Historic Swan Oyster Depot—the city’s most popular raw and seafood bar—opened in its current building in 1912, and little has changed since. Pull on a fish-shaped brass door handle, step across the cracked mosaic floor, slide onto one of the 18 barstools in the narrow room, and get whisked back in time. There’s no website, no computer system, no reservations on Open Table. You won’t find over-the-top haute cuisine here, either, just a beautifully simple winning formula: wonderfully fresh and barely adulterated seafood served by a friendly member of the Sancimino Family—owners since 1946—at a worn marble counter, along with paper napkins to wipe the crab juice off your mug. Recipes are no-fuss—think steamed, raw or fried seafood, with terrific house-made cocktail sauce—the prices are very reasonable, and the service gruffly charming. Eating here is a fun, old-timey experience—and needs to be, as there’s usually an hour or two wait to get in! If you’re starving and tired of waiting, you can call in a take-out order while standing in line. Only cash and local checks accepted.
San Francisco› Restaurant
Swan Oyster Depot
1517 Polk St (btw California and Sacramento sts)
Our Rating Neighborhood Nob Hill/Russian Hill Hours Mon–Sat 10:30am–5:30pm. No reservations Transportation Bus: 1, 12, 19, 47, or 49. Cable Car: California St. Phone 415/673-1101 Prices Main courses $6–$45 Cuisine Type Seafood Web site Swan Oyster Depot
Map1517 Polk St San Francisco
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.