Serving breakfast all day, along with a variety of fat burgers, sandwiches, salads, pasta, steaks, and crab cakes, the Buena Vista has become a tourist destination in its own right. Buena Vista means “good view” in Spanish, and this classic spot right by the cable-car turnaround certainly lives up to its name. Converted from a boarding house to a saloon in 1916, it provided a perfect setting for fishermen and dockworkers to take a break while watching the bay, literally, “for their ships to come in.” When the fishing boats arrived, they could chug their drinks and quickly run down the hill to get back to work. Grab an empty space at one of the large, round communal tables and laugh as long-time waitress Katherine flings napkins at you and scowls if, heaven forbid, you dare not order their famed Irish coffee—a “national institution,” for it was here, in 1952, that the first Irish coffee in the U.S. (inspired by a similar drink served in Ireland’s Shannon Airport) was crafted by owner Jack Koeppler and Pulitzer Prize–winning travel writer Stanton Delaplane.
San Francisco› Restaurant
Buena Vista Cafe
2765 Hyde St (at Beach St)
Our Rating Neighborhood Fisherman's Wharf Hours Mon–Fri 9am–2am, weekends 8am–2am, no food or children after 9:30pm Transportation Bus: 47. All Embarcadero light rail and streetcars. Cable Car: Powell–Hyde Phone 415/474-5044 Prices Breakfast & lunch $12–$16; dinner entrees $15–$22 Cuisine Type American Web site Buena Vista Cafe