NETTIE'S CRAB SHACK SAN FRANCISCO

Imagine sweet tender fleshy crab meat freshly plucked from the ocean, and then steamed, stuffed, and swaddled between a buttery toasted brioche bun. Sounds yum-o-licious doesn't it?

 

Nettie's Crab Shack in San Francisco is one of my latest discoveries of good casual dining spots in the bay area. It's a down-to-earth, laid-back locale with a touch of New England charm. When you arrive, directions are posted on the chalk board: 1) choose a table, 2) order at the bar, and 3) we'll bring the food. 

 

Aside from the written guide, the sunny, rustic and austere ambiance readily invites guests to pull up a chair, and if they please, put their feet up. Diners even serve themselves complimentary water, sparkling or flat, which is provided in a what looks like an antique miniature bath tub. I love how the legs have rusted showing signs of age. 

 

While visiting, I had an opportunity to meet the group of maverick crabbers who brought in this season's exceptionally sweet fresh crab meat for the day. Isn't it neat? They almost look like fixtures within the place. How was crab season? It was one of the most exceptional in years.


Even though there were several item enticing items on the menu, we came for the dungeness crab, which in addition to the crabbers' report, everyone in town was also buzzing about how sweet  and meaty the catch was this year. So we ordered the dungeness crab cobb salad ($25) includes organic diced avocados, beets, cucumbers, and eggs. While delicious and refreshing, I do think that the star on the menu was the crab roll.


Crab roll ($26) came with a side of shoestring fries, and house made pickled organic vegetables. It was buttery, simple and decadent, done so well I think I'd call it exceptional. The toasted brioche bun is a welcome improvement to the traditional New England seafood roll. I hope other restaurants will replicate this roll using brioche versus the more common hot dog-like roll. If there was one complaint about Nettie's crab roll, it may be that there was a touch too much butter for my taste, but nonetheless it was good.


While we did not have any room for desserts, there were several platters of beautifully crafted sweets displayed. Perhaps next time. It was a sweet visual ending.



2032 Union Street (cross Buchannan)
San Francisco, CA 94123
(415) 409-0300

Nettie's Winter Hours
Wednesday - Sunday 10am - 10pm
Closed Tuesday
Monday 10am - 4pm

63 comments:

Bellini Valli said...

I hope to travel to San Francisco again this year so will definitely keep this place in mind:D

Sook said...

I will have to go visit this place the next time I'm in SF. Everything looks great!

TKW said...

I do so love reading your restaurant reviews. I don't get to travel much, so just reading about your meals gives me satisfaction.

I agree that a brioche bun is inspired; however, you are right that they should be a little light with the butter, since the roll is decadent. I'll be dreaming of that salad.

Bob said...

While I'm not really a seafood fan I have to admit, that all looks really good!

Katherine Aucoin said...

What a really cool find! I miss having fresh seafood so readily available. This lloks like a wonderfully replaxing place.

Beth said...

that crab roll sounds mighty tasty! and I've got a serious weakness for shoestring fries!

The Diva on a Diet said...

What a thoroughly charming place! I've heard of it, but have never been ... will put it on the "must-try" list for my next trip to SF.

Lovely review and your pics are, as always, gorgeous, FLB!

Gulmohar said...

Now I know one more restaurant to visit during my next trip to SFO..Tempting clicks Christine...

Kathleen said...

I'm going on a girls trip next month to SF. This place sounds perfect.

Sara said...

Wow that looks delicious! I'm a total sucker for anything with crab in it. I might never leave that place! And your pictures are amazing!

Gloria said...

I love this place and the food, all!! I hope some day go to San Francisco amd know it!!I love crab..always! nice pics, gloria

Yasmeen said...

Looks like an enjoyable place.Love the fresh flavors of the salad and the roll :D

Miss Mitten said...

Looks great. Hard to have too much butter but I guess it can be done!

Joanne said...

Thanks for this fantastic review! All of the food you guys got looks delicious. I'm going to have to try this place out the next time I'm in SF!

The Cooking Photographer said...

So cute Christine! I love the mini tub cooler.

I haven't been to San Fran in a few years. I need to take a trip out there. I miss good seafood.

I have your email and will send you my info. Sounds like you're going to as jet lagged as I will be.

Laura

Andrea@WellnessNotes said...

Sounds & looks like a wonderful meal!

♥peachkins♥ said...

That looks like a great place! I wish I could try it out someday..

Katy ~ said...

Sigh.... your beautiful pictures make me wistful for a place I have never been. Lovely lovely pix!

Emily said...

Nettie's sounds awesome. I bet their fresh seafood is amazing. I also love their rustic, vintagey decor.

tigerfish said...

Reminded me of a Lobster Shack in Redwood City.

Julia said...

God that looks great. I heard about the big crab haul from some friends. Wish I was there to enjoy it!

Velva said...

