Bluestem Brasserie

4.4
2078 reviews
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$30 and under
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Californian
A San Francisco brasserie & gathering place, at ONE Yerba Buena Lane, the intersection of downtown’s cultural, shopping and business corridors. An urban neighborhood restaurant, offering a lively dining experience, for anytime bites or drinks; a meal with friends, business associates or family; or picking up to enjoy at home.
Bluestem Brasserie features a familiar brasserie menu of fresh, simply composed dishes; distinct cocktails; a satisfying wine list with 12 on tap, sourced directly from Napa and Sonoma's finest producers - offered at a great value.
Named after the indigenous North American grass favored by cattle, Bluestem will showcase sustainably produced beef from highly regarded purveyors with an emphasis on whole-animal utilization. Ingredients sourced directly from the ranchers. Savory items are balanced by a dessert menu of classic, brasserie-style selections.
A theme of terroir extends from the menu of house-made items to the carefully crafted wine list.
What 2078 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
4.3
food
4.5
service
4.3
ambience
4.0
value
Noise · Quiet
84% of people would recommend it to a friend
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RL
Brighton
2 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Nothing negative to say at all. Great food and great service. Location good for Union Square visitors. (For beer lovers, the Porters (dark) is well worth a try.) Enjoy!

TC
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a wonderful brunch here...and delicious. Try the cinnamon roll. It is to die for! But all the dishes were incredible and it is a beautiful restaurant!

AC
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 2food 1service 2ambience 2

Restaurant was empty, despite that the service was not good, the waiter tried too hard and the food was definitely not at the level expected! A real shame!

K
San Francisco
14 reviews
Dined on August 14, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Very good food and very efficient, friendly service

SF
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on August 12, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 5

AMBIENCE:
Wonderfully quiet lunch. For those curious about long-dead human traditions like conversation this place had got you covered.

SERVICE:
very friendly. Attentive host. Responsive server. Appetizer though did require a reminder and arrived about four minutes before main course.

FOOD:
Hamburger was excellent.
Deviled egg was a good, but tiny serving.
Almond "Bites" were vaguely spicy and had a rubbery-soft coating.
Crispy Pork Belly was good, but quite fatty even for pork belly.
Filet Mignon was very tender, though the 3/4 of one teaspoon of "Bleu cheese butter" was to scant to taste (I asked for another option and the waiter said the had nothing else), and the 1 1/2 tablespoons of flaccid mushrooms did not include flavor.
Honolulu Hangover cake was clearly built for visual impact, oversized and comprehensively bland: mealy chocolate cake was no match for store bought mix from Safeway (may have been left over from weekend run), thick, pasty filling tasted like nothing, thin meringue frosting struggled nobly in vain to make up for all of this.
Devil's food Cake was very good, though naturally awkward and a bit of a mess to leverage from the tall parfait glass.

Will return. Menu has many promising options. Room is quiet and attractive. Will not get dessert.

OT
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on August 11, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 3

Nice space with very courteous and friendly staff. Fun cocktails good place to check out if you are in the neighborhood.

b
Washington DC
245 reviews
Dined on August 10, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Dined with my husband. I had the vegan pupusos and he had the amberjack. We also ordered artichoke hearts and corn bread. Everything was delicious and the corn bread was simply outstanding.

WM
San Francisco
50 reviews
Dined on August 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

One of our favorite places in the city!!
The food is original and great! The service wonderful and the drinks creative.

DB
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on August 9, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 4

The food was good, but the service was terribly slow. We ordered several small plates, and after 30+ minutes, everything came out at once. They had to pull up another table to fit everything. Drinks service was slow, and everything was over-priced.

OT
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on August 9, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Waiter was very pushy with the specials.

OT
Denver
2 reviews
Dined on August 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Business meeting. The staff was just awesome and food was perfect.

OT
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on July 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Best brunch, best lunch, and best service in the Union Square area! We frequent bluestem and always walk away pleased with everything.

OT
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 4ambience 3

Tourist trap. Butchery steak was so tough and extremely salty i didn't bother eating it.

t
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on July 24, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Such nice staff with attentive service. Fun drinks. The food was interesting with some things being very good to others a bit odd. The chicken liver toasts were a “miss” too much liver hard to cut toast and the fruit didn’t go. The vegan dish, the pasta special, the lattes and the corn bread was great. We will be back.

KG
Palm Springs
8 reviews
Dined on July 24, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

We liked the location of Bluestem to SF MOMA. Service was very good, people friendly but food just so so.

C
San Francisco
15 reviews
Dined on July 23, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 3

I got the impression that this place relies on the hotels nearby and don't feel that they need to compete with other truly great restaurants in the city. Their 'big plates' don't even include accompaniment. A $49 dollar filet with no vegetables or potatoes? The vegan pupusas lacked any significant filling and tasted like a greasy pancake. Our waiter and the host were wonderful, but I did watch the ice melt in our drinks at the bar for about 10 minutes. I wouldn't go back except maybe for cocktails.

TN
Denver
17 reviews
Dined on July 23, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great lunch choice- the burger was fantastic and the Einstok White Ale was delicious!

l
San Francisco
13 reviews
Dined on July 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Bluestem was a convenient spot for Sunday brunch as our hotel was just off Union Square. Croque madame was delicious but a little unexpected with a bechamel like sauce (and an egg) over the sandwich. Fried chicken was moist and well spiced without being peppery. Wonderful salads accompanied both. The chef may be sending me to hell with a sinful cornbread (more like a corncake) filled with the most decadent chocolate and mascarpone concoction ever to pass my lips! All I can say is, "I'll be back."

OT
Brisbane / QLD
3 reviews
Dined on July 20, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Try the dirty fries and cornbread. Waiting staff were terrific and dessert menu worth saving some space for too!

P
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on July 19, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

We've been here many times over the years but the last last time was very disappointing for the expense and the quality we've come to expect. The restaurant was mostly empty, so it seems our experience is not unusual.

J
1 review
Dined on July 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food and service were excellent as always. Love how the menu evolves and reflects in season options.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on July 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Have been many times before. Food, service, ambience all superb. Many new items on menu. Love this restaurant and plan on returning soon!

AD
Raleigh
2 reviews
Dined on July 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was unique and delicious - I loved the vegan papusas. Service was fantastic, we’ll definitely go back

OT
1 review
Dined on July 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great experience from the moment we walked in. My boyfriend and I were celebrating our anniversary and they put extra touches to make our dinner amazing. The service was on point and the food was sooooo good! Thank you!

B
San Francisco
79 reviews
Dined on July 7, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Menu has limited and strange food selections. Offering different meals is OK as kind as you still have a few basic food offerings to go along with the different meals.

K
San Francisco
22 reviews
Dined on July 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and excellent service.

G
San Francisco
23 reviews
Dined on July 5, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Bluestem is a reliable choice for dining in Union Square. The service is very good and it’s a nice place to enjoy a long conversation with friends.

CH
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on July 1, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

The staff was very nice. We truly enjoyed ourselves.

JC
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on June 29, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

A group of us dropped by there after a visit to Moma and had brunch on the mezzanine balcony. The space allowed for people-watching on Market, but was sheltered enough by glass walls and also had heaters. The menu was significantly elevated from the usual brunch fare, and we ordered a wide selection. the food turned out to be clean, well presented and very delicious. A hit all round.

M
San Francisco
21 reviews
Dined on June 22, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Nice food, really nice service people. We went before theater at ACT, and will be back. The brunch menu is really good!

OT
Los Angeles
150 reviews
Dined on June 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great culinary experience

a
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on June 17, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

I generally take clients to Blue Stem because of their high quality and service. I haven't dined there recently and had forgotten that Mary's Chicken entree didn't include any sides on the plate--considering the price ($29.00) it should have. I ordered Kennebeck fries as my side (additional charge) and they were excellent. Service was pleasant but I was a bit annoyed as the server didn't check with us (two of us total) after our entrees were delivered (by a runner) and no additional beverages were offered during that period. I did see the server "sweep" the room with her eyes on every table but she didn't stop at ours until we were finished with with our entrees. We both were full from the meal (we had oysters to start, very fresh) so declined dessert or coffee. I would still return to Blue Stem when the occasion warrants.

w
Central Coast
10 reviews
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a very nice birthday dinner there. The appetizer and main dishes were very good. The desserts were over the top. Our server was very attentive without being a pest.

K
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 4

We were the only people in the dining room for the first 20 minutes, but for some reason our food took the longest to bring out. In addition, my brother ordered a $50 filet mignon, and he ordered it "medium". It came out rare, even the server agreed it wasn't "medium". She took it back to heat it up more, but when she returned it, it still wasn't medium. Mind you, she didn't give him a new steak, she literally took the plate, with his mac and cheese on it, and clearly just put it in a heater for a couple minutes. It was laughable. She didn't come back to ask how it was either. My brother was starving so he just decided to eat it. Then the bill came and there was no discount.
Frankly, if we're paying $50 for 1 piece of steak, there should be a discount if it isn't cooked perfectly. It should also be thrown out, and given a new piece of steak if it's not cooked properly. It just was a lousy experience. Besides the food issue, the service was super slow (and by the time we left there were maybe 5 tables total), the server seemed like she was high and aloof, and I will never go back. Considering the hundreds of amazing restaurants near Bluestem, I'm shocked their service (from the server, specifically) wouldn't be better.
I'm honestly surprised this place is still in business considering Amber and Ippudo are such higher quality, and they're right next door. I regret not just going to one of those restaurants.

Y
Las Vegas
34 reviews
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I always enjoy coming to bluestem, when I'm in the area. I was hanging out and had a craving for a drink and the best cookie dessert in town. My waitress Jen was very accommodating, did a great job of managing the we entire area, and when I forgot my cookie to go, she caught me outside before I got too far. I owe her next time. Thanks again

DG
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Great place for brunch--I was last here with a friend on a Sunday but have come here several times with a large group. Food is always good, cocktails are fabulous, creative and seasonal, and staff is always friendly and usually on it. This time I think they were a bit short staffed so not as attentive as usual but overall this place is perfect for meeting friends for brunch.

w
San Francisco
158 reviews
Dined on June 12, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Had their fried chicken sandwich which was done perfectly. It was exceptionally large with delicious add-ons. with the fries it was more than a filling lunch and more than I could eat. The service was attentive and fast even though it was a busy lunch hour.

OT
1 review
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service great food great ambience.

LG
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

Slow service

OT
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were 8 people and we sat at the gorgeous wood round table in the front corner by the window. The flowers were so stunning. We had a great brunch with frittata and croque madame. Great afternoon

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