1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

La Trappe Cafe

Not Rated.
La Trappe CafeLa Trappe Cafe
BA SCORE
97
world-class

67 Ratings
Ratings: 67
Reviews: 50
rAvg: 4.44
pDev: n/a
Taps: 15
Bottles: 250
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Bar, Eatery ]

800 Greenwich St
San Francisco, California, 94133-2615
United States
phone: (415) 440-8727

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
Place added by: dougnboston on 06-04-2008

No notes at this time.
Place: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Ratings: 67 | Reviews: 50
Reviews by czechsaaz:
Photo of czechsaaz
4.9/5  rDev +10.4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Normally I wouldn't start a review with the atmosphere. I'll put up with a lot for a great beer list but... La Trappe is way cool. You walk in upstairs and there's the kitchen and some dining tables. You could stay upstairs if you want, but take the spiral staircase into the cellar. That's where the bar is and it's all exposed brick and dark paint colors and dim lighting. It felt to me like drinking a catacomb or the basement of some cathedral somewhere. Loved it.

Then there's the binder sized beer list that is of course 85-90% Belgian with a handfull of other European and a few outsanding U.S. Belgian styles plus Unibroue. There's plenty of rare beer on the list to keep you interested but the really rare is very pricey. Not a complaint at all but there were a few things that I really wanted that were out of my league price wise.

For the service, we were told when we sat down that service in the Lounge area (dark, brooding and even romantic) was self service at the bar. But after ordering beers and a snack and chatting with the servers and bartenders for a bit at the bar they did table service for us. (I had one of those, "They know I'm a beer guy and they love beer too so we have a mutual respect" type of vibe.)

My price rating is more for the rarities. The taps and most bottles are reasonably priced. But they also have some really great lambics, limitted releases and large format bottles that are expnsive but not out of line for the rarity.

I only get to S.F. once a year or so but this is now (with the Toranado) on my must visit list. Great Place.

More User Reviews:
Photo of almostjay
4.45/5  rDev +0.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Photo of hambone
4.55/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.75

Photo of Kishanti
3.5/5  rDev -21.2%

Photo of SeeingMeansMore
4.25/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of aoampm
4.5/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of Igormatos
4.75/5  rDev +7%

Photo of LightnerLiquorKS
5/5  rDev +12.6%

Photo of GeorgiaBeerGuy
4.75/5  rDev +7%

Photo of ajs4bd
5/5  rDev +12.6%

Photo of jellikit
4.58/5  rDev +3.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

This bar is awesome. We walk in and I was sure that we walked into an open, run down kitchen with a few tables: empty. Then I saw the stairs welcoming us down to where the actual, what you think of when you think, "Belgian ba"r. Spiraling staircase down to a dimly lit, low ceilinged, brick and wooden beamed Belgian dreamland. Then you're offered the beer list. As heavy as a baby and just as previous.

Photo of largadeer
3.75/5  rDev -15.5%

Photo of RBassSFHOPit2ME
4.25/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of HopsAholic79
4.5/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of Ilovebeer1549
4.25/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of theRooster
4.25/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of Tristan_E
4/5  rDev -9.9%

Photo of Hellpop65
4.75/5  rDev +7%

Photo of Thrashsquatch
4.25/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of jgasparine
4.26/5  rDev -4.1%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5

Atmosphere- Like a slice of Europe. The downstairs bar, in particular, makes you feel like you're in Brugge. Clearly a beer-centric place, filled with beer-loving people.

Quality- Everything about this place- the glassware, draught lines, and the establishment itself was clean and quality.

Service- We got there right when they opened... so it wasn't too packed. But the bartender really knew his stuff, made some great suggestions, and was super-prompt and friendly.

Selection- They didn't have the largest selection. I was familiar with nearly everything on their menu... but this is not to discount the QUALITY of their selection. All were solid beers, and you certainly won't be disappointed.

Value- This was somewhat pricey... but overall worth the price for an occasional visit.

Photo of joshklein069
3.23/5  rDev -27.3%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3 | food: 3

They have a great selection of beer on tap and an ok bottle list. Most of the offerings tend to gravitate toward Belgian styles. When I went I had a glass of Temptation. Expect to find on tap Duvel Green, Allagash, La Chouffe, Chimay White, and Koningshoeven Quadruple. The bottle list encompasses beers from all over the world, but Belgium gets the most coverage.
I found the bartenders to be very friendly. Since I knew what I wanted, I can't speak to how knowledgeable they are.
I passed on food when I went, but every table had frites and I heard a few people mention that their food was good.
The prices were about the same as most Belgian beer bars. I did not pay any attention to how much they were charging for bottles.

