Huxley loves nothing better than eating out with his pack. His
humans like every restaurant and bar on this list, but the ratings
are Hux's, according to how comfortable he is and whether, if he's
lucky, he gets a nibble too. Huxley's taste in wine is no less
reliable for being based entirely on chewing the wine-soaked end
off the cork.
New in April 2013: Market & Rye
New in March 2013: Rose Pistola, Sotto Mare, Park Tavern
New in February 2013: Ben Tre, Hog & Rocks
Mission District, Noe Valley, Bernal Heights
|Atlas Cafe (20th at Alabama). The back patio of this neighborhood cafe (reached through the side door on Alabama) is full of friendly dogs, and there's a water bowl for the dogs and good draft beer for the humans.|
|Beretta (Valencia at 23rd). The staff was happy to serve the entire pack outside when no-one else was crazy enough to brave the chill of the evening, and brought water. Otherwise there's not much here for Huxley, especially as the humans usually drink the strong stuff here and it doesn't come with corks.|
|Esperpento (22nd St. at Valencia). After a period of not having outside tables, this sister restaurant to Picaro is back in Huxley's sights. The tables aren't as sheltered, but the food and the corks are just as good, and the location is a lot closer to Huxley's house, which means more visits.|
|Farina (18th St. between Valencia & Guerrero). Though there are some interesting corks, the heaters are too high overhead to make up for the chill wind blowing down 18th Street and the food, although good, isn't the sort that the humans will share with Huxley.|
|Garçon (Valencia & 22nd). This neighborhood French restaurant has several sidewalk tables and friendly staff always ready to serve you there. Though there are no heaters, partitions moderate the evening breeze. Huxley even got a lamb bone here once!|
|Giordano Bros. (16th at Valencia).
Outside tables, heat lamps, and an occasional dropped french
fry are just what Huxley looks for in a neighborhood
restaurant. He has no interest in the excellent beer, but it
keeps the humans in place while he waits for a fry to drop.
|Hog & Rocks (19th at San Carlos).
The outside tables are large, the heaters are powerful and
dogs are offered water. Hog & Rocks is open until 'round
midnight, just right for a semi-nocturnal predator. However,
Huxley has no interest in rocks (oysters), and the hog is
way too good for him, so he's not as pleased with this place
as are the humans.
|Humphrey Slocombe (Harrison at 24th). Huxley doesn't think the novel flavors here are any more exotic than what he finds on the street every day, but he lives for the end of the cone just the same. Less spilled ice cream than Mitchell's, but more outside seating.|
|Lolo (22nd between Mission and Valencia). The benches out front protect Huxley from lunchtime sun and waiter is available. For whatever reason, though, the humans aren't sharing whatever is on those small plates.|
|Le Zinc (24th St. between Noe and Castro). Sit out front to watch the street, just like a Parisian tourist, or in back under the heat lamp. Huxley particularly likes the corks from the well-chosen list of French reds.|
|The Corner (18th & Mission). Closed! Another welcome option in a part of the Mission with few others. Though there are few amenities here for Huxley, and it's frustrating to smell all that rich meaty goodness up on the table and not get any, there are heat lamps and some interesting corks, and there is always something interesting going on in the street.|
|Grub (Valencia between 18th & 19th). The staff said a friendly hello and brought water, and there was lots of interesting canine and human traffic to watch while the humans ate, but Huxley isn't giving out more than one bone until he gets a taste of the food or at least until the humans order something with a real cork instead of a screwcap.|
|The Liberties (Guerrero & 22nd). Although this Irish pub has had outside tables for a while, they only recently became able to serve beer at them. That's what was needed to make a pleasant outing for the whole pack. The second bone is for the friendly, dog-loving owner and some special consideration that we're not at liberty to discuss in detail here.|
|Mitchell's Ice Cream (San Jose Avenue at 29th St.). Nothing is better than a visit to San Francisco's finest ice creamery, always mobbed with friendly humans and dogs, a chance to slurp up fallen ice cream off the sidewalk while the humans relax on the benches outside, and, if Huxley is lucky, the end of a cone.|
|Noe's Bar (24th St. at Church St.). Just what you need after a hike to Las Papas: a couple of tables with umbrellas, draft beer, and all of Noe Valley going by. Hux heard he could go inside; he hasn't tried yet, but if it's true another bone is sure to follow. On the other hand, we haven't dropped by since the adjacent restaurant appeared and aren't sure to whom the tables belong now.|
|Phat Philly (24th St. between Bartlett and Valencia). This hopping fast-food joint would have three bones if Huxley ever got a scrap of the delicious-smelling cheesesteaks. Meanwhile, there's usually one or two left of the giant portions of fries. The kind servers even sometimes bring water when it's not too busy. The four outside tables are now protected by beer-keg planters and are probably the best place in the Mission to watch all manner of people and dogs go by.|
|Picaro (16th St. between Valencia & Guerrero). Something about this taperia makes the humans generous. Huxley has been known to get a whole cantimpalito (a snack-sized chorizo), usually when the humans get near the bottom of a bottle of Spanish red -- a delicious cork at a reasonable price. Tables are protected by a little fence and the neighborhood is always interesting to watch.|
|Rosamunde (Mission between 24th &
25th). There is not much space between the closely packed
tables on Rosamunde's narrow front porch for Huxley to lie
down in, but there is a water bowl at the end and heaters
overhead. Huxley puts up with the smell of beer for the sake
of the smell of sausages. If only he could somehow have one.
|Southern Pacific Brewing Company (Treat near 19th). There is plenty of space at the picnic tables on this brewpub's front patio. It gets cold when the sun goes down behind the building in late afternoon, which means the humans' fries get cold and Huxley might get one. He is trying to decide whether all of the delicious homemade sharp mustard that he somehow got hold of means more bones or less.|
|Tuba (Guerrero at 22nd). This excellent Turkish restaurant has no outside amenities other than a couple of tables, and the wind on wide Guerrero Street can be bitter. None of that matters to Huxley when the friendly waitresses give him lots of attention, an exotic cork or two, AND all the lamb bones he can eat. Huxley will be taking his humans to dinner here as often as possible.|
|Vino Rosso (Cortland at Anderson). There's only a bench outside, which means only glasses of wine for the humans and no corks for Huxley, but the water bowl is very welcome after hiking around Bernal Heights and there are always friendly human and canine passers-by. Other humans have been seen eating outside as well as drinking, so this place's star is on the rise.|
|Xanath (Valencia at Liberty). No doubt Huxley appreciates the difference between the several different kinds of vanilla at the Mission's newest and most exotic ice creamery even better than the humans do, but he also keeps coming back for the good location, the handy benches and the big bucket of water provided for dogs. And did we mention that he might get the end of a cone?|
|Huxley has his eye on the new outside tables at Luna Park, but they're not serving corks yet so neither Huxley nor the humans are interested yet.|
|Dos Pinas (Rhode Island at 16th). Outside tables and Mexican food that's bland enough for a beagle -- if he manages to steal any.|
|Il Pirata (16th at Utah). The slow, slow service here is just fine if you're a beagle sunning himself on the back patio. The Italian sausage sandwich that that guy holding the leash always seems to get smells great, but Huxley has to settle for an occasional fry.|
|Liba Falafel (DeHaro at Alameda). Just a food truck parked in front of a disused warehouse, and Huxley sometimes has to endure being tied up next to the running generator while the humans order, but he never fails to score mouthfuls of dropped falafel and -- even better -- delicious sweet-potato fries. At this writing Liba Falafel is at this location on Thursdays, but check their Twitter feed before going to be sure.|
|Market & Rye (DeHaro at 16th). The
human puppies that have recently taken over this
neighborhood throw half of their food underneath the cheery
blue picnic tables, so Huxley is optimistic about the
possibilities at this bakery-oriented cafe. No other dog
|Pizza Nostra (DeHaro at 16th). Closed!
Though the humans have often enjoyed a glass of lunchtime
wine at this fancy pizzeria's outside tables, Huxley has
never gotten a cork or even a pizza crust. It must have been
good! However, it recently changed ownership and Huxley no
longer works in the neighborhood, so he doesn't know what
it's like now.
|Wolfe's Lunch (16th at Wisconsin). Next to the Showplace Triangle mini-park, this Korean greasy spoon has a few outside tables, but not much else that interests Huxley.|
|Huxley worked in north Potrero Hill and only ever got to lunch in that part of the neighborhood. Other dog-friendly options around there which he never got to visit include Cafe Pazzo, on Henry Adams at the traffic circle, What's Up Dog on De Haro at 16th, and the Chairman Bao food truck, last seen at De Haro and Alameda on Fridays. A well-behaved dog might even get away with sitting at a courtyard table outside the excellent Rustico, in the California College of Arts' building A2 on 8th St. between 15th & 16th.|
South of Market
|The Butler and the Chef (South Park). Hux fits right in with the strict French ambiance. The kindly chef, who's been known to bring out a dog treat, and all of the other dogs visiting the park made this his favorite lunch stop back when he worked in this neighborhood.|
|Ristorante Umbria (2nd & Howard).
This would be a fine place for a fancy Italian lunch if
Huxley ever got a taste, or if he got to jump up into the
big comfortable-looking chairs. At least there's plenty of
interesting traffic at lunch time on this restaurant-packed
|South Park Cafe (South Park). The nicest place Huxley knows of to watch humans eat dinner South of Market. It's not far from his old office, there are dogs in the park in the evening, too, and he usually gets a cork.|
|Zebulon (Natoma near 2nd St.). Closed!
That guy at the other end of the leash sometimes seemed
awfully relaxed here for a weekday lunch. Yes, there was
beer as well as sandwiches. There wasn't really much here to
interest Huxley, but it was a welcome oasis in this
neighborhood. Now disappeared under Transbay Terminal
North of Market: Financial District, North Beach, Union Square, Tenderloin, Polk Gulch
|A La Turca (Geary St. at Larkin). Delicious Turkish food at reasonable prices for the humans, water for Huxley, and sidewalk seating in a neighborhood where it's rare.|
|B44, Belden Taverna, Brindisi, Cafe Bastille, Plouf, Sauce (Belden Place). All of the many restaurants on Belden Place have covered outdoor seating and heaters. Huxley usually sits at one of the tables farthest from the restaurants (and the heaters) where there's more room to sniff around. Two bones for the reliability of all these restaurants as a group; one of them is bound to be open at almost any time. Cafe Bastille has been open for weekend lunches when the others were not. The humans like the tapas at B44 and the mussels at Plouf best, but Huxley is most interested in Cafe Bastille's aromatic andouillette.|
|Bask (Columbus at Jackson). Not only
does this brand-new Basque restaurant have ample outside
seating on a very entertaining street, heat lamps, a water
bowl and delicious corks, but it's around the corner from
Huxley's new workplace so he can visit often.
|Bocadillos (Montgomery at Columbus).
Even closer to Huxley's new workplace, this tasca has only
one outside table, so Huxley and the humans only get to go
here when they're very lucky, or when the weather is stiff
enough to send home the amateurs. With no doggy amenities
aside from the well-chosen corks and not a crumb falling
from that table, Huxley is puzzled as to why the humans like
it here so much.
|Cafe Claude (Claude Lane). Huxley will never forget his first visit to this outpost of traditional French cooking, when a kind waiter treated him to the remains of someone's charcuterie plate, boiled chicken left over from making stock, extra hamburger from a steak tartare, and even a lick of the steak tartare mixing bowl. The humans were so jealous. Excellent corks as well.|
|Comstock Saloon (Columbus at Pacific).
Huxley has been coming here since the San Francisco Brewing
Company days. There is still no better place for a dog, or a
human, to watch the world go by than one of the tables
tucked in around the main entrance. Huxley appreciates the
friendly clientele and the water brought by the maitre d',
but he's not giving out a second bone until he gets some
fries like he did in the old days.
|Emporio Rulli (Union Square). During Huxley's stay downtown in 2006, this was the place to enjoy an early continental breakfast and watch Union Square wake up.|
|Gelateria Naia (Columbus between Green & Union). We visit whenever a long weekend walk takes us to this part of town. Huxley is willing to wait outside tied to a parking meter while the guy with the leash orders, because he knows he'll get the end of the cone eventually. The outside tables are as good as any along Columbus for watching the crowds of tourists and locals.|
|Georges (Sansome at Commercial). For
Huxley, the only saving grace of the few outdoor tables at
this seafood restaurant is that they're perfectly positioned
to greet his hard-working colleagues on their way home from
the office. But the financial district gets cold fast at
night, the tables are too high for Huxley to see what's
going on, and the humans ordered glasses, not corks. He's
not excited about the humans' plans to return for happy-hour
oysters, either: their bones are much too tough.
|Giordano Bros. (Columbus at Broadway). The outside tables here aren't quite as comfy as at Comstock Saloon, but the fries that regularly fall out of the overstuffed sandwiches more than make up for it.|
|Gitane (Claude Lane). This hot spot from the Cafe Claude people is a must-visit for dogs, with an awning, heat lamps and water brought out right away. The humans drink sherry here so Huxley never gets a cork, but bones from the humans' pork ribs make it a three-bone destination.|
|The Grubstake (Pine at Polk). This Portuguese diner has a covered porch to relax on and water for thirsty dogs, and vinho verde for breakfast means happy humans might give Huxley a little piece of bacalao.|
|Honey Honey (Post & Taylor, formerly The Crepe House). What's not to like about breakfast with a cheery tiki god?|
|Irish Bank (Mark Lane, near Grant & Bush). Convenient to Union Square and open all afternoon. There is endless outside space, much of it protected by awnings. Huxley has sometimes sat in a puddle here, but has forgiven all since that time the waitress dropped an entire platter of fries.|
|Leland Tea Company (Bush near Polk). Huxley much prefers the humans to join him at the single outside table than to keep an eye on him from one of the inside tables by the window. Not much here for Hux, but if it keeps the humans going, that means a longer walk for him.|
|Mario's Bohemian Cigar Store (Washington Square). Hux has never actually had one of Mario's meatball sandwiches, but the smell keeps him coming back just in case. The outside service is a little slow, but that's just perfect for relaxing and enjoying this interesting corner location with lots of people and dogs to greet as they walk past.|
|Matchka (Washington east of
Montgomery). Late in the week a cheery crowd fills the
tables outside this well-groomed Turkish spot and its
neighbor Aventine, and occasionally there is even another
dog. But the tables are too high for Huxley to feel like
part of the pack, and until the human orders more than a
glass of wine there's not even a cork here for Huxley to
|Off the Grid (5th & Minna). All
those food trucks, yet somehow there was nothing on the
ground for Huxley to eat surreptitiously on his single visit
here. Another visit or two would surely have led to better
luck and a higher rating. But the guy at the other end of
the leash doesn't hang around nearby any more so Huxley will
have to try again at a different location.
|Off the Grid (Front & Vallejo).
Another food truck gathering, this one conveniently located
near Huxley's new office, in session three days a week, AND
sometimes including old favorite Liba Falafel! Only the lack
of seating, and the dog-unfriendliness of the nearby park,
stand between this location and a second bone.
|Park Tavern (on Washington Square
Park). Not only does this North Beach hot spot provide a
ringside seat for busy North Beach and Washington Square
Park, but the entertaining parade of guests arriving at
valet parking is in full view of the sidewalk tables.
Heaters keep the fog away, and though there was no water
Huxley didn't look up from his short rib bones long enough
|Rose Pistola (Columbus between Green
and Union). Humans are better taken care of than dogs here,
but busy Columbus Avenue is interesting and Huxley might get
to visit one of his favorite ice cream stops a few doors
|Sotto Mare (Green near Columbus). One
way to get in to this packed, no-reservations seafood
restaurant is to sit out front on a cold night when no-one
else wants to. Though there are no amenities, Huxley enjoys
greeting the steady stream of guests and the dog-friendly
staff might bring a treat if they get a spare moment.
|Tony's Pizza Napoletana (Union & Stockton). Not
only does this place have heat lamps (though they're a
little small for a cold SF night), not only do they keep a
sturdy, shiny water dish ready for their canine guests, not
only is there an excellent list of corks -- but Huxley will
not soon forget the giant, still-juicy marrow bone that the
humans let him have when they'd done all they could with it.
