The Waterfront Restaurant and Cafe

4.2
2659 reviews
icon/ic_price_rangeCreated with Sketch.
$31 to $50
icon/ic_cuisineCreated with Sketch.
Californian
ZAGAT 2015
"Breathtaking Bay Bridge views from every table, both indoors and from the "tented patio", makes this Embarcadero seafooder a wonderful place to relax and absorb the beautiful setting, while the Californian fare is deemed well executed."
icon/ic_private_diningCreated with Sketch.
Private dining
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
icon/ic_cuisineCreated with Sketch.
Cuisines
Californian, Seafood, Contemporary French / American
icon/ic_clockCreated with Sketch.
Hours of operation
Lunch: Monday - Sunday:
11:30 AM to 4:00 PM. Dinner: Monday - Saturday: 4:00PM to 9:30PM
Sunday: 1130AM to 9:00PM
icon/ic_phoneCreated with Sketch.
Phone number
(415) 391-2696
icon/ic_new_windowCreated with Sketch.
icon/ic_paymentCreated with Sketch.
Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
icon/ic_dress_codeCreated with Sketch.
Dress code
Business Casual
icon/ic_cateringCreated with Sketch.
Catering
Full Prix Fix dining menus available, custom-made for your event. Let us help you with all the planning for your special or corporate event. We have Private Rooms available with a Private Bar, a separate kitchen from our Main Dining, Private Restrooms, Expansive views of the Bay, including the Bay Bridge Lights, all accessible via stairs or our private elevator.
icon/ic_neighborhoodCreated with Sketch.
icon/ic_cross_streetCreated with Sketch.
Cross street
Broadway
icon/ic_parking_detailsCreated with Sketch.
Parking details
$14
icon/ic_public_transitCreated with Sketch.
Public transit
F- Line stops in front every 15 minutes, daily until midnight.
10 minutes walking distance from Bart.
icon/ic_special_eventsCreated with Sketch.
Special events & promotions
Happy Hour: Monday-Friday, 3pm-6pm.
Additional
Banquet, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Takeout, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine
avatar copy

Private Dining

Book your next event with us

View details
What 2659 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.2based on recent ratings
4.2
food
4.1
service
4.4
ambience
3.8
value
Noise · Moderate
82% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
2
1
Sort by
Newest
Filters
BA
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

My crab salad was excellent but expensive for the amount of crab
Views are amazing & service was attentive

Report
Helpful
ML
San Francisco
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We were very satisfied with everything but the day was grey and raining so the view was not as good as it would be. The side of the restaurant with glass is cold, I recommend to put more heathers at that area, we felt cold there , what is not very pleasant.

Report
Helpful
OT
Las Vegas
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was good taste.

Report
Helpful
OT
Central Coast
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 2food 4service 2ambience 3

Made reservations and still had to wait another 10 minutes. There were tables available when we got there. It seemed like we were more of a burden to staff as the waiter kept passing us by throughout the evening. Although the view if the bridge us beautiful, we will not be dining here again.

Report
Helpful
F
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 3ambience 5

The food at the Waterfront is OUTSTANDING, you can't beat the view and I've always had wonderful experiences there.

Report
Helpful
DG
New Mexico
1 review
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food and ambiance! We come back every time we visit San Francisco!

Report
Helpful
P
San Francisco
51 reviews
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

The Waterfront has been around for years and is basically a seafood restaurant. With a view of the Bay Bridge light desplay at night, one can spend an enjoyable evening with reliably good food and attentive service.

Report
Helpful
E
1 review
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Absolutely loved this place- fantastic penne pasta, great salmon. This service was outstanding, most definitely a place to return. Kid friendly, which is always a plus a beautiful wine list, and a great stop for a small birthday get together or a night on the town with your better half. and let’s not forget about the spectacular view that you can almost see from any table in the place.

Report
Helpful
OT
San Francisco
41 reviews
Dined on January 4, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 4

Food ..scallops, fries, salmon, gr salad ..were all well prepared and nicely presented and the wine selection pretty fair. The service, however, was not up to standards of a restaurant of this class. A few examples...unfinished salad was removed without asking, the $ of the special volunteered by the waiter was incorrect and staff had a tendency to hover without actually doing anything. However, a nice table with lovely views and so we left happy. The daily special which we saw a bit too late was an excellent value especially with the $6 wine.

Report
Helpful
DH
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 2, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 1ambience 4

The food was very good and a nice selection of items on the menu, mainly seafood and also offered oysters (raw and baked). However, our waiter was cold and unfriendly.. never once smiled and told us rather sternly that the kitchen closes at a certain time and then walked off. The atmosphere was nice, and did not feel cramped, we were seated right away to a table next to the windows overlooking the bay. Our reservations were at 8:30pm but would recommend going earlier during light hours.

Report
Helpful
CS
1 review
Dined on January 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I came to The Waterfront restaurant to celebrate my birthday with a friend of mine. We had a gorgeous view looking over the bay bridge from where we were seated. The staff was friendly,the food was delicious. I definitely recommend anyone visiting San Francisco to give The waterfront restaurant a visit.

Report
Helpful
BP
San Francisco
16 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food and a Service were great. View was Great! I entertained out of town guests who loved it! Thanks.
Barbara Price

Report
Helpful
OT
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

The Good restaurant, The good localization, The good food but The price is medium!

Report
Helpful
OT
Mexico City
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

La comida muy buena, el servicio regular ya que teníamos reservación para 2 personas a las 9:15 de la noche el 31 de diciembre y nos dieron mesa alrededor de las 10:40 de la noche

Report
Helpful
OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 1

Service chaotisch und völlig überlastet - ewiges Warten auf das Essen - anstehen und warten trotz Reservierung - im Restaurant eiskalt ... wir hatten uns mehr erwartet für diesen Preis

Report
Helpful
OT
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 1food 2service 3ambience 1

New Year’s Eve
In a word Appealing!

Report
Helpful
AV
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 4

I've been there for new year Eve dinner..everything was more or less good, but the restaurant was over crowded and the service suffered for it. More than 2 hours for 2 courses and for that price I expected something more, but it's good!

Report
Helpful
G
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 1ambience 3

I go to this restaurant regularly because I like the position and the food. Unfortunately the New Year's Eve Dinner was poorly organized and probably understaffed. We arrived in time for our booking and we had to wait outside in line without knowing if the people in front of us had or not a reservation. Nobody was outside receiving the customers. Our waiter then was embarrassing, evidently under pressure and without a lot of experience. There were only 3 courses and we had to wait about 40-50 minutes for each of them. Quality of food lower than usual. All the tables around ours had a similar treatment. A lot were openly complaining. Not the usual restaurant I know, hopefully this was just an unfortunate episode.

Report
Helpful
B
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 2ambience 3

We spent a lot of money for the evening. the server was friendly but we rarely saw him and the busboy did most of the work. At that price we had to pay extra for coffee. Plus there were some families who had children and they let the children blow the horns in other guests ears intentionally and were laughing while the parents kept quite. So not a good way to end the evening.

Report
Helpful
OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

The table by the water was terrific. The sheltered patio was elegantly decorated for the occasion Heating units would improve the temperature which was chilly. Food was terrific. Wine was also top grade. Service was excellent both bar and food. We will book again in warmer weather and dress warmer if dining this time next year.

Report
Helpful
D
Las Vegas
8 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 2ambience 2

Was very disappointed with our experience. Had booked the upstairs for my birthday for 2 but was told there was no table available for at least an hour. The downstairs closed in area was filled with families and it was so cold I had to keep my coat on. The mussels were good but both entries were only okay for the price. The men’s room was so dirty my husband complained to the manger who said they were too busy to deal with it. Won’t book again unfortunately especially for a special occasion.

Report
Helpful
D
Los Angeles
7 reviews
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great views. Great service and great food

Report
Helpful
S
San Francisco
26 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were seated pretty quickly ahead of the late afternoon reservation we made. We ordered a few well made cocktails, ordered ahi tartare and clam chowder and sole. And ate and drank with the benefit of an amazing view with the sun setting. It doesnt get better than that! David was a really good waiter too

Report
Helpful
d
1 review
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

I was here a few years ago with my family and we wanted to all come back because of our wonderful experience previously. It was warm, the food was delicious and the service was incredible. This time we did not have the same experience. We were seated right away, which was wonderful - but that is the only positive thing I have to say about our visit. It was a very cold day in San Francisco, but the heaters that used to be on the outside patio are no more. Our water glasses were dirty and when we asked our waiter a question about whether the burger has mayonnaise on it, he didn't seem to know what we were talking about. We all ordered two appetizers of calamari, which basically consisted of all tentacles. When we explained to our waiter that we really didn't enjoy it he just said sorry. The only thing that was ok was the burger, I ordered the baby leaf salad without celery, when it came it had more celery and carrots than lettuce. The manager on site comped one of the calamari since all that was left when they took it away was two bowls full of tentacles. We definitely WILL NOT be back! I'm ok with paying $300 for a meal, but not when the meal was horrible.

