O, the Refuge [ peninsula ]

I just wanted to take a shout out for the Refuge.

San Carlos is my favorite location. It seems the beer is a little more interesting, and I like the indoor-outdoor seating, and overall the atmosphere is more pleasant.

But the Menlo location is close. In both cases, it’s not the raving frat boy scene that has turned us off from Stein’s ( and would annoy us about Eureka! ).

I usually look for a lighter weight IPA or amber / ale thing. Or anything by Evil Twin. I am starting to wish they rotated their taps a little more.

I was reminded to write because last week I had their “pastrami burger”. Although prices are generally high at Refuge, that burger is great. A decent sized patty, a good layer of their world-class pastrami, a slaw layer, some swiss — it’s a ReubenBurger.

Refuge seems to do a good business, but it’s never crowded-crowded. I can’t remember the last time I had to wait more than 5 minutes, although I don’t usually eat at 7:00pm. So I was just thinking about it, and wanted to remind people about this spot.


As a beer aficionado, you might enjoy the unfiltered pilsner brewed on the premises at Bon marche, next time you’re in SF. No pastrami but they do have charcuterie and a good sausage plate. Be sure to save room for dessert

I experienced the pastrami at The Refuge (San Carlos) on a just-completed business trip. Man, is that outrageously good pastrami, I would have to rate it the best I have ever had! (And I have access to great house made pastrami here in the Boston area and in mid-coast Maine.) I loved all the pickles and pickled onions on the plate as well. A shared order of fries was nice but unnecessary. I will have to add this to Sushi Sam’s as must-visits on future trips.