Verbena
Verbena

Verbena

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.verbenarestaurant.com/
  • Phone: 4154412323x
  • Hours of Operation:


    Dinner: Sunday to Tuesday 5:30pm-9:30pm
    Wednesday to Saturday 5:30-10:00pm

    Brunch: Saturday and Sunday 11am-2:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Californian
  • Executive Chef: Sean Baker
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Private Party Facilities: Private Dining experiences must be booked through our private dining coordinator. Please call the restaurant to discuss the details.
  • Private Party Contact: Sabrina 4154412323x

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Green Street
  • Parking: Public Lot
  • Parking Details: Use the Walgreens parking lot on corner of Broadway and Polk.
A word from Verbena
Verbena brings a distinct culinary and beverage experience to the Russian Hill neighborhood of San Francisco. Executive Chef Sean Baker, also of Gather Restaurant in Berkeley, incorporates a balance of artisanal vegetable dishes and whole animal butchery. The inspiration for the menu draws from deep working relationships with farmers and ranchers who are extremely passionate about their craft. The bar sets the stage in the restaurant and features an innovative beverage program highlighting carefully crafted small batch spirits and wines.
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Verbena reviews from OpenTable diners
185 reviews since June 23, 2014
Overall Rating4.2
  • Food4.3
    Service4.3
  • Ambiance4.2
    Noise LevelModerate
86% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (137)neighborhood gem (95)special occasion (72)romantic (51)notable wine list (42)hot spot (37)vibrant bar scene (32)good for groups (31)great for brunch (27)great for outdoor dining (8)great for lunch (6)late-night find (6)kid-friendly (4)scenic view (2)Show More
  • Cozy place
    Cocoa
    Dined on 10/17/2014
    We liked the ambience. Some dishes were more refined than others.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Wonderful! (As always)
    TTSFVIP
    Dined on 10/16/2014
    We came here to celebrate our friend's engagement... What a wonderful evening! As always, the staff was warm and incredibly hospitable, and made our celebration even more special. We ordered just about everything - the standouts - the frying peppers, little gems, pork cheeks, and grilled chicken. SO good. And be sure to take the staff's recommendations about wine - they are fantastic at suggesting options that complement the meal and meet your price point. We'll be back (again)!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for brunch, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • My new favorite restauant in sf
    Marge
    Dined on 10/15/2014
    I came here with some foodie colleagues from out of town. Our meal was just stunning. All dishes were unique and perfectly crafted. I loved the wide range of flavores and ingredients. Our cocktails were some of the very best I have had and service was immaculate. I will be back as often as possible.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great flavors, off portions
    OpenTable Diner Since 2001VIP
    Dined on 10/14/2014
    Amazingly flavorful and different food. Squash dish with integrated rising heat was a favorite. Beets and apples showcased the ingredients. Wonderful wine list if you know your local stuff. We ordered the cured pork but it never came, no explanation. We had the spaghetti and the pork loin for mains. The flavors were truly spot on, especially the interior smoke on the pork. However, I was truly embarrassed for the restaurant at the portion sizes of the mains. Two paper thin pieces of pork and 4 bites of pasta for $28 and $19 respectively. We are not big eaters, but this was shameful. Closed with a wonderful cocktail from the bar. Service was spotty due to the umber of people helping us. This guy can cook, but even we needed more.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Odd but delicious menu
    LunaTek
    Dined on 10/14/2014
    Odd? No tired 'standards' - everything new or twist. Menu divided into smalls/larges not appetizers/entries, so a bit confusing how much to order. Our vegetarian smalls were surprisingly large/filling and meat smalls were closer to appetizer size. Delicious? Oh yeah! Loved the small squash and small meatballs; friend enjoyed small artichoke and small tuna. Surprisingly spicy for California cuisine. Good heat, but still had nice balance of richness/textures/flavors in all the dishes we had. Can't wait to eat there again. Tips? The sprouted seed bread isn't really bread - more like seed bars. Not unpleasant, but not bread. More like an appetizer. Nice bar seating. Why not 5 stars? A little pricey-if you're budgeting, be careful.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Excellent meal and friendly service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 10/10/2014
    Excellent food; menu not quite as extensive as sister restaurant, Gather, in Berkeley. Gluten-free bread on small plates menu was outstanding.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • always a new experience
    chickenandeggVIP
    Dined on 10/9/2014
    there is probably an alchemist working behind the scene: new ingredients, new ways to combine flavors and textures, which end up with a dish you had never thought of before. so put your skepticism away, everything pretty much works. the whole thing is wrapped in a very pleasant decor, and attentive service, without overbearing attitude.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The Place to Dine
    Junnie
    Dined on 10/9/2014
    Verbena is at the top of my list to dine. The service is definitely a "Five Star" Highly Recommended!!!
    Special Features:
    good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 9/30/2014
    The food was really pretty good except for the squash dish, which had an unappetizing texture. Unfortunately, waiting 40 minutes between our appetizers and our entree without so much as an explanation put a real damper on the whole dinner. Really a shame because I have been wanting to go since they opened, but now I don't think I will ever be back :-(
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great food, kind of snooty service
    localbusiness
    Dined on 9/30/2014
    FOOD IS AMAZING, unique and very interesting combinations and textures. Venue is great (nice open space, ambience was friendly and cozy). However, the dining experience was strange - server was a little condescending.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Superior service, exquisite food!
    Christy
    Dined on 9/28/2014
    My husband and I came to Verbena for our 1 year anniversary. We were greeted with a warm welcome and decided that we wanted to sit in the bar instead of the table. We were immediately served a complimentary delicious glass of champagne. Anthony, the bartender was extremely personable, knowledgeable, friendly and advised us that since it was our first time visiting Verbena, that he would take care of. My husband and I are definitely not "foodies" but we love to eat and try new foods and are open to anything and everything. Anthony suggested his favorite dishes and we took his recommendations. We joked that we weren't hungry for "dinner" however my husband and I ate each of Anthony's suggestions and had zero left overs. Must check out!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2011VIP
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    Awesome food and service. Definitely coming to enjoy the experience again:)
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • FoodyVIP
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    Interesting spot - we waited 45 minutes for our table when we had a reservation. The service was erratic at first. Food was interesting but not stand out. Probably won't go again.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Bland food, odd service
    fredloboVIP
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    Made reservations as was seated in their mezzanine level. Which means upstairs by the bathrooms. Plenty of empty tables downstairs. This meant that our service was very slow and at a very odd cadence (our bread arrived halfway through our meal). Our first course was the apple beet salad. The beets were fine, if small; but the apples were tasteless and the pomegranate added nothing. Next was the pork cheek. Dry and not overly flavorful, though the cabbage was fairly tasty. Next came the bread. Would have been a highpoint (was quite good); but for the extremely over salted butter. Finally we had the chicken thighs. How is it possible to have undercooked and dry thighs? All of this on a Friday night. Can't say I'll ever be back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Fantastic once again
    Merobel
    Dined on 9/22/2014
    I've been going at Verbena 4 times for dinner and a couple of times for just drinks. I love this place. Everything is thought through! One must understand how the menu works because Verbena is about sharing tasteful plates. The way veggies are cooked and arranged is sublime. Even the veggies that usually scare people away end-up being re-discovered. Make sure the waiter explains how the menu works not to be surprised. Verbena is a little expensive but really worth every penny!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Awesome dinner
    lovethegreen
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    Loved the space. Excellent knowledgeable waitstaff. Food is creative, inventive and tasty. Love all the veggie choices and that the concept is family style!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, romantic, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Way too strong flavor
    YSCAVIP
    Dined on 9/14/2014
    I read the review and end up very disappointed. If you like turmeric and this is your type of food. Too much Indian spice and ingredients. Way to strong flavor. I will not come back again.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • My new favorite restaurant.
