and ambiance is great. The food is pricey so be prepared. The servers aren't well informed about the cuisine or the sake. I was told that Uni will not be legal to purchase or eat, which is erroneous.
    Special Features:
    romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Really very good
    SmarterBear
    Dined on 6/17/2014
    We weren't sure what to order here because I've only eaten izakaya style food a few times before. So, we asked the server what to get and she suggested some of the chef's specialties and we were very happy we took her up on it. In particular I'd recommend the hamachi carpaccio, kabocha croquette and the eggplant with miso sauce (a surprising favorite). But besides that I'd really recommend their okonoMiyaki (which she did not suggest) a dish that not a lot of japanese restaurants make that is kind of homey, almost western in taste and appearance, which I thought was the best I've ever had, perhaps because of the unusual addition of smokey bacon? (and also very filling). We'll be going back--delicious food, a very pleasant modern space.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • fabulous find
    ElleVIP
    Dined on 6/15/2014
    I have had a lot of sushi in my life, and this place is now in my top five!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • a gem
    cfuentes
    Dined on 5/28/2014
    The food was just outstanding, we had sushi rolls, sashimi and also noodles for my son, who was very happy with it. It really worth it, I didn't expected that quality of food, I fully recommend it .
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Distinctive Dining
    Crayon
    Dined on 5/24/2014
    Enjoyed our meal immensely. I chose to visit Izakaya Kou after seeing the review in SFgate.com. The food presentation was remarkable. The most beautiful food and it all tasted as good as it looked. The fish we had was like eating butter. Highly recommend. Service was helpful and attentive.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great new find
    susiekVIP
    Dined on 5/13/2014
    We tried several smaller dishes and nothing disappointed. The fish was fresh and well prepared, and I particularly liked the kyokoku mori. The bacon enoki and the bacon asparagus were also very good, with a great grilled flavor. The gyoza were well prepared with a really good filling. We also tried to okonomiyaki, which was fluffy and delicious. Service was attentive and quick. I'm excited to go back and try other dishes.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • mediocre
    Annabelle
    Dined on 4/27/2014
    Izakaya Kou is a beautiful restaurant with ok food that is overpriced for what you get. Interior is gorgeous but completely ruined by horrendous elevator music being played very loud. Servers were very eager to get our order in, even advicing us to ring a button on the wall when ready. After the advice we had 2 different ladies ask us if we were ready on 5 different occasions. We did get a chance to push the button while waiting for someone to bring the check and again when waiting for someone to pick up the card. Close to a comical experience. How can a restaurant that stunning be so very oddly amateur.
    Special Features:
    Good for Groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Very attentive for our group
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 4/18/2014
    I don't expect much out of group dining experiences- servers have to deal with so many diners with distracted attentions, people get rowdy, the many dishes have to come out at the same time and temperatures. Yet the service here blew me away. Everything was great AND all the staff we dealt with were so kind and attentive. For that alone, I would make this a go-to in the neighborhood. Luckily the food was delicious too!
    Special Features:
    Fit For Foodies, Good for Groups, special occasion, Hot Spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • worst service ever
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005VIP
    Dined on 4/13/2014
    I had high hopes for this izakaya and gave it two chances. Both times we encountered bad service. Both times we arrived with an online reservation only to be told they could only seat us at the bar. what? When we pointed out that a reservation meant a reservation for a *table*, the hostess got very snooty and rude. After much discussion and a wait, a table was begrudgingly given. But the bad service continued: a long wait for food (no food on the table for 40 minute). No water until we had asked for water THREE times. The service was indifferent and we will not be back. There are many better izakayas in town.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great Izakaya
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007VIP
    Dined on 4/2/2014
    I was in SF for business on my own and really wanted a relaxed Japanese meal. I found this place on Opentable and figured I'd give it a go. I was really impressed. Its not too easy to find somewhere with a really good izakaya style menu, but they had all my faves. The okonomiyaki was fantastic, as was the tako wasabi and the hamachi kama. Also they have a happy hour until 7pm. Highly recommended.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Our new favorite Japanese restauran
    AMSFVIP
    Dined on 3/29/2014
    First time at this restaurant pre-Fillmore show. All four of us decided it's now our favorite Japanese restaurant in SF. The food presentation is great, the food is delicious, and the decor is really nice (we also felt like we were in Japan). Plus, it's reasonably priced. I was slightly concerned about service given some of the other reviews, but we had great service. Will definitely be returning.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great service. Food was amazing.
    Shasha
    Dined on 3/28/2014
    Great service. Food was amazing. Great atmosphere. Loved it!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, vibrant bar scene, neighborhood gem, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • overpriced, but great atmosphere
    SarahVIP
    Dined on 3/21/2014
    first time trying this place - love the decor and the friendly staff. food was okay - the fish was fresh and tasty. other dishes, like the tapas, weren't worth the price. overall, very expensive dinner and left feeling hungry. we were also trying to make a movie and when we went to pay the bill we were delayed with their computer system being down.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Just ok
    goodeats
    Dined on 3/20/2014
    The service was impeccable, but the food just so so. Probably will not be returning.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The food was awesome. The
    BRKeyVIP
    Dined on 3/18/2014
    The food was awesome. The service was OK until we wanted to order more, at which point the server forgot about us for over 1/2 hour, so we decided to wave him down for the check.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Amazing Food & Service
    DisappointedVIP
    Dined on 3/1/2014
    We LOVE this restau. Have been several times. This time when we walked in we were specially greeted AND because I am obviously mobility impaired, the host offered me a pillow for my seat. Then the feast began. Eggplant so good we ordered a second one! Every dish excellent, many superb.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Early stages
    cruisermaxVIP
    Dined on 2/14/2014
    The restaurant isn't 100% ready for service. There doesn't seem to be a system going yet, and the manager keeps advising/correcting his staff. Sushi bar is small - not really the type you want to sit at. Food is good and creative. Would go again to try different things on the menu (we're not Dragon roll and Chicken teriyaki types). The fried squid mouth is great if you like chicken cartilage. Overall, would go again to finalize my overall thoughts about the restaurant.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great neighborhood restaurant
    EddieVIP
    Dined on 2/11/2014
    Izakaya Kou reminded us of a souvenier shop in Northern Japan where the owner responded to our request for a local restaurant by serving us wonderful fried oysters, sushi, beer and wine that were amazing and very reasonable in price.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate