As we welcome in the new decade with resolutions to eat better, work harder, love more, and frown less, it’s still never easy to say goodbye, so in case you’re already missing last year, here’s a highlight of 2009’s best dining neighborhoods in San Francisco chosen by dining experts.
Eater has been gathering opinions by some of the nation’s foremost experts in food and dining to countdown into the new decade. We thought we’d share a glimpse of the locations that were chosen as San Francisco’s best dining neighborhoods with you, so let us know if you agree, disagree, or have completely different neighborhoods you think should have made the list.
Jan Newberry, San Francisco Magazine: “The Mission will always be one of this city’s great dining neighbors. So many wonderful places there like Bar Tartine, Foreign Cinema, Delfina, and Range. And I love what’s happening at 18 Reasons. Then there’s Humphry Slocombe and Dynamo Donuts, not to mention the potato chips at La Palma. And I’m looking forward to seeing what happens at Jack London Square once Bracina opens there. It’s been a good year for eating in Oakland and I think it will only get better.”
Lissa Doumani, Terra/Ame: “I don’t know if it is best but it is certainly the fastest expanding, Oakland.”
Jessica Battilana, 7×7: “Is there any neighborhood that has the diversity, the breadth, the depth and the variety that you find in the Mission? It’s nice to see new restaurants opening in other neighborhoods, of course, but they are still playing a game of catch-up.”
Joe Hargrave, Tacolicious: “The Mission (and the Richmond too).”
Nish Nadaraja, Yelp: “North of the Panhandle.”
Brock Keeling: SFist: “SOMA”
Lucchesi: “Pound for pound, the Mission is still the best dining ‘hood in the Bay for sure, but did it have the best year? Highlights: Limon’s return, Flour + Water, Schmidt’s, Saison, new chefs at Bar Tartine and Bruno’s, the various pop-ups and … Urban Burger? The Castro had a wealth of improvements (Starbelly, Frances, Blackbird, Chilango). Oakland made some huge strides this year too, but for every standout (Adesso, Commis, Boot & Shoe, maybe Pican), there were also a number of high-profile spots that could/should be a lot better (Lake Chalet, Bocanova, Miss Pearl’s, Ozumo). So I’ll opt for a neighborhood that no one went for: Pac Heights, which saw SPQR reinvent itself to a win, Baker & Banker, Woodhouse, Fraiche, Out the Door, plus Dosa and Pizzeria Delfina opening in late ’08 (and even La Salsa closed!). Nothing incredibly ground-breaking, but quality/quantity both went way up in the last 14 months, and still you’ve got the proximity to the Korean joints on the other side of Geary and recession-friendly Japantown. Also, Benihana.”