Permanently Closed - Butterfly, The Embarcadero

4
1978 Reviews
$30 and under
Pan-Asian

About

This restaurant is permanently closed. Butterfly offers the perfect mix of food, atmosphere, an amazing California Wine List and great decor. Chef Robert Lam was named as a previous "Top 6 Rising Star Chef" by The Chronicle, Lam continues to impress by bringing his innovative California-Asian cuisine to the waterfront location on the Embarcadero. " Narsai David of KCBS said," Butterfly is a happening place". Best seafood soup, I have ever had!" A few suggestions Clams and Mussels, Salmon and Strawberry Rolls, Kalua Pig in Butter Lettuce Cups, Crispy Fried Whole Fish, and Banana Bread Pudding for dessert.
What 1978 people are sayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
4.0based on all time ratings
4.0
food
4.0
service
4.0
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
88% of people would recommend it to a friend
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R
vipRudolph
San Francisco
151 reviews
Dined on January 7, 2017
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Last meal at Butterfly in SF, RIP. Thank you Chef Lam for the awesome memories the last 16 years. SF won't be the same without this fine restaurant and its ambiance. I love those sea urchin chandeliers!

GJ
GeorgeJ
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 6, 2017
Overall3food3service2ambience3

had hard time reading the menu, since it was so dark.. took awhile before waiter to greet us ..
took awhile between service of food items ..

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 6, 2017
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It is a shame that this restaurant is now closed. It was very romantic!

CQ
ChiliQueen
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on January 5, 2017
Overall5food5service5ambience4

The food was fabulous as it always is. The calamari is to die for. The duck confit spring rolls are to kill for. The Shanghai Noodles, surf and turf style are not to be missed and the catfish was outstanding. We are so sorry to see the closing of Butterfly but we know Chef Rob Lam is moving on to a wondrous new project! And we wish him All the Best!

D
Disappointed2
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2017
Overall1food3service1ambience1

They were closed!!!!!!!!!!!

H
Helen
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 30, 2016
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Overall it was an awesome experience although I am vegetarian and the menu does not have a big list to choose from.

GI
GreatItalianfood
San Francisco
29 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2016
Overall2food2service5ambience4

Butterfly has a very limited menu with very few choices that aren't "fried". It's not a healthy menu at all. It's also way overpriced - $42 for a 1 lb fried fish - really?
The ambience is great - right on the water and the service was very good, but I can not recommend this restaurant because it is so overpriced and the food, although OK, is not exceptional.

T
Tammim
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2016
Overall3food5service1ambience4

Service wasn't very good. For the first 20 minutes we were completely ignored. Had to ask for water and wine list. Waited another 0 minutes and than was brought the wrong wine. Our waiter didn't seem to know what was going on...our food was pretty tasty, but for me it wasn't the best Christmas Eve because of the way we ignored at first and the overall service.

DR
DianaR
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Simply wonderful! Beautiful setting, marvelous food, excellent service.

TT
msTT
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on December 22, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Our office is local to Butterfly and we really enjoy this place and the sister Poke joint; Sammy's Aloha. The food is good, the Ahi/Poke is excellent, the owner/Chef is fantastic and the staff are SO accommodating. We love this place. Beautiful view out of the huge windows as well.

C
Calif
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 21, 2016
Overall1food1service3ambience1

Very Loud! Food was cold. The Curry Chowder was bland. We will not be going back

2
vip2dindin
San Francisco
107 reviews
Dined on December 18, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Jose is an awesome server. Considerate and attentive.
The food was delicious and high quality. I highly recommend this restaurant. May I add amazing views.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on December 10, 2016
Overall4food3service3ambience4

Creative, flavored food. Poor wine menu. Starter too big. Really nice ambiance and decoration.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Central Coast
53 reviews
Dined on December 3, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

First time there nice view of the Bay and Bay Bridge, do the oyster shooters and Hangar Steak or the Cheeseburger:-) Only thing maybe bring a good wine with you, only short fall but the bar is great. Service was great

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 3, 2016
Overall4food4service4ambience4

We really enjoyed very much so we may comeback soon.

TK
TessnKim
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 30, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Amazing food - tasty and good portion size. Great ambience and service. Look forward to coming back!

VO
vipVickiO
San Francisco
99 reviews
Dined on November 26, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Tucked away on Pier 33, right next to the Alcatraz Ferry terminal. Why isn't BUTTERFLY packed?!

