Benu

4.9
1447 reviews
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$50 and over
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Contemporary American
Benu offers a set tasting menu. To provide you with the best dining experience, please indicate any dietary restrictions when making your reservation. For guests avoiding gluten, we are unable to remove soy sauce as it is used in our base preparations.

We also request a credit card to hold your reservation and require all bookings to be confirmed by phone or email 3 - 5 days in advance. If we are unable to confirm with you using the contact information provided, your reservation will be cancelled 2 days prior to the reservation date at 5:00 pm.

In the event of a no-show or cancellation with less than 2 days notice, the credit card will be charged the full menu price per guest ($310).

Due to the length of the meal and quiet ambiance, we do not allow young children unless they are able to partake in the full tasting menu. Many guests are celebrating a special occasion and look forward to a relaxing, uninterrupted evening. Thank you for understanding.
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Cuisines
Contemporary American
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Hours of operation
Dinner:
Tuesday - Thursday, 5:30 - 8:30 pm
Friday - Saturday, 5:30 - 9:00 pm
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Phone number
(415) 685-4860
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Smart Casual
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Executive chef
Corey Lee
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Private party facilities
Benu offers a customized private dining experience for parties of all sizes. Reservations can be made up to a year in advance for anytime. Please contact us for more details.
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Private party contact
Sinead Quach: (415) 685-4860 ext. 117
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Catering
Please contact us for further information.
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
Howard and Hawthorne
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Parking details
Valet parking is available at the restaurant for $20.
Additional
Banquet, Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine

What Insiders Are Saying

The Infatuation
8.5

You've probably heard about Benu and its 16 courses. But is it worth it? Here's what goes down.

Ratings 8.0-8.5:The best way to think about restaurants in the low to mid 8′s is that these are the places you would absolutely go back to, anytime. These restaurants are ones that you want to bring a friend to, just so they can also experience the duck carnitas, or burger, or whatever dish the place is known for.
What 1447 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.9based on recent ratings
4.8
food
4.9
service
4.7
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Quiet
90% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
2
1
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OT
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I wouldn’t say this is the best restaurant I have ever tasted. But it definitely worth to try. The front yard is cute.

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RJ
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 7, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fantastic all around. Really amazing food and service!

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OT
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on November 29, 2018
Overall 1food 2service 3ambience 1

An odd experience at Benu in SF. After all of the hype I had (perhaps unfairly) high expectations. I was extremely disappointed. Service was great. GM greeted us, and we received great attention plus banter with staff as my colleague had dietary restrictions. But the wine service was poor. Delivering standard lectures with no dialogue or interest in the guest. Most importantly 90% of the food was monolithic in flavor largely due to lots of / strongly flavored sauce. Highly complex ingredients with a lot of attention to sourcing and intricate prep were overwhelmed with simplistic tasting sauces which drowned any subtlety. A couple of dishes were nice but way too many misses. For $1400 for two with just the menu and wine pairing, not on point.

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LP
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on November 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It's been a few years since my last visit but this place is still still amazing. One of the finest dining experiences in the Bay Area. Looking forward to my next visit.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The birthday menu has my name on it and the cake prepared is very nice.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The food was superb! It was an experience like no other. Highly recommended!

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VC
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on November 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and excellent service Thabk you to Ivy for her attentiveness!

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SR
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on November 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Incredible experience, fantastic food and pairing!

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M
Atlanta
10 reviews
Dined on November 14, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

ordered champagne for wife's bday. waitress said she'd let us enjoy drink before starting service but wine and starters came before we got through half our champagne drink. starters were great. meal was the same as discussed online - you tube vids; nothing new. servers were very friendly and glad to discuss the wines and food. mid-way chicken course disappointing; the rest was great great. won't return as creativity and pace of serivice not what we have experienced at other 3 michelin star places throughout the world

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RT
1 review
Dined on November 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a spectacular time at Benu.
Please look at my Yelp review for photo's.

The best service-
Compactly professional combined with charming and engaging. There wasn't any stale / uncomfortable presenting.

The food-
Each item was delicious and abundant. We left very full and satisfied on every level. The Tea menu is complimentary and coffee/chinos.

Price-
Price per person+8.5%+20% ... It's like the price of going to a nice show or concert. It's much better spending the money on a really memorable meal and skip the concert or show.

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ON
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on October 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Una experiencia maravillosa. El lugar espectacular, formal pero relajado y con ambiente perfecto para disfrutar una comida increíble. El menú de degustación es perfecto y el servicio impecable. Probablemente una de las mejores experiencias culinarias de una vida!

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FL
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on October 31, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

Awesome Som wine🍷🥂
Seating a bit austere minimalist grey for my dates taste... as well as mine. This was the first time I was sat away from the kitchen. Best seating around the corner to right.

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o
Los Angeles
11 reviews
Dined on October 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Exceptional on all levels. Creativity and culinary execution at its best. Service was incredible - extremely attentive and helpful, yet subtle and unobtrusive. The perfect mix of excellent service, cuisine and attention to detail.

