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Alta CA - Permanently Closed

4.2
4.2
631 Reviews
$30 and under
American

Alta CA is a neighborhood restaurant and gathering place in the heart of San Francisco that celebrates the best of California’s diverse ingredients and cultures through inventive fare and spirited drinks. We believe in exceptional quality, craftsmanship, and the magic of truly tasty things.

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What 631 people are saying

Overall ratings and reviews

4.2
4.2 based on all time ratings
  • 4.1Food
  • 4.1Service
  • 4.0Ambience
  • 3.5Value

NoiseModerate

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  1. LD

    LauraD

    San Francisco

    9 reviews

    vip
    1.0

    9 reviews

    Dined on December 31, 2017

    overall1food1service1ambience1

    How about having some food with your salt – vegetables over cooked – greens and everything else is horribly over salted and disgusting. They overcharge for a tiny hunk of bread – that we had to ask a few times for. Pasta was soggy -and when asked for vegan had absolutely no flavor – obviously they never were prepared to make it without cheese. We should’ve sent everything back and left – worst meal ever!!! Avoid!!! We had to ask them to turn the music down so conversation can be had —and they kind of had an attitude about as if we were asking them to turn the music down at a nightclub & it was 5:30pm! Service is the worst!! And it was not cheap – you can eat at a great restaurant for what it cost to get grossed out here!

  2. NY

    NYCEater

    New York Area

    5 reviews

    3.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on December 28, 2017

    overall3food4service3ambience4

    Chicken entree was delicious as was my cocktail. We were surprised that they were “out” of bread at 5:30 on a Thursday. Sundae dessert just ok. Location worked well for pre-SFJAZZ dinner but we had better meals elsewhere while visiting SF.

  3. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    San Francisco

    142 reviews

    vip
    3.0

    142 reviews

    Dined on December 13, 2017

    overall3food4service3ambience4

    When we arrived for our 5:30 reservation there were very few people in the restaurant and the noise level was only too loud due to the piped in music. We asked our server if he would turn down the music, when he graciously did. But that lasted only a few minutes. by 6:00 the place was packed and it seemed the more people came in the louder the music got. It was so bad the 4 of us had to shout to hear each other. The food was very good. Shared a delicious beet salad between two of us. Other appetizers at our table were the soup and the green salad, all very good. After an extremely long wait the entrees of 2 chicken orders and 2 sole orders arrived. They were also very good. Dessert was a chocolate toffee sundae and strawberry shortcake. Again, both were very good. Overall, Alta was very good for its food. Service was a little slow, due to what appeared to me to be our server having to cover too many tables. Also, the kitchen was slow to prepare our entrees. Negatives were the noise and the slow service.

  4. SA

    StevenAm

    New York Area

    27 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    27 reviews

    Dined on December 7, 2017

    overall5food5service5ambience5

    Great cocktails, well-prepared farm-to-table cuisine, and friendly, attentive service.

  5. RH

    RonH

    Sacramento

    1 review

    vip
    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on December 2, 2017

    overall3food3service4ambience2

    Alta California was just satisfactory. The prices (particularly for wine) are rather high for what you get. The noise level makes conversations almost impossible. WHAT IS this "service charge" currently added to restaurant bills PLUS taxes??

  6. g

    giseler

    San Francisco

    12 reviews

    vip
    2.0

    12 reviews

    Dined on November 29, 2017

    overall2food3service1ambience1

    chicken was smoky with a crispy skin, a smattering of veggies and some nutty faro. Sole was uninteresting but good enough. Little gems salad was lettuce only with dressing so sour it was hard to swallow. Conversation was nearly impossible because the music was crazy loud— good, but crazy loud. We asked if they could turn it down a notch, but they declined. Mediocre, uninterested service. At $220 for 2 the place should have knocked our socks off.

  7. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    San Francisco

    1 review

    4.0

    1 review

    Dined on November 25, 2017

    overall4food4service3ambience4

    All very nice, service from maitre d', waitresses nice. My only complaint was that I booked ahead for special pre-theatre with my children (I was coming from abroad, 1 child was coming from LA, 1 from SFC) for Thanksgiving weekend, going to opera, so special event, and we got sat in the back corner, tight, dark, with open shelves to working kitchen, noisy, when there was a 4-seater table by the front window. By the time I tried to get a change, the brighter, more spacious table had walk-in customers, and the larger brighter table apparently had reservations. So went back to our cramped place. Disappointed and pretty annoyed with that, but the servers handled it well, and given we had 1 hour for meal before picking up opera tickets, they were VERY quick with the food, which was VERY good. So low points for that table (they need to space out better) but high points for the staff, food, ambiance, and proximity to the performing arts!

  8. AS

    AnnaS

    San Francisco

    4 reviews

    4.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on November 17, 2017

    overall4food3service5ambience5

    The drinks were much better than the food- they were pretty delicious even. Citrus st and refreshing. Not sure what all the hype about this place was about.. The burger was awful, chicken was OK, but too smoky for my taste. 3 desserts were a different combo of the same ice-cream which wasn't that great. The best part of the meal was bread...

  9. RZ

    RonZ

    San Francisco

    1 review

    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on November 15, 2017

    overall3food2service5ambience4

    Too expensive for what it was. Quality was average but at an exorbitant cost. Service was superb as well as ambience. Cocktails were delicious. Just really a let down with the food.

  10. M

    Mike

    San Francisco

    4 reviews

    vip
    2.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on November 10, 2017

    overall2food3service2ambience5

    I had wanted to try this restaurant for awhile now. The ambiance and decor is great and the bar was lively (it was a Friday night). The service was fair as the server could have been a tad more upbeat and friendly. The food itself was pretty good (we had the beef and the pasta). What did bother me was restaurant automatically adds $18% tip to every bill. I almost always tip 20%, unless the service really was bad, but I don't like being forced to pay it. How about this, just incorporate the tip into the price of your items and pay your staff better? When did a "tip" become mandatory? Secondly, the wine we ordered was $53 and she charged us $80. She went back and checked and sure enough, a new bill was produced. I probably won't be coming back here again since there are so many other options out there.

  11. LY

    LocalYokel

    San Francisco

    10 reviews

    vip
    3.0

    10 reviews

    Dined on November 10, 2017

    overall3food3service2ambience3

    The food here was decent but the service was pretty spotty. We noticed the restaurant automatically charges a tip and then the tips are pooled for the staff to split. We wonder if that could explain the service quality? Not a lot of incentive to do a good job.

  12. f

    fredarep

    San Francisco

    191 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    191 reviews

    Dined on November 10, 2017

    overall4food4service5ambience4

    We love this place before a concert or performance at the Civic Ctr. They understand how to move the dinner along, the plates are great for sharing & not too expensive, it's not fussy food but very well designed. it's a little hard to find on Market St. because there's not a big sign but it's cozy inside. We love their appetizers especially. And the soft serve ice cream--which all of their dessert revolve around.

  13. ML

    MilesL

    San Francisco

    5 reviews

    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on November 9, 2017

    overall5food5service5ambience5

    Fun evening dine with a great vibe!

  14. SW

    StevenW

    San Francisco

    15 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    15 reviews

    Dined on November 9, 2017

    overall4food5service3ambience4

    Music too loud. No need in busy space. Tuned it up as crowd got louder so crowd got even louder and on and on.

  15. G

    Guilhermedico

    San Francisco

    34 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    34 reviews

    Dined on November 4, 2017

    overall4food3service5ambience3

    Good: service, pinot noir by the glass, roasted chicken, strawberry shortcake, coffee Meh: limited pinot noir selection by the glass, appetizers, sole Bad: limited menu offerings, high price My overall rating: 3.5 stars out of 5 stars

  16. JB

    JamesB

    New York Area

    11 reviews

    2.0

    11 reviews

    Dined on November 1, 2017

    overall2food2service3ambience2

    Simply horrid on most counts. Terrific servers but that's it!

  17. SF

    SFEater123

    San Francisco

    11 reviews

    4.0

    11 reviews

    Dined on October 14, 2017

    overall4food5service5ambience2

    The ambience at Alta is strange--a thrift store chic playing ironic '70s big hair band hits. We had a reservation but they seated us at a high bar table. They changed it when we asked. Food was excellent, as was service.

  18. SF

    SFMom

    San Francisco

    7 reviews

    vip
    2.0

    7 reviews

    Dined on October 14, 2017

    overall2food3service2ambience2

    The food was good and interestingly spiced, so I'd give them good marks for that. The desserts however, were limited to a list of variations on a soft-serve sundae, and both that we ordered were over dried out cake bases. Not that great. The service was friendly but had some big flaws. During part of the meal, we had a server's behind in our faces and nearly in our drinks. When we were both finished, we sat in front of dirty plates way too long, with multiple staff walking by and not picking them up. It was not a matter of being too busy, they were just that inattentive. Saw one server on her phone steps away from us while we were still waiting to have the table cleared. The reservation required a credit card to hold and the terms stated they would charge $20 a head if we didn't show. That type of hold is misplaced for a restaurant of this caliber. To top it off, the bill arrived with an 18% gratuity already added and the server did not point that out. Like they are hoping people won't notice and inadvertently way over-tip. We normally leave 20-25%, so they low-balled themselves by doing that. Though the food was decent, the serve errors and the "we think we are so great" credit card hold on the reservation plus the unannounced automatic tip all left a bad taste in our mouths. Won't be returning.

  19. r

    rjw123

    San Francisco

    2 reviews

    4.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on October 11, 2017

    overall4food4service4ambience4

    The Petrale Sole was excellent. The brown rice puffs with avocado and espellete was underwhelming as the puffs were too greasy and there was very little avocado. The candy bar sundae was good.

  20. n

    nicknamerequirementsredic

    San Francisco

    18 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    18 reviews

    Dined on October 5, 2017

    overall5food5service4ambience4

    Great food. We shared 6 courses and all were great. Size of portions has wide range. The cheese plate was laughably small. Outside of this, all was great.

  21. ER

    EmilyR

    San Francisco

    66 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    66 reviews

    Dined on October 4, 2017

    overall4food4service4ambience5

    This place is very chic looking and has a cool downtown vibe but it is wildly overpriced! Thanks to it's neighbors Twitter, Uber and NEMA (some of the most expensive real estate in the city) the prices at Alta do not make for a reasonable meal. $17 for the cheapest glass of wine and over $12 for a salad.

  22. Z

    Zingal

    San Francisco

    99 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    99 reviews

    Dined on September 30, 2017

    overall4food5service3ambience3

    We were pleasantly surprised by the food at Alta CA. We made reservations here because it was walking distance to the Orpheum Theatre for our 8 pm show. I had warned Alta CA of our show time when making the reservation and they acknowledged it when we walked in. The service was just a bit slow between dishes, but it all worked out with time to spare to talk to the manager after regarding their pending move to a new hotel at the end of the year. We started with their deviled eggs. I'm not usually a fan of deviled eggs, but these really changed my mind. Yummy! The TOMATO-BREAD SALAD (cucumber, red onion, feta, wild arugula) was the best. Fresh heirloom tomatoes, yum! We had the STROZZAPRETI (spicy bolognese, peas, smoked maitake, parmesan), which was delicious, although a bit salty. For dessert, we opted for the cookie plate as we thought this was a quick dessert to bring to the table. They must have cooked the cookies upon order as it took awhile to arrive. They were good and went well with our coffee. I look forward to checking them out in their new location. There isn't many good places for a before show dinner in the Market Street area. This is one!

  23. SP

    SteveP

    San Francisco

    2 reviews

    3.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on September 29, 2017

    overall3food5service1ambience4

    Ever since they started charging the tip upfront, the service has gone downhill. We eat here a lot over the last year as it is near a theater we frequent. The food has always been great. Prices are a bit up there but this IS San Francisco.

  24. S

    Sewbrown

    San Francisco

    22 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    22 reviews

    Dined on September 29, 2017

    overall4food4service4ambience4

    Came here for a meal before going to the theatre, very convenient location. Wonderful wine and terrific food!

  25. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    San Francisco

    1 review

    2.0

    1 review

    Dined on September 16, 2017

    overall2food4service4ambience4

    Although menu was a bit limited, both the food & service were very good. The only thing that was not ok was the fact that they included 15% service charge on a bill for 4ppl. There was no indication of this from the server and the standard fill-in-tip line was included on the receipt. Rather shady practice... luckily the other couple with us caught this. I was going to tip 20% (well I guess 35%!).

  26. M

    Mike

    San Francisco

    28 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    28 reviews

    Dined on September 15, 2017

    overall4food5service4ambience4

    Excellent food and great service. Don't miss the smoked trout on toast and the beet salad!

  27. m

    mara

    San Francisco

    21 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    21 reviews

    Dined on September 15, 2017

    overall4food4service3ambience3

    Enjoyed our meal and the restaurant, and would return, however they could use another server during peak dinner hours, especially before an 8pm curtain. Our server was covering so many tables, the service couldn't help but be slow.

  28. K

    Kathy

    San Francisco

    25 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    25 reviews

    Dined on September 8, 2017

    overall4food5service5ambience5

    Loved it! But so loud! Great food! Some of the tastiest we have had recently!

