Oliveto Café & Restaurant

4.4
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3141 Reviews
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$31 to $50
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Italian
Oliveto Café & Restaurant offers seasonal cuisine in the Northern Italian tradition, including wild game, fresh pastas, wood-fired pizzas and authentic vegetable and poultry dishes.

All reservations are for the upstairs restaurant. The cafe is open all day 7 days a week for walk ins. We look forward to seeing you soon.
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Private Dining

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What 3141 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
4.4
food
4.2
service
4.5
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Quiet
84% of people would recommend it to a friend
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F
San Francisco
34 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Been coming here for years even after moving away. Now when I come to visit friends and family it is a favorite. The food is fresh and beautifully presented and DELICIOUS. try the mushroom risotto. Yum. The upstairs is light and open and the noise level is less so you can have meaningful conversations. Highly recommend sharing it with someone you want to connect with.

OT
San Diego
8 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food was EXCELLENT. I eat out very often and am a foodie. The quality and taste of the lobster linguini was absolutely fantastic. I ate lunch at Oliveto the next day because it was so good. I highly recommend this restaurant, it was outstanding.

AC
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall2food2service2ambience2

I took a friend here for her birthday, and the experience was very disappointing. It started with the cocktails, gin gimlets not the most complex drink, which were essentially gin and lime juice and that's all. We had to send them back to get fixed. The service was also very slow even though the restaurant was not full. We both ordered pasta as our mains and both were disappointing. My friend ordered the Tagliatelli with lamb ragu but essentially it was pasta with a bit of meat no sauce. My ravioli were salty but again it was a combination of elements shrimp and mushrooms that were just thrown together and shouldn't have been. Finally, the wrong dessert was brought to the table with a candle on it. My friend set it back and the servers were embarressed enough to take it off the menu. The only reason I didn't give it a 1 star rating was because the bomboloni and the little gem salad were decent. I won't be going back any time soon and neither should you.

OT
San Francisco
19 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall2food2service1ambience4

Service was dysfunctional. They said they were understaffed that evening, but you could see 4 or 5 servers waiting on a special event in the back room. Made you feel like a second class citizen. Very unlike Oliveto!
Pasta which is typically excellent, was totally undercooked. Also very unlike Oliveto.
And now they charge you $3 for bread, which is really tacky, given their prices!

l
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience5

The service was very good. Good recommendation on wine and most of our selected items. However, the description in the menu for a salad did not, in my opinion, match the actual. When I pointed this out to the server, she offered and brought a replacement. Appreciated this prompt response.

b
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall3food2service4ambience4

Our seating and the waitstaff were nice. Sadly the food was not hot when it came out and the bread puree accompanying my pork was coagulating. Tea cups after dinner were dirty and sent back, dessert however was the best part, a delicious lemon tart with cream.

S
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was excellent and served surprisingly quickly, even though I ordered the ribeye and our server had even reminded us that particular dish could take a little extra time. It was an excellent evening all around and made for an enjoyable treat on our anniversary.

w
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2020
Overall2food1service3ambience4

I will write a separate more detailed e mail to the restaurant. We were not happy at all with the food. The Chicken saltimbocca was a blob of rolled( not flat pieces ) chickenbreast , totally dried out , with a yellowish coating like it was deep-fried ....topped with a dollop of what I assume must have been the Calabrian Chili that was so overpowering it basically numbed your tastebuds. You could barely cut the meat with a serrated steakknife, it was so dry and hard.
My Wife had Brussels Sprouts Fettuccine ....no trace of any sprouts anywhere, all you could taste was SALT.
The service was good, with one very strange occurrence to be noted: we just ordered these 2 dishes and wanted to save room for dessert but our server said we should order a starter like a salad to" give the kitchen time to coordinate when to fire up our main courses" . I never heard of such a thing, having been in the industry for many years myself, it is ridiculous ..... the kitchen supposedly cannot manage to plate a pasta dish and a poultry dish to come out at the same time for a table of 2 ?? Please !! that story they have to sell to someone else .

M
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall1food5service3ambience5

With a table booked weeks in advance we arrived to chaos at the door several well dressed couples stranded on Valentine’s Day with 45 minute wait times despite having reservations. Not this first time this has happened. Food is good but extremely overpriced for what can be had all over northern Italy for a fraction of the cost or even at local restaurants for half the cost. Initial service was slow and food was slow to come out.

TB
Portland
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall1food1service5ambience4

Our server, Ashley, was wonderful
We were there for Valentine’s and the food was a major disappointment. Both entrees were overcooked and lacking flavor.. I can’t even remember the starters but do remember not being impressed

o
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food was amazing. Service excellent.

TA
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall2food3service1ambience1

Very loud, staff was frustrated about it being Valentine’s Day and were very vocal about it. Food was ok, but not worth $253 for 2 people. Service was extremely slow

LI
San Francisco
85 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall1food1service3ambience1

It was a total bust. We took a friend there on Valentine's Day and all they offered was a Pre Fixe Menu at $85 p/person. There was very little I could eat on the menu because I don't eat onions and can't do dairy. I checked to see the menu before we arrived, so I clicked the link on Open Table to view the menu on the website and there was no mention of a Pre Fixe menu for Valentine's Day. The server gave me no other options for meals, and she had a hard time answering my questions about ingredients and preparation. We asked to be seated downstairs because they have a much broader menu, but all the hostesses offered us was outdoor seating on a cold night. We should have walked out when we had the chance. The appetizer was supposed to be a donut filled with mushrooms and cheese - more like a donut hole. The Endive salad was horribly bitter. The pork roast was not only cold, it was on the RAW side. I couldn't eat it. The Pavlova dessert was as hard as a rock. Cocktail and wine prices were through the roof. Better to take you own wine and pay for the corkage. All the portions were rather small as well, and 45 minutes after being seated we had to ask for bread twice. The owners packed in as many tables as they could squeeze in and most customers were running into chairs and other guests. It was just overall a really uncomfortable experience. Oh, it took 1 hour and 45 minutes before our entrees were served. Everyone in the place was complaining about the slow food and service. I felt bad for the servers - they were just overwhelmed. Not a place I would go back to in the near future.

F
San Francisco
20 reviews
Dined on February 13, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Never disappoints. The cortoni was excellent

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 13, 2020
Overall3food4service2ambience4

Our first visit a month ago was lovely but this one was disappointing. We waited fifteen minutes for water, another fifteen for lukewarm coffee and forty five minutes for lunch. The waiter was more interested in talking and laughing with female staff. The young man waiter was kind and professional. It didn’t feel like a special day out, I am sorry to say. Kathleen Cornett

J
Montreal
1 review
Dined on February 11, 2020
Overall2food2service2ambience4

This was a major disappointment. This restaurant appeared in a magazine article as one of the best Italian restaurants in the U.S. Far from it. This was an overall a bad experience and quite frankly laughable as one of the best in the country.

DS
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on February 11, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Oliveto never fails to wow and is always a trusted go-to spot for lunch or dinner!

KM
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always nice to have Joselito and his team serving us.

LR
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on February 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was wonderful with many things to choose from on a diverse menu. One of us is vegetarian and there were a number of good choices. Nice selection of wines by the glass. Attentive service that allowed us to eat at a leisurely pace. Nice ambience in the upstairs.

EB
San Francisco
24 reviews
Dined on February 6, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience3

Consistently good

CH
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on February 3, 2020
Overall3food3service4ambience4

I have come here for years but was recently disappointed. We were sat next to a loud table and could not move the chair back without informing the person behind us as it was just too tight (along the window). There were plenty of other open places. The service was good and the space is beautiful. The food was good but the menu was almost all pasta and not a lot of variety. The risotto with mushrooms was disappointing from the appearance to the taste.
Pricey for the value. Likely will not be coming back.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 2, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Impeccable service. They noted what anniversary we were celebrating and figured we deserved to be treated to dessert!
All the dishes were beautifully prepared and served.

i
San Francisco
66 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Good as usual. Soup and ribeye steak with turnips. My wife’s semifreddo was delicious. Great service.

E
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our waitress was great! Food was perfect!

s
San Francisco
93 reviews
Dined on January 31, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

What a nice place to celebrate a birthday, anniversary or just being alive! The service is friendly and welcoming and our waiter was terrific. Excellent hand the with seabass and the swordfish. The radicchio salad with octopus was wonderful. Our pasta was a little more al dente than I like. The space is nice and the ambient noise was subdued of people having a good time.

YL
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 31, 2020
Overall4food5service3ambience4

The food was great. One dish was inedible due to too much salt (must have been a mistake) but the other dishes were excellent. The server was not very nice, nor was she attentive. Once finished with the meal, 30 minutes went by before plates were cleared or dessert was offered.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 27, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It was amazing!

DM
1 review
Dined on January 26, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Oliveto Restaurant is excellent. We love the food, service and especially appreciate their efforts to create a quiet atmosphere. It is the perfect place to go on a date, or with a large group of people to enjoy fresh food, and good conversation...something that is hard to find in a restaurant.

c
1 review
Dined on January 25, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

yes, if they were affluent enough to dine there. you can be very proud of the quality of your restaurant.

OT
Seattle
5 reviews
Dined on January 25, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Classy elegant restaurant, professional service and superb cuisine.

WB
1 review
Dined on January 20, 2020
Overall3food3service3ambience4

Overall it was fine. I focused on pasta dishes that night and tried several. I ordered the most creative sounding ones I saw. Such as, Red winter wheat chicche with Gorgonzola cheese, espresso, and hazelnuts along with Linguine with Dungeness crab, tomato, pickled avocado, and preserved Meyer lemon along with the Sweet potato gnocchi with shrimp, Chanterelle mushrooms, Calabrian chili, candied walnuts, and Pecorino cheese. These indeed all sound creative and tasty. The gnocchi was by far the best as the quality of the pasta itself was nothing special and the sauces were a bit schizophrenic with the sweetness being out of balance. The place was very pretty as always but our server certainly was inexperienced. One should never comment on how much or little was eaten by the customer unless, asked to. The automatic added tip is fine with me (less than I usually tip) but the slot to add more seemed out of place unless they want to add a slot to tip less if desired. They should just pick how they want to go. That said it’s a nice place with decent food and people should indeed go. Cheers

M
New England
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This is such a beautiful restaurant, I almost want to keep it secret. :)

OT
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on January 18, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Really enjoyable interesting food! Out server was new to upstairs restaurant so she really didn’t know the menu which didn’t help us pick out what we wanted eat. Yet, she did seem to know her wines!

OC
San Francisco
59 reviews
Dined on January 17, 2020
Overall4food5service5ambience5

We eat here all the time. Tonight was VERY busy for a Friday. But our waiter Jack took it all in stride. We started with some savory Zeppole (donuts), followed by a sweet potato gnocchi with an unbelievable sauce! Our mains were tasty enough, but they both arrived overcooked to medium (duck breast and swordfish). No biggie, we had a wonderful experience - everyone has an off moment or two in a kitchen!?

Get in here!

1
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on January 12, 2020
Overall3food3service3ambience4

We were celebrating a birthday with the family, one of whom had severe allergies. I had called before making the reservation to make sure this person could be accommodated and was assured she could. However when ordering we saw there were a lot of sides but none that were ok fo her. We asked the waiter if he had plain rice or vegetable and he told us no, they didn’t have anything like that and they couldn’t add that to the plain swordfish she had ordered. So she would have to just have the swordfish alone. Seemed like he couldn’t get away from the table fast enough. When he returned I asked him if he would please ask the chef directly if he could prepare a plain unseasoned side? He returned to say they would have to get some broccolini at the store but he would do it. Turns out the swordfish and broccolini were perfect. Can’t say the same about the octopus the waiter pushed, talking about how long it was cooked so it would be soft and tender. It probably was the worst octopus I had ever had. Hard, extremely chewy, very difficult to even eat. The chicken was delicious. The steak was ok. The tagliatelle with duck was pretty bland. Dessert was good. I have eaten there before - sometimes great, sometimes not. this experience was not very good

VI
San Francisco
40 reviews
Dined on January 12, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience5

This restaurant knows how to do it. Service is polite, not overly friendly, yet impeccable.
The restaurant is very nicely decorated and the tables are not right on top of one another making conversation easy.
The menu was hard to decipher, I couldn't imagine what I would be eating from the description.
There weren't a lot of gluten free options, two of the people in our party were gluten allergic, one severely.
The food was good, not rave worthy and for the price I thought we were going to taste some great things. Only one person remarked how delicious their plate was.
They have a good wine list .
In summary, good restaurant with very nice wine list and impeccable service. The food left me unimpressed and for the price I expected more.

T
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on January 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Just lively enough to be friendly, but quiet enough for conversation. Great location. The crab linguine was crabsolutely delicious.

Y
New York Area
1 review
Dined on January 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I took two quite sophisticated friends here, who were visiting from the Netherlands. They were both impressed by the delicious food and the excellent wine we chose. There was one thing that I found regrettable. One of us has very poor hearing and we had asked for a table as quiet as possible. It was a weekday evening and not crowded. A table was found in a corner with many empty tables near us. After about half an hour, with many tables still unoccupied, four people were seated right next to us rather than at one of the empty tables further away. This somewhat diminished our pleasure. I don't understand why this is done as there seems no logical reason to put people in clumps, especially when they have asked for a quiet spot. The restaurant never did fill up that night.

OT
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on January 5, 2020
Overall4food3service3ambience5

The sound is blissfully quiet due to their special acoustics. Your scale is not appropriate. Don’t like loud where you can’t talk! Oliveto food - strange choices, difficult to choose, especially if you can’t eat gluten((ie pasta).

FS
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on January 4, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food at Oliveto just gets more and more amazing. We had pasta dishes and both were exceptional, and really different from each other. The service was also excellent. A fantastic place for a special occasion.

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