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Party Size
For 2
Date
Today
Time
7:00 PM
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Booked 7 times today

1601 Bar & Kitchen

4.6
229 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Sri Lankan
Top Tags:
  • Fit for Foodies (12)
  • Creative Cuisine (9)
  • Neighborhood Gem (8)
1601 Bar & Kitchen is a small, independent, husband and wife owned and operated casual fine dining restaurant, operating since 2013. The atmosphere is intimate and comfortable for conversation, while the noise level is low. Chef Brian Fernando refers to his technique-driven interpretations of Sri Lankan cuisine as ‘Contemporary Sri Lankan’ or ‘Californian Sri Lankan.’ Our cuisine is aromatic and vibrant, offering both mild and spicy items. We offer a very popular multi-course Chef’s tasting menu accompanied by optional beverage pairings that usually takes 1,5 hours for 2 guests. We also offer an evolving à la carte menu of small and large dishes. The favorites are the egg hopper, smoked salmon, chicken curry, okra, Mulligatawny soup, and goat stew. Our menu contains many gluten free and vegetarian items. Children are welcome. Reservations and walk-ins are welcome. We are located close to the freeway and the street parking is easy; there is a parking garage within a block.
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Private dining
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Cuisines
Sri Lankan, Fusion / Eclectic, Dining Bar
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Hours of operation

Dinner: Tuesday - Saturday 5:30pm -close.



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Phone number
(415) 552-1601
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
Brian Fernando
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Catering
Please contact us with catering inquiries, 415-552-1601 or write to info@1601sf.com
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
12th Street
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Parking details
Easy street parking, no meters after 6pm. A garage available within a block, (closes at midnight)
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Public transit
Muni: Metro-Van Ness & Market, Bus 47 & 49: Van Ness & Mission
BART-Civic Center
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Special events & promotions
Birthdays, corporate events, corporate meetings, etc. Please contact us for details, 415-552-1601 or info@1601sf.com
Additional
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Gluten-free Menu, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Private Dining

1601 Bar & Kitchen offers a private room (up to 16 guests), a semi-private communal table (up to 12 guests), or the entire restaurant buyout (up to 49 guests).

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What 229 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6  based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.7
service
4.2
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Quiet
100% of people would recommend it to a friend
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vipOpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on February 15, 2018

Enjoyed a truly delicious GF and dairy-free meal for Valentine's Day. Service was excellent and every items on the tasting menu was terrific.

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OpenTable Diner (Denver)
2.0  Dined on January 23, 2018

Disappointed to find that the restaurant strayed far from traditional Sri Lankan flavors. The food was overpriced and overworked.

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vipReywal (Houston)
5.0  Dined on January 23, 2018

The food was awesome; location was off the beaten path, but safe; the menu, although not extensive, was quite varied; as a party of 4, we ordered everything on the menu, including those items from the tasting menu that were available a la carte; I'm not a fan of Indian food, and although the Sri Lankan dishes were obviously influenced by Indian spices and raw ingredient choices, the presentations for each were quite unique; the only slight criticism was that service between each set of dishes brought to the table were a little slow, but that allowed for a very nice 2.5 hour dinner and was not a problem for our group; this is excellent place to go if you want something out of the ordinary and have the time to wait between courses for very good and in some instances extremely unique food; I would dine there again, especially with folks who are foodies and always looking for something different.

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vipOpenTable Diner (Chicago)
5.0  Dined on January 11, 2018

What a surprise, fresh, original Sri Lankan inspired food served in a quiet nicely furnished atmosphere. Sometimes you just want great meal where you can carry on a conversation with wonderful friendly service. Both times I have eaten here with well traveled friends, they had the same comment, "One of the Best meals I had in years". If you loved wonderful food, this is one of the best in SF.

PS, The smoked Scottish Salmon with salmon roe is a must.

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vipAcahti (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on January 10, 2018

Always superb. Always a treat! I have never had a meal at 1601 Bar+Kitchen that I - and my dinner guests - didn't thoroughly enjoy.

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on January 6, 2018

Dining at 1601 Bar & Kitchen for the second time reinforced my initial experience - the food is fabulous! In a city with so many dining options, I'm glad to have made two visits within two months, both of which were terrific. The food is unique and delicious, with quantities ideal for sharing among several guests. The entire table (four of us) adored the crab dish with a special Sri Lankan topping, as well as the fried okra. Rarely are fried foods on my 'must have' list, but the batter is light, and there was no oily residue, just the highlighting of a delicious taste treat. Others shared the egg hopper and heartily endorse it; while I and another guest were especially fond of the chicken curry as well as the rib dish. Wine, beer, and cocktail selections are varied and pair nicely with the menu options. Service was delightful - helpful suggestions, including a thoughtful caveat to not order too much initially. The staff and knowledgeable about the cuisine and are unobtrusive but helpful during the dining experience. I and my guests look forward to another visit soon!

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JerrysPalate (San Francisco)
4.0  Dined on December 31, 2017

Wow! I really didn’t no what to expect and was somewhat concerned when we arrived to find the dining room almost empty. Then we saw the menu divided into two sections: small plates and prix fixe. We opted for the small plates and our waiter offered us additional choices from the prix fixe items. Everything was delicious, presented beautifully and creatively. The scallops and the chocolate desert were my favorites. I will be back!