LP
LvhP
Vancouver
1 review
Dined on November 25, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful decor, music, and interesting dishes such as fried whole Black bass served with kim chee and tasty rice cake pieces. The Duck Confit spring rolls with wasabi mustard sauce was great too. Just wish there were more people for a livelier atmosphere. Maybe Black Friday night was just a quiet one (as people are out shopping). Also at night, you cannot see much out the large glass windows. It's better to go when there's some light out.

The waitress was friendly and table service was good. Nice value with a Groupon; may be on expensive side without it but worth trying the different fusion dishes at least once.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Diego
1 review
Dined on November 25, 2016
Overall4food5service5ambience3

The food and service were amazing. They only issue would be the low lighting but it does provide ambience to the restaurant.

PL
vipPeterL
Central Coast
9 reviews
Dined on November 24, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Enjoyable fixed dinner with turkey on thanksgiving.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on November 23, 2016
Overall4food4service4ambience4

The Happy Hour menu has lots of tasty choices, and it's fun to share a good variety of small plates with friends. Prices are quite reasonable. Only wish the fixed price menu were still available.

g
vipgoldbloodedgriller
San Francisco
52 reviews
Dined on November 19, 2016
Overall2food2service2ambience2

Good poke, cocktails, & desserts. Duck & chicken entrees were overpriced for mediocre food. Service & atmosphere was blah

S
vipSqueeze
San Francisco
21 reviews
Dined on November 18, 2016
Overall4food4service3ambience3

Great green papaya shrimp salad. Duck was good and
Garlic noodles surf and turf ok. We both liked our shared desert.
Banana bread pudding with Carmel sauce and ice cream

F
vipFoodanier
San Francisco
39 reviews
Dined on November 18, 2016
Overall4food3service4ambience4

In all, I cannot be totally fair, because I was recovering from an upper respiratory illness, so I could not taste as well as usual. It may have been that was the reason nothing on the menu appealed to me. My friend got the noodles, which were good, and I got the curry chowder, which was also good, but neither were "off the chart". The fresh fish was more expensive than I wanted to spend, and my friend did not want to go for the "steak for two". Perhaps I will try it again when my taste buds have recovered.

B
vipBlue
San Francisco
19 reviews
Dined on November 18, 2016
Overall4food5service4ambience4

Outstanding value for lunch with delicious sandwich choices. People in our group had the Angus Cheeseburger Loco Moco style. It was about 6 inches high and was sooo delish. Cooked perfectly - medium rare. The Tumeric catfish Thang Long was a nice low-carb choice with fresh catfish that comes sizzling hot in a cast iron pan. It is liberally drenched with tumeric over carmelized onions. Wrap it in the fresh butter lettuce leaves and sprinkle with the dipping sauce - a great combination of flavors. For a vegetarian choice we had the portobello mushroom sandwich - great flavor, did not miss the meat. The steak fries are medium cut, crunchy on the outside and piping hot. Everything was very comforting and satisfying.

MV
MikeV
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We wanted great food and an interesting location for a special occasion and Butterfly delivered. We loved the Catfish, Butterfly Chicken, Peking Duck as well as the cocktails, dessert and service! Our party of 6 left well fed and very happy. Thanks Butterfly!

b
bayareagal
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on November 9, 2016
Overall5food4service5ambience4

We had a Groupon for Butterfly, but we had also been wanting to try it since we saw it reviewed on Bay Area Check Please. It did not disappoint! We had happy hour cocktails and appetizers -- great value. The salt & pepper calamari was outstanding. The batter was SO light, and the minced peppers added just the right amount of spice. Truly the best fried calamari appetizer I have ever had. For our entrees, I had the teriyaki hangar steak, which was good. I would have liked a bit more potato and peas. My husband got the whole fish, which was Bronzino sea bass that night. It was moist, flaky, and deliciously seasoned, and even though it was a bit difficult to eat due to the whole fish aspect (bones), the presentation was beautiful. We were seated at a small table that faced the windows so we had a great, unobstructed view of the Bay. Lovely evening and meal!

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 7, 2016
Overall5food4service3ambience5

We came here for our 18th wedding anniversary celebration. We arrived early and were seated immediately. The host honored our request for window seating.

We were a little disappointed with our server. We did not receive a warm reception from him. It was our first time trying the place. We were looking to him for guidance. We did not get the warm reception we'd expected for a high end restaurant. I thought he would interact with us i.e. Ask if we have dined there before or return costumer, etc. We expected him to return to ask how we are enjoying our dishes. He did not do that either.

