Caffe Sport - San Francisco

4.3
icon/ic_reviewCreated with Sketch.
344 Reviews
icon/ic_price_rangeCreated with Sketch.
$30 and under
icon/ic_cuisineCreated with Sketch.
Italian

Top Tags:

Pre/post Theatre
Caffe Sport, by Antonio La Tona is one-of-a-kind among restaurants. While North Beach is full of Italian Restaurants, not many actually embody the spirit or the food of their homeland. Antonio La Tona’s homeland is Sicily, and Sicilian food is the best there is in Italy.

Every square inch of the interior is adorned with elaborately painted furniture and woodcarvings. Come in once and you’ll never forget, and you’ll see why Caffe Sport is so famous.

Come and read the autographed photos and letters from celebrities throughout the world who are all Caffe Sport fanatics.
What 344 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.3
service
4.3
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
100% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
2
1
Sort by
Filters
RB
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on October 12, 2019
Overall3food4service2ambience5

We had an 8:15 reservation and were not seated till 9 pm. We were not served our food till 10:15. Not cool when you have three hungry 12 year olds. Clearly, they need to manage their reservation and walk in system better.

OT
Richmond
2 reviews
Dined on October 10, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great place for authentic Sicilian food.

E
San Francisco
13 reviews
Dined on October 6, 2019
Overall4food5service5ambience4

Enjoyed the place. Service was excellent and the food was very good. Nice place to try if you’re in the North Beach area.

R
San Francisco
22 reviews
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Early dinner before theater. Perfect service and food was marvelous.
Family style platters, had enough for lunch the next day. Will go back again and again.

S
San Francisco
28 reviews
Dined on September 21, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience4

This was for our anniversary. We had a wonderful meal. I couldn’t eat it all which is rare for me. Their pasta. A little bit of heaven on a plate. We look forward to our next visit.

JB
Raleigh
3 reviews
Dined on September 16, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food was great! I came in knowing not what to expect but it pleasantly surprised me.

l
San Francisco
14 reviews
Dined on August 21, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Food was very good. The service was excellent. We will go again when we are in the city

DK
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on August 16, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Waiters were terrific. Great time.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on August 14, 2019
Overall2food2service2ambience2

A mere shadow of what it once was. Lousy pasta dishes and VERY slow service given we had a 5:30 reservation). 5 of us and only thing decent was spaghetti and meatballs. Wouldn’t go back.

G
Nashville
21 reviews
Dined on August 10, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We went with open minds after reading the mixed reviews. My partner’s great memories of long ago visits were upheld. We had to wait an extra 20 minutes to get a preferred table, but used the time at the bar to soak up the Saturday night festive vibe. Everyone serving us was attentive and fun. We had a great meal and another memorable experience.

TP
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on August 10, 2019
Overall2food2service2ambience2

Well, we've been going here for MANY years bc the food was so good. But tonight, for our special anniversary dinner... we were totally underwhelmed. Started out, we were seated at a private booth which was so nice until they made us change our table out of the blue. Mind you, we made reservations. They told us they had a “better” table for us. But better to them meant right next to the kitchen and bathroom where it was A LOT less private or comfortable. One bench is high... one is lower. I felt like a midget and my hubby and I had to switch seats. God I wish we were able to stay at our booth! Tried to shake that off, nothing is ruining our special night... right? So then the food came. The appetizer with calamari, shrimp and scallops was just ok. Lacked shrimp and scallops... maybe 2 shrimp total and a few m&m size pieces of scallops. Scampi and pesto taste was spot on but they are getting a lot more skimpy on the scampi and it’s not the same size as before, it’s a lot more smaller. But here is where I felt compelled to write a review. We ordered filet of sole... and SERIOUSLY. What kind of restaurant does this!? They tried to pass off striped bass for filet of sole!!! And played stupid about it. This has never happened to us before at any other restaurant. How shady. We are avid fishermen and have a freezer full of striped bass. If we wanted striped bass... we sure wouldn't spend $25 a plate for some! BAD and shame on the kitchen for doing this. Overpriced food, mediocre portions. Staff was very “meh”. Where I used to rave about this place and crave their food... it has changed to not wanting to come here anymore and the whole bait and switch on ingredients leaves a really bad taste in your mouth. Dishonest. Gone are the good ol’ days.

Caffe Sport - San Francisco
Responded on August 20, 2019

Thank you for writing the review Tricia! We want to thank you for your continued patronage at Caffe Sport. We are very sorry to hear that your most recent visit was not a good one. We wish that you would have addressed the manager at the time to try and resolve the issue but there is still no excuse for this level of service. We hope to see you again in the future.