Have I told you next to NYC, my second favorite city is San Francisco? :-)

I hope you are having a lovely tme.

lynn @ the actors diet said...

this place looks like so much fun! love the tub.

Amanda said...

My old neighborhood!

Looks fantastic - although haven't been yet. When you were here did you try Woodhouse Fish Co?

Esi said...

All the food looks and sounds really good!

Carolyn Jung said...

I have not been here yet, and judging by your photos, it's high time that I do! The bathtub is adorable. And the crab rolls look divine.

Angie's Recipes said...

Looks like a SF is a food paradise! The pictures look amazing.

5 Star Foodie said...

Sounds like a great place and the crabmeat sounds fantastic!

Btw, we loved our dinner in Alex! I'm so late with writing up a review, hope to post it next week :)

Mimi said...

Looks like the place to visit on my next trip to the bay area.
Mimi

Janice said...

I need to get out to San Francisco more often and eat all day. I'll have to check out Nettie's soon

Debinhawaii said...

OK, this place is going on the list for sure. I would be in heaven with the salad or the roll--YUM! Those desserts look fun too! ;-)

Saveurs et Gourmandises said...

Quel dommage que j'habite si loin de S.F.
See soon.

My Carolina Kitchen said...

What a charming and delightful place. I love the ambiance as well as the gorgeous food.
Sam

Lea Ann said...

Great opening sentence!!

Signed
Jealous and Land Locked in Denver

Donna-FFW said...

Youre teasing me.. I want that crab sandwich, like now. It sounds so delicious!

Paige@ RunningaroundNormal said...

What a CUTE place! This alone makes me want to visit!

Unplanned Cooking said...

For me there can never be too much butter! Love that place from your photos alone.

Impromptu Diva said...

we frequently go to SFO when we visit our daughter in Berkeley... we will definitely try dining here. i love the rustic charm!

Pierce said...

I love the photos and would very much like a crab roll. Yum! I've never been to San Francisco..one of these days......

Nanny'76 said...

...le tue foto sono sempre meravigliose ...^_^

Julia said...

Whoa!! That's some tasty looking food. I live in the south bay and have not been for a "real" dining experience in SF ever. Sad but I have lived her all my life. Me and husband need to go on a "date." Thanks for more inspiration. :)

lindsaymeyer said...

I'm so glad you tried this place! I live in the neighborhood and I'll make it a must-do to visit soon! Especially since crab is in season!

Pam said...

That looks like such a cute place and the food looks awesome!

Enjoy!

Chef E said...

Christine you photos are so beautiful and appetizing! I love the rustic look of this place...makes me wish it was summer and I was beach side eating that sandwich!

Mari @ Once Upon a Plate said...

Christine, another jewel! Thank you for sharing... um, is there any crab more delicious than fresh Dungeness? If there is, I've never tasted it!

Lovely photos (as always), love that you did the crabbers in black and white ~ you captured the mood so perfectly.

I have one of those tubs on a stand but I use it as a flower planter. Your photo made me rethink that idea. :)

Thank you for taking along with you on your journeys ... I always have such fun when you do.

Michelle said...

Sounds like my kind of place! Love the rustic atmosphere and of course any time crab is on the menu I'm the first in line!

Ca88andra said...

Sounds delicious! Definitely on my list of things to do when I next go to San Fran.

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

A great place with gorgeous looking food!

Cheers,

Rosa

Chow and Chatter said...

oh wow love crab great place

Esme said...

These all look great-thanks on the names P is because he thought it is a cute girl name and M. because he is an explorer. Are you getting excited for your trip?

Lele said...

I love seafood but it's actually the BUN that's making me drool! I'm in a carby place right now!

Cocina Savant said...

Fresh crab on brioche sounds almost sinful. I could definitely dig into a crab roll like that right now.

Heavenly Housewife said...

It does sound yum-o-licious indeed. What an adorable little place. Looks very cozy.
Have a wonderful weekend daaaaaaahling.
*kisses* HH

Devon said...

Nice job capturing the decor. This place is super cute.

Kim said...

This place (and your photos) look outstanding! I know I should be marveling over the crab, but that brioche bun looks to die for! very impressive :D

Erica said...

WOW! What a cool spot. I love when restaurants have unique touches (like the self serve water in the mini bathtub!)- they can really make a place! The food all looks super fresh too. I have to get back to San Fran soon!

Cristin said...

Beautiful photographs as always, Christine! I really love the one with glasses lined up in the shabby shelf!

xoxo

Stephanie Savors the Moment said...

Sounds delicious and love your photos - will have to visit there next time I'm in San Francisco. Thanks!

La Table De Nana said...

Very nice..I have never been..it looks like fun!

Pam said...

The sandwich looks absolutely amazing!

Little Inbox said...

It's absolutely yummy!

Table Talk said...

We are headed to San Francisco in April--glad I caught this post before our trip!

lostpastremembered said...

I saw the baby bath tub on food with style.. what a great look... loved your blog...so glad to have found you!