Report
Helpful
C
Seattle
15 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 4food 2service 4ambience 4

The view is the only reason to dine here. The food was totally pedestrian. It is a tourist destination it’s as though they don’t drive to create delicious food because they have the view to fall back upon. Lettuce in my Caesar salad was tired and the crab cakes unmemorable.
My family also agreed their meals were just so-so.
Ah well! Now we know.

Report
Helpful
SJ
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Beautiful location, tasty and creative seafood dishes, good selection of wine, delicious desserts and outstanding service.

Report
Helpful
CL
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We’ve been here several times and the food and service was wonderful as usual.

Report
Helpful
RA
London
24 reviews
Dined on December 26, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 4

Lovely decor and location but the quality of the food was not even mediocre and the service was not what is expected at at upscale restaurant and certainly not at the price point they command.

Report
Helpful
OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 26, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 1ambience 4

Everything about my experience was poor and not what one would expect from a restaurant owned by this restaurant group.

Report
Helpful
OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 26, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 4

The food was cold & not very good

Report
Helpful
MG
1 review
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 5

We have been to Waterfront several times over the years, mostly for holiday dinners, and have always enjoyed food, setting, price, service. We ate here for Thanksgiving this year and enjoyed food, service, and ambience very much. But for Christmas, there was a different menu, and the price was MUCH higher. Very disappointed in menu choices, service, and price. Despite seemingly abundant wait staff, we had to wait a LONG time just to get coffee. The price was too high for the menu. I noticed there were a lot of empty tables; usually they are filled to capacity for holidays in past years when we have been here. I do appreciate the excellent disabled access, as I use a wheelchair and they have always been very gracious and accommodating.

Report
Helpful
J
San Francisco
36 reviews
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 2food 1service 4ambience 4

Christmas Menu, looked good but didn’t taste very good. Prime rib and mixed grill unappealing, pasta just okay. Crab bisque was like gravy. Kale salad and desserts very good. So over-priced for poor cooking. Disappointing for such a nice venue. Service was good.

Report
Helpful
JB
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Food & beverage were good. Only thing was the fixed/ limited menu. Would be better if I knew upfront when making the reservation.

Report
Helpful
MK
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 2

Christmas Eve Scam. Nothing on line warned us that this was a prix fixe menu with bizarre pricing... but we will get to that.

We were first seated on the patio - where we were freezing, even wearing our winter jackets. We asked to be placed inside, and they were courteous about that, but even there we were too cold.

We had a 7 p.m. reservation - by 8 p.m., we had received nothing to eat but bread and butter. Once the food came, it was a mixed bag. The mixed grill was quite good, but the rib-eye was terrible. The kale salad and the calamari appetizers were excellent, but the crab bisque was mediocre.

The pricing was RIDICULOUS. For five us, we paid over $700 - including some bizarre administrative fee of $31, and an automatic gratuity of 18% that was not optional and not deserved.

Report
Helpful
K
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

Family Christmas Dinner. Made reservation a month in advance. Reconfirmed a week in advance and we were not told it was a prim fix menu. Manager was accommodating as he found us another restaurant. We had to stay. Food was good. Excellent service. He did buy a glass of wine. But since 4 do not drink it was a nice gesture. Biggest complaint it was freezing cold as we were seated next to terrace with plastic widows. We were afraid to complain!,!,, overall ir was fine but expensive and my family does not have that kind of $ But it was xmass eve.

Report
Helpful
AW
1 review
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 3ambience 2

We made dinner reservations for Christmas Eve. When I booked our table, I was not informed it would be a prix fixe dinner. When we arrived we were seated in a drafty outside area and given prix fixe menus. We were disappointed in the food selection, the price, and the service. Although our waiter was very affable and kind, he did not know the menu. Overall, it was a disappointment. We will not be returning.

Report
Helpful
BL
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I loved the gentle touches of holiday lights surrounding the windows. We had a spectacular view of the bridge lights as well. The service was spectacular, not hurried and the fresh choices were explained well. We all enjoyed the wine, appetizers, and our meals. We were so comfortable that we forgot to take a holiday photo! Thank you for everything. I will be back.

Report
Helpful
KL
Kansas City
1 review
Dined on December 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Really enjoyed out meal and service. Been almost 15 years since we had been there because we live back east now days.

Awesome place ..... might find a place as nice, but not better!

Report
Helpful
OT
1 review
Dined on December 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service, good food, decent price and value, and best view.

Report
Helpful
OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on December 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was a beautiful birthday dinner. My mother-in-law was very pleased and we were given a beautiful table too. Thanks for making it happen!! :)

Report
Helpful
1
2
3
67