Live jazz nightly in the upper level dining room.
ZAGAT RATED: Food 26 / Decor 24 / Service 25 / Cost $44
"Step back in time” at this circa-1908 Downtown “landmark”, where “solid steakhouse fare" and "strong drinks" draw “tourists and locals alike"; "one of the last old-style SF eateries", it’s also renowned as a "Dashiell Hammett hangout" (and a setting in The Maltese Falcon.)”
Zagat Rates John's Grill - #1 Steakhouse in Downtown San Francisco!!!
Dinner: Monday - Sunday: 3:30pm - 9:45pm (last reservation 9:15pm.)
A party of eight or more must be confirmed with a valid credit card. Any cancellations must be made prior to 24 hour of reservation to avoid a $25 charge per person. This policy also applies if you need to reduce the number of guests in your party.
There is a parking garage directly across the street, Ellis - O'Farrell Garage.
Historic John's Grill a landmark restaurant established in 1908 offers private dining rooms for 20 - 300 guests. Classic San Francisco atmosphere offering local seafood and fine cuts of steaks and chops. Chosen as top 10 by Esquire and featured in Gourmet.View Private Dining Details
Our waiter was exceptional and the food was spectacular
Otherwise known as a glowing review!
Wonderful food and generous portions. An iconic SF restaurant and a good value for sure in the downtown area.
It was great, the staff was so friendly and helped us sit at a great table!
Too loud for conversation.
Unfortunately, we had a terrible experience and would not go back. They could not get our steak orders correct and the service was poor. One steak was ordered medium rare and it came out medium well. When we sent it back it came out cooked more not less and was well done. The other steak was ordered medium and came out rare. The waiter didn't seem to care and the manager never came over even though we sent two steaks back twice. For a restaurant that is supposed to be known for its steaks, I did not think the quality of the beef was top notch either. I have been to many steakhouses and have had better quality steaks many times and always better service.
Our server was very courteous but the food was underwhelming and extremely overpriced. They also don’t allow substitutions for sides. The bread they served was cold and the butter was not good. I had an upset stomach after leaving as well so overall, I was disappointed in my experience here.
tasty American steaks and comfort food in a place with atmosphere to spare -the lamb chops are a must have at least twice a year! - excellent value for money - it ain't fancy but you will be more than satisfied
My bestie and I went there prior to the theater by recommendation and were not disappointed. I had the sole and she had the rib eye. Both were amazing. Our server was was very attentive and polite and the place was jumping! Would back!!
Excellent experience, food and service was great.
No problem getting a table for 8 at the last minute and we had a great time. Great food!
Old school amazing SF steak and seafood. Go prepared to spend a bit of dough, an all out dinner is about $100 per person and worth every penny!
I had a T bone and Lamp chops. But my dishes were not warm. It was look like pre-made foods and warmed food. But all staff were friendly.
We went here for dinner prior to going to the Golden Gate theater because of its proximity. We had made a reservation and were seated promptly. We had a nice corner seat in the back of the restaurant. It is a place with dim lighting, dark paneling, and autograph pics of famous people on the walls. I had the lobster ravioli and my spouse had the petrale sole. The ravioli was soggy although the sauce flavor was good. My husband enjoyed his fish. Food was ok but nothing ususual. The server was attentive without being intrusive. It was $93 with the tip for just the food and one glass of wine. We had no apps or deserts. I appreciate that things are more expensive in the city, but given the quality, did not feel I got value for the money spent. Think we will try something else next time. Wish there was a maybe choice for the question, "Would you recommend the next time?" Since there are not a lot of great choices in a safe area within walking distance of the Golden Gate theater, I may or may not go back again.
Fine. Except they picked up the check and credit card. Then they seemed to forget and was awkward
The ambience in the restaurant reminded us of an old English chop house. Keyboard player was superb good jazz riffs. Steak was delicious rest of the food not brilliant and lukewarm. Waiting staff friendly and efficient.
A great steakhouse with perfect grilled beef and good baked potatoes.
Maybe San Francisco had simply put me in a good mood, but I really enjoyed dinner with my wife. Live music on a piano set a nice ambiance, though (as it always seems) there was one loud voice in the crowd that added a certain edge. The food was well presented and tasty without being pretentious. While marking things as part of the review, I couldn't thing of any real negatives.
Amazing steak! Beautiful environment.
This is your average non-chain steakhouse - nothing more, nothing less. Some authentic charm with the whole reference to The Maltese Falcon. Should have known something was a little weird when we saw the street-side hustler pushing people to enter the restaurant, but we had reservations based on OT's recommendations and decided to push through it. After checking in, we got garbled instructions to walk to the back (practically in the kitchen) and then go upstairs to get checked in again. Waiter was slow, non-responsive and not personal, fun or informative in any way, shape or form. Martini was sour and the pre-meal sourdough was stale. Thankfully, the filet mignon was cooked perfectly and tasty - which salvaged this adventure. Will not be on my repeat list.
I have been to John's Grill many times in the 50 years I have lived in the Bay Area. My friends and I always go there for dinner when we attend the theater nearby. The food is always great and the dining experience is always wonderful! The Prawns Dijonaise and the Halibut, as well as the Jack LaLanne Salad!
We were well taken care of by our waiter (Cesar I think). Knew when to appropriately come around and when to stay away. Good was good, the clam chowder in particular was excellent. Manhattans were also perfect. Great place, great ambiance... Old San Francisco flavor through and through...
So the sign says John's Grill since 1908..... that's 110 years? For the meal we had I find it hard to believe. Perhaps if you only order red meat, because one of my dinner companions had the lamb chops and he said they were very good. As for those of us who ordered the fish, not so much, it was not fresh, more like frozen, and even at that, I've had better frozen fish at home. And for someplace that has been in business for 110 years.....maybe it's time to get rid of the old tired décor and update the menu? I've had better meals at a diner.
Food was outstanding, and our service was good. My only complaint was the location of our table. I had booked a reservation for 2 at 7, and we were actually a few minutes early. It was obvious that our table had not been set aside - we were shunted first to the second floor, and then to the third floor, and ultimately placed at a table for 4 right next to the bar and the kitchen. Almost all of the tables were for large parties. We were almost the only people there at first, but it did fill up - with large parties. I was disappointed, because I was treating my niece to "old and historic San Francisco," and I wanted her to enjoy the ambiance of floor 1 or 2. Next time I hope the restaurant actually honors the reservation - otherwise, what's the point of making one???
Food seemed a bit overpriced for the quality. We had the sea bass and the salmon.
We enjoyed ourselves, and steak was great. We loved the atmosphere and the history of the establishment. We will dine here again when we return to the city.
Steak was perfection as were the side dishes! Thank you John’s Grill!!
The food was great but we should have told the waiter we had an 8pm show. We were the second table seated upstairs but our food was slow in coming and we were not offered cocktails again after our first round.
The waiter and staff were friendly just not at our table.
I had the sea bass. It was over sauced. My husband had the seafood pasta, it was delicious. The caesar salad was great. They should have a choice for the fish with and without the sauce.
I loved the history, the atmosphere, the service and the food.
A great dining experience.
The food was delicious, large portions and well seasoned. Lively crowd but was a little loud. We enjoyed our dinner and recommend it highly.
Great place, very old school. Menu is terrific, great selection . Old place full of busy tables and waiters. Recommend.
Mario really took care of us after having him a few months ago serving us for lunch. Steaks were great, service was excellent despite being packed. We will be back
Enjoyed our evening, especially enjoyed the seafood.
I really liked this place. The steak was properly cooked and it was a very tasty cut of meat. Decent bar/wine selection, except very few beers if you are a beer drinker.
Great time and great waiter! The food was super good along with the pomegranate martini :)
We loved it! The a/c was horribly cold, but anything else 5*
always good been going since 1982 every time we are in SF.
Interesting location. Food was ok, wine as well. Service was very good.
Delicious food and a great atmosphere.
We enjoyed everything about John’s Grill. The Sam Spades lamb chop s were outstanding.