Simply horrid on most counts. Terrific servers but that's it!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
Came here for a meal before going to the theatre, very convenient location. Wonderful wine and terrific food!
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%!).
Excellent food and great service. Don't miss the smoked trout on toast and the beet salad!
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.
Loved it! But so loud! Great food! Some of the tastiest we have had recently!
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.
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..