Where to Take Your Parents to Dinner in SF

Whether your parents are just in for the weekend and you want to show them the best of San Francsico, or they live just across the bay and you just want a nice place to catch up. These are the best restaurants in the city to dine out with your parents. 

01 of 09


Chloe List/ Courtesy of Maybeck's
3213 Scott St, San Francisco, CA 94123, USA
+1 415-400-8500

What do you get when you mix amazing culinary feats with an unpretentious demeanor? The perfect spot for family dinner. Maybeck’s homemade pastas will transport you to the Italian countryside but the fried chicken brings you right back down to earth. It’s a great meal in a cozy setting that everyone will be sure to remember. 

02 of 09


Chloe List / Courtesy of Cala
149 Fell St, San Francisco, CA 94102-5106, USA
+1 415-660-7701

If you want to impress your rents with the new, swanky San Francsico vibe, take them to Cala. With clean concrete walls and constellation-like light fixtures that change the room as the night wears on, it’s an interior design dream. Plus the cocktails and food are both creative and delicious. 

03 of 09


Wing Y. via Yelp
3611 18th St, San Francisco, CA 94110, USA
+1 415-437-6800

While it’s fun to grab a table, if it’s just you and your parents, grab a spot at the bar. It’s always fun to chat with the bartender and you can peek in to the kitchen to see the prep. Pasta is the way to go here, whether that be oxtail risotto or classic spaghetti. 

04 of 09

Liholiho Yacht Club

Courtesy of Liholiho Yacht Club
871 Sutter St, San Francisco, CA 94109, USA
+1 415-440-5446
Casual Restaurants

Sometimes, dinner with the parents can be a little bit self-serving. Like making a reservation at the place you’ve been dying to go to dinner for months. Don’t worry, they’ll still enjoy Liholiho’s swanky design and the creative dishes like togarashi popcorn or roasted octopus with castelvetrano olives. You’ll get to enjoy a delicious dinner at one of San Francisco’s hottest restaurants and catch up with your parents—two birds, one stone. 

Continue to 5 of 9 below.
05 of 09

Zuni Cafe

Ann S. via Yelp
1658 Market St, San Francisco, CA 94102-5949, USA
+1 415-552-2522

For out-of-town parents, this is an S.F. classic. Its been a city institution since 1979. The cozy brick interior makes for an easy, intimate atmosphere for catching up. But you absolutely must order the wood-fired chicken for two—it’s the dish that made the restaurant famous. 

06 of 09

Celia's By the Beach

4019 Judah St, San Francisco, CA 94122-1122, USA
+1 415-759-8741

Sometimes for family dinners, you just need some good old comfort food and no frills. Celia’s is just that. Order a pitcher of margaritas, which come in cactus cocktail glasses, and some enchiladas. Then eat way too many chips and salsa before the food has even come. 

07 of 09

Heirloom Cafe

Amanda M. via Yelp
2500 Folsom St, San Francisco, CA 94110, USA
+1 415-821-2500

One good tip for deciding on place to take your parents to dinner: listen to their opinions. If they love a restaurant and keep telling you to go to it, chances are you should book a table for all of you. For yours truly, that is Heirloom Café. The food is always fresh, the atmosphere clean but relaxed and the service is always friendly. There’s nothing to get in the way of some good old fashioned bonding. 

08 of 09


306 Broderick St, San Francisco, CA 94117-2275, USA
+1 415-437-0303

Sharing is encouraged at this Mexican tapas restaurant. It’s best for bigger groups so you can share the carintas, the empanadas, the quesadillas—well everything. Make sure to call ahead and put your name on the waitlist to stroll straight in for some margaritas. 

Continue to 9 of 9 below.
09 of 09

Original Joe's

Pamela L. via Yelp
601 Union St, San Francisco, CA 94133, USA
+1 415-775-4877

Family style is the best way to go at Original Joe’s. Of course, if you’re family is not into sharing that’s fine too. But the big red vinyl booths are great for squeezing in

if you wanted to introduce your parents to a few friends and the cocktails are nicely priced too (inexpensive martinis and manhattans). Make sure to order some veal piccata and Joe’s eggplant parmasean. 

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