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  • Poesia

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Poesia Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.poesiasf.com
  • Phone: (415) 252-9325
  • Hours of Operation: Dinner: Monday to Saturday 5.30 pm - 11.00 pm Sunday 5.00 pm - 10.00 pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar/Lounge, Chef's Table, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Takeout, Wine
  • Private Party Facilities: Poesia is a small intimate restaurant ideal for private parties (birthdays, holiday parties, company events, engagement's parties, etc) up to 49 people. There is also the opportunity to have the front room turned into a private space for a group up to 16 people.
  • Private Party Contact: Francesco (877) 824-0339
  • Entertainment: Our restaurant may accommodate up to 40 guests comfortably, with a full bar to provide traditional and unique drinks of choice. Featured on one of our walls are projected Italian films from the era of Dolce Vita, bringing us to a time of romance, passion and lively humor.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Castro
  • Public Transit: Nearest Muni station: Castro (at Market). Upon exiting Muni station, proceed one black South on Castro Street, then head East (left) on 18th.
  • Parking: Street Parking
A word from Poesia
Owned and operated by Francesco d'Ippolito, and staffed by an experienced, multi-cultured family of hosts whom are all passionate about the experience and concept, Poesia is the latest addition of authentic Italian cuisine to call San Francisco its home.

Nestled in the middle of the vibrant and colorful neighborhood of the Castro, Poesia features the finest in hand-made, traditional ingredients and pastas, combined with meticulous preparation and presentation that is second to none.

It is with every intention to give our patrons a warm, intimate experience with superior attention not just to our menu, but to the relationship we have with every guest.

Our hearty and delightful dishes will embody the passion and zest of Italian cuisine coming from the owner's home of Calabria, teasing your palette with rustic herbs and fruitful aromas.

Poesia. Italian for poetry, yet the embodiment of an experience that is so much more.
Diner Reviews
  • "this time seated at table for two on the balcony adjacent to the restaurant entrance which made for a special evening. the owner is always so attentive and engaged in the entire experience. the staff is attentive and the cuisine is consistently wonderful. love it LOVE IT"
    Dined on 7/28/2014
  • "We had a perfect meal at Poesia. The ambience is charming, the service impeccable and the food was perfection. I had Eggplant Parmigiana, the best I've EVER tasted. It was light and flavorful. This restaurant has been open 6 years and has moved into my #1 spot for favorite SF restaurants. Everyone there is responsive and lovely. The owner came to our table several times to check on whether we needed anything. Of course, parking in the Castro is always a challenge, but in this case definitely worth it."
    Dined on 7/27/2014
  • "This charming restaurant is truly a one of a kind. From the food to the service, you can't go wrong."
    Dined on 7/26/2014
  • "Perched on the second floor of a Castro Victorian building, Poesia is a charming osteria with classically appointed interior decor and two outdoor balcony tables for those rare warm nights in SF. The service was friendly and affable, the menu was diverse, but the food itself was mediocre and came in small portions. I had high expectations given high ratings but wished the food quality lived up to the expectations set by the tasteful venue and warm service. Note: I am a vegetarian and the meat and fish dishes may have been better."
    Dined on 7/25/2014
  • "Our server was great. He always was stopping by our table to see how things were going and if we needed anything. If we needed something, he got it right away. Food was really good and flavorful. Definitely recommend!"
    Dined on 7/25/2014
  • "WE had a great time. Staff was warm, friendly and attentive. Food was yummy. I loved the mussles wwith sausage.. I would surely come again and bring friends . Our aunt who was visiting from New York loved the sea bass and was struck with how reasonable our bill was."
    Dined on 7/25/2014
  • " Great location, great food, great service. I highly recommend Poesia."
    Dined on 7/22/2014
  • "Our request for a window table was noted and we were given a table with the view of the neighborhood. The server was friendly and knowledgeable, even bringing samples of wine to taste. The food was well prepared and came promptly. We had the see bass in parchment which was moist and very flavourful and the pasta with calamari (they had run out of shrimp). We were not rushed at all even though the place was packed. Very nice experience over all."
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "We are diners who have traveled the world and eaten at some of the best restaurants in the US. We went to Poesia because it is one of the rare Calabrian (Calabrese) restaurants we have found. It features dishes from the unspoiled, mountainous southernmost portion of mainland Italy, a region that some call the "true Tuscany" and which others note, "time forgot." We were not disappointed. The restaurant had authentic, homemade Calabrian pasta, with a pork/wild board sauce made just like they do in Calabria. The wine list was authentic, featuring great Sardinian Vermentinos and Calabrian varietals. The wait staff was extremely friendly. This was a great find, with great food, that we strongly recommend for a unique Italian experience."
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "The hospitality at Poesia stands out. We had called earlier in the day to find out about parking. The owner was very helpful over the phone, then even checked in with us upon our arrival to follow up on the results. The food was exceptional, the entire table loved the home-made bread. I think my favorite was the ricotta gnocci, melt in your mouth delicious. For dessert, one person wanted more chocolate gelato in the tortufo but it was still extraordinary."
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "Attended to very professionally and cordially. Very accommodating because of time constraints and delays."
    Dined on 7/18/2014
  • "Poesia is a great find. The pasta tastes so fresh, that I feel like we are eating in Rome. The restaurant is in a quaint Victorian in the Castro which has a very comfortable vibe."
    Dined on 7/18/2014
  • "Unfortunately we were seated 30 minutes after our reservation and always felt like we were pushing to be seated even when the table opened up. 3 of us were eventually seated on a 6 top which was odd. Bread was cold and chewy. Apps were forgettable as well. Low ceilings felt like you were eating at your grandmas house (probably the desired look and feel so can't ding the restaurant too much for this) Only one veggie pasta made options limited"
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "Ate here for the first time last week. Totally loved it!!! The food is fantastic and prepared with very fresh ingredients. What really made the experience wonderful was the service we recieved. From the time we arrived, till the time we left we received the best service that I have had in a long time. Marney was so gracious and helpful with selecting our dinner choices, as well as the wine. I would go back just for her. Thanks for a wonderful dining experience."
    Dined on 7/8/2014
  • "we had recently seen this restaurant reviews on Bay Area check please and it receives incredibly high review marks for not only food but service and ambiance. from the minutes we walked into the door we were warmly greatest by the owner and throughout the meal he insured that the food was repair store like you. Homemade pasta sauce rich sauces and the most amazing whole roasted fish capped off our dinner. an extensive wine list with unbelievably reasonable prices. We will be back."
    Dined on 7/1/2014
  • "This is definitely a neighborhood gem. The atmosphere is Italian, the food is excellent, and they remember repeat customers and treat them as valued customers. And they have the best whole fish I have had in San Francisco."
    Dined on 6/29/2014
  • "This was our first time to Poesia. The food was amazing, the staff was friendly, and the ambiance was really nice. We will definitely go back. It's a great find."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "Had a very nice meal and great service. the menu is small but interesting and has 3 homemade pasta dishes. started with the special asparagus wrapped in speck with buratta which was outstanding. also had the grilled calamari, perfectly cooked large pieces with a small salad. the fettucine with lamb was just ok. the sea bass in parchment paper was just slightly overcooked and suprisingly didn't come with anything but the fish. the squid ink ravoli was very good. wish we had time for desert, list looked great. pasta' very reasonably priced and a decent portion. i wish they had more pasta's to choose from. leave extra time for parking. will try different entree's next time as i'm not sure we had the best that they had to offer."
    Dined on 6/24/2014
  • "The food was good but very expensive. Our service was not that good. Our waitress never checked to see how we were doing or if we needed anything. The noise level was so high that we just could not talk among ourselves. Basically there was one group there that monopolized the place and the rest of the tables just ate food and left."
