Foreign Cinema

4.7
5782 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Californian
Top Tags:
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
  • Fit for Foodies
Foreign Cinema is a one of a kind, nationally acclaimed restaurant combining independent films with California-Mediterranean cooking. Enjoy an airy yet chic setting, complete with indoor dining room with a fireplace, outdoor courtyard, mezzanine, gallery curated by Modernism & full bar in the main dining room. There is also a great cocktail bar, Laszlo, as you enter from Mission Street.
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Delivery or takeout
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Private dining
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Cuisines
Californian, Mediterranean
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Hours of operation
Dinner:
Sunday-Wednesday, 5:30pm-10.00pm
Thursday-Saturday, 5:30pm-11.00pm
Weekend Brunch:
Saturday & Sunday, 11:00am-2:30pm
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Phone number
(415) 648-7600 ext. 0
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
Gayle Pirie & John Clark
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
21st St.
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Parking details
Valet is available, $15
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Public transit
MUNI: 14 Mission bus; BART: 16th & 24th/Mission station
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Entertainment
Movies; see restaurant website for schedule. While we try to honor all request, none are guaranteed.
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Gift Card
Additional
Banquet, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Entertainment, Fireplace, Full Bar, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Private Dining

Venture into the distinctive experience of dining at Foreign Cinema. The dramatic candle lit entry welcomes you to a repast that you won’t soon forget. Foreign Cinema brings together the serendipitous relationship between food and film, dining and entertainment. Have your next event with us!

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What Insiders Are Saying

The Infatuation
8.6

Foreign Cinema in the Mission is a San Francisco classic for brunch, and dinner is solid too.

Ratings 8.5-9.0:Now we’re in the range of absolutely excellent restaurants that you might go to more than once a year/lifetime. These restaurants tend to define a city, and make up the places that you absolutely cannot miss if you want to have any credibility as a restaurant-informed person in a major metropolis.
What 5782 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.4
service
4.7
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
86% of people would recommend it to a friend
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MM
5.0Dined a day ago

Everything was wonderful about our meal. The drinks are really good, the appetizers were excellent. We had the smoke salmon and the goat cheese. Even all our entrées were superb. I had the Kobe flank steak and my husband had the fried chicken.

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M
3.0Dined 3 days ago

We were very disappointed with our last experience here. The lamp chops (plural) only came with one “chop” and that’s a pricey dish to only get a half portion. And the fruit galette on the dessert menu tasted of cumin and was a shame it could not be enjoyed. Multiple times we placed drink orders only to find out ten minutes later they were out of what we had ordered. I do not plan to go back for more than a glass of wine and cheese in the future. It’s not worth risking poor service, food, and a massive bill that didn’t feel earned.

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SS
5.0Dined 4 days ago

The Foreign Cinema was suggestet to me by a friend of ours from Germany who is here regularly on business. My daughter (from Munich, Germany) and I are vistiting SFO for the first Time and we are truly happy that we got there. Everything was perfekt. My chicken Madras....was sensationel. An unforgettable evening. Thanks and Hello to Juan, Sonja

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NK
4.0Dined 4 days ago

I thank the restaurant for serving special desert for my husband's birthday.
But the KOBE steak was too salty and I expected the mood with cinema but it was my mistake.
However, service, wine and overall mood was nice.

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AF
2.0Dined 5 days ago

We were hugely disappointed with the service we received during our visit.

First, we made a reservation for 4 outside and while there were several 5 top tables available, we were told it would be at least another 20 minutes. So, we were seated inside.

While the runners and everyone in a black shirt was very attentive, our main waiter gave us horrible service. Drinks were ordered, never got delivered. When we asked about it, no apology was given for forgetting about them. One of the mixed drinks tasted like it had no liquor in it at all. When we complained, again, not even an apology.

After the food was delivered, the waiter did not return to check on the quality, nor to see if we needed anything, like more drinks.

The food was very tasty, but be prepared for very small portions. The clams appetizer we ordered literally had 6 tiny clams in it. The broth had a wonderful flavor, just wish there more clams in the order.

Overall, the experience was very disappointing.

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PV
5.0Dined 5 days ago

The best service, food, and ambiance

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OT
5.0Dined 5 days ago

We had Saturday brunch here for our 3 year wedding anniversary. I highly recommend this spot. Food is amazing, service is 105% and the atmosphere is everything you’d want from a brunch spot. A-ok in my books.

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OT
5.0Dined 5 days ago

Always a good time

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OT
4.0Dined 5 days ago

Food was great but the blood mary was way too spicy for me....

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OT
5.0Dined 5 days ago

The food and service were amazing! We’ll be coming back!

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OT
5.0Dined 6 days ago

This place was fantastic! Our server was so fun and gave great recommendations. The calamari appetizer was phenomenal. I had the sea bass, which was perfect and so unique with a fig and walnut topping. My husband had the duck and was equally impressed with that. Everything was great! It is very loud in there, but we didn’t mind. Will definitely return!

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OT
4.0Dined 6 days ago

Great atmosphere and service. Awesome for a special occasion or date night. Oysters and small plates were great. Tried the fried chicken based on reviews and it was just OK. Flights of whiskey was a bonus.

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s
4.0Dined 6 days ago

Food was good but a little overpriced for what it was. It had a nice atmosphere.

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SS
1.0Dined on July 12, 2018

Not many food options and confusing menu. I wasn’t able to figure out what to eat. No vegetarian options and very limited chicken option.

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OT
1.0Dined on July 11, 2018

We had a reservation at 8:45 and we finally got to the table at 9:50. The servicer was okay but they do really take their time. The food was good but the portion is very small.

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LR
4.0Dined on July 11, 2018

We visited in July. Foreign Cinema has a beautiful outdoor patio, with string lights and ample heaters. Ambiance was romantic, food was delicious! The menu is comprised of a selection of amuse-bouche sized bites, small plates to share and mains. The dessert list is creative and our Tres Leches cake was DELICIOUS! If weather predicts wind, request an inside table. If your unable to sit inside, request blankets to keep yourself warm :-) Highly recommend!

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OT
5.0Dined on July 11, 2018

We do not live in SF but our son does. We come to FC every trip out. The food is ALWAYS great. Service always top notch. FC is one of my favorites of any city

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OT
5.0Dined on July 10, 2018

Bartender was honest and so personable.

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WS
5.0Dined on July 9, 2018

Perfect for date night. Service was top. Ambiance was excellent. Different kind of concept

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r
5.0Dined on July 9, 2018

We've been eating here for years. It's wonderful. This time I had the sesame curry fried chicken and an arugula peach salad. My husband had the wedge salad with jalapeno cream dressing and a mixed grill plate. Everything was beyond delicious. I highly recommend Foreign Cinema.

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x
5.0Dined on July 9, 2018

Absolutely loved it. The duck and fried chicken are a must!

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JO
5.0Dined on July 8, 2018

The food is fresh and inventive. The wine list is diverse and reasonably priced. The service is attentive, but not fussy. All this equals a great meal full of unexpected twists and surprises. A very special place.

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AJ
3.0Dined on July 8, 2018

Food was pretty

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m
4.0Dined on July 8, 2018

Been here atleast 5 times in the last few months.
Solid brunch and dinner.
Food and drinks are great.
Well priced too.

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SF
4.0Dined on July 8, 2018

Moved to Austin last year and just brought my boyfriend here to experience a landmark restaurant experience in SF. This place never disappoints. Al Fresco dining even with heaters is always fun.

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s
5.0Dined on July 8, 2018

One of our favorite places in the world. The vegetables and produce always very fresh but also with some very interesting spices (such as persian eggs and very special mole with their squid). Not everything is equally a hit, alas: the soup is always a bland disappointment. The wine program is sensational and a relatively good value in some areas, including wines by the glass. The service runs the full gammit: almost always the servers are warm and know the menu well. Sometimes the service is rather slow and sometimes some of the servers seem a little disinterested. I understand the problem is partly that the house takes a large share of the tip pool for the back of the house so harder to keep some superstar servers.

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AE
4.0Dined on July 8, 2018

Foreign Cinema is a wonderful restaurant with amazing food and service. If you sit outside in the evening there is a movie playing on one wall. The only thing that keeps me from going back often is it is quite expensive for fairly small plates.

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f
4.0Dined on July 7, 2018

My husband and I went for brunch. The food was really good and the service was outstanding. We will definitely be back!

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OT
4.0Dined on July 7, 2018

bartender overcharged us for a glass of wine

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A
5.0Dined on July 6, 2018

It was awesome!

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RR
5.0Dined on July 6, 2018

Foreign Cinema is one of my long term favorites. The food is excellent and the service as it should be. The weather was nice, so I sat out on the patio. Although the restaurant was almost full, the noise level was tolerable.

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z
3.0Dined on July 4, 2018

The duck pate in agnolotti was really good; it was almost like eating a savory dish and dessert in one dish (in a good way!). Sadly, the porchetta di Testa and the rib eye were disappointing. The blueberry shortcake fell short as well.

I'd like to go back and give it another chance and try other dishes. It's just disappointing that the rib eye which a splurge ($60) was not that great.

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AF
5.0Dined on July 4, 2018

Visited from SF from NY and this came to me highly recommended. Everything was delicious, from the bread on the table to the duck we ordered.

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H
5.0Dined on July 3, 2018

This place never disappoints, whether for a special occasion or just for a fun night out with friends. The food, service and wine list are all extraordinary.

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OT
5.0Dined on July 1, 2018

Best steak and duck I've had! Love the ambiance too. The dining area us very open and airy. It's quite deceiving when you look at their front door and entry hallway.

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SF
5.0Dined on July 1, 2018

We had the most delicious meal last night at Foreign Cinema! Each time we go there it just gets better and better. Everything we ate was excellent, service was outstanding and we have always loved the space. We can’t wait to go back. Kudos to Steven the manager and our excellent server, Leo for making it a special evening!

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FT
4.0Dined on June 23, 2018

Foreign Cinema remains a great venue ... year in and year out. It's nice to see that it remains a dependable, foodie option in a city with lots of new trendy restaurants.

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PJ
5.0Dined on June 23, 2018

We had a great server (unfortunately I forgot his name) and we just followed his recommendations and everything was fantastic. The pork chop was the best I ever had. Will definitely come again.

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OT
4.0Dined on June 22, 2018

Liked the chicken - please don’t change the recipe. It’s the best friend chicken in the 5 time zones.

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P
5.0Dined on June 22, 2018

The food was amazing! We were seated inside so we did not get to see the movie but the atmosphere was fabulous. It was expensive but worth every penny. I highly recommend it and will return here when I come back to San Francisco.

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