Report
OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on August 2, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Out of town visitors

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall1food2service2ambience1

Cramped table, over priced mediocre Italian food, rude staff, not ever going again and I’m a San Franciscan. Skip this place.

Caffe Sport - San Francisco
Responded on August 2, 2019

We are sorry that you did not enjoy your visit to Caffe Sport. Our kitchen values freshness, flavor, preparation and presentation, and we're sorry to hear that you did not experience this. In addition, we always strive to provide attentive service and are sorry that we did not live up to expectations here. Your feedback allows us to improve for future guests and we hope to show you the true Caffe Sport experience in the future

Report
TH
1 review
Dined on July 21, 2019
Overall3food3service3ambience4

It was a nice place with average food and service. Very difficult and expensive to find parking.

P
San Francisco
35 reviews
Dined on July 20, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

What a fun place to dine in North Beach! Can't wait to have another chance to come back.

C
Atlanta
1 review
Dined on July 15, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Awesome over-the-tip decor, delicious cioppino, and fair prices. I’ll go back.

OT
Orange County
1 review
Dined on July 12, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience3

I had reservation at 7:00 pm for party of 6. We checked in at 6:45 but did not seated till 7:30.

t
San Francisco
91 reviews
Dined on June 25, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Ate there for decades always a culinary family style delight

AT
Central Coast
2 reviews
Dined on June 21, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My family came here with a party of 18 for my birthday. I was overwhelmed by how attentive the staff was, especially for such a large party. We had an incredible time and an incredible meal. It felt like Italy, and I mean that as the highest compliment I can give. Grazie mille!

OT
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall3food4service2ambience3

Food was good but service was so-so. We had to ask for hot water, bread and coffee multiple times.

OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on June 15, 2019
Overall2food4service1ambience3

They just had a tough night... seated about 15 minutes after our scheduled

Caffe Sport - San Francisco
Responded on June 27, 2019

Thank you for the feedback! We do appreciate you understanding that staff can occasionally get very busy, however we are still very sorry that this put a damper on your experience. We do hope that you will return so that we can show you how we really operate.

Report
J
San Francisco
25 reviews
Dined on June 15, 2019
Overall4food3service5ambience5

A fun place whose decor has not changed in many moons. The service was very good - efficient without being pushy. I had the eggplant parm which was a nice size portion and tasty. My friend had the calimari and said most pieces were too chewy.

CA
San Francisco
47 reviews
Dined on June 14, 2019
Overall2food2service2ambience3

We have fond memories from our last meal here years ago. We walked in and the decor and space brought back warm and pleasant feelings. We were excited for our meal. Sadly, I need to write a negative review for our experience. Our plate of bread (with the delicious dipping sauce) was stale--it was clear with our first touch that the sliced bread had been sitting out too long before coming to our table. The iced tea wasn't made (yet?) and apparently was never made as my husband never got it. The olives were very tasty and we especially enjoyed being able to try for the first time the Gaeta olives. Our waiter apologized to us as he set down our entrees because our salad never came out. I appreciated that he comp'd my second glass of wine. My husband said the salmon entree, although good, was not what he expected given the description. He wanted something lighter and didn't expect the butter-laden sauce when it was described as being cooked in olive oil and lemon. Much too rich for his taste. I ordered the cioppino rosso. It looked beautiful upon presentation but it came out much too hot. I tried a bite or two right away and found that the seafood in it was overcooked, thus rubbery, esp the shrimp and calamari. The crab legs were not pre-cracked to help customers remove the meat so it was very tedious & messy to get to the meat. I asked for a damp towel for my hands and I was brought a very wet, folded cloth napkin. It was so wet that when I held it in my hands to wipe off the marinara sauce, water dripped down my forearms and onto my lap. This was a very disappointing experience and frankly, I was surprised as well as irritated by it all. My husband finished his dinner so ahead of me that we didn't feel like we were dining together. Sadly, this was not what I expected, and I have to say that we will not be dining here again.

Caffe Sport - San Francisco
Responded on June 27, 2019

Hi Chris! Thank you for your recent visit to Caffe Sport! We have a great deal of confidence in our staff, everyone has off nights, and we do apologize if the service you received was anything less than excellent. We appreciate your bringing this to our attention, as we'll certainly be following up with our staff about it.

Report
g
San Francisco
28 reviews
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

We enjoyed our risotto and carbonara entrees, but there was way too much of both. I don’t know if they make half orders, but beware! This was three meals for both of us. The garlic bread wasn’t very noteworthy. The service was kind, if a bit off timing-wise. Cute little place.

m
San Francisco
12 reviews
Dined on May 31, 2019
Overall2food1service4ambience3

The wait staff was lovely, attentive. I am sorry to say the food we ordered was terrible: gnocchi heavy and drowning in a sticky pesto, the four-cheese vermicelli bland and not cheesy. And the portions were huge, way beyond what one person could possibly eat.

J
1 review
Dined on May 31, 2019
Overall5food3service5ambience5

The staff was amazing and the experience was so wonderful! I always wonder why pasta is so expensive....enjoyable experience though!

S
San Francisco
18 reviews
Dined on May 26, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It's hard to believe, but Caffe Sport seems to be even better these days. Wow. This really is what Italian food should be. Absolutely every part of the experience dining here makes one glow inside. We had to wait about seven minutes for a table (since we were early for our reservation), and they seemed quite upset by our wait so they bought us our salads and garlic bread. Great house salad, by the way. And then we had pasta with shrimp and scallops and Chicken Parmesan. Both were amazing (as leftovers the next day too). Family style, relaxed, fun... a great ambiance, Old San Francisco, with fresh bread, good inexpensive wine. This is certainly one of the best restaurants anywhere. Every time we go, with just two of us or with a group of 20, we are never disappointed. The only downside is that there are too many tasty choices to enjoy in just one trip!

OT
Tahoe
1 review
Dined on May 18, 2019
Overall2food2service4ambience4

Service was good and the food at the time seemed tasty but my daughter and I had a really bad reaction to the bucatini sauce. Also there was gum on one of the chairs which got on my wife’s pants and other than giving us some ice to help clean it they did not seem very concerned. My son ordered chicken parm which came way after the other food. He had to ask three times to get it. We will not return.

I would have rated it one star but the salmon was the one excellent meal.

J
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall2food3service1ambience4

Two stars for two reasons. Service was terrible - we weren't greeted when we came in, no one seemed to want to help us. Service was very slow and we waited forever after our plates were cleared until we finally got up to find our server to ask for a dessert menu. We ordered 2 mains which we thought would be enough food for the 3 of us. They were both fairly small plates. $28 for 8 ravioli! Some of the plates had enough food for 2-3 people so it's hard to know how much to order. Wish our server had been more on it. The food was tasty and well prepared.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It was our one year anniversary and they were very nice!!

M
San Francisco
52 reviews
Dined on April 19, 2019
Overall3food3service3ambience4

It is sad to say but this unique restaurant ain't what it used to be. Portions are smaller, wine is diminished in quality, and the bread is pitiful (how can that be considering S.F. has the best bread in the world?) A word to management: PLEASE up your game, we want to go back but you aren't making it easy for us to do that.

OT
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on April 15, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It's been 20 years since I've been here and on this occasion I wanted to take my daughter and her friends for dinner. Between the 4 of us we shared a shrimp Alfredo, Petrale Sole, a small salad and a glass of Prosecco for me. It was just enough food and we were happy. This was a Monday night and the place was not busy but the ambience is fun and we had a lovely time.

PC
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall4food5service3ambience5

Love coming to Caffe Sport! A great staple in the neighborhood and outstanding food every single time. I always take people who are visiting to this restaurant.

AC
1 review
Dined on April 3, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Good food and service. The waiter was very corteus.

OT
1 review
Dined on March 29, 2019
Overall1food1service1ambience2

Hair in food. Terrible waitress. Food tasted like rubber.

OT
Central Coast
18 reviews
Dined on March 22, 2019
Overall3food3service3ambience3

Dine here ‘cuz walking distance to Beach Blanket Babyon Show at 8pm.

MR
1 review
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food and the service are both excellent. The waiter was the best I have ever had. The caprese salad was so delicious and the mushroom risotto was cooked by someone who knows exactly what they are doing. I have always walked past this restaurant while going to some of my favorite go to restaurants. This is my new go to restaurant. I can't wait for the weekend when I can go again. Do not miss out on this restaurant, there is no alternative to this kind of food and service. You will not find this quality anywhere else.

OT
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on March 1, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My husband had Scampi Al Antonio which was not as hearty as remembered, less garlic and thinner sauce. Good nevertheless. I hadcthe cioppono and it was fabulous! Ordered the Rosso from the menu but requested it fra diavlo. Chef complied with the request and delivered a hearty, heaping cioppino that is the stuff memories are made of. Amazing lunch!

GS
1 review
Dined on February 28, 2019
Overall4food5service4ambience4

The food was wonderful. The service was good but I would have enjoyed myself more IF it had been warmer,no HEAT.

BM
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 23, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We have gone to Caffe Sport now for over 30 years. Still good and will go back again...