French. Consistent and classy, Absinthe Brasserie and Bar is busy on almost any night of the week and steps from the San Francisco Symphony and Opera House. With a full bar stocked with premium libations and single malts, accessible French fare (the leg of lamb is stellar) and an excellent dessert menu featuring indulgent choices like lavender creme brulee, Absinthe has it all in one dark and rich atmosphere.
Part of Absinthe's success in the area is its understanding that in Hayes Valley, a good bar is critical. Serving decadent meals of rabbits and oysters decorated in gilded Belle Epoch style, its menu is complimented by first rate double fisted cocktails. The Arlequin Cafe is a gourmet food-to-go shop with patio and dining seating out back, and the wine merchant, Amphora Wines, has a tremendous selection of wines at very affordable prices.