    Dined on 6/15/2014
  • "This is the gem of the neighborhood. House-made pasta is one of the reasons I keep going back. Other reasons include food delicate and flavorful as a breeze off the Calabrian coast. It's a place to fully relax and happily focus on food. It's intimate. The service is excellent; the staff warm, welcoming, and knowledgeable. I've had group and 2 person meals here. The food is unpretentious (dare I say real?); the best of Italy served up. Plus, I like the silent old films screened on a back wall and the bird's eye view of 18th Street from the sun flooded bay window."
    Dined on 6/15/2014
  • "Delicious Italian Dining. They have the best Basil Martini!!! Service was a little slow (they left us at our table for 30 min before someone came to ask us if we wanted something to drink) but as soon as we brought it to their attention, service considerably improved."
    Dined on 6/14/2014
  • "My husband and I ate at Poesia a few nights ago. The food was delicious. We had the grilled calamari, pasta with lamb sugo and beet salad. The service was so attentive and professional. We loved it and will be back very soon."
    Dined on 6/13/2014
  • "First time at Poesia. Food was excellent overall and was reasonably priced. "
    Dined on 6/7/2014
  • "We really enjoyed the food: beef carpaccio, beet salad, excellent pastas and cannolo for dessert. The dining room is small but nice, with personal service. We love Poesia."
    Dined on 6/7/2014
  • "If you want a creative Italian meal in intimate surroundings, Poesia is the place. I have been many times and the food has always been excellent and the service impeccable! I sqid ink pasta dishes are exceptional and the Branzino is exquisite! And you must try their version of Carpaccio."
    Dined on 6/5/2014
  • "The food was very good. The atmosphere was worth paying for! Very cute. "
    Dined on 5/25/2014
  • "my favorite "secret spot" to bring a date. Delicious food - friendly staff - great layout - can be a lot of fun with friends or a date."
    Dined on 5/22/2014
  • "Best Grilled Calamari in town! It's a MUST if you have an affinity for squid. We were licking our lips ravenous for another plate of it, when the Halibut (seafood special for that night) was set before us. If they have it when you are there, order it. You won't be disappointed. Then there's the filet mignon carpaccio! I've been to Poesia twice & am already hungering for more…of everything. Have to also mention that the FOH staff is stellar. Warm, responsive, knowledgable, unpretentious, and easily make you feel like you are a part of their incredible family. Table 10 is a treasure…the only one that overlooks 18th St, which is always amusing. Parking is hard, so I rec cab or muni. But it doesn't matter how you get there, just get there."
    Dined on 5/9/2014
  • "Everything tasted great and the service was super. "
    Dined on 5/8/2014
  • "This place is basic, food, wine, but isn't priced accordingly. Stay home if you couldn't find a reservation at a restaurant of substance. This place will not last"
    Dined on 5/3/2014
  • "My party of 5 went to Poesia on a whim the other night; we got a reservation for 7:30 on a Friday just one day in advance, which, in my experience, can be quite difficult in the city. Three of us arrived at once, and they promptly seated us – woot! I always feel awkward having to loiter in the lobby if my full party hasn't arrived yet. The service was attentive but not awkwardly so, the noise level was just fine, and the food was pretty tasty, though nothing to write home about. (I am a vegetarian and got a so-so ravioli dish; perhaps the meat and fish entrees were better.) I'll definitely come back again when I want a sweet, slightly more formal than usual dinner out."
    Dined on 5/2/2014
  • "We were introduced to Poesia by friends and have since been back multiple times, including most recent birthday celebration. Completely authentic southern Italian dishes, excellently selected wine list featuring wines not normally found on U.S. wine lists (white Aglianico, anyone?)."
    Dined on 4/26/2014
  • "This is a really charming, cozy restaurant in the heart of the Castro that is definitely worth checking out. Francesco has done an excellent job in providing a wonderful experience for his guests. :-)"
    Dined on 4/25/2014
  • "A fantastic place, the food is creative authentic Italian. So perfect to have a place like Poesia available when there are so few around. The appetizer was amazing, we actually asked how they made it. The staff is friendly and knowledgable. The entire experience was just perfect. "
    Dined on 4/22/2014
  • "Nothing was good about our experience here. We had a 6:45p reservation for which we arrived on time. We were told that they were setting up our table. Lie #1. Five minutes later, another couple arrived without a reservation. They were seated immediately. We were told that they were given an open table that was not as nice as ours. Lie #2. Five minutes after that, we were told that the people at our table were taking a long time to leave. (Thereby exposing Lie #1.) Fifteen minutes after that, we were seated at a totally different table, yet told that was "our" table. (Lie #3) Food wise, things were unremarkable. The server described a "swordfish dish" that ended up being pasta with a few chunks of swordfish thrown in. Won't be going back."
    Dined on 4/22/2014
  • "I found this restaurant randomly and I was amazed by the quality of the food. I am originally from Italy and I do not go very often to Italian restaurant abroad. Poesia was a fantastic surprise. I higly reccomend the calamari as appetizer and the tagliatelli ai funghi porcini. My husband is vegeterian and he found great options, not the "classical" ravioli with Alfredo sauce. He loved the pappa al pomodoro."
    Dined on 4/20/2014
  • "We had not tried Poesia although it has been in the Castro for about 6 years. We're sorry to have waited so long. The service was wonderful on a Friday night, and the place was crowded! It was hard to decide from the menu since we wanted to try so much, but the cocktails were great so we didn't mind taking our time. The grilled calamari salad was excellent, as was the bread and tomato soup. The pasta was some of the best I've had in SF. I had the special fettuccine with mushrooms and my spouse had the mezzaluna. We both loved our meals and certainly felt well-fed. The cannolo for dessert was Sicilian style and perfectly blended with chocolate, lemon and pistachios. It was not too sweet and every bite was wonderful! Great meal! "
    Dined on 4/18/2014
  • "Lived in Rome for 5 years and I am frequently in San Fran for business from NY. Poesia is always on my list of restaurants to enjoy. It is authentically Italian. Ingredients are always fresh, wines are reasonably priced and high quality, service is knowledgeable but never pretentious and the choices nicely balance innovation & tradition. "
    Dined on 4/18/2014
  • "We had an excellent experience here. Food was great, service was impeccable. Even when they got busy the level of service stayed the same. They do need to put salt and pepper on the table though!"
    Dined on 4/17/2014
  • " The service was attentive without being needy. Delicious tomato soup and local bread. Both the sagu and ragu were tasty, although the pasta was slightly overdone in my opimion. We were a party of two and had a nice time for a reasonable price."
    Dined on 4/16/2014