If you’re looking to work in the food industry or have already earned your stripes in a restaurant or two, San Francisco is the perfect place to build your career. To help you get started, we’ve compiled a list of incredible restaurants to work for below.
Feeling jittery? Start by reading our guide to San Francisco jobs before applying. What are you waiting for?
If you’re looking for startup culture in a food and beverage setting, Octavia is a brand new restaurant in San Francisco. Belonging to infamous west coast chef Melissa Perello, this elegant and historic spot is high class.
The best part? It still sports a friendly neighborhood vibe. Learn a multitude of skills and build your resume at one of the top restaurants to work for in San Francisco by joining this incredible team.
Nestled on Valencia Street in the heart of the city is Locanda Osteria, the perfect place to keep it local. Using only fresh and locally sourced ingredients, you can hop in Locanda’s line or run food knowing customers are consuming some of the best.
If quality matters to you, you should look into their current job openings. Plus, they’re closed on Mondays and Tuesdays, so you’re guaranteed two days off no matter what.
3. Pier Market
Serving jobs in San Francisco are abundant in theory, but how do you know if you’re investing your time in a high-quality establishment? Pier Market has been a seafood staple in San Francisco for over 30 years.
If job security and experience are top priorities for you, Pier Market doesn’t appear to be going anywhere. Also, they’re committed to the preservation of oceans and fisheries in the Bay Area with 100% of their seafood purchases coming from sustainable sources.
Are you interested in boosting your credentials at a critically-acclaimed restaurant? La Folie Restaurant boasts a menu with everything from racks of lamb to roasted asparagus.
Each dish is designed like a piece of art, so presentation is everything. If you want to combine your love of creativity with a love of food, La Folie Restaurant could be the ticket to your dream job.
5. China Live
China Live isn't just a place to grab some delicious grub. This high-volume establishment is three in one: a sit-down restaurant, market, and cafe. They’re also open seven days a week!
With a job on China Live’s event team, you’re more than just staff, but an integral part of building an interactive dining experience. Dinner and a show? You’re the whole package when you snag a position at China Live.
Considered a city staple, Kasa Indian Eatery has had two successful establishments standing in the city for over ten years. Now expanding to Redwood City, Kasa Indian Eatery is passionate about keeping the Bay hooked on Indian flavors and culture while providing patrons with exceptional service.
Plus, if you're looking for a killer menu at a place that also happens to be one of the top women-owned businesses in San Francisco Bay Area, you’ve come to the right place. Come get your hands dirty and your mouth-watering at any of Anamika Khanna’s three locations.
With a name that includes “stinking,” you may be tempted to scrunch up your face. However, you’ll be doing anything but that at The Stinking Rose! This whimsical and quirky North Beach restaurant is famous for its garlic-inspired dishes and decor.
Holding the title for the world’s largest garlic braid, this establishment is truly famous. Open seven days a week starting at 11:30 am, it's a great gig for someone looking for a consistent and high-volume experience with a predictable schedule.
8. Papito Hayes
Just a few steps from the San Francisco Opera House, Symphony, and Ballet, Papito Hayes is a great spot for someone looking to be in and around San Francisco’s arts district. This Mexican bistro has a touch of French flair which makes for a sophisticated menu in a convenient location.
Papito Hayes is always pulling in the pre-theater crowd, so join their team for delicious treats and an exciting blend of locals and tourists looking to enjoy all the surrounding creativity.
One of the most popular brunch spots and best cafes to work for in San Francisco, Mission Beach Cafe is completely organic. The walls are dripping with homemade croissants, pastries, and pies. Aptly named for the Mission District in which it resides, it’s an ideal place to work for anyone who wants a piece of it all.
Blending the casual with quality, Mission Beach Cafe is open seven days a week but closed Sunday nights during dinner. If you want a weekend evening for yourself, apply today!
George Biel founded the first Hillstone location back in the 1970s. Although the decor at this restaurant might appear casual, don’t be fooled by the lack of tablecloths. This high-end site requires a black-tie uniform and gives five-star service.
Getting a job at Hillstone is no easy feat, as their mission is an “unrelenting commitment to do things well, measured against the highest standards and manifested in careful attention to the smallest details.” Think you have what it takes to meet their demands? Keep an eye out for open positions.
This company prides itself on treating its staff as a community, taking trips, and participating in local events to keep everyone excited about what they do.
Also, they’re REAL certified. This is the nationally-recognized trust-mark for restaurants and foodservice providers that are committed to promoting health and sustainability within the industry. If you want a family serving up delicious food, for REAL, you’ve found your home.
Considered collaborative, diverse, fast-paced, and fun, BibimBar is a Korean kitchen in the city center. They’re one of the coolest San Francisco restaurants hiring right now! Catering to a global crowd, the restaurant works to combine healthy foods and impactful flavors.
Their fast-paced counter service allows patrons to build their dream rice and veggie dish in under a minute! Keep things moving with a position behind their counter or in the back of their house.
