Foreign Cinema

4.7
6011 reviews
icon/ic_price_rangeCreated with Sketch.
$31 to $50
icon/ic_cuisineCreated with Sketch.
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.
icon/ic_private_diningCreated with Sketch.
Private dining
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
icon/ic_cuisineCreated with Sketch.
Cuisines
Californian, Mediterranean
icon/ic_clockCreated with Sketch.
Hours of operation
Dinner:
Sunday-Wednesday, 5:30pm-10.00pm
Thursday-Saturday, 5:30pm-11.00pm
Weekend Brunch:
Saturday & Sunday, 11:00am-2:30pm
icon/ic_phoneCreated with Sketch.
Phone number
(415) 648-7600 ext. 0
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
Casual Dress
icon/ic_chefCreated with Sketch.
Executive chef
Gayle Pirie & John Clark
icon/ic_neighborhoodCreated with Sketch.
Neighborhood
icon/ic_cross_streetCreated with Sketch.
Cross street
21st St.
icon/ic_parking_detailsCreated with Sketch.
Parking details
Valet is available, $15
icon/ic_public_transitCreated with Sketch.
Public transit
MUNI: 14 Mission bus; BART: 16th & 24th/Mission station
icon/ic_entertainmentCreated with Sketch.
Entertainment
Movies; see restaurant website for schedule. While we try to honor all request, none are guaranteed.
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!

View Private Dining Details

Specials

New Year's Eve Special Menus & Offers

We will be serving a festive 3 course prix fixe dinner for $130 per person, each course will include multiple options including vegetarian dishes. This will be the only dining option for NYE, no a la carte menu. There will be special wines by the glass & cocktails to help bring in the new year well!

Monday, December 31, 2018

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 6011 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
92% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
2
1
Sort by
Newest
Filters
AW
San Francisco
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A fabulous evening -outstanding service -Our server Erin was awesome -great suggestions on wine and dinner choices -a great fun spirit -a secluded table and beautiful ambience -can’t wait to go again!! Very special!!!

Report
Helpful
p
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 2

Very disappointing. It's all about the service, right? Our waiter was MIA a good part of the evening. We had to ask the busboy to find him three times. As I write this I realize he never brought us our bread as he said he would. First world problems, I know. The portions were a bit small, it was loud and I needed to wear my coat cuz it was cold. Unfortunately, the service really makes whole experience...and in this case, the poor service reflected badly on everything else. If you read the Yelp reviews, you will see several others comment on the poor/slow service too. Too many other restaurants in SF to try...no need to go back.

Report
Helpful
k
Charleston
7 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Really cool atmosphere. Pricey drinks for sure but the food was semi reasonably priced. We split the Kobe steak (amazing) and the squash risotto (unique and tasty).

Report
Helpful
A
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 4

The food was good. Inventive calamari cooked in mole sauce. Beef carpacchio. And scallops with lemon butter sauce (but, I’ve had better). The service was lacking when we went. The waiters messed up our order (didn’t give us an appetizer we ordered, brought mains out before we were ready, kept coming by and interrupting conversations to keep courses moving, and recommended desserts that weren’t even available...). The movie was also playing outside (we were seated inside) and we couldn’t really see it. Probably won’t return.

Report
Helpful
OT
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 1ambience 4

The food - Phenomenal, the drinks - amazing. Literally everything about our experience was great except our waiter.

Attila, who’s name I only got because I asked for it, was either over worked or too busy to ask if our table - needed any more drinks, how our food was, how our drinks were, if we needed our check, or if everything was ok. The runners, who were very attentive, made sure to ask all of this for us.

I’m normally not one to write a review like this (honestly) but I’ve been to this restaurant before and had amazing service. Just very disappointed to not be able to share that experience with my friends from out of town

Report
Helpful
M
New York Area
158 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Just the best good ambience great food professional service welcoming .. perfecto

Report
Helpful
OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Took my wife to Foreign Cinema for her birthday dinner date. The ambience was really nice. Feels like a drive-in theater, except for sitting. Our server Daniel had great inputs throughout the night for different courses of meal and helped us with the wine selection as well. We had the oysters, Santa Barbara smoked salmon, foie gras (loves it), dry-aged steak & the 5-spice duck breast. I felt the beans with steak dish were a little salty, but they paired perfectly with the steak. Loved all the dishes. Topped off the night with creme brûlée & pumpkin pudding. Lovely evening.

Report
Helpful
m
San Francisco
21 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

It appears Foreign Cinema has been open for 19 years now...that in itself should tell you of the quality and commitment from top to bottom....brunch is excellent, dinner is excellent and enjoyable with the movies being shown...a jewel in The Mission

Report
Helpful
EB
New York Area
3 reviews
Dined on November 11, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

great atmosphere but smaller sized dishes. we all left happy but still hungry.

Report
Helpful
T
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 10, 2018
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 3

Service was the worst I have ever had and the food was nothing special. Decent at best. There are a dozen other restaurants that fall into this category (Nopa, Marlowe, Statebird Provisions, etc.) that are significantly better for the price.

Report
Helpful
OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing place!

Report
Helpful
OT
1 review
Dined on November 9, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 2

Could have been much better.

Report
Helpful
LO
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Unfortunately my beer-centric spouse could only order beer from the can, no beer on tap, otherwise, terrific dinner, great food - quail was amazing.

Report
Helpful
ME
New York Area
1 review
Dined on November 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Foreign Cinema is a great combination of unique venue with fantastic food. I love the post-industrial cement-heavy chic of the restaurant. I've had both brunch and recently dinner - both were excellent. The Swordfish was delicious - by far the best I've had. The service was perfect, attentive but not intrusive. The only comment i'd make is that (for inside tables) it can gat a bit noisy, but didn't really detract from the experience.

Report
Helpful
MM
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on November 7, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing place with super nice staff serving the tables!! Worthy!!!

Report
Helpful
c
1 review
Dined on November 5, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

The experience was overall good, but Opentable said there was not table available until 9.15. Then I called an hour before and they said we could come at 8.30. When we got there the restaurant was practically empty, so I don't understand why they said there was nothing available until 9.15. We were very annoyed by this attitude and this is the only reason why I might no longer go back

Report
Helpful
B
San Francisco
41 reviews
Dined on November 5, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always delicious food and super service. Will return soon

Report
Helpful
OT
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on November 4, 2018
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 3

bad service and avoidable missteps

Report
Helpful
S
San Francisco
20 reviews
Dined on November 4, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

a san francisco landmark - trend setting, almost 25 years in the mission - still inventive, fresh, beautiful space - great service

Report
Helpful
GB
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on November 4, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

The service, while efficient, was wanting for attention. I get the feeling that the server wasn't prepared to have that many tables sat at the same time. It took about 20 minutes for us to get in our order and when asking for replacement dishware (one of our bread plates was dirty), we had to remind our server to bring a replacement when food started arriving. Nothing terrible, just distracted service. The food was lovely and the ambiance was great.

Report
Helpful
MM
Los Angeles
41 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

Worth a second visit. The setting is impressive and the wait staff is stellar. We were happy with the wine list and the ambience is both romantic (especially outside) and good for groups, too. I was just a little underwhelmed by the food, which was consistently unremarkable. We had a salmon starter which was fresh, but unoriginal and forgettable.As an entree, I had the Madras curry-scented fried chicken, which sounded great and is a popular dish here, but again, it really was just average. Given the atmosphere, service, and this place’s reputation, I’d be willing to give Foreign Cinema a second try to explore some other things on the menu.

Report
Helpful
A
Las Vegas
2 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Great experience. Best to go after sun down and request for outside seating.

Report
Helpful
CD
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 2, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Love to go there for the ambiance and the food. The wine list is just infinite and the sommelier really helpful. I took the calamari, could have been better... but the scallops were perfect.

Report
Helpful
e
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 30, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 3

It’s fun if you sit where they are playing a movie but it was too cold for us. The food was nothing special. Service was good. Nothing to call home about though. It’s a bit on the expensive side but not worth it from my perspective.

Report
Helpful
w
San Francisco
14 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Always consistent. Great wine list, good choices on menu

Report
Helpful
K
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on October 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The fried chicken was amazing and substantial. So much going on in that dish.

Report
Helpful
VC
1 review
Dined on October 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Superb experience. The lighting was on point. The choice of food and the quality made it a top dinner experience.

Report
Helpful
OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 28, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 2ambience 4

Came here for brunch. Waiter was rude when we said we will pass on dessert: “...really?” Was the response we got. Yes, really. Food was okay, but did not live up to expectations.

Report
Helpful
OT
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Nice open airy restaurant, with great nonalcoholic beverages.

Report
Helpful
RP
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

All I can say is this place is SOOOOOO WORTH IT!!!

Report
Helpful
AR
1 review
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Sublime meal, fantastic service and the ultimate setting - Foreign Cinema deserves the hype and acknowledgement as one of San Francisco's best dining destinations. If you're visiting the city, make this Mission dining stronghold a priority.

Report
Helpful
n
1 review
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

We were very impressed to all our courses - imaginative and fun

Report
Helpful
MD
Los Angeles
14 reviews
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A great restaurant with interesting decor and delicious food and drink. The flavor combinations for the plates I ordered, like the Tuna Poke, were delicious. I will definitely be back.

Report
Helpful
MC
1 review
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

The waiter was very professional and helpful when asked for suggestions/recommendations on both wine and food. Desserts are especially creative and delicious.

Report
Helpful
BP
Los Angeles
9 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2018
Overall 3food 5service 2ambience 4

Beautiful location, good food. The device was mixed. My husband felt personally offended by our waiter who he felt was unaccommodating and disrespectful. It was my bday and I was paying attn to my friends, but he shared this later. Would try one more time to see if there’s one bad seed or if it’s representative of the service overall.

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

Always good. The food was terrific, really unique flavors that worked perfectly together. Service attentive and friendly. Atmosphere is still chic but not fussy. Menu is continually renewed.

Report
Helpful
SH
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our group of 5 came to Foreign Cinema to celebrate a PhD graduate and they were so kind to provide a complimentary champagne toast at the beginning of our meal which set the evening off on a fantastic start. We greatly enjoyed our food - a lot of unique dishes on the menu - and the service was fantastic. Would highly recommend Foreign Cinema for a nice night out.

Report
Helpful
JE
1 review
Dined on October 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Went to Foreign cinema for my husbands Birthday. The food and drinks were outstanding and we would love to go back! The only odd thing was that our waiter seemed a bit disgruntled. As my husband went to the restroom he saw what seemed to be the owner or manager ordering our waiter to serve with one arm behind his back. Looking around, I noticed most of the servers were not looking very happy. Maybe Micro managed? 😕

Report
Helpful
OT
1 review
Dined on October 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food and service!

Report
Helpful
R
Los Angeles
41 reviews
Dined on October 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Great food in a beautiful patio setting watching a movie on the wall.

Report
Helpful
1
2
3
151

Tweets by Foreign Cinema