Excellent and creative food-craft; inviting decor, design and layout - however, the actual ambiance and service experience would prevent me from returning. This was a special occasion and I flew in from NYC to SF to surprise my dearest friend for her birthday.
I read the "story" of Firefly online & how the founders "...dreamed of a restaurant where the customers felt like they were at a friend’s house for dinner . . ." I thought - perfect place for two life-long friends to celebrate. For us, it wasn't.
First off - the food really was very good! We shared Crab cake - which was hearty, mostly crab (yay!) and delicious! Secondly we shared a lovely Kale Salad with cranberries and persimmons. Lastly, my friend had the Kabocha Squash (w.hominy, kale chili, maitake mushroom, marinated cabbage topped with a brown rice cake); and I had the Lemongrass pork chop. My pork chop was outstanding! Truly.
For desert we shared the Pumpkin Brioche Bread Pudding, served warm with rum crème anglaise and sprinkled with pumpkin seeds. This was absolutely exceptional! Paired with an excellent cup decaf. coffee - we were in desert heaven.
However, while the food was great - it in no way matched up to the overall ambiance, music or service experience. I will not return. When we arrived the music was some kind of grunge / alt. rock - you know the kind of music you might find in a punk / hip coffee-house, but was really strange in a dining setting. It created a very edgy atmosphere that was hard to relax in - as well, it was a quite loud.
The biggest thing was the strange energy from Service Staff. With the exception of the hostess -
- throughout our entire meal it felt like they were trying to "hurry" us out. The place was busy, but by NO means full. Our Waiter was very efficient (almost clinical), but completely disconnected, no real warmth, and fully dispassionate. In this case, unfortunately, it really came across to both of us and just wasn't enjoyable. A sour note for sure.
It was all good. Portions could be larger.
Very relaxing and relatively quiet with nice ambiance. One guest's pork was quite rare, and upon request, they graciously cooked it more. Lovely staff.
We love Firefly. It's such a comfortable dining experience. It's my happy place!
Love the restaurant, great service and very very delicious food. My only disappointment was a special request was put in during time of reservation via opentable and that request (dessert + birthday candle) was forgotten.
Incredible food, wonderful service, seasonal, local, organic. Delicious, creative menu. Consistent. LOVE this place!
I used to really love this neighborhood standout but on a recent visit it seemed the food was just fine (but not memorable) and the restaurant was looking a bit tired. I remember coming here when the restaurant first opened and thinking how lovely and airy it felt with its tent like cloth covered ceilings. Now it just feels poorly lit and dingy. In addition, the tables are quite close together so be prepared to share in your neighbors' conversations. On the plus side, the service was excellent.
All three of us LOVED this place... the ambience, the waitstaff, the food! Also, some great vegan and gluten free options. Much appreciated!
Great food, wine and service
Had a wonderful birthday celebration for a friend who has been going to Firefly for 17 years.
Very welcoming and unpretentious place. A tiny bit fancy without letting it go to their heads.
My date felt very included though she doesn't drink alcohol, the waiter took the time to give her a great experience ordering grape juice (which was delicious).
Great food. Got some potatoes, some Brussel sprouts, some salmon and some seafood stew. All very nice dishes, perfect for sharing.
Food was excellent. Service not very attentive. A large group seemed to overwhelm the staff.
I will return and will recommend it to my foodie friends.
My friends from Kentucky where very pleased with my "local" dinner suggestion. My wife and I have been coming here for 20+ years, ever since we dated! The food and service is still any bit as good, even without Brad behind the stove!
I hadn't been to this restaurant in years. The food was fantastic, the service great, and we had a very cozy table. We will definitely be back.
Firefly accomplishes (seemingly effortlessly) that combination of high cuisine and happy coziness that both aspiring and established spots reach for. Perhaps it is that balance of a constantly creative culinary team that has been successful for decades and still finds ways to surprise.
The atmosphere is only topped by the incredible wait staff. Their attention to every detail of our experience made it a night we are still enjoying and talking about.
Great food, but felt rushed by the hostess early in the meal, since one couple in our group of 6 was 15 mins late. Next next seating was 2 hours away. FYI we finished dinner 45 mins early and skipped dessert.
Had a 9:00 reservation and when we arrived in time and sat down our sever immediately greeted us by telling us the kitchen closed at 9:00. We apologetically ordered quickly and then we felt rushed to leave because multiple waitstaff hovered to clear our half eaten plates. The same staff immediately sat down at the bar and started eating their dinner while diners were still in the restaurant. Felt like the priority was then closing early instead of providing service to paying customers. Will not be going back. Sadly the food was really good!
I just don't get the hype! The food was fine enough, but not worth the prices.
The service was stilted and awkward. I felt like we were a bother to him.
Won't be returning...
LOVE their gluten free organic fried chicken! And the daikon radish cakes are amazing. Very flexible in accommodating my special dietary needs. Haven’t had anything bad.
