Powered By OpenTable: Restaurant Reservations. Right this way.
Restaurant Reservations - Free • Instant • Confirmed
  • PLAJ

  • Online Reservations

PLAJ
PLAJ
  • Address:
    333 Fulton Street
    San Francisco, CA 94102
    Neighborhood:
    Civic Center / Hayes Valley / Van Ness
  • Cuisine:
    Scandinavian
    Price: $30 and under

PLAJ Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.plajrestaurant.com
  • Phone: (415) 863-8400
  • Hours of Operation:

    Dinner: Sun-Monday 5:00PM - 8:15PM
    Tuesday-Thurs 5:00PM - 10:15PM
    Fri-Sat 5:00PM - 10:30PM
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Scandinavian, European, Californian
  • Executive Chef: Roberth Sundell
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Beer, Farm to Table, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Private Party Facilities: Please contact Andrea Sundell. Subject to availability.
  • Private Party Contact: Andrea Sundell (415) 294-8925

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Franklin Street
  • Parking: Valet
  • Parking Details: Valet parking is provided for a fee through the Inn At The Opera, subject to available space.
A word from PLAJ
Introducing PLÄJ, a new innovative concept from Swedish born Owner/Chef Roberth Sundell where California fare and Scandinavian flavors become one. PLÄJ is a celebration of local and seasonal ingredients inspired by the rustic flavors and simple elegance of Scandinavian cusine. PLÄJ embodies the soul of Scandinavia,the place to share the experience of new flavors, great wine, Scandinavian beer, and cocktails. Continued
Foodspotting photos
See all photos >
Diner Reviews
  • "What they do with herring is spectacular. Their homemade infused vodka was a delightful accompaniment to their fish dishes, and it’s definitely worth trying. They also have freshly baked bread, pumpernickel I think (anyway, it was dark and fragrant). You’ll need plenty of their freshly baked bread to sop up the amazing sauces that accompany each meticulously prepared dish. We had a wonderful time at Plaj. Overall: extremely yummy food and great staff which made the evening fun."
    Dined on 7/18/2014
  • "Wonderful experience! Will be back! The service was excellent from everyone. Creative drinks. Bar service was knowledgeable, quick, and tasty. The wait staff was thoughtful, brilliant, and fun. James was spectacular. And James's relief waitress was kind and friendly. Now the food, it was out of this world. Nothing matches the creativeness, and out of the box menu like this any where else in the City. Different yet delicious, multilayered, and simply brilliant. The decor and furniture was beautiful and comfortable. Every last detail was noticeable and appreciated. I hesitate writing this rave review because then people will find out and I won't be able to get reservations the next time I dine here. Thank you Plaj!!!!!"
    Dined on 7/17/2014
  • "Hadn't been back to Plaj in a while and the meal made me wonder why not. As usual everything was delicious and different from most S F restaurants. Great service and we could hear each other. Maybe my favorite restaurant."
    Dined on 7/14/2014
  • "This is fresh, interesting, delicious food in a great atmosphere, good service and great cocktails. Very much enjoyed it and highly recommended. We ate family style and loved everything, particularly the charcuterie plate (oh, that apricot jam with it was amazing) and the gnocchi. YUM!"
    Dined on 7/6/2014
  • "My husband and I enjoyed our after opera dinner at Plaj. The food was excellent, the service was outstanding and I found the ambience very conducive to actually having a conversation with my husband (without raising my voice) even though we were in close quarters to another couple. The wait staff (unfortunately, I've forgotten his name but not because he was not memorable!), was very patient in explaining each of the dishes and allowing us to order separate dishes since we did not know how hungry we would be after a dish."
    Dined on 7/6/2014
  • "Great intimate place tucked into the back of a small hotel in the Civic Center/Hayes Valley area. The menu serves a wide variety if Scandinavian influenced and inspired dishes. So many great items I had a hard time choosing. I ended up ordering the tasting menu, which I usually don't, as there will be a couple great items and a couple missed. Not here. We also ordered the charcuterie plate, which was very nice and the pickled onions particularly so. For mains I had the venison which was cooked a perfect medium rare and the squab which was also beautifully cooked. Looking back at the meal, the things that stand out most however are the vegetables. Each presentation was FRESH and amazing. So flavorful. The service matched the food."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "We dined here before the Opera. It is a perfect location -- just across the street and about half a block. We arrived early for our reservation and fortunately were able to be seated in just a few minutes. They have an excellent selection of Scandinavian liquor including my favorite Icelandic vodka. Food is Scandinavian. My venison was super. Will definitely go back."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "Plaj has several things going for it: interesting, well executed Scandinavian cuisine, great location for dinner before the symphony or opera, and friendly, well meaning service. We had a very good dinner before the opera and enjoyed all of our courses. As many reviews state, the menu is interesting and our waitress helped walk us through order. There are several interesting wines by the glass as well as a small list of wines by the bottle. The food was very good - portions are a bit unpredictable - the salads were quite large and even the entree sized meat and fish plates were somewhat small. The desserts are heaven (strawberry rhubarb pie - fantastic!). For me, the misses were the sometimes distracted service and the NOISE!"
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "Wonderful dinner - great, creative cuisine with outstanding service."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "I was just sorry that I had to make a run for the opera. The food is interesting and very well prepared, and the service was excellent. It is a very California-influenced Scandinavian and I think that is my one quibble with the place. The room is dark wood cozy. I want to go back when I have a few hours to spend sampling the many interesting dishes, maybe back at that potentially communal table. I can also totally picture being here at the tiny bar area, sipping lovely distilled spirits and tossing back bits of the lovely herring preparations. It would also be a lovely romantic night out, I think (I was not there for romance this time)."
    Dined on 7/3/2014
  • "We reserved here for a pre-show dinner. The menu is interesting and unusual and once we received our food, we enjoyed it - but the restaurant was unpleasantly noisy and the service was poor. I had to get up from the table to ask the hostess several times to get someone to bring something - bread, salt, new fork, etc. The server spent too much time apologizing and not enough time being alert to diners' needs. In the end, we were nearly late for the curtain. We won't be back."
    Dined on 7/3/2014
  • "Fantastic food, fabulous service and will definitely return"
    Dined on 7/3/2014
  • "Close to opera house, symphony, Herbst. Valet parking"
    Dined on 6/29/2014
  • "I'm Scandinavian and found Plaj great. Good mix of "comfort food" from back home and very contemporary remixes of old Scandinavian dishes, drinks and sides. All the food we had was amazing. Will definitely return when in SF next time."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "The ambiance is kind of old world with modern updates. It was a little warm and stuffy though. The food at Plaj was ... ummm ... interesting. We had the grilled octopus salad, which was excellent, although the presentation could have been better. Also, the house-smoked salmon, which was served warm and delicious. I had the saddle of venison, which was excellent, though more medium than rare. My wife had the Swedish meatballs, which were very good, although we both agreed that her home-cooked version is a little better. We also tried the house-made classic aquavit. Aquavit is growing on me and this was a very nice example. Strawberry rhubarb pie was delicious."
    Dined on 6/27/2014
  • "Pleasant space. Efficient service. Interesting bar menu including multiple aqua vitae. Small plates approach worked well for our group. The bread was over the top. Highly recommend."
    Dined on 6/26/2014
  • "We ate here before the Opera. The service was perfect and the food was interesting and delicious."
    Dined on 6/25/2014
  • "Plaj was a wonderful surprise to us! Unfamiliar with Scandavavian food, we did not know what to expect. Our server was pleasant and explained perfectly the menu. The food was simply delicious! We had one dish that it was a bit familiar, the Swedish meatballs. Well, this dish was nothing like we had before. The house special drinks are worth trying. The deserts quite " high end"!! We also found the prices reasonable. We are going back, and we recommend Plaj to our friends and family."
    Dined on 6/24/2014
  • "Interesting Scandinavian food (quite good, actually), convenient location for SF Opera-goers, service cordial but slow. Only off note was the host/seater, who was so casually dressed at first I thought he was a busboy. Was a bit jarring in an otherwise upscale setting."
    Dined on 6/24/2014
  • "The prices here are very high for what you get. The lobster dish which everyone recommends has 4 small pieces of lobster. When we asked about it, our server said lobster is expensive. The herring plate was just as small with 3 small pieces. Our server said she doesn't make up the plates. We would never come back! They have an answer for every question and the answers are poor!"
    Dined on 6/21/2014
  • "We stayed at the Inn at the Opera and had dinner at PLAJ; which is located in the Inn. Everything about the restaurant was first rate."
    Dined on 6/19/2014
  • "Fabulous food, but wait staff seems disengaged and distant."
    Dined on 6/19/2014
  • "great location to grab an early dinner before catching a show. the staff is very mindful of getting you to your show on time. waitress made great recommendations."
    Dined on 6/18/2014
  • "We went to Plaj before to opera. It was lovely. The food was very interesting with a long menu for unusual. They were very nice and attentive to our time needs. Pretty inside. S"
    Dined on 6/18/2014
  • "It's always fun to go to a restaurant that serves food that is different from the norm. Some Scandinavian ingredients, like Cloudberries, I've never experienced before. Great flavors, a bit fussy, small portions. Close to SFs performing arts, it's well located for attendees. I'll tell you, though, it really puts a damper on the experience if your waitress argues with you over what you ordered. She didn't write anything down, had a bit of a superior attitude, and when we reminded her that we'd ordered two beet salads, not one, she got huffy and told us no we didn't -- and stuck to her guns. Can't remember what it's called, but there was a meringue, berry ice cream, and chocolate cake dessert which was great to look at and tasted even better."
    Dined on 6/18/2014
  • "5:00 dinner to be able to languish over the experience; we departed at 7:20 to make a 7:30 curtain! Wow! We took forever deciding what to eat as the menu offered so many unique dishes and wonderful combinations. Fortunately we had two incredible cocktails to assist us. Our server was most helpful with explanations and suggestions. The sauces and flavor combinations were wonderful. We had 2 cocktails, 4 glasses of wine, 4 plates and 2 desserts for $100 a person. I thought it was an unbelievable bargain for the quality. I look forward to eating my way through that menu."
    Dined on 6/18/2014
  • "There is no way to understand what to order..small plate portions are too variable. The food is unremarkable, especially for the excessive cost. Service is lame and /or nonexistent. I cannot imagine why this place attracts customers."
    Dined on 6/17/2014
  • "Every dish is a flavor treat. Plates are small so you can try several which we would recommend. There are many items on the menu that you would not be able to get anywhere else and each is perfectly put together."
    Dined on 6/15/2014
  • "The food selection is very different from your average restaurant. Everything that we ordered was delicious. Highly recommend for the adventurous foodie."
    Dined on 6/14/2014
  • "This restaurant has such potential to be a favorite for civic center activities. Food is different and good. The wait staff is nice, though harried and not that competent. The management is poor. The restaurant is unreasonably noisy, and the manager refused to take steps to help dinners when there's serious problem -- disruptive diners. My husband was very sore yesterday and couldn't decide if it was from the gym or the chair at dinner -- it was so bad and crowded, he had to sit sideways. And, we did not have the worst chairs in the house -- the metal chairs at the big table."
    Dined on 6/14/2014
  • "You might think that Scandinavian food is just all dried cod, meatballs and pancakes. But you'd be wrong. This inspired restaurant offers a wide range of smaller plates designed to be shared offering delicious variety of seafood, salads, meat dishes and fantastic cocktails. There are gluten-free and vegan offerings as well. We had the octopus salad with greens and a delicious yogurt-dill sauce, and a green salad with aged gouda shavings that tasted like caramel, granny smith apples and roasted nuts -- divine! Our main dishes were lobster in a creamy foam with avocado and yogurt cream that was so flavorful I almost wept. I'd say more but I'm almost out of space. Dessert was a soft and chewy chocolate cake with a vanilla cream sauce."
    Dined on 6/13/2014
  • "Elegant, interesting and fresh ingredients combined creatively -- not merely quirkily -- to produce vibrant flavors on pleasantly small portions."
    Dined on 6/13/2014
  • "As usual, dining at Plaj is enjoyable. I dined both Thursday night (did not have a reservation for that night but they worked me in) and Friday night prior to the opera. The waitress was very good and accommodating to our time needs."
    Dined on 6/13/2014
  • "Friends, whose opinions we respect recommended, recommended it highly, and we concur. There are a number of unique dishes on the menu worth trying. We will certainly return."
    Dined on 6/12/2014
  • "I'm a swede so I was looking forward to PLAJ. The menu was certainly creative, but not enough herring for my taste! The charcuterie plate was delicious, the bread, served in small paper bags was awesome, some of best rye bread ever, in Sweden our outside. The cardamom fig aquavit was sensational. The citrus spice had way too much cloves. The meatball dish was disappointing, however. The meatballs were on the dry side, as if they had been made a lot earlier and warmed up. Others at our table had salmon,crab and sausage. Our sausage eater is an expert on sausage and he was also a bit disappointed. It was dry. All in all, we enjoyed our meal, the service was perfect and the ambiance quiet, although very dark & hard to see menus."
    Dined on 6/9/2014
  • "We had heard much about PLAJ and were excited to finally go with our friends. The Aquavit drinks were fantastic. The taste of herring dish was a huge hit as was the salmon. The dish that was disappointing was the cheese plate. It was fine but was described as including Scandinavian cheese when in fact it did not (until I asked). The restaurant has a really nice look but was so loud that at times we were unable to hear our waitress. And, the room temperature was exceedingly warm - we felt we were cooked by the time we finished our meal. So, if you are dying for a taste of Scandinavian food, by all means go. Or, if you want a drink before or after a performance, go. If you want a special meal in an elegant surrounding, keep looking."
    Dined on 6/7/2014
  • "I brought my Norwegian born husband as a birthday gift. He didn't like the menu's layout; he couldn't figure out what to order, even after he was given direction by the server. He was overwhelmed by the choices and didn't want to miss out on anything. I had to convince him to order a few things with the promise we'd return. We had the kumla (fantastic), herring (wonderful), and gravlax (nothing special). His entree was the pork belly on kohlrabi mash; he loved it and I thought the mash was the best I've had, in Norway or here. I had the half order of the meatballs and found them to be spiced for American tastes (more heavily than common in Norway). My husband can't wait to return. For me, it was fine food, but not my personal favorite."
    Dined on 6/7/2014
  • "There were four of us - I had been to Plaj before but it was the first time for the other three. We had several things to celebrate so it was a special occasion evening. The members of the wait staff were helpful, attentive but not interruptive. We were asked if we were going to an event (prime spot if your evening includes the Symphony, Opera, etc.) and when we said no, they were happy to bring us more coffee and let us finish in a relaxed manner. The food is wonderful and meant to be shared. We all agreed on the choices and with the advice of our server we had just the right amount of food. Since we each had our own place setting, it was easy to pass all the plates around. Utensils and plates were removed and replaced efficiently. "
    Dined on 6/6/2014
  • "We were a group of 6 people. They seated us at a table with stiff metal chairs. When we complained that ALL the other chairs in the dining room were upholstered, they brought us pillows to cushion our seats, but would/could not give us other chairs. Very poor for a restaurant of that caliber that accepted our reservation."
    Dined on 6/6/2014
  • "This was our second visit. Everything we ate and drank was outstanding, the presentations were lovely, and the room feels very luxe. The service was warm and friendly, but slow. I'd told our server that we had theater tickets, but even getting two courses in 90 minutes proved difficult. We'd hoped to have dessert, but there wasn't enough time left. Maybe it was the kitchen, or the big party that came in shortly after us. In any case, we'll definitely be back."
    Dined on 6/6/2014