The Monk's Kettle

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The Monk's KettleThe Monk's Kettle
132 Ratings
The Monk's KettleThe Monk's Kettle

Type: Bar, Eatery, Beer-to-go

3141 16th St
San Francisco, California, 94103-3334
United States

(415) 865-9523 | map

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Added by NikStique on 12-07-2007

View: Place Reviews
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Ratings: 132 |  Reviews: 76
Photo of PeprSprYoFace
4/5  rDev -8.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

First ill start off on the location of this place. Itis in a ghetto freakin part of San Fran and when i got off at the bart station, there were drug deals, prostitution, and people talking to themselves all in front of me. Never seen so much gow down all at once.

Any way despite all that it is actually kind of a nice place. Its wierd how in this area there are like nice places mixed in with the getto. there was a nice whine bar down the street as well. It seems like alot of "hipsters", as people on here like to call them on here, were eating there and that area has alot in general.

The service was good, our bartender was cool and giving us tasters of stuff and talking to us. He did talk about how he smokes weed all the time though and he also looked like a hipster.

Their food was pretty good, all of it being hipster organic food and what not but all in all this place seemed to cater towards the people that live in that area.

Cool place but not really somewhere to go out of the way for.

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Photo of dougnboston
4.36/5  rDev -0.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

I think a terrific people vibe. Shiny, not a dingey old bar, more upscale. Small, but I managed a seat at the bar.

Nice selection of beers. Any time I find Piraat on tap I'll take it. Tasted clean and fresh.

As noted by others the prices are high. Knowing La Trappe is near or heading over the bridge to Trappist ... I'd probably do either of those before the Monks Kettle. I do like a darker older looking bar, but it's more the prices that will keep me going to others. Some of our pours also seemed light. They may need to put fill lines on their wine glass they use when a proper glass isn't available.

Service was great. People seemed great. Again a terrific place with an above average selection, proper glasses and a beery crowd.

Enjoy the Monks Kettle.

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Photo of largadeer
2.98/5  rDev -32%
vibe: 2 | quality: 3.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 3 | food: 3.5

Monk's Kettle is a mixed bag. Aesthetically it's pretty nice, lots of dark wood and marble, somewhat Euro looking. It's very small, and also quite popular, which makes things like sitting or even comfortably standing pretty much impossible.

The bar has about 25 taps, which are nicely split between local beers and imports. I see quite a bit of Moonlight and Russian River here, which is hard to complain about. What I can complain about are the prices, which are completely absurd. Expect to pay anywhere from $8 to $12 or more for beers that you can find at other local bars for literally half the price. They do have the occasional value beer, but it's rarely anything special.

The bottle list is pretty decent, and they've got a solid selection of vintage beers, but again, