User's Guide

Where to Eat and Drink Like an Old-Timer Downtown

Photo: Kevin Y./Yelp

In honor of shopping season, the Chron today has a downtown restaurant itinerary more exhaustive than an eight-year-old’s Christmas list. Unfortunately, among the shout-outs to E & O Trading Co, Scala’s Bistro, and Burger Bar, some recommendations for funky, old-time San Francisco favorites have gone missing.

Must you restrict your mid-afternoon cocktailing to the Clock Bar? No. If you’re anything like us, you’d appreciate a tarted up dive like the Gold Dust Lounge, where ceiling frescos and crazy marquee lights surround old dudes sipping martinis and youngsters overdoing it on the happy hour margaritas. And why no mention of Lefty O’Doul’s? This is a classic stopover for a bloody Mary and a pile of hoffbrau, and as we mentioned the other day, has a crazy hidden Vaudville past. And what about the Tadich Grill? That is THE place for old-school San Francisco. In fact, it’s the oldest school in town. Get your Hangtown fry or your Dungeness cocktail and call it good. The Chron list is fine if you’re looking for “critically acclaimed” restaurants that serve “good and interesting” food, but if you want some old-school meat, seafood, and booze to soothe your achy feet and rattled nerves, don’t forget about the classics.

Best dining options for Union Square shoppers [SF Chronicle]

Earlier: What’s in Lefty O’Doul’s Famous Bloody Mary? [Grub Street SF]

Where to Eat and Drink Like an Old-Timer Downtown