WoWsan francisco

San Francisco

an opinionated review

Revised, updated and added to March 27, 2002


Bars and Clubs

Nightlife in San Francisco is very different than in Miami and New York. San Francisco has more of a European nightlife approach - typically those over 30 do not do a lot of bar hopping and in general is more subdued that say Miami or LosAngeles. As much as we've criticized Club Opium in South Beach Miami, nothing in San Francisco come close to its look, style and atmosphere.

We've included bars in some restaurants that are worth a visit just for the bar. Below is the initial list, come back for frequesnt addition, reviews and updates.

Our 15 Current Favorite Bars and Clubs

Ana Mandara

Bubble Lounge Mecca
Aqua the Cafe the Ramp
Backstreet g bar Redwood Room-Clift Hotel
Bacar Jardiniere Ruby Skye
Bix Le Colonial Shanghai 1930

Aqua - 252 California - Financial district
A place for business people with cash and taste. Dramatic lighting. Elegant place for dinner and drinks

Azie - 826 Folsolm - SOMA
East meets west, cool, upscale, elegant. Expensive.

Bacar - 448 Brannan St - SOMA
Lounges on two floors. Nice for drinks and elegant dinner. NYC chic in SFO, sophisticated, upscale business types

Backstreet - 550 Barneveld
Wow, a very San Francisco dance club that is rented out to a regular group of promoters. Three levels of dance floors where you can choose between salsa, hip-hop and 80s. Depending on the day and the week the club is either straight, gay or lesbian. Some of the most beautiful lesbians can be found here on the second Saturday; however unless you are in their small group of close friends expect to be rudely treated whether you are lesbian, gay or straight.

Bix - 56 Gold St - Financial district
A retro supper club and bar. Good martinis, cosmopolitans and wine

the Cafe -2367 Market St - Castro
A cruisy place for gays, straights, lesbians and twisted. Fridays is women's night with 40% gay women, 20% straight men and 40% gay men. On other nights its 20/30/50. Definetly not an elegant setting and be prepared to share a crowded unisex bathroom with many others who are having their own party in the bathroom. Outdoor patio and pool tables. Packed on Friday and Saturday nights, good house music and hip-hop.

g bar - 488 Presidio Ave.- Pacic Heights
A zen like living room space with a fireplace and bar. Upcale crowd of locals, crowded on Friday and Saturday nights.

Mecca - 2029 Market St - Upper market
Lots of pretty men and women. A chic hangout, with a large round bar. Sophisticated, edgy, industrial setting with velvet curtains. The couches in the small alcoves make for intimate settings. Attracts a typical upscale chic San Francisco crowd, i.e. straight, gay, lesbian, and twisted.



Redwood Room - Clift Hotel - 495 Geary St.
Our current favorite. An impressive bar and lounge, edgy but not ostentatious. The Redwood Room has, thankfully, gotten over its opening week problem of mischarging $14 for a glass of mediocre Australean wine; we think they finally fired the offending inept bartender. Now the bartenders seem friendly and know what they are doing.

Ruby Skye - 420 mason St - Union Square
A former theatre turned dance club. Wear you best Versace and Prada. Has perhaps the best dance club interior in San Francisco. Very long lines on Fridays and Saturdays.

Come back for more reviews in our next edition. Coming soon:

Boom Boom Room
Buena Vista
Carnelian room
Compass Room
Shanghai 1930
Zuni cafe


UPDATED March 27, 2002