The truth might be harder than a lump of coal – SF put a curfew on Christmas. With indoor dining canceled and outdoor dining canceled, the whole season looks a little bleak this year. What are the holidays without big dinner reservations, awkward private parties, or drunk Santas roaming downtown bars? Well, we’re about to find out.
For those who make themselves comfortable at home, the restaurants are still open for takeout and delivery. And when we get through this thing, we might as well do it with prime ribs, garlic noodles, and tamales, not to mention stollen and nog. So put up some more twinkling lights, pull on your most stretchy pants, and pour a take-away cocktail. How to celebrate Christmas 2020 in San Francisco.
For anyone ready to brave the wave and sit down to dine al fresco, the Vault tries to make itself cozy as a winter wonderland with fresh garlands, twinkling lights, and a massive tree. There are two special menus on Christmas Eve: a prime rib roast with crab cake, shrimp cocktail and Caesar salad; or a festival of the seven fish with oysters, squid conchiglie and roasted striped bass; both for $ 110 per person.
Trust a steakhouse to really treat a roast properly, and Izzy’s will wrap it up for smaller parties at home. A prime rib dinner with horseradish cream and roasted vegetables is $ 175 for 4 to 6 people. It’s worth adding in gratinated potatoes and creamed spinach, and they all go on cakes, with seven different types of juicy cakes, including a grandma-style carrot cake soaked in Grand Marnier. And who doesn’t love a naughty grandma?
The boutique grocery store has everything from family dishes to individual trays this Christmas season too. A traditional ham set includes mac and cheese, roasted cauliflower, and a kale and apple salad for $ 150 to $ 4 for 4 to 6 people. And the Turkey TV Dinner is running again, ensuring that solo travelers can party in retro style for just $ 16.99.
Fisherman’s Wharf’s 55-year-old fish factory is a classic this time of year, but alfresco dining will be lively even with sparkling boats. Thankfully, the restaurant promises the Dungeness Crab Cioppino, which has been repackaged as a dinner kit that fans can make at home, where admittedly, it’s less embarrassing to tie a bib. Scoma’s is closed as usual on Christmas Eve and during the day, but kits can be picked up on Tuesday and Wednesday beforehand. Keep an eye on the website, more details will follow shortly.
Many Chinese restaurants are still open for Christmas, but a fan favorite of Eater SF readers is Chili House, Richmond’s Peking duck legend. The restaurant confirmed that this year they will stay open on both Christmas Eve and during the day, serving the usual menu with chilli strings. They have a limited number of ducks per day so it might be worth calling ahead.
PPQ Dungeness Island
Whales want us to have local Dungeness crabs in time for Christmas right now. And as usual, PPQ promises to be open on Christmas Eve and during the day, and the crustaceans are available for takeout and delivery. There are flexible menu options for two, four, six, or ten people, and a roasted crab meal for two with Imperial buns, garlic noodles, and braised beans for $ 95.
La Palma Mexicatessen
This Mission Mexicatessen is known for their fresh masa, which sells for a pound, is pressed into tortillas, or wrapped in tamales that feel like a festive package this time of year. Shop for a dozen fresh tamales filled with braised pork or sweet corn for $ 32.99.
Star confectioner Belinda Leong has not one, not two, but three Buche de Noel flavors to celebrate the dull cake season – a mousse made from Mont Blanc, vanilla raspberry and chocolate toffee. She promises that the minutes will be posted on the website on the first weekend in December. So keep an eye out for quirky forest desserts.
Obviously everyone is obsessed with Roy’s panettone, the staggering $ 60 bread. (It’s big and ships and holds up well for a month.) But don’t underestimate the sourdough strength of Manresa Bread, which also makes a triple chocolate and orange panettone for just $ 45. In all honesty, either is a master pastry, and maybe this is the year for chocolate for breakfast.
The only dedicated German bakery in San Francisco promises the particularly crispy and spicy biscuits such as Vanillekipferl (powdered moons), shortbread biscuits (hazelnuts dipped in dark chocolate), rascals (filled with jam) and more fun treats. But there are also rumors about tunnels. Keep an eye on the website for important announcements from marzipan.
Andytown coffee roaster
Sunset’s favorite cafe keeps it mint-fresh this holiday season. The mint mocha swirls in chocolate from Guittard and syrup from Oaktown and makes you buzz like a Christmas elf through the last deadlines of the year.
Pacific Cocktail Haven
The Miracle Pop-up Bar at Pacific Cocktail Haven usually draws a loud crowd, which can be a bit alarming for al fresco dining, but the festive cocktails are also available to take away. Read the full list of Mulled Wines and Nogs in Novel Mugs. Because what is Christmas without a mug in the shape of a T-Rex with a Santa hat?
Iron horse vineyards
Why not shop in bubbles and buy California sparkling wine this year? Iron Horse in Russian River has a special rosé that will benefit the Sonoma County Resilience Fund, and the wine country really deserves it after this forest fire season.
Almanac Beer Co.
The Alameda Brewery has an ugly IPA with sweater-themed what they call “tropical” and “humid,” and likely a party to sip in a hot tub. The Bunny Hill IPA is soft and clean by comparison, and has possibly the nicest can of the season. But for those who can’t decide, there is also a kind of advent calendar with 12 beers for Christmas.