Foreign Cinema

4.8
7387 Reviews
$31 to $50
Californian
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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Private Dining

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Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
Physical Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
What 7387 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.8based on recent ratings
4.8
food
4.6
service
4.8
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Moderate
97% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined 18 hours ago
Overall5food5service5ambience4

It’s always great dinning at Foreign Cinema. Great food and service

JJ
JenniferJ
1 review
Dined 19 hours ago
Overall5food3service5ambience5

The ambiance was AMAZING!!! Entire staff is too! The owner was spectacular....caring, friendly, and most of all humble. This is an absolute MUST DO! Perfect for dates and birthdays. We celebrated my daughter’s 18th birthday and I know she will remember this night for the rest of her life......and so will I!

NN
NiNi
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined 21 hours ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Quick service, good food, great ambience. Our host and server were so amazing and kind. Really made our special night just that much more special!

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Loved this place!!

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall2food3service3ambience2

The food was pretty good but we received our entrees 1.5 hours after being seated. They did not have enough umbrellas to provide shade. We spent nearly 700.00 on the meal with tip and did not enjoy ourselves for Mother’s Day

WB
WahidB
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Patio is beautiful. Had a really incredible duck breast.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Loved every second of our time at Foreign Cinema. Food and service were both fantastic!

MR
MarthaR
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on May 6, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Very cute place! The outdoor seating area is incredibly adorable. They play the movie on the large white wall but don't expect to hear it, it's more of a background type of thing, just for the aesthetic but it's still super cute! I loved it, I'll definitely be going again!

MB
vipMattB
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on May 6, 2021
Overall3food2service2ambience3

As a sometimes single diner, it’s unfortunate to see how servers make immediate assumptions and adjustments in their level of service when they perceive the table as not one that will tip well. What’s worse is when they give you notice that the table must be turned in two hours before even asking what you’d like to drink, clearly focused on getting you out as quickly as possible. I get a need to turn tables, but when in the history of ever does a single diner take two hours unless for a considerable pre fixe. Then stacking plates of food as if to say, you’ve sat down and you’re already taking too much time. Overall service just gave the feeling that I was the bother, and the quality of food did not match the price. My duck was over cooked and a considerable amount of juice was gone out of it all over the plate. Just a meh experience for a rather high cost.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on May 5, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It was great! Cool vibe

DB
vipDBin
San Francisco
17 reviews
Dined on May 5, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

We had a lovely 20th anniversary dinner at Foreign Cinema. We recommend any of the cocktails, the beet salad, the seafood platter for a splurge, the duck breast and pork chop entrees, and the Creme brûlée and birthday cake for dessert.

It was a chilly night so we were grateful for the indoor seating, though the “outdoor” seating is at least semi-protected.

A bright spot in a somewhat gritty part of town - go when you have a special occasion or just want a great date night!

OT
OpenTable Diner
London
4 reviews
Dined on May 5, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Amazing experience and delicious food

JO
JoOh
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on May 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Amazing ambience. Relaxed and hip place to eat out -- typical SF vibes with a dress code ranging from casual jeans to jackets and dresses. Wait staff were knowledgable, attentive, and friendly. Menu was diverse and exciting, mix of familiar comfort foods and exotic novelties (what is a quacklin??). Cocktails were delightful.

M
Mimi
New England
2 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and atmosphere! Very friendly service.

JM
vipJulieM
San Francisco
14 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Foreign Cinema has always been one of my favorite restaurants in SF, and it was wonderful as always. Super accommodating waitress adjusted heat lamps as needed and provided solid recommendations for wine and food. Waitstaff was quick and efficient, and the beautiful murals and lighting made for a special dinner. I am not a big beef eater, but my friend and I shared the bavette steak, and it was juicy and tender and wonderful!

s
vipsfsince1995
San Francisco
25 reviews
Dined on April 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Office party that was so special thanks to our lovely server

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My boyfriend had never been, but I knew Foreign Cinema would not disappoint. We’ve only been dating since last May and this was probably our first formal date due to the pandemic. I honestly think the experience brought us closer. The food, ambiance, and unpretentious service were all wonderful.

AA
AndreeaA
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 29, 2021
Overall4food3service5ambience5

We had a really good time! We had a booking but still had to wait 30 mins, but they did give us some complimentary salad and the service was really good.

DH
vipDH94114
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on April 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our first dinner "in" a restaurant post-vaccination, although actually in the wonderful courtyard. All food and drink was excellent, service was spot-on, and the crowd felt very festive. It was great to be back.

SU
SUMANK
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on April 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had so much fun after such a long time!

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

LOVED IT!!

NP
vipNateP
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on April 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and drinks, open atmosphere both inside and out.

J
vipJoyceee123
San Francisco
29 reviews
Dined on April 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It was my son's birthday, 4 adults and 2 children, ages 3 and 6. Our table was ready at arrival. Service was immediate -- we ordered drinks and appetizers while waiting on our son, daughter-in-law and two grandboys. Our waiter treated us quite well and was attentive. ALWAYS the food and service is the best. We have never had mediocre service or food. All our experience with Foreign Cinema has been superior, the best and is the reason we come back, time and again.

AV
AlejandrinoV
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on April 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It rained but the staff moved us which was great this was for our first time here the food was amazing, the service was stellar and the host made us feel like VIP’s can’t wait to come back.

F
Foodyum
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on April 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This is really the place to be in this pandemic-- beautiful outdoor dining. The food and drinks were amazing. It felt like we were transported to Europe. Such a treat!

LF
vipLaurenF
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on April 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Worth the wait! Foreign Cinema was a wonderful experience- the food amazing, the service perfect, the outdoor dining beautiful and everything safe. A perfect place for a wonderful night out.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Orange County
8 reviews
Dined on April 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Just love this place. I will absolutely come back. Great food, great service. I was absolutely enchanted by this restaurant.

A
Anika9
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 24, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Really Nice!
Our table was way in the back, only thing I didn’t like.
drinks are Great, they are very generous with the alcohol! 😉

B
vipBradster
San Francisco
37 reviews
Dined on April 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Another great birthday brunch at Foreign Cinema. The food, service and atmosphere is always top notch. It really is the most reliably great restaurant we have been to over 20 years in the city.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on April 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We’ve been here for dinner a couple times and loved so we thought surely their brunch had to be good. It did not disappoint!
Service was great as always and the food was delicious. The spacing between tables was very comfortable and all the right precautions were taken to make us feel completely safe.

I got the French omelette and had no idea an omelette could taste so good. I also had the Wickerman cocktail...twice. YUM!

My wife got the coffee-rubbed wagyu and it was perfect.

We will definitely be back. 5/5 recommend :)

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 23, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Great time

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on April 23, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Boyfriend and I moving in!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Detroit
1 review
Dined on April 23, 2021
Overall3food3service2ambience1

They sat us in mezzanine, far away from the entire atmosphere of the restaurant. They forgot or messed up many of our orders and we had reservation for 8:30 and did not get food until 10pm.

EC
EllenC
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on April 23, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were greeted with such enthusiasm-it really felt like they remembered and were glad to see us. It was our anniversary, which I mentioned to the host, but not to our server. The food was outstanding, the wine pairing was perfect, and with our dessert was a “Happy Anniversary” card! Our server was friendly and knowledgeable and again, made us feel as though we were old friends that she was delighted to see.
It was a wonderful experience and I look forward to our next visit.

LL
vipLocalLosGatosDiner
San Francisco
25 reviews
Dined on April 23, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience4

In these pandemic challenged times, eating outside in the courtyard at Foreign Cinema is the closest to being back with pre-pandemic dining. The food was wonderfully delicious and carefully prepared. My bavette steak with the bagna cauda and vegetables was cooked perfectly and paired well with the Alma de Cattleya cab. The smoked salmon appetizer was very creative and the brandade is always a trusted standard. The trofie pasta was spicy good and the tuna ceviche was nicely balanced.

B
Brigid
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on April 22, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Lovely outdoor ambiance, with the strings of lights and movie playing it felt quite magical. We had delicious food and a great wine recommendation. Would highly recommend eating here for a date or special occasion.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Cincinnati
3 reviews
Dined on April 22, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Friends visit

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OT
OpenTable Diner
Miami
1 review
Dined on April 21, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Engagement

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MS
MaryS
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on April 21, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Loved everything about our evening at Foreign Cinema: the food was both delectable and interesting, the service was terrific, and the outdoor courtyard was perfect (spacious and clean, not too loud but not too quiet, just the right temperature in spite of the freezing windy weather outside). The charming owner escorted us to the bar while we waited for the other twosome in our party and then escorted us and our tasty drinks to our table after they arrived. Definitely one of the best dining experiences we've had in SF.

N
Nina
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on April 20, 2021
Overall1food1service5ambience4

Please add more vegetarian options. And please update your online menu to reflect what you serve.

FAQs

Foreign Cinema offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (415) 648-7600 ext. 0.

Foreign Cinema is rated 4.8 stars by 7387 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.

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