Favorite French restaurants in SF Bay Area?

There have been recent threads about favorite international restaurants. I think France was missing, so I’d appreciate any opinions folks have. Sure, there are a number of food regions in France, but I’d prefer to keep the question general. Of course there’s no limit to what you can $pend in the higher end places, but I’m curious about people’s best experiences regardless of price range.

Traditional farmhouse cooking as tasty as it gets:


House classic lamb tongue with warm potato salad appetizer no longer appears on menu, but has been known to appear from time to time. Combined with quenelles de brochet, we call it lunch worth the palate’s attention.


Bistro Jeanty was the only restaurant ever in 30+ years where we recently walked out before we even started ordering food - never experienced such unfriendly, incompetent service/hostess before (and it is really hard to annoy us). There are too many good French restaurants in the Bay Area to waste your time with them




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Some SF French restaurants I like:

Chez Maman in Hayes Valley. They have a pretty good burger that is not exactly French, and also a good moules frites and a blanquette de veau which I think is very French.

La Société in SoMa

Absinthe also in Hayes Valley is also quite good.

And also Monsieur Benjamin in Hayes Valley, but it is closing this month.

I also like L’Ardoise in the Castro - very good coq au vin, escargots en croute, and rack of lamb.

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Chez TJ in Mountain View, are they still open? Use have one or twoMichelin stars.

Chapeau in SF, use to go when I lived in SF.

Left Bank, Menlo Park (also now in Oakland Jack London Sq) I think the burgers are very French, not my favorite.

Cafe Jacqueline, North Beach, soufflé only, date place.

Auberge du Soleil in Napa, super rich food in that French way. Almost overwhelming to California pallete.