Culture & Criticism Since 2003
Out near Pac Bell Park on the Embarcadero, South Beach Cafe is one of the forgotten jewels in the crown of the city’s restaurant scene. One trip there and you will immediately realize that this place shouldn’t be over-looked, but cherished.
Opened over a decade ago by co-owners Michele D’Amico and Ferdinando Ballare, the South Beach is known among neighborhood regulars for its wide array of authentic Italian desserts and some of the best coffee this side of the famed North Beach district.
But make no mistake – the South Beach is so much more than a breakfast nook or some quick coffee stop. Instead, it offers a full lunch and dinner menu in a comfortable ‘jazz bowl’ – the music pooled against the idea of the light streaming through the wrinkled windows recalls some quaint 1950s’ setting from a by-gone San Francisco.
An outstanding selection of sandwiches features many standouts, including the “Tonno” (tuna with mozzarella, tomato and basil) and the prosciutto with tomatoes, mozzarella and basil. Dinner boasts a great treat – the “Schiacciatina di Pollo” (pounded chicken over mixed salad served with tomatoes and gorgonzola cheese) is something you won’t taste like this anywhere else in the city; it’s simply superb.
Top off your meal with a cup of espresso and any one of the subtle pastries: it makes for the perfect accompaniment to a unique dining experience in a city that’s utterly famous for its food.