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OT
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on October 20, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The courses fly at very high altitude; out of all the courses maybe two have been great but not spectacular. Cory lee fuses his meals into compositions that unfold great complexity with some daring moves along the way. The wine pairing was in parts unorthodox but overall very good, the food stood out though.

Service was impeccable. A memorable evening. No doubt we’ll be back.

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OT
Atlanta
11 reviews
Dined on October 19, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 5ambience 3

The quail and veal were very ordinary not much flavor. A mundane meal at extraordinary prices. The wine pairing was great

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KT
1 review
Dined on October 12, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was a very nice meal to celebrate my 20th Anniversary.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was a great birthday dinner, the environment is very high end and the food was very creative and blew my mind.

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LI
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on October 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was excellent, every single dish. Unfortunately the prefixed menu was very pricey. It’s too bad they don’t have an open menu available.

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NC
San Joaquin
35 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

WOW from beginning to end everything was spectacular. Every dish was creative, unique and delicious. Service was immaculate. Worth every penny. Can’t wait to go back ! Definitely recommend!!!

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OT
San Diego
1 review
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Best meal of my life, bar none.

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c
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on September 14, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 2

Amazing food, not very innovative in the pairing (mainly boring French and German wines), but highly overpriced for what you get.

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k
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 3food 5service 2ambience 3

We asked about adjusting the beverage pairings to avoid sake and beer, Table captain was not great about it. “Let me go see, not sure we can do that” same with removing sea urchin from one dish (after being asked if everything looks good). Not a great start, but a lovely meal. Three stars seems high, but a lovely evening.

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OT
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Took my boyfriend here for his birthday. Absolutely outstanding service. Every single person we interacted with wished him a happy birthday, the menu was personalized wishing him a happy birthday and they brought out a little music box with a cake underneath at the end, they made our evening that much more special. Food and drinks were amazinggg. Everything about the experience was worth every penny.

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RG
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on September 2, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We wanted to try a fine cuisine for my husbands bday.
We really enjoyed the food. Special, pretty and delicious.
Personally I liked the small delicates.
Warmly recommended

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D
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on September 1, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 2

We had just returned from a trip to Europe where we enjoyed multiple Michelin starred meals. Ever since Michelin began rating restaurants in the US, I felt there was grade inflation in the US. Benu is definitely that.
Service - Souless, absolutely no personality from the greeting at the door, from the somm, from any server...getting them to engage on anything about the restaurant, the food etc was flat and robotic
We did the wine pairing...they provided a glass that went with the first three introductory bites which may have taken all of 5 minutes to serve in total....before moving on to glass 2 and more food....glass one went largely un drank due to lack of time
Food - My wife and I were hard pressed after the meal to name a single dish we wanted to have again...simple as that...in Europe, we couldn’t help ourselves to take a picture or two of certain dishes given their imagination and innovation...the I phone stayed in the pocket the whole night.

While there are good dishes at Benu, you aren’t going to leave and tell your friends or feel you can’t wait to return.

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JW
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on August 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing execution from start to finish. Presented and well thought menu. Was an amazing experience! Only thing that I’d had to comment that was not so good was the table/party behind me was quite loud and lively.

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OT
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on August 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

World class.

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OT
Cleveland
13 reviews
Dined on August 26, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 3

Went to Benu for an anniversary celebration and left feeling underwhelmed.

Unfortunately, I think we went on an off-night for the staff. We were brought to our table and the carpet next to us was speckled with food debris. The tasting courses weren’t all enjoyable; this is the first time I’ve paid for a tasting course of such an esteemed restaurant and didn’t finish all of my portions.

I wouldn’t recommend this place, if anything the experience makes me question the value of a Michelin ranking... $1000 for two (with a bottle of wine) - what a joke.

As a note, the service was great.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on August 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Anniversary

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OT
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on August 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food and detail of presentation were amazing — well deserved 3 Michelin stars. The staff were awesome!

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C
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on August 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Definitely worthy of 3 Michelin stars! Creative and delicious!

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OT
Toronto
8 reviews
Dined on August 22, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Delicious food and perfect service

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OT
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on August 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Those not on the menu taste better

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GA
Italy
6 reviews
Dined on August 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was a fantastic experience!!! Its worth the trip. The food is spectacular and the service amazing. Cant wait to be back and taste those sophisticated flavours again.

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OT
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on August 19, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Every dish was more beautiful and delicious than the last! Amazing 3 hour dining experience!

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DK
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on August 17, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Crazy expensive but extremely creative and delicious. Special occasion worthy!

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JD
Denver
1 review
Dined on August 5, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

An amazing dining experience! The food, service, wine and ambience was fantastic. Highly recommend.

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JP
Los Angeles
9 reviews
Dined on August 4, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Excellent food with impeccable service. All around great meal and a special treat.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The finest of dining experiences every single time.

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F
Palm Springs
7 reviews
Dined on August 2, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous tasting menu! Went to Benu for a mini-reunion of college friends! Lobster cxio Lao bao bursted with umami flavor in my mouth that is out of the world! Each dish is unique and unforgettable! Staff and service are impeccable

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