by Patrick Heig - 324 Reviews - 95 List
Some of San Francisco's alleys are like the tiny, bistro-lined streets in Europe which, too narrow for cars to drive through, become pedestrian oases from downtown bustle and traffic. Others recall the foreboding back alleys of Gotham, where shady figures lurk in dark doorways, and behind unmarked, speakeasy-style doors music and food and booze await members of your club: those who know how to find the place.
Updated: September 23, 2009
Just opened a few doors down from Cafe Claude, Gitane's got a playful, sexy design, incredible drinks from a Bourbon and Branch alum, and pizza from a certified pizzaioli--and of course, plenty of heated, bistro-style outdoor seating.
Feeling more like something you'd find on a twisty alley in Prague than a side street in the FiDi, this cafe gracefully nails the Eastern European ambiance: Czech specials like goulash or sauerbraten with dumplings, gruff patrons and plenty of imported beer.
Well-hidden from the strip-club solicitors, peacocking thugs and other greasy characters who lurk on Broadway, this North Beach bar is set on a steep, dark carless street--the kind of dark, sexy place a hard-boiled detective might take his dame for a drink.