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  1. Distance: 0.50mi
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Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.50mi
  2. Distance: 0.50mi
  3. Distance: 0.53mi
  4. Distance: 0.54mi
  1. Distance: 0.50mi
  2. Distance: 0.50mi
  3. Distance: 0.53mi
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About 1601 Bar & Kitchen

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.

1601 Howard Street
San Francisco, CA 94103
View Larger Map

Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Sri Lankan, Fusion / Eclectic, Dining Bar

Hours of Operation:

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



Cross Street:
12th Street

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$31 to $50

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(415) 552-1601

Website:
http://www.1601sf.com/

Catering:
Please contact us with catering inquiries, 415-552-1601 or write to info@1601sf.com

Parking Details:
Easy street parking, no meters after 6pm. A garage available within a block, (closes at midnight)

Public Transit:
Muni: Metro-Van Ness & Market, Bus 47 & 49: Van Ness & Mission
BART-Civic Center

Executive Chef:
Brian Fernando

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Gluten-free Menu, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Special Events & Promotions:
Birthdays, corporate events, corporate meetings, etc. Please contact us for details, 415-552-1601 or info@1601sf.com

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).

1601 Bar & Kitchen Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.6

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.6

service

4.7

ambience

4.2

value

4.2

Noise

Quiet

100% would recommend it to a friend

Fit for Foodies (11)
Creative Cuisine (9)
Neighborhood Gem (8)
See All
Good for a Date (7)
Special Occasion (7)
Good for Birthdays (6)
Tasting Menu (6)
Bar Seating (5)
Authentic (5)
Good for Groups (5)
Business Meals (4)
Notable Wine List (4)
Quiet Conversation (4)
Romantic (4)
Cozy (3)
Local Ingredients (3)
Pre/post Theatre (3)
Good Vegetarian Options (3)
Late-night Find (2)
Worth the Drive (2)
Spicy (2)
Good for Anniversaries (1)
Fun (1)
Vibrant Bar Scene (1)
Healthy (1)
Organic (1)
Seasonal (1)
Tapas (1)
Gluten Free Options (1)
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228 reviews
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 (Denver)·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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food2
ambience2
service4
value2

vip
 (Houston)·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.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Romantic, Cozy, Tasting Menu, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service4
value5

vip
 (Chicago)·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.

Tags: Local Ingredients, Good for a Date, Fit for Foodies, Notable Wine List, Cozy, Romantic, Business Meals, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·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.

Tags: Bar Seating, Good for Birthdays, Good for Groups, Notable Wine List, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·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!

Tags: Seasonal, Pre/post Theatre, Good Vegetarian Options, Creative Cuisine, Fit for Foodies, Spicy, Bar Seating, Good for Groups, Special Occasion, Fun, Authentic, Tapas, Good for a Date, Tasting Menu, Quiet Conversation, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·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!

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (San Francisco)·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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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·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.

Tags: Romantic, Neighborhood Gem, Special Occasion, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·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...

Tags: Romantic, Vibrant Bar Scene, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies, Neighborhood Gem, Late-night Find, Quiet Conversation, Creative Cuisine, Good for Birthdays, Worth the Drive, Local Ingredients
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Phoenix)·Dined on December 15, 2017

Unique and delicious

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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (San Francisco)·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!

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Pre/post Theatre, Spicy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service5
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·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!

Tags: Worth the Drive, Quiet Conversation
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·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.

Tags: Business Meals, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (San Francisco)·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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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·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!

Tags: Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Business Meals
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service4
value4

vip
 (San Francisco)·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!

Tags: Bar Seating, Good for Birthdays, Special Occasion, Organic, Creative Cuisine, Healthy, Cozy, Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Pittsburgh)·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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food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·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!

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Authentic, Tasting Menu
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 21, 2017

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

Tags: Cozy, Bar Seating, Authentic, Tapas
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·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...

Tags: Romantic, Special Occasion, Business Meals, Seasonal, Tasting Menu, Creative Cuisine, Worth the Drive, Good for a Date, Quiet Conversation, Neighborhood Gem, Authentic, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Los Angeles)·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!

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Good Vegetarian Options, Creative Cuisine, Local Ingredients
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·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.

