Unlike L.A. or New York, San Francisco isn’t exactly known as a rooftop dining and drinking city. But if you are looking for a rooftop spot where you can eat and drink, use this guide. It has eight bars and restaurants where you can also get some sun and soak in good views.
The comic book themed bar in Oakland reopened in mid-May and is once again serving cocktails and twists on classic drinks. You can hang out inside their massive, loft-like space with lights shaped like talk bubbles and oversized graphic novel art, or make your way upstairs to their spacious rooftop deck. It may not have city views, but it certainly will satisfy your need for drinking at an elevation in the sun.
Rooftop 25 is a restaurant and bar above 25 Lusk in SoMa. They’ve got a spacious, open-air seating area with stunning downtown views and feature dishes like wood-fired pizzas, bugers, and other snacks. To drink, they also have wine, beer, and frozen cocktails. On Friday and Saturdays, Rooftop 25 is open from noon to 10pm. Reservations are available here for parties of 5 to 8 only.
El Techo is pretty much the perfect San Francisco rooftop bar: there are umbrellas in case it’s too bright, heaters for when it’s too cold, and excellent margaritas and palomas. On top of that, the views from this spot in the Mission are basically unbeatable. Food options here include small plates, chicharrones, birria tacos, and more.
Located on top of the Proper Hotel, the views from this Mid-Market rooftop bar are fantastic. And aside from that and having great cocktails, it’s a good place to enjoy a drink during the day, or cozy up next to a fire pit at night. Charmaine’s is taking reservations for both outdoor and indoor dining.
The rooftop at this Lower Nob Hill cocktail bar has a lot going for it - it’s massive, and there are also plenty of lush plants that make it feel like a secret hideaway. While you’re relaxing, you can order everything from pizza and smoked-seared salmon to small plates like buffalo wings and crispy-fried adobo pork ribs. Jones also hosts weekend brunch from 11am-4pm and monthly events.
Oeste in Old Oakland is one of our favorite East Bay drinking spots - and one of the few places in the city with a rooftop. And right now, they’re serving their excellent cocktails and Latin and Southern bites like cheesy shrimp and grits on their sunny patio. They’re also accepting reservations.
If you’re near Union Square and looking for a place to kick back, check out Dirty Habit. It’s located on the fifth floor of Hotel Zelos, and is surrounded by a bunch of tall SoMa buildings, so don’t expect sweeping city views. Still though, the spot is great for a post-work hang or anytime the occasion calls for strong cocktails. The bar food is also shareable and pretty good (get the fries). They’re re-opening April 1, and reservations are available online.
The two-story bar near Lake Merritt also comes with a massive patio and an even bigger rooftop. You can enjoy a beer (they have 40 on tap), excellent cocktails, and food from The Lumpia Company. They’re open Wednesday to Saturday until 9pm, and heads up - they’re not offering table reservations.