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on December 24, 2017

amazing, just great food and great people. tried so many different things off of the menu and every single one was amazing

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vipJan2017 (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on December 20, 2017

I don’t know I missed this restaurant. The food was all very good, and most of it was exceptional. The crab appetizer with coconut infused foam was amazing. The service was perfect. Server owner was engaging and totally knowledgeable about each dish. Owner chef visited table to discuss his creative style as well as the art covering the walls. I will return, as will my three friends. A real find in an unusual neighborhood.

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vipSFjazzgirl (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on December 16, 2017

Wonderful dinner - carefully executed for a perfect balance of spices, moisture, delicacy and intensity. And our server remembered everything from our last visit - our wines, the dishes we ordered, even our preferences! The best discovery in SF in the last year...

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OpenTable Diner (Phoenix)
4.0  Dined on December 15, 2017

Unique and delicious

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vipfeeding5 (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on December 8, 2017

Fabulous and creative food. Deserves to be much busier and in demand than it is. The waiter was wonderful and helped to pick everything our party of 4 ate. Have already recommended it to several friends. GO GO GO!

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on December 8, 2017

Recommend for pre-symphony dinner with 5:30 reservation. Dishes are to be shared. Fun assortment and many delicious tastes. Server recommended two choices per person and that was a perfect amount so as not to put you asleep during the performance!

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Andy (San Francisco)
4.0  Dined on November 29, 2017

Great spot with a lot of care/attention paid to diners. Quiet enough to hold important conversations and good choices on the menu. Delicious.

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vipOpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on November 16, 2017

Stunning!! Exquisite food and a killer wine list!
This was my seventh time and it just gets better and better!!

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vipKakrall (San Francisco)
4.0  Dined on November 11, 2017

This was our first experience with Sri Lankan food. It was unlike anything we had ever had before. We all really loved this restaurant and will definitely recommend it to others and will be back ourselves!

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vipChowdaHead (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on November 10, 2017

I've been here twice, the first time about 4 years ago. It was a fantastic find, and has sustained excellence over the years. It was very quiet, not busy, thus a really great place to go! I highly recommend this to anyone!

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vipRitikD (Pittsburgh)
4.0  Dined on November 4, 2017

Novel menu, nice space, good for a group dinner. We ate off the shared plates menu, chef's tasting menu looked really interesting, as well.

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TEGJ (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on October 21, 2017

Dinner party of four. We asked the server his recommendations and ended up going with everything he said. The food was excellent! Some dishes on par with some of the more famous and Michelin starred restaurants we've eaten at recently. This is definitely one of our favorite restaurants in SF and we can't wait to return!

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viperinelliott (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on October 21, 2017

Really happy and lovely experience. The food was delicious and a great location and easy to park too!

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vipSFjazzgirl (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on October 20, 2017

This restaurant is outstanding! We were overwhelmed - truly great, creative, delicious, fascinating dishes, one after another. We had the tasting menu and a good bottle of Sardinian Vermentino - every dish was spectacular! I had just been to Saison 2 weeks before and this was definitely a competitor - not as fancy a setting (though very warm and pleasant and quiet), but the chef and the waitstaff are fabulous. Can't wait to bring others back. Best new restaurant of the year...

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vipJHG1 (Los Angeles)
5.0  Dined on October 20, 2017

In a city with zillions of dining options I picked this restaurant because it is Sri Lankan and Sri Lankan food is amazing. The entire meal was scrumptious and the goat stew was incredible. The food presentation is beautiful. The husband and wife team are terrific and the service was first rate. For a unique and flavorful dining experience this restaurant is very highly recommended! If you’re in San Francisco and want a different and delicious meal this is the place to go!

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vipmaruko (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on October 12, 2017

Have been there twice for their chef tasting menu by now and loved both times! The egg hopper dish is amazing, and so are the scallops with home-made prawn cracker. Loved the okra as well.

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ZoeL (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on September 30, 2017

Delicious meal and knowledgeable and courteous staff. Recommend the egg hopper and curry ribs.

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on September 23, 2017

Egg hoppers to die for! Brilliant fusion of traditional Sri Lankan food + modern cuisine.

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vipOpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on September 22, 2017

1601 is an outstanding find in SF. Elegant and accessible dishes with a combination of Sri Lankan intrigue and Michelin start worthy flavors. The tasting menu is perfect for a special occasion and the diverse a la carte menu can be tailored to a week night dinner.

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on September 7, 2017

Absolutely delicious - every dish was so flavorful and unique

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on August 25, 2017

Absolutely amazing and delicious food - great service!

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OpenTable Diner (New York Area)
5.0  Dined on August 12, 2017

The food was creative upscale Sri Lankan. Each dish more original and tasty than the next. Hard to pick a favorite. The egg hopper, lamb and pork meatballs, crab... all amazing! The service and the ambiance (along with the food of course) make this an overall five star experience.

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OpenTable Diner (Washington DC)
5.0  Dined on August 5, 2017

This is one of my absolute favorite spots in San Francisco. I make a point of visiting every time I'm in town and have never been anything other than blown away.

Head chef Brian Fernando is, to my mind, one of the Bay Area's most inventive talents. No one out there is doing anything remotely similar to his fusion of traditional Sri Lankan cuisine with the savoir faire of French and Basque influences. (In other words, this isn't your ammamma's home cooking.) He's a true master of his craft, from the bright and spicy consommé to the surprising and delicious beverage pairings. (Cava and curried dungeness crab? Wow.)

The service is friendly and knowledgable, and the atmosphere is quiet and elegantly intimate. This is by no means an inexpensive restaurant, but it's worth every penny and more.

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