|Wine (Embarcadero Two). Closed! Hux prized this place not for the corks -- the humans tended to have glasses here, not bottles -- but for actually having been allowed inside a couple of times before there was sidewalk seating. The space is now occupied by a new wine bar and we haven't been back yet.|
|Betelnut (Cow Hollow). Three words: logo water bowl. Plenty of outside tables and heaters, too. We usually get here by walking from home, which means a long sit with a beer or two.|
|Liverpool Lil's (Cow Hollow). This pub has a dog at every sidewalk table and good fries, but our neighbors kept their dog so nervous and worked up that Huxley understood why we sometimes make fun of the Marina.|
|Sociale (Presidio Heights). San Francisco's most charming patio, heaters that can handle the foggiest night, and an excellent and unusual selection of corks.|
|Tango Gelato (On Fillmore in Pacific Heights). Closed! A refreshing stop in a mostly unfamiliar neighborhood, with a couple of little outside tables and maybe the end of a cone.|
|Park Chalet (behind Beach Chalet, on the Great Highway at JFK Drive). Three bones for abundant outdoor seating, heat lamps near every table, lots of other dogs to greet, and the brewpub beer and erratic service, both of which keep the humans from moving on too quickly. And, of course, because coming here means a long walk in Golden Gate Park or on Ocean Beach or both.|
|Ziryab (Divisadero between Fell and Hayes). This Mediterranean place has crowded but plentiful outdoor seating in a front patio set back from the bustle of Divisadero. They're open all day on weekends, making them a handy stop in this neighborhood. Huxley didn't get any of the excellent shawarma, but he did get a few of the very good fries.|
Huxley has noticed all of the outside tables in Hayes Valley and
on Polk Street in Russian Hill and wishes his humans went to those
neighborhoods more often.
|Ben Tre (just off 101, on Grand Avenue
near Airport Drive). A real novelty for Huxley: a Vietnamese
restaurant with a patio. Although Ben Tre has become a
regular weekend morning stop for the pack, their meat is
much too good for the humans to give him any, so he has to
settle for fresh air.
|Barclay's (College Avenue, Rockridge). Abundant outdoor seating, a long beer list and Hux's friends Rosie and Teebone make for a perfect follow-up to some East Bay hiking.|
|Chop Bar (4th at Alice, Oakland). This neighborhood favorite near Jack London Square provides the dog dining basics -- heat and cold water -- on their long, narrow patio, but the patio wall is solid so he can't see the street, the humans like their food too much to share, and cocktails mean no corks.|
|Sunny Side Cafe (Solano Avenue). Here's the place for brunch before or after a long hike in Tilden Park. The food is too good for Huxley to get any, but dogs and humans alike can enjoy the heaters.|
|Wat Mongkolratanaram (Russell near Martin Luther King Jr.). No water, few other dogs, and only a concrete slab to lie on, but Huxley comes here again and again for stray beef balls. Once he got a whole containerful of khanom krog that someone dropped.|
Huxley's pals Teebone and Rosie have been talking up Chow in Lafayette. Hux hasn't been there yet, but is looking forward to it.
Though Huxley loves The Other Place, he doesn't think much of the Anderson Valley or the nearby Mendocino area as a culinary destination. The rest of the pack always seems to eat without him. He has hopes of visiting the Boonville Hotel restaurant some day when they're seating outside, though; the humans certainly seem to like it.
|Anderson Valley Brewing Company (Boonville). Hux doesn't like beer himself, and there's nothing else here. But he's allowed inside, and the excellent beer makes the humans so happy Hux can make a full meal on treats.|
|The Highpockety Ox (Boonville). The former Buckhorn still has a full range of Anderson Valley Brewing Company beers and decent pub grub. The outside tables are the perfect place to rest up with a nice bowl of water after the long drive up from San Francisco.|
Huxley and his friend Cody loved their visits to dog-friendly
SLO. County law bars dogs from wine tasting rooms, but the better
establishments admit them anyway.
