From Our Editors
The Abbot’s Cellar: A User’s Guide
- Starter: Day Boat scallops with seasonal produce
- Entree: pork loin or chop
- To drink: a craft beer, naturally—ask your server for some recommended pairings
- The beer list is camouflaged as part of the furniture. Pull out the drawer at the bottom of your table to find it.
- If you want a burger, sit at the bar, since it’s not on the standard dinner menu. Conversely, table seating is reserved for those ordering dinner only.
Where Does It Come From?
- Before they reach your table, the beers spend time in a two-story beer cellar. The collection encompasses 100 bottles and 30 brews on tap—including cask-conditioned and hand-pumped varieties.
- The food is the work of chef Adam Dulye, who works with a constellation of more than 100 local farmers and vendors to find ingredients at their prime. As a result, the food menu changes constantly with the shifting season and even the weather, anticipating whether customers will want something refreshing or comforting.
When to Go: Try dinner on a Tuesday when parking is free in the dedicated lot.
Where to Sit: Solo diners or parties of two can angle for a seat at the kitchen counter and watch the chefs at work.
History Lesson If The Abbot’s Cellar had been around in precolonial times, it would have stood in a lake. The ground remained marshy even after it was drained and the Valencia Hotel was built on the site, and the ground opened up beneath the ornate Victorian building in the earthquake of 1906. A century later, the restaurant made use of the high ceilings and square footage of a former garage. They found something interesting during construction: a dozen antique wine and beer bottles from the old hotel, buried in the quake.
While You Wait
- Flip through the interesting cookbooks on display on pedestals near the bar—it’s what they’re there for.
- Peer into the viewing windows cut into the stone walls of the beer cellar.
- See if you can find the ghosts of any old initials etched into the planks of reclaimed wood that line the space.
- One of the San Francisco Chronicle’s Top 100 Bay Area Restaurants, 2013–14
- Named one of San Francisco’s Best New Restaurants by Condé Nast Traveler in 2013
- Beer dinner recommended on 7x7’s “Bucket List for San Francisco Beer Lovers”
If You Can’t Make It, Try This: the Cellar’s more casual sister gastropub, The Monk’s Kettle (3141 16th Street)