This long-standing, stable chain has a reputation for fresh ingredients and authentic eats. The space itself is modern and hip, so if trendy is your taste, this Japanese staple could be your calling. They never open before 5:30 pm, so night owls are encouraged to apply. It’s also one of the evening and night jobs perfect for college students.
On the hunt for diverse businesses to work for in the San Francisco Bay Area? This minority- and women-owned business in Berkeley boasts a Burmese street-food menu. They’re open in the morning as well as evening, which leaves you with some flexibility to work the shifts you need.
Plus, it’s in a great location just a few blocks from the Berkeley Repertory Theater. Grab a bowl of curry after your shift ends and catch a show down the road!
15. Novy Restaurant
Located in the heart of Noe Valley, Novy Restaurant offers casual eats with a Mediterranean twist. This family- and woman-owned spot is currently run by sisters Kristen and Kathryn Gianaras.
Their father, John, founded a restaurant in The Bay Area that ran successfully for over 20 years! Their passion for food hasn’t changed. Novy isn’t just another place to work, you’re really part of the family as a staff member.
16. Le Garage
Le Garage prides itself on keeping its French-inspired recipes simple with their casual and fun atmosphere. Their menu is packed with red beets, egg benedict, and grilled prawns to offer a delicious treat for any French craving. They also open with coffee and croissants for breakfast each day at 9am, so make sure you love morning shifts as much as nightlife.
Cockscomb Restaurant has a creative environment that offers a nice blend of classic cocktails and fire-grilled oysters. Nestled on Fourth Street, the sprawling space is an ode to the chef’s diverse background and adopted San Francisco identity.
Do you feel you have a lot to learn about the food industry in the Bay Area? They have a lot to teach about quality, care, and innovation, so don’t be shy! Stop by and apply to join their team today.
Matko is one of the most delicious restaurants to work for in the Bay Area. They offer BYOK (build-your-own-Korean) dishes that are handcrafted to bring customers a truly comforting experience. Though the counter may move quickly, the food is slow-cooked to maximize flavor and health benefits.
Want to join a team that doesn’t require you to carry around a million pens or memorize a giant menu? Matko has all the benefits of working at a traditional restaurant without any of the headaches.
19. Eat Americana
This well-renowned neighborhood staple has recently undergone a facelift and change in management. When you think of American food, do french toast and burgers come to mind? Then you know what to expect on Eat Americana’s menu.
They’re currently looking for brunch and lunch servers to man their expansive indoor and outdoor spaces. If you’re a puppy lover, patrons are encouraged to bring their furry friends and are guaranteed to brighten your work shifts!
If you’ve ever worked in a restaurant, you know that one of the requirements is learning the menu top to bottom. That is, unless you work for Luce Restaurant. Pulling ingredients from local farms, Luce’s offerings change based on the season and freshness of available ingredients.
All of their pasta, bread, and desserts are made in-house so there's never a question of quality. They have been recognized by Michelin Guide for over ten years, thanks to their unwavering dedication and love of food. If you’re a dedicated foodie, Luce Restaurant is waiting for you to join their team on Howard Street.
If you love children, get hired as a host in San Francisco at this family-fun arcade and grill on Pier 39. They’ll be sure to make you smile! It’s a high-energy place full of bright colors and a bit of fun for adults as well.
To get away from the games, their Luau Lounge has sweeping views of the bay, and most notably, Alcatraz. Pair playtime with breathtaking views for a job that will never leave you bored.
22. Zero Zero
Zero Zero has been a Michelin-recommended restaurant for six years and counting. Chef Bruce Hill created a family-style atmosphere with large plates ideal for sharing.
This warehouse has upstairs and downstairs seating areas packed with large wooden tables and candlelight. They are open every day at 11:30 am and close on the earlier side of the evening.
Are you interested in hosting large parties or private events? Check out one of the classiest San Francisco restaurants to work for: Boulettes Larder & Bouli Bar. Their award-winning kitchen founded by Chef Amaryll Schwertner is known for its classy establishment with a complex, diverse brunch, lunch and dinner menu.
Chef Amaryll has global food knowledge that fostered a global menu with flavors from Eastern and Western Europe, North Africa, Turkey, Greece, and Japan. There’s a lot to learn if you land a job at this company, so be prepared to study. But you’ll leave with the knowledge that can make you a superstar in any upscale team.
Looking to get your foot in the door at a top-notch restaurant? We recommend trying to find a dishwashing job in San Francisco and build experience from there. Koo Japanese Restaurant is a great place to consider!
Utilizing real ingredients and recipes that replicate the quality and style of Japan, this high-end establishment looks to blend the cultures of San Francisco with those on the other side of the world. They have been featured in countless blogs, magazines, and restaurant publications.
Although Chipotle is served quickly, it’s everyone’s favorite quick food. This well-known casual dining establishment embraces the tex-mex influences of San Francisco restaurants, while providing a healthy and cheap alternative to other chains.
Building work experience at a national chain is ideal in order to build a long and fruitful service industry career. They like to promote within, so upward mobility is no question. Jump behind the counter and start building something delicious!