|Big Sky Cafe (Broad between Higuera and Marsh). Though this place had a very nice patio and the staff brought water, the uninspiring smell of the humans' breakfasts made Huxley wonder if there was as much meat in there as they'd expected.|
|The Firestone Grill (Higuera at Osos). The only thing wrong with this place is that not one bit of the steak sandwiches that the humans were so pleased with made it down to beagle level. But it's a self-serve establishent so there were plenty of french fries and such all over the vast patio, and big gas fireplaces keep away SLO's nighttime chill.|
|Foster's Freeze (Nipomo & Marsh). SLO is almost as cool as San Francisco in the summer, but the humans just like ice cream and Huxley was happy to come here again and again to help clean up spills.|
|Luna Red (Chorro at Monterey). Huxley
liked this creekside place even better than the humans, what
with the abundant heat lamps and friendly, water-bearing
staff. Many delicious local and international corks are on
|Novo (Across the bridge from Mission Plaza). This creekside hotspot has a front door on Higuera, but dogs can get to the patio from the path by the creek. Huxley enjoyed both an excellent cork of local Pinot and an exquisitely done bone from a ribeye steak. This is how dogs were meant to live. The staff was both attentive and unhurried, and understanding of both humans and dogs.|
|Old San Luis BBQ (Higuera between Broad and Nipomo). This brand-new competitor to the Firestone Grill, a bare-bones takeout window, has even more delicious-smelling tri-tip which Huxley is even less likely to get any of. On the bright side there are lots of interesting smells in the cracks around the handful of outdoor tables.|
Two paws up from Huxley for this also very dog-friendly area! Hot weather means lots of outside dining and high-alcohol wines that keep the rest of the pack in an easy-going mood and out of the car. Almost every area winery welcomed Huxley. This may have been where he developed his taste for corks.
|Cabana Cellars Wine Bar (Mission Drive at 4th Place, Solvang) An oasis of L.A. style in quaint Solvang which welcomes four-legged friends. We've heard that Cabana is under new ownership and we don't know if they're still dog-friendly, so call before coming with a canine.|
|Ballard Inn and Restaurant (Baseline Avenue, Ballard). Sophisticated, careful cooking, a real standout in the rustic Santa Ynez Valley. White-tablecloth seating on the porch was perfect for humans and dogs, and Huxley rolled over for the bones that came with the humans' lamb.|
|Firestone Walker Taproom (Just off Highway 101, Buellton). There's just a table or two outside, the wind can be fierce and you're on your own for service, but it's an essential stop in the perfect location.|
|Los Olivos Cafe and Wine Merchant (Grand Avenue, Los Olivos). From one of the comfortable outside tables at this location made famous by "Sideways" you can see and hear everything that goes on in Los Olivos while you enjoy any of the top-quality local corks available on the wine-merchant side. The cafe side has food for a simple snack with your bottle or a whole meal.|
|Mortensen's Danish Bakery (Mission Drive at Atterdag, Solvang). There are quite a few places to eat breakfast outside in this tourist- and dog-friendly town, but Huxley settled on this one for the shady back patio and the wide selection of Danish pastry. The pastry is far too sweet for dogs (in fact Mortensen's seems to use special sugar, more tooth-achingly sweet than anything we've ever had) but they're still happy to hang out with you.|
|Side Street Cafe (Alamo Pintado, Los Olivos). Chef Patrick welcomes dogs on his wide, shady front porch and the staff brings water right away. The humans are sure to come up with a cork from the exceptional list of local wines. Huxley didn't get any of Chef Patrick's excellent California cuisine, but the humans were so pleased that they gave him extra treats.|
This page is updated whenever Huxley gets wind of something new. Got a suggestion? Write Huxley, huxley at eagerbeagle dot com, and let him know.
Huxley's rating system is similar to that used in the Michelin guides:
|Well worth a visit.|
|An establishment with outstanding qualities, head and shoulders above the rest.|
|The experience of a lifetime, whether measured in human or dog years.|
Of course Huxley is reviewing for dogs, not for humans, so some ratings might not be what a human would expect. Reviews of some establishments, mainly those outside of San Francisco, are based on less visits than a real reviewer would make. There are a lot of places off Huxley's regular routes, in and out of S.F., that he hasn't even been to yet; if your favorite isn't listed, maybe that's why. Hey, for a dog who can't drive, Hux is doing pretty well.