Have been to Firefly many time. Always a wonderful evening. Very good food, friendly service and a good variety on the menu to everyone. Highly recommend the desserts, as well. Look forward to my next visit.
I met someone very special recently and I decided to reserve a spot for dinner here for our third date. We both very much enjoyed the conversation, food and service. Great veggie and seafood options. I'm sure we will be back!
We had a winnng day at the Cow Palace and this was a perfect celebration place, good food, wine, and had better beverage choices than usual.
One of the best meals that my wife and I have had in years! This was our first visit together in San Francisco; we made a reservation based on the fact that we were staying in the Mission district and were impressed by the on-line reviews. We were not disappointed! If we are ever back in SF, we will certainly visit Firefly again.
Delicious meal with excellent and friendly service.
Food was great and the service was excellent. The perfect place to have an intimate dinner where you don’t have to shout over noise from other diners in order to have a conversation.
Best Fried Chicken and Crab Cake
in San Francisco. Ate here twice. Excellent both Times. Food can take a little extra time to get to Table. Worth it!
Great service. Not a lot of good options for kids.
Eight of us went there for my daughter's birthday. Her and a friend are vegan, the rest of us like it all. Their menu did a nice job of offering quality options no matter your preference. The execution from the menu to the table was really great. Kudos to the chef who balanced flavor and simplicity with each dish. As noted, we were a table of eight, but the kitchen had no problem with timing. They were spot on. Our server was really nice and easy going. An important note because it was my daughter's 21st birthday (sash and all). That would cause eye rolls from even the least jaded server out there, expecting the worst from "that kind" of group. Instead she was gracious and cool and helped to set the tone by being fun but in an easy, casual way. All in all, a great time with excellent food and equally excellent service. I hope to come back sometime soon.
We had gone to Firefly for my birthday in July and vowed to return for our son's birthday in October. We are not planning to come back in November for my husband's. We requested a cozy table in the window and were delighted that it worked out. The food was awesome, as always. It's our happy place.
You'll definitely have a good meal at Firefly. Everything we tried was excellent. We had Brussel sprouts to start, the fried chicken and the pork chop as mains. Although it's a bit out of the way, and the wait for food was a bit long between app and main, we would return to try their other dishes.
Pork and chicken was under cooked. Very limited vegetarian menu. The chef wore a tank top,which I find gross when dealing with food
I've been going to this restaurant for a couple years now and just learned that he whole menu is gluten free!!! Goes to show how wonderful the dishes are that I didn't even suspect anything out of the ordinary! My suggestion is to try the Fried Chicken!
I have been to Firefly three times and this by far was the best experience I have had. I had a friend in town who is vegetarian and has Celiac so there were very few restaurants that we could go to. Not only were there many options but our waitress was SO knowledgable and helpful with selections.
The only issue we had that night was that it was warm outside and it was even warmer inside. It got hot! But the food was great and the wait staff was AMAZING.
We went for a double birthday and family visit dinner. Had the tostones, the fried chicken, and both the fig and the chocolate pudding dessert. It was all amazing, delicious and the service was great.
Did not have the signature Mary's fried chicken, nor any wine. I did come with high expectations from yelp reviews. Ordered chard Brussels sprouts, that were more charred than crispy. I had a kale, pear salad with gorgonzola and pomegranate. It was the better part of the meal. Then I had brisket which was ok too. Overall, great service, food not a memorable savory experience. Salad and Brussels sprouts on a Tapa portion and brisket more like a regular portion totalling about 55 dollars.
Excellent service and tasty food, with a good wine list. My guests are foodies who enjoyed an unpretentious place to enjoy a thoughtful meal.
Had a great time, very friendly and professional service. A great spot. Highly recommended
I was uncertain to what extent the menu would be gluten free as required for Celiac Disease. Our server gave me great relief when he said the owner's daughters were also Celiac. I ordered the brisket and was concerned about the gravy but he reassured that any time a thickener is required, gluten free flour is used. I could then enjoy the meal, it was full of flavour, the cornbread soufflé was the perfect compliment. My sisters raved about their meals, it was a cozy and lively restaurant, a complete gem!
Excellent gluten-free choices. Great dining experience for those with Celiac. They welcome foodies and were able to accommodate our gluten-free, vegan, and vegetarian group. We'll be back.
There were 5 people in our party and we ordered 5 of the starters and 2 mains. Non of the starters were memorable. They were just blah. For mains we ordered the salmon and the fried green tomatoes. Salmon was average and the fried green tomatoes were tasteless. Looking back on the meal I think the main problem was that the produce was not as good as I am used to. The heirloom tomatoes were hard. The only item that I could recommend was the eggplant (baba ganooush) but for $15 bucks I have had much better. The service was good and it was a very cute neighborhood restaurant.