Photo of BlackHaddock
3.86/5  rDev -13.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

6th Feb 2013: my wife and I visited the basement. We could only have a table if eating because the joint was almost full, as the wife doesn't like sitting at the bar we were shown to a small unlit square at the rear. I had to stand by the kitchen corridor to read the beer menu it was so dark where they put us, smart, modern, comfortable but just too dark.

The barman helped a lot, but not one American beer I wanted on the menu was in stock (I visit Belgium often, so wasn't really interested in that selection, huge though it was), so I had three Canadian beers. All in good condition.

The food looked good from where we sat and as I blocked the service corridor beer searching I got a closer look on occasions.

All in all a cool place, busy and friendly staff, just a pity about their US selection stock

Photo of damndirtyape
4.93/5  rDev +11%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Visited both lower bar and upper restaurant. Got there shortly after the bar was opened at 5, and later went upstairs for dinner.

Atmosphere: Cozy little joint downstairs. Plenty of tables, but it fills up fast. The bar chairs were already filled up when I got there 15 minutes after it opened. All wood and brick downstairs, with booths and small tables for parties anywhere from 1 (myself) to 8. Impressive layout of Belgian beer signs and glassware behind the bar suggesting this is Belgian beer heaven outside of Belgium. Upstairs (well, ground floor really, it's where you enter) is equally cozy - not many tables, but well lit and airy with a high ceiling and kitchen nearby. The downstairs is a place to have several beers and dwell upon them. Upstairs is just what you want when you get hungry after those beers - food is emphasized but you still get the great beer.

Quality: I don't think I can do this place justice on the quality of the beers available. Rare and great Belgian beers and Belgian style beers from around the world here. "No crap on tap" would be an accurate statement to make here. The only trappist ale they didn't have was Westvleteren.

Service: Very friendly given the small staff (2 behind the bar, 1 roaming) versus the large clientele (every table and chair filled downstairs). I watched the servers listen to the orders, look for the right glass, pour it, and if it spilled over, they even got out the knife to level off the foam from the top and then wipe down the glass. I watched another bartender open a corked bottle for a party of four and then proceed to serve them at the bar leaving the sediment behind. Later when I went up for dinner upstairs the waiter was equally friendly and made sure I got everything I needed without being too hovering.

Selection: 15 different beers on tap - way too much selection. It was hard to pick what to have on tap. The bottle menu was even longer - broken down alphabetically by country with the Belgian selection alone taking up probably 15-16 pages in the huge beer menu. Far and away the most extensive beer menu I've ever seen.

Food: Good and tasty. I wasn't very hungry so I ended up having the beer and cheese soup and the sliders as they were out of the puff-pastry chicken. The food went very well with the beer I was having at the time (Petrus Winterbier) and the portion sizes were just right.

For value....The beer prices were high for a 25cl or 33cl glass, but....if you're paying for this selection imported all the way from Belgium you're going to need to be willing to pay. Food prices I would say are quite reasonable, but beer prices - this is a place you save up for a treat, not an every night experience. Well....I would love to drink here every night but I know I would quickly wreck my banking account on this place.

Photo of excalibur
4.68/5  rDev +5.4%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

We love this place. Go downstairs and the room is a brick lined grotto with comfortable seating and playing good rock music, but not too loud on a powerful system. They have an extensive Belgium beer book listing some pretty high priced beers but there are also about 6-10 reasonably priced draft Belgiums served in beautiful appropriate glassware priced between $7-$12. The servers are very knowledgeable and helpful in making your selection. I think their mussels are great and are cooked in many different ways. We also enjoyed the pommes frites and a tasty roasted beet and avacado sandwich. They open at 5 or 5:30 depending on the day and I suggest you arrive early as it can get crowded. I believe the kitchen opens at 6. If you like fine Belgium ales this is a place you must visit if in town.

Photo of scotaussie
3.4/5  rDev -23.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4

The cellar scene at the Trappe provides good ambience, a good list of beers and nice Belgian food, that is if you like mussels and not much (nothing) else. The main negative points are the exorbitantly high prices, one assumes to pay for the rent and the owners pension plans, and the atrocious Musak you are forced to listen to, while having a beer. The super high prices certainly don't make anybody want to hang around and try more beers. The waiters knew little about the beers they offered so a discussion on whether they had nice blondes rather than Flemish sour red ales was not clear, so I ended up with the latter by mistake.

to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
La Trappe Cafe in San Francisco, CA
97 out of 100 based on 67 ratings.