Part of our eating out experience at a nice restaurant such as The Butterfly, we expect some level of interaction with our server. We expect warm reception. We expect high quality services. We did not get that here. We left feeling unhappy. We like the food, location, ambiance, and view of the bay. Because of poor service, we are questioning our return.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 6, 2016
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Enjoyed the Hawaiian thread. Nice water view. Staff friendly. Food was yummy.

VO
vipVickiO
San Francisco
99 reviews
Dined on November 6, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

If you're headed to Alcatraz Island via the ferry, don't forget to stop in for a drink and/or memorable meal at BUTTERFLY right on Pier 33, close to Pier 39 yet "so far away" from the tourist scene, and a rather elegant, fun discovery.

The food is superb and the whole restaurant enjoys incredible floor-to-ceiling SF Bay views between two private piers where a harbour seal and bird life have staked-out their paradise.

Butterfly's menu and drink selections are meant to please the hearty- and the healthy-minded hungers (don't let the name fool you). Beautiful and thoughtful presentation of meals add to the memorable discovery of your new "secret" favorite San Francisco Embarcadero restaurant.

See you there!

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on November 5, 2016
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Having lived in the immediate area for several years, I've enjoyed many opportunities to dine at BUTTERFLY. The menu offers a varied selection of choices, and surely anyone's personal taste is easily met. Service, both bar and table, is excellent and attentive. In addition, the owner/manager made it a point to assure our party's complete and total satisfaction.

m
mamalove
San Francisco
37 reviews
Dined on November 4, 2016
Overall5food5service4ambience5

It is our go to place when I don't feel like cooking. I am a retired chef and the food is wonderful

m
mng246
Seattle
36 reviews
Dined on October 29, 2016
Overall5food5service4ambience5

This was our 2nd time here (we live in Seattle) & we brought 4 other local friends to celebrate an 81st b-day - everyone said they'll be back! We sampled 5 appetizers & 4 entrees doing "family style" - (hint, you need to provide more serving utensils). Rave reviews for flavors, especially the Buddha Chicken Wings & Seafood Curry Corn Chowder! Everyone also liked the Papaya Salad & Hanger Steak was so tender. We really appreciated the candle lit desserts & fun picture taking. Yes, we'll be back for more!

JL
JLouie2014
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on October 15, 2016
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Butterfly has the ambiance and great creative dishes. Food is fresh with Asian fusion.
Service is excellent. Recommend this restaurant for date night, gatherings with friends or happy hour.

m
miamama
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on October 15, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food, wonderful service, and a nice scenic spot by the bay. The Curry Seafood Chowder was SOOO GOOD! The Duck Confit Spring Rolls was amazing. The salads and noodles also very good. We walked there from the Embarcadero BART station (1.2 mile) - a nice walk along the piers.

TC
TraceyC
San Francisco
12 reviews
Dined on October 15, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Lights went out during dinner so kind of stopped the fun and had to eat it in the dark. Never came on during the rest of the evening. But our waiter was wonderful and we would go back.

e
elizam90
San Francisco
13 reviews
Dined on October 14, 2016
Overall5food4service4ambience5

It was a great experience and we had a wonderful meal! They gave us a couch in front of the beautiful Bay view and it was conducive for conversation and very quiet at our early seating at 7pm.

S
Sassieone
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on October 8, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

the food stood out, our waiter was so attentive and knew the menu so well. His attention to detail and knowledge of wine was exceptional. He made our night even more special. Loved the location. lovely view, great value. We had family visit from out of town, and we live in the South Bay so this was a fairly easy commute for us. Down side is parking sucks in SF but we managed, parking cost us nearly as much as our meal :( but we had a wonderful evening and this was a great place to meet and eat at. The mussels were fabulous! And the chicken wings amazing!!

A
vipAugust2014
San Francisco
72 reviews
Dined on October 8, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always live to eat here when at the embacadero or pier 39

N
Nannan
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 7, 2016
Overall4food4service4ambience5

Great food, presentation, and taste. Had a great window seat & can see part of air show. Had a good experience.

FAQs

Permanently Closed - Butterfly, The Embarcadero offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (415) 864-8999.

Permanently Closed - Butterfly, The Embarcadero is rated 4 stars by 1978 OpenTable diners.