  29. GC

    GuyCosta

    San Francisco

    1 review

    1.0

    1 review

    Dined on September 5, 2017

    overall1food3service1ambience3

    It was an awful experience. We arrived at 21:30 and ordered our meal, which arrived in 5-10 minutes, we then decided to order another thing and the waitress said they were out of that specific dish, she was clearly lying cause when I tried to change she said that actually the kitchen was closed. No last calls. It was only 10 pm. They were practically pushing us out. if they do not want to serve people at 10 they should never take 9:30 or 9:45 reservations. Rude and uneducated. Deeply regret. Waste of time and money.

  30. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    San Francisco

    3 reviews

    vip
    2.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on September 5, 2017

    overall2food5service1ambience3

    Service was extremely slow.. not good for before theatre. Got there at 615 and literally ran out at 750 not having any dessert.. took way too long..

  31. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    San Francisco

    6 reviews

    4.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on September 2, 2017

    overall4food5service3ambience4

    Order the gnocchetti and the salmon! Best dishes, IMHO. Definitely get a cocktail too. The strawberry sour is my favorite. Finally, the service was a bit on the slow side for a Saturday night but we gave them the benefit of the doubt as it was the hottest day of the year. If you're in a hurry, you might want to tell your server that you need to leave by a certain time.

  32. d

    dinetowine

    San Francisco

    26 reviews

    vip
    3.0

    26 reviews

    Dined on August 30, 2017

    overall3food3service4ambience4

    Alta is a small restaurant but has ambience. It seems to be Popular with the young crowd for happy hour. The dinner menu was rather small. Not a lot of choices The entrees seem fairly high priced. A cheeseburger was $22.

  33. CC

    CCSS

    San Francisco

    4 reviews

    5.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on August 25, 2017

    overall5food5service5ambience5

    Warm and rustic atmosphere with excellent waiter and delicious food! Plus really creative cocktails that tasted amazing! I highly recommend this little gem!

  34. TL

    TerriL

    San Francisco

    1 review

    4.0

    1 review

    Dined on August 24, 2017

    overall4food4service4ambience4

    I like the other location a bit more, but the food was delicious here and the location was perfect for dinner and a show.

  35. G

    Grynch

    San Francisco

    8 reviews

    vip
    3.0

    8 reviews

    Dined on August 23, 2017

    overall3food4service1ambience3

    The food and cocktails were all tasty and satisfying. However, although the restaurant was nearly empty at 6:00 PM on a Wednesday, service was poor. I waited 15 minutes to place a cocktail order and then 20 minutes for the drink to arrive. Another 10 -15 minutes to place our food order; during which the server incorrectly described the gnocchi dish with corn as including several other vegetables and ingredients not on the menu. She did not explain nor correct the discrepancy even after I pointed it out. My dining mate ordered it nonetheless and enjoyed it, but it surely wasn't what the server described. Alta is a no-tip establishment, and is a bit pricey in order to compensate the staff I assume. But as a result, we had to tolerate poor service with no consequences to the server.

  36. MV

    MarlaV

    San Francisco

    28 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    28 reviews

    Dined on August 19, 2017

    overall4food4service4ambience3

    Although you could miss the restaurant if just walking by, it was great for being close to the Orpheum Theater and I really enjoyed the Salmon plate we shared. Once inside the place is warm and inviting coming off Market Street. The host and wait staff were friendly and attentive.

  37. E

    Efren

    San Francisco

    50 reviews

    4.0

    50 reviews

    Dined on August 18, 2017

    overall4food4service4ambience4

    Solid flavors, interesting menu and attentive service

  38. M

    Maruchan

    San Francisco

    14 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    14 reviews

    Dined on August 17, 2017

    overall5food5service5ambience5

    Was blown away by the food and service. Drinks were good too. Dessert left a little to be desired but nonetheless an amazing experience. Would definitely highly recommend and would go back in a heartbeat.

  39. r

    rara

    San Francisco

    27 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    27 reviews

    Dined on August 15, 2017

    overall4food4service4ambience4

    Best place to eat if you're going to Orpheum Theatre. Everything good there.

  40. BK

    BrentK

    Washington DC

    33 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    33 reviews

    Dined on August 8, 2017

    overall4food5service5ambience5

    Great, trendy spot. Amazing cocktails and the very best burgers ever!

FAQs

Alta CA - Permanently Closed is rated 4.2 stars by 631 OpenTable diners

Not available on OpenTable

Unfortunately, this restaurant is not on the OpenTable reservation network.

If you like, we'll notify you by email if this restaurant joins.


Is this your restaurant?
Claim this listing
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