Pier 23 Cafe

4.4
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1279 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Seafood

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Casual
Pier 23 Cafe is a unique waterfront restaurant specializing in fresh seafood, live music and beautiful views of San Francisco bay. Family owned and operated for over 30 years, Pier 23 Cafe captures the heart and soul of a city obsessed with food. The large bay side patio allows patrons to soak up the California sun while enjoying creative dishes made from fresh, local ingredients. Night time dining in the heated tent is complimented by maritime activity and amazing views of Treasure Island and the Berkeley Hills. Come down and enjoy a true local favorite and experience some real waterfront history.
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What 1279 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.2
food
4.4
service
4.3
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
88% of people would recommend it to a friend
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M
Toronto
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall3food4service4ambience3

We made reservations but they reserved the table closest to the kitchen. It appeared that walkins had better seating than we did.

Pier 23 Cafe
Responded 4 days ago

Thank you for informing us of your experience today. I see your reservation was made at 11:22am this morning for 11:45am. It is difficult to guarantee specific seating. Weather can be limiting and only certain tables can fit a high chair. We had 20 minutes to find a table amongst other reservations. Only a few were available. Still, it is unacceptable to have let you down. I will discuss solutions with my staff. I invite you to join us again. Contact me and I will save you a great table.

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CH
Las Vegas
5 reviews
Dined on February 18, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Great Food! Look all the food. Very fresh Dungeness Crab, fish and chip, chicken wing and waffle, chowder soup, bake broccoli and cauliflower. All are delicious!

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall3food3service3ambience5

Not as good as it used to be. Fish and chips was undercooked, had to send it back. Clam chowder was bland. Shrimp and crab sandwich was good, but the salad with it was hard to eat.

N
Las Vegas
9 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall3food3service5ambience4

We wanted to like this place...the service was good, however the restaurant was very hot inside, and the food was bland. My wife and I both had the fish and chips, and I had a bowl of clam chowder. The chowder was blah...no seasoning whatsoever...a little salt and pepper would have helped but there was none on the table. It literally had one potato in it. The garlic fries were okay, but under seasoned, the fish was not done in the middle and was just bland...put some salt or seasoning in your batter. My wife had the espresso ice cream for dessert and loved it. That said they got us in quick and the service was good. The food was not worth the cost sadly.

OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Delicious!!

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MD
Sacramento
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience2

Good food, very casual. Most of the seating is under a tent. Good value if you are somewhat on a budget. Caution, their shirts they wear show naked women's back side...if you bring the kids.

RO
San Francisco
84 reviews
Dined on February 6, 2020
Overall3food3service3ambience3

Casual fun spot. Not sure it would make it if you removed it from the waterfront. Food and beverage is just average. Would go here more if they put a little more effort into what they are doing.

L
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We loved eating on the water, enjoyed the chowder, salad and sausage. The best part was the live music. Jinx Jones was playing the night we were there, great rockabilly music in the bar, and we could easily hear him while we were sitting out on the dock.

OT
1 review
Dined on January 30, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Fantastic mussels and clams made perfectly with very interesting herbs and spices. Delicious chared bread. Awesome service great cocktails. And is the Irish say great craic!! Well done.

ST
Las Vegas
6 reviews
Dined on January 25, 2020
Overall5food4service2ambience5

Service depends on the server. So one time a server is great, the second time not so good

WM
San Francisco
13 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2020
Overall4food3service5ambience4

Music was great as was the service. The crab quesadilla didn't have any crab to speak of in it, but all the other dishes were spot on!

Pier 23 Cafe
Responded on January 23, 2020

William, Thanks for the nice review, I will pass your commendation along to Sean, your server. I am disappointed to hear the crab quesadilla wasn't what you were expecting. I will take a look at it with the culinary team today. Let me know when you plan to return, and we will have it tasting delicious for you!

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JW
San Francisco
29 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My table was waiting with my reservation on it upon arrival. The service was efficient professional. The food and cocktails were very good as always. Keep up the great work...

d
1 review
Dined on January 17, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience4

The customer service was excellent! The view of the ocean was spectacular and it was wonderful to be able to eat "outside" in January due to the clear tent that covered the entire outdoor dining area. Overall, it was a fabulous experience and we will be going to Pier 23 again!

Pier 23 Cafe
Responded on January 26, 2020

Thank you for coming in and leaving an excellent review. I would love to know more about who helped you out so I can pass on the commendation. Regardless, we look forward to hosting you again!

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J
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on January 14, 2020
Overall4food5service5ambience4

Great lunch. Halibut special was superb. Nice server, overall was fine. A little noisy for us, as we are hard of hearing, but we came at 1 pm to see if there would be fewer people. After awhile there were. Live nearby, and plan to return soon. Glad you take reservations.

Pier 23 Cafe
Responded on January 17, 2020

John, Thank you for taking the time to visit us and write such a stellar review. The Halibut is locally sourced and very tasty indeed! I let the team know you really enjoyed your visit. Come say hello next time you stop in, would love to meet you. Tony Lubrano Pier 23 Carfe

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P
Sacramento
9 reviews
Dined on January 12, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It's awesome to look forward to eating at a place and to have that place produce food that is even better than you remembered. That's what happened at Pier 23. Their Crab and shrimp salad sandwich is one of my all time favorites, so when I am in the City I try to make it by. The one I had the other day was absolutely amazing. My wife had their burger that came with fries coated in a garlic oil that were perfect. For an appetizer we had the shrimp ceviche, which was different enough but still amazing. Food and service like this will keep me coming back. Great job Pier 23 cafe.

Pier 23 Cafe
Responded on January 15, 2020

Peter, Reviews like yours keep a smile on our face. You made my day and I will pass on the good vibes to our staff. Please, say hi the next time you are in or contact me for your next reservation and I will have something special waiting for you.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 12, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Great crab cakes!

EC
1 review
Dined on January 11, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Lovely view, great menu
Will come back again
recommend having a reservation

Pier 23 Cafe
Responded on January 14, 2020

So glad you enjoyed the morning after your wedding. Congratulations and we look forward to hosting you again soon.

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E
San Francisco
31 reviews
Dined on January 10, 2020
Overall4food5service4ambience4

Host and waitstaff are always very friendly, and the crab and shrimp Louie salad is never a miss.

Pier 23 Cafe
Responded on January 14, 2020

Thanks for the great review, Evan. The Louie salad has remained a staple here for many years. Come say hi next time and I'll buy you a beer. -Tony Lubrano

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LA
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 5, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Just an awesome fun place in the city to go to! The food is very good * our service was excellent * love the ambience of this old SF haunt.

Pier 23 Cafe
Responded on January 9, 2020

Thanks so much for the glowing review! I would love to know who helped you out during your visit so I can give them a high-five. Let me know when you intend to return and I will have something special waiting for you.

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Z
San Francisco
12 reviews
Dined on January 4, 2020
Overall3food4service2ambience2

We enjoyed our food, however the service was hit and miss. The restaurant had a number of tables with children, yet the table near us without children was loud and often used profanity. We've eaten at Pier 23 multiple times in the past and did not experience raunchy dinner guests in the past and the service was better.

g
San Francisco
56 reviews
Dined on December 27, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Love the atmosphere and friendly staff..

m
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on December 27, 2019
Overall3food3service5ambience2

too cramped and needs cleanup. Great staff, pleasant and attentive.... overpriced for the quality of food.... disappointed and will not be on the list again...

FB
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on December 22, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Joey, the Exec Chef, did a spectacular job. He asked us personally how we enjoyed brunch. Great meal and service!

OT
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on December 22, 2019
Overall5food4service4ambience5

Great! Enjoyed the view and service.

I
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on December 9, 2019
Overall4food3service5ambience5

Fun bar on the waterfront. Mostly fish dishes, but finally they’ve added a few options for us vegetarians!

DW
Los Angeles
23 reviews
Dined on December 7, 2019
Overall5food4service5ambience4

We like to pend time with Mike at the bar when we visit the city.

LD
1 review
Dined on November 25, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was wonderful. We had the crab cakes, chowder and the shrimp ceviche and the flavors were outstanding. The chef came and even checked on us and the food quality.
Highly recommended by us!!

P
San Francisco
17 reviews
Dined on November 25, 2019
Overall4food3service4ambience4

I had the Caesar Salad $10 with added Chicken $8- the chicken was dry... very dry, which I only ate one piece. It was a very expensive $18 salad, enuff said...

l
Los Angeles
4 reviews
Dined on November 9, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The clam chowder was delish ! The mussels and clams were great, with a great broth, the fish and chips were really good , ceviche was spicy but very good , great sitting outside!!!

HM
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on November 9, 2019
Overall4food5service3ambience4

Crab cakes benedict were excellent! Service was a little slow and it was very noisy.

T
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on November 7, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

We had a wonderful experience sitting on the patio at night. Plenty of warmth out there with the tent set up. Definitely would go back.

S
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2019
Overall5food4service4ambience3

It was a bit noisy the food was good but the corn special was cold it should have been hot service was ok

TJ
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on October 25, 2019
Overall4food5service4ambience4

My husband had the Dungeness crab and LOVED it! My chicken sandwich was so-so but it’s a nice, neighborhood place.

y
San Francisco
25 reviews
Dined on October 25, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Great place on a warm day! It's not anything fancy but it's good food, vibes and service!

JW
San Francisco
30 reviews
Dined on October 21, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My table was waiting for me with my reservation on it as usual. The staff was very welcoming and professional. The food was great as always. Keep up the great work‼️

B
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on October 20, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a group of 6 for brunch & had a great time!

h
San Francisco
13 reviews
Dined on October 19, 2019
Overall4food4service2ambience3

On a Saturday noon we met up with two friends for an informal yet a most scenic spot for lunch on the Embarcaderro waterfront. We have walked passed Pier 23 many times and this was our first venture inside of the building to try the restaurant's offerings. We were all happy that we finally walked through the threshold.
The food was quite good. The preparation of the grilled halibut was near perfection. The shrimp and grits was very tasty. The entree shrimp and crab salad was large enough to share and my friend said that the sea food salad was one of the best he has tasted. The cup of clam chowder I had was a little on the bland side.
Service was efficient and I must say very rapid. No sooner did we barely get seated and picked up our menus when our server came by and asked if we were ready to make our drink selection and when he returned in a few minutes to actually get our drink orders he requested our food orders. Our server seemed to be in some sort of a hurry - although, I must say, he was very pleasant. Finally, on about his third attempt we were ready to order. The food came very quickly. As stated we enjoyed the preparation and flavors. As each diner finished his or her plate there was someone there to quickly whisk the empty plate away barely before a utensil could be put down. Desert was offered to us before all of the entrees were finished and the check came before all of the entrees were finished. Our server did say, "no hurry" when the check was put down on the table. We took him at his word and we had a nice conversation before credits cards were produced.
For the view, the food and yes even part of the service we would return to Pier 23. But unless you are in a rush to catch a ferry boat or something I would suggest to the staff to just chill a little bit.

PG
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2019
Overall4food3service4ambience5

Would have liked the sourdough on the crab sandwich toasted. Otherwise very good.

l
Sacramento
267 reviews
Dined on October 6, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience5

Shrimp and crab sandwich is always good, but there seems to be more shrimp and crab these days. Also would be better if they buttered and toasted the bread.

TM
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Took friends from out of town and they loved it. Food was great and got to sit outside on a beautiful day.

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