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SF Waterfront Restaurants With Outdoor Seating

If you’re trying to sit outside and stare at the water, head to one of these spots.

Written by
12 Spots
Launch Map
12 Spots
Launch Map
Updated August 10th, 2020

Being able to stare at large bodies of water is one of the biggest perks of being a Bay Area person (right next to wearing only a “light jacket” in winter). At these restaurants, you can take advantage of that perk while also eating good things and (if you want) drinking four glasses of sparkling wine. Here are some very solid waterfront spots that are open with outdoor seating right now.

Mary Lagier

Red's Java House

$$$$ 551 The Embarcadero

The waterfront bar and restaurant on Pier 30 has reopened their patio seating, so you can once again have lovely views of the bay and the bridge while enjoying burgers and fish and chips. Reservations aren’t required and feel free to bring your dog along too. The casual restaurant is open for breakfast, and is also showing Giants games.


$$$$ 399 The Embarcadero

The upscale Embarcadero seafood restaurant is always a great choice if you want phenomenal oysters and some of the best bay views. Right now, they’re offering lunch and dinner, and Happy Hour from 2-4:30pm. You can also drop by from 12-4:30pm when the oyster-of-the-day is $1.05 each. Grab a reservation here.

Pier 23 Cafe

$$$$ Pier 23

There are plenty of reasons to head to this family-run bar and restaurant on the Embarcadero - good beer, good burgers, and casual, waterfront dining on their sunny patio. They’re open for socially-distanced outdoor dining Wednesday to Sunday from 12-5pm. Make a reservation here.

Atwater Tavern

$$$$ 295 Terry a Francois Blvd

The casual Mission Bay restaurant overlooks the water and Oracle Park, which may or may not bum you out depending on how often you used to attend Giants games. The casual spot has plenty of patio space, including a rooftop deck. They also have chicken sandwiches, salads, flatbread pizza, and cocktails Monday to Sunday, and a Happy Hour from 3-6pm.

Mary Lagier

Hi Dive

$$$$ 501 The Embarcadero

The waterfront dive bar used to be a favorite pre-Giants game hangout spot. And now the Pier 28 ½ spot is a go-to for margaritas, burgers, BLTs, and fish tacos out on their patio. Get there Wednesday to Sunday, 11:30am to 6pm.

Scoma's Restaurant

$$$$ 1965 Al Scoma Way

Scoma’s is in the heart of tourist central, but is actually one of the only places in Fisherman’s Wharf where you’ll find us. The menu is full of old-school dishes like Crab Louie salad and linguine con vongole, but what you’re really here for are the clam chowder and Dungeness crab. Walk-ins are OK, but reservations are recommended.

La Mar

$$$$ Pier 1½

La Mar does excellent ceviche right on the water, along with plenty of outdoor seating and heat lamps. They have a pretty great view of Treasure Island, too. The Peruvian spot is accepting reservations, so grab one and have pisco sours, empanadas, and anticuchos for lunch or dinner.

Mission Rock Resort

$$$$ 817 Terry a Francois Blvd

If you need to be reminded that you live in a place surrounded by water, head to Mission Rock Resort, a two-story restaurant and bar in Mission Bay. They’re taking reservations, but walk-ins are welcome. And if you want to avoid a wait, find a spot on their ground floor cafe. It’s got bay views, a full bar, and a limited menu.

Lake Chalet

$$$$ 1520 Lakeside Dr

If you’re trying to eat and drink next to the water in Oakland, the answer is pretty much always Lake Chalet. It’s the only restaurant on Lake Merritt, and has outdoor dining available on their sunny, spacious dock. Heading here for Taco Tuesday (3-8pm) is always a good call if you want to have $3.50 fish, chicken, asada, or veggie tacos, and $8 margaritas.

Farmhouse Kitchen

Thai  in  Jack London
$$$$ 336 Water St

The Oakland edition of the beloved Thai spot in the Mission is located on the Jack London waterfront, and overlooks a pedestrian walkway and a bunch of boats. The festive, lively restaurant has a good amount of outdoor seating, and they serve some great dishes too, like papaya salad, fried chicken, and short ribs in panag curry.

Quinn's Lighthouse Restaurant & Pub

$$$$ 1951 Embarcadero

The big draw of this casual bar and restaurant is that it’s housed in an over 100-year-old lighthouse overlooking a quiet marina in Oakland. Head straight upstairs to their casual pub, The Upper Deck, which has a large patio, plenty of beers, and serves things like burgers, sandwiches, and fish and chips. No reservations are required.


$$$$ Pier 5, Embarcadero Dr.

Coqueta makes Spanish classics like jamon, albondigas, and patatas bravas, but a perk of this place is that it’s on the water (assuming it’s not one of those June Gloom days). You can make a reservation online, or by calling 415-704-8866.

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