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Special Occasion, Tasting Menu, Local Ingredients, Cozy, Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date, Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 30, 2017

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

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 23, 2017

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

Tags: Worth the Drive, Good for a Date, Creative Cuisine, Gluten Free Options, Special Occasion, Good for Groups, Quiet Conversation
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·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.

Tags: Special Occasion, Healthy, Neighborhood Gem, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 7, 2017

Absolutely delicious - every dish was so flavorful and unique

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Tasting Menu, Tapas, Local Ingredients, Seasonal, Good for Groups, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on August 25, 2017

Absolutely amazing and delicious food - great service!

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for a Date, Bar Seating, Romantic, Happy Hour, Local Ingredients, Tasting Menu, Paleo Friendly, Worth the Drive
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·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.

Tags: Local Ingredients, Seasonal, Authentic, Fun, Tasting Menu, Fit for Foodies, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·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.

Tags: Good Vegetarian Options, Gluten Free Options, Quiet Conversation, Spicy, Tasting Menu, Great Beer, Creative Cuisine, Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Romantic, Good for a Date, Healthy, Tapas
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on August 2, 2017

A truly remarkable dining experience! I'd been here once before for small plates with friends. This time, I brought my boyfriend to treat him to the tasting menu for his birthday. What a delightful treat! They accommodated my gluten-free dietary needs, providing incredibly delightful alternatives on the few dishes I couldn't eat. Our server was friendly, courteous and patient, and clearly enjoyed explaining all the delights that came to our table. I highly recommend 1601 for special occasions!

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Spicy, Fit for Foodies, Cozy, Good for Anniversaries, Tasting Menu, Quiet Conversation, Gluten Free Options, Good for a Date, Good for Birthdays, Special Occasion, Tapas, Creative Cuisine, Romantic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Houston)·Dined on July 27, 2017

Phenomenal place.

The food and service was excellent. Nothing negative to say about our experience. 5 stars

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Tasting Menu, Creative Cuisine
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on July 26, 2017

Dined here alone on way out of town after a conference. The staff was incredibly kind and hospitable. I had a great seat at the end of the bar, which worked out great while dining alone. I orders the tasting menu (~$100) absolutely amazing and worth the price even at that cost! I was exposed to so many new flavors. My only regret is being too full to finish every dish.

Tags: Special Occasion, Business Meals, Romantic, Good for Groups, Bar Seating, Fun
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on July 18, 2017

Great Tasting Menu! Very different from the normal fine dining fare. Service was exceptional as well.

Tags: Tasting Menu, Creative Cuisine
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Washington DC)·Dined on July 15, 2017

We were disappointed with the quality and flavors of the dishes offered......was not at all special. Despite the positive reviews, which drove us to select "1601", our experience, was sub par....though the staff was courteous.

Tags: Casual
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food1
ambience3
service4
value1

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on July 15, 2017

The wait staff were excellent. The food was delicious, but the portions are very small, particularly the ceviche, which we were lucky enough to have as they were not thought to be available.

Tags: Authentic, Quiet Conversation
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food4
ambience4
service5
value2

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on July 8, 2017

Unique restaurant with some unique dishes but prices are too high for the amount of food served.

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food3
ambience3
service5
value1

vip
 (Los Angeles)·Dined on June 23, 2017

Amazing find. Loved the food and service was superb.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Tasting Menu, Authentic, Romantic, Good for a Date, Worth the Drive, Good for Anniversaries, Fun, Tapas, Creative Cuisine
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on June 21, 2017

The food was pretty tasty, but shockingly expensive.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience2
service4
value1

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on June 16, 2017

It's a small husband and wife team that runs this unassuming restaurant. If you've never been here before, you're in for a treat. We had the tasting menu and every single dish was simply amazing. One of the best undiscovered restaurants in the city.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Fit for Foodies, Neighborhood Gem, Casual, Good for a Date, Hot Spot, Authentic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on June 9, 2017

My dining partner and I had the tasting menu plus wine pairing and had a really great time. The menu was a fun journey with a couple of outstanding dishes and pairs. I appreciated that chef accommodated his gluten allergy. Great service as well. I'd come back.

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food4
ambience5
service5

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