    MarinerS
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    The food is unusual and everything is delicious. AMAZING!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Great brunch, no frills
    RGSP
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    Great brunch menu, seated us on time, I'll be back again for brunch. the egg open face chicken skin sandwich was great
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for brunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • BrandyVIP
    Dined on 9/12/2014
    Always a stellar dining experience. Wait staff is knowledgeable, friendly and efficient. Sean Baker rocks in the kitchen!! It's one of my very favorite restaurants and I go there often with friends. It is a true neighborhood gem!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • What to order?
    megregVIP
    Dined on 9/9/2014
    Although our dinner was delicious, we almost couldn't find anything we wanted to order, as the menu descriptions are not actually descriptive of the dishes. They are almost off-putting. Yet, our buttermilk chicken thighs (a bit on the salty side), air dried beef with raw eggplant tapenade, and chicory & potato salad were all just great. The well-crafted cocktail list never disappoints and our waiter's wine recommendation was spot on.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Creative Use of Ingredients
    DannyGVIP
    Dined on 9/8/2014
    This was my first time at Verbena and the food proved to be exciting, with creative use of ingredients. What let it down was the service - the waiter who took our orders seemed a little pushy - and the table situation. We'd arrived 20 minutes or so early but, despite this being a Monday night and the restaurant half empty, we were told our table wouldn't be available until exactly the time of the reservation. There were several alternatives but the table we were given was right at the back near the kitchen. Usually I'd complain and get moved but frankly didn't even seem worth the effort on this occasion. The guy who served the food was fantastic, however. Overall: decent but didn't feel particularly welcomed by hostess or waiter.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Verbena is vonderful
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/5/2014
    Everything on the menu was superb. The service was excellent. Fantastic overall.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A Wonderful Dining Experience
    LeaG
    Dined on 9/4/2014
    Verbena proved to be more than expected. From the moment we walked through the door we felt welcomed. It was as though we were at the home of a valued friend. The atmosphere is lovely right up to the lighting fixtures. Three of us dined on the most beautifully presented, scrumptious fare. Each dish was served by Justin who was not only pleasant and attentive but also well versed in the food preparation. Anthony, the bar Manager and creator of exquisite libations served us his brand of excellence. All in all this was a most pleasurable event. We will definitely recommend Verbena to others.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent Experience
    JsnC
    Dined on 9/4/2014
    Attention to details, amazing food, great service, all around perfect evening.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Looks can be decieving
    pastryturtle
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    The restaurant looked really nice and relaxing and I was looking forward to dinner. THE BREAD WAS AMAZING!!!! BUT the rest of the meal was meh... The farm to table concept really intrigued me and I was really excited about having dinner here but the dinner started out on a high with that bread, next we had some sort of okra and bean dish which I really liked and it was downhill from there. I'm not saying the food was bad but it wasn't great nothing to be excited over I think so it was a let down. We ended up leaving after about 4 tapas, which was about $80 and not worth it, we went to another restaurant to eat.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Great food on limited menu
    GreatVIP
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    This was our first visit to this new restaurant. So far the Chef is working well but the rest of the crew are still learning. The seed bread and the meatball-clam starter were just extremely tasty novel tastes and well worth a visit here for the alone. The " white" chicken thighs were extraordinary-- juicy with thigh tastiness turned to breast meats by marinating in milk and their special ingredients. The wines were excellent.but the menu choices were quite limited-- maybe the salmon, but why no meat? The service was quite slow and the darling lady at the computer had so much effort to find us a table even though the restaurant was half empty when we arrived on time for our 8:39 reservation. They need more waiters and fewer suits.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Victim of Crappy SF Trend
    RayCVIP
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    The bartenders are outstanding. The staff, super accommodating and attentive without being annoying. The food (for the most part) was flavorful and innovative. But why, WHY, do we need small plates, medium plates and big plates. Can't we just have little plates and big plates? We had no idea how to order so we ordered WAY too much which was fine because we got to taste almost everything on the menu but when medium plates cost $18 on average your bill can sky rocket quickly. One more thing - PLEASE GET RID OF STUPID RECLAIMED WOOD! DOWN WITH THAT TREND! Oh and the bathrooms looked like they were out of your local public high school.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Incredible!
    localdinerVIP
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    Creative, delicious dishes.....and the menu changes which is nice! We have never had a dish here that wasn't good. Just took my sister and her husband here for a birthday dinner and they, too, loved it. Highly recommend this restaurant!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • EspressoVIP
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    Pros: Nice decor, pleasant staff, can talk and hear each other. Cons: The food is "precious." Some of the dishes were good and some not so. Surprisingly the staff said it was good for sharing and recommended we do the same. But the food is so compex that it is not easy to share — impossible for all 4 people on the table to get a healthy bite of all t he flavors in any dish. Expensive.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Simply Awesome Food
    MimiPatterson
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    If you desire fresh, locally grown food at its best, served with style and flair, then Verbena has surely captured your palette. The Chef creates amazingly deliciously dishes just from the simplest ingredients. He incorporates fresh apples and cucumbers with an exquisite walnut and beet sauce. The duck wings are savory with unique seasoning that makes you want to crave more. Their cocktails are original and pairs well with everything on the menu. You'll enjoy the food and wonderful ambience that comes with it. Bon Appetit!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for brunch, great for lunch, hot spot, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Just OK
    curiousfoodie
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    This place was overrated. Good service and cool ambiance but they had very small portions of uninspired food especially for the price. We had to grab pizza afterward.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great restaurant.
    AlExVIP
    Dined on 8/28/2014
    Verbena is a great overall restaurant. Good service, nice looking place, and great food.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Neighborhood Gem
    JennyLou
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    Great addition to the Russian Hill neighborhood, although we have a few observations. First, our waiter tried to up-sell us, which is annoying. We were hungry and wanted to try many different things (food and beverages), so no need push it. Food is good, but a little overdone at times--dish combinations are interesting but perhaps a little strange. Wait staff cleared our plates too quickly and then there'd be a wait before next course.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Reservations not honored
    mata
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    Made a reservation for 8:15 on a thursday night, not seated until 9pm. The manager was apologetic and comp 'ed an appetizer and desert; a little wait past the reservation is acceptable, but 45 min, something's wrong there.
    Special Features:
    romantic, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Too many flavours
    Maria
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    The food was too ambitiously overdone, with way too many flavours per dish. Plating was nice, but all in all the food was too much and too intense. Large wine list, but a little hard to overlook since it's mainly sorted by wine house. All in all, we had higher expectations and were highly disappointed by the food.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Vegans don't do veggies this well
    DebDav
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    This is a place you come when you want to explore something you hadn't imagined in food before. Other than the water, beer, fine wine and bread, nothing here is what you could find anywhere else. The ingredients are recognizable, but the combinations are unique. There are magnificent creations with fruits and vegetables. We didn't try the squid and watermelon, and instead went for the shaved air dried beef and berries. Pretend you are a food channel judge and come to experience. Some plates the meat is used to accent the vegetable preparation, while others are meat free. They did have chicken (which we did not try) every entrée was something I had not seen before.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • FitfoodieVIP
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    I have been a huge fan of Verbena but when I visited the restaurant recently I was underwhelmed by the new seasonal menu. We tried a few different items and were left feeling like the flavors didn't marry together well. I had previously enjoyed the carrots, the meatballs w/ the mole sauce and the mushrooms w/ polenta. All amazing! On our recent visit in August, we ordered the air dried beef with eggplant which had no flavor and the green beans with plums were just OK. The meatballs were delicious but I didn't like the pairing w/ the clams in a broth. The cocktails were outstanding as they always are and the wine was superb. Service was great too! I will be back but just looking forward to a change in the menu with the next season.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Hipster crowd, new take on dishes
    Damon
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    Hostess was great. Thanked us for calling to adjust our reservation at the last minute. Was only half-filled when we got there; packed when we left. Noise level definitely ratcheted upward. Good mix of diners; heavy on the hipster yuppie side. Food was refreshing combos I wouldn't have considered. A couple of the sauces were really surprising (in a good way). Ordered 4 dishes to share and it was about right. Didn't feel too full or starving for more at the end of the meal. Ingredients were fresh and used well in the dishes. The squash and cucumber were crunchy fresh; a nice contrast with the salmon. Nicely done.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great, once again!
    LandscapeinsfVIP
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    Our second visit was great again. Menu seems a bit "precious" but totally original, delicious, and servings are filling. Wine list is expensive, but by the glass reasonable. Service excellent both times. Probably only for special occasions for us tho, not inexpensive!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate