Plaj is not only right across the street from the War Memorial Opera House, but it is simply a terrific restaurant. We were not very familiar with Swedish cuisine so did not know what to expect. It has a very high rating and deservedly so. Very knowledgable and friendly wait staff. The only drawback is the noise level is quite high. The delicious food, the decor and the incredible location make it well worth it.
The food is terrific and the chef comes out and explains what all of the dishes are. The problem was with the service. Our food was supposed to come out one dish at a time and it did not. We waited a very, very long time for it to come out, and we had a performance to go to. We did not have time for dessert and the coffee/tea/check came out as we had to leave. We could not get our waitress to come back and take our payment; she was chatting for a long time at another table. We finally went to the bar and asked them to take our payment. We had to run to get to our performance before the doors closed.
We enjoyed the interesting menu and food we ordered was excellent. However, we found the prices very high for the portions served so overall, we rated value for this restaurant low. And then there was a $2 charge for bread??
Service started out great but slowed down at the end, long wait for the server to clear our plates and get our bill, especially since we let our server know we needed to leave by 7:30, which didn't happen. Lovely setting but restaurant very small so depending on who is sitting around you can be very loud.
While we really loved the food, not a restaurant we would recommend or return for a second visit.
A wonderful experience all in all. I just wish the menu was bigger.
Pricey but well worth it. We're heading to Scandinavia soon, and thought we'd try testing out our palettes on the cuisine. If this is anything like what we'll find, it will be a gourmet trip.
Beet salad and gravalax were outstanding. COD was perfectly cooked as was the elk. We would go back. Perfect for after symphony dinner
Great if you have tickets at the Opera House of Symphony or SF Jazz. A bit pricey but worthwhile. Try the Swedish meatballs with lingonberry sauce
Plaj is the best restaurant I've been to in a long time. Food was outstanding; service impeccable.
Plaj is always a favorite before the ballet or symphony and dinner 2/20 was again an excellent experience for me and my guest. I will return again!
For those really want to enjoying excellent meal, PLAJ is a good place to go. My husband and I went for dinner before SF symphony. I told our waitress we need to get out by 7:15pm and we did. we have a very nice meal. Everything is excellent. The apple pie was so good. It would be good for special occasion since the price also matched the food.
Wonderful food in a small, quiet beautiful room. Lovely warm service caps it all.
I lived in Sweden for three years, so I was looking forward to eating at Plaj. My wife and I were not disappointed! From the herring starter (three types of the five available) to gravadlax and smoked ricotta & beet salad, to the cod main (which we split), every dish was inventive and engaging. Dessert was amazing - blueberry lemon tart with blueberry ice cream and meringue. We also enjoyed aquavit and other Scandinavian staples. Service was impeccable and we enjoyed chatting with our waitress as well as the manager. A really great dining experience on Valentine's Eve, and a wonderful return to the Stockholm restaurant scene for me. We'll be back!
I introduced a friend to Scandinavian treats recently at Pläj and she was completely won over. The herring presentation is excellent and the dish named Kumla is an authentic home cooking replica from southern Sweden. The akvavit is house made and my favorite is cardamom and fig in a slender icicle glass. Always a treat.
I came here with my mom for her 70th birthday. We really enjoyed trying out foods we had never had before. Everything was great! The two best things I had were the potato dumplings and the dessert that is bread with almond cream inside sitting in a bath of cardamom milk - sounds odd but was so delicious!
Herring was delicious. Meatballs were excellent.
The food and service were outstanding! The only downside was the very tight and cramped seating at our table for two in the corner of the back seating area. We have been coming to this same location since 1983 through several venues . The original team until the nineties and the Plaj group were and are the very best . However we will not return if we cannot have more comfortable seating.
I was staying at the Inn at the Opera and noticed Plaj which is housed there. Never having heard of it decided to try it and am I glad I did. The food is outstanding and authentic Swedish cuisine. The crab bisque, pickled herring sampler and the elk tartare were delicious as were the Swedish meatballs and the blueberry lime tart with homemade blueberry ice cream was to die for.
It's not inexpensive but I would highly recommend this restaurant.
we had ox cheek and elk , both were pretty good, their bread is not that great though
The menu is (modern) Nordic oriented, but there were definitely San Franciscan's influence here. The fact that a Norwegian next table came and praised the food and that a bunch of Scandinavian association members do meet up there speaks a lot about this place. The salmon gravlax was really mind-exploding, it's a great combination of saltiness, freshness, slight sweetness and crunch. The cocktails were great, and most if not all use Scandinavian liquors which provide slightly more interesting base than the more common ones. Had the ox cheek and elk for mains, the buttery texture of the games were spot on (although they're tad too salty for our liking), wish the accompanying fixings balance the buttery-ness and saltiness more. But overall great play!
Creative food and fun art on the walls. We loved our server and the overall experience was great.
Very good food but the waitress was rude and burnt out. We had her last year too and she hasn't learned to love her job any more. The food is expensive with small portions, but it is very good. The wine list is overpriced and they seem to be out of the less expensive bottles when you try to order them.
Delightful. Very good food presented nicely by trained waiters Relaxing and comfortable ambiance. Good , reasonably priced wine list.
We had a 6 p.m. reservation and a 7:30 curtain, which sounds fine. However, we were seated for half an hour before we got any food at all, which made me anxious. Located as Plaj is right near the Opera House, they have a built-in clientele so prices are high. Some portions are quite small also. We had dined there before and found it much more satisfactory than we did 1/26. We have more ballet tickets coming up and won't rush back to Plaj.
We loved it. We were a group of 5, it was not very busy and quite quiet - perfect for us to chat and enjoy the company. The food was absolutely delicious and it tastes and looks better and from the pictures
The menu was too limited. Overconcentration on herring; lack of choices of entries, appetizers, etc. Really would not return because menu too limited; soup portion a little small, wines not exceptional (bitter Sangiovese) --- We are sorry because we attend the Opera, Symphony etc often and your restaurant is so well located.
The choices of cheeses and accompanying jams served on a plank were exquisite!
We loved the potato dough crisps, kefses?
Nice choice of wines.
After outstanding Swedish meatballs, no room to try dessert. Next time!
All the serving staff were attentive and friendly, and their explanations were clear - and minus the "talking-down" you can get when asking about another nationality's dish.
What an outstanding restaurant! The food was outstanding and every single person –the hostess, the bartender, the waiters– did every single thing they could to make our evening wonderful. A meal at Plaj feels very civilized, and was an overwhelmingly positive experience, again!
Plaj features Scandinavian food, so the menu has on it herring (many choices!), Swedish-style open faced sandwiches, game, berries, and anise, all very typical. The food was all great; I especially loved the SF herring, made with local fish that had been house cured with salt and was served with a deep-fried herring skeleton.
I could eat a whole plate of deep-fried herring skeleton. I hope the chef will start offering it.
The bread and caramelized butter were amazing; my luxurious and richly-flavored ox cheek was delicious. My partner loved her beet/ricotta salad and scallops as well.
Start with the bread. Warm, Scandanavian-style, moist, dense, and delicious!
My ox cheeks were fabulous. Moist, flavor, and exceptionally tender. I would have liked more of the accompanying Brussels sprouts, which were also tender and delicious.
My friend and I shared a Chocolate Kladdkaka for dessert. Very enjoyable way to end the meal.
Service was friendly, quick, and very pleasant.
Interestingly approached gourmet food, good selection of cocktails, everything customizable go your needs and wants, really attentive staff.
My husband and I had to go to a performance, but we would have stayed much longer just to sip good wine and really enjoy this restaurant. Comfortable but beautifully appointed, quiet, and all was tasty! Waiter was excellent.
Did not appreciate the overall attitude of the staff. There was a woman at the door who didn't even make eye contact when she directed me to the restaurant after asking "what are you here for?". The restaurant itself was a bit too quiet and I felt uncomfortable to even speak to my friend. The waiter was annoyed that our drink order wasn't ready when he introduced himself and walked away and didn't return for over 3 minutes. The restaurant didn't seem busy at the time. I'm not sure if that was his way of punishing us for not being ready. He also talked us out of ordering something when we didn't ask for his opinion and encouraged us to order something more expensive. I felt very uncomfortable. This was the worst restaurant experience I've had in San Francisco and will not be going back.
Excellent EVERYTHING. Loved the food, atmosphere, lack of pretension, service- but mostly the food. Eat here!
My wife and I made reservations for her birthday. We wanted to go somewhere special and different. Pläj was both.
We got there a little early, so we sat at the bar and ordered some amazing drinks. We also had some of the house made aquavits. Fantastic!
The menu is succinct and everything on it was enticing. We ordered a random selection with help from the staff, and all of it was fenomenal, starting with the cheese plate and finishing with the princess cake.
What a great treat.
We have already been back since, because it is so close to the SF Opera house. We love it and will continue to go there.
Plaj was recommended to me by a friend and I will say the food and service was excellent. The meatballs were the best I have ever had.
I love dinner at Plaj. It is a relaxing and gentle place to share a meal and drink with friends. The house-made pickled herring is nothing like the stuff in the jars at the grocery store. Everything that I have had is wonderfully tasty and perfectly cooked and served. One of my favorites in SF.
Plaj is an excellent choice for dinner before events in the area--opera, ballet, symphony, et al.
I was very surprised by this restaurant. Everything was delicious. We had the gravlax and herring and the elk as well as a mound of delectable dessert. Each one had its own unique flavor and beautiful textures. The room is quiet and romantic and the service was very professional yet casual. Full bar and lovely wines that compliment the food. Prices were reasonable too.
New year ever dinner was reeeeally small portion even though it was five course menu and I added extra oysters to my dinner, I still did not leave restaurant satisfied!!
Wonderful experience with the family. Everyone loved the first plates as well as their main courses. Wonderful presentations and tastes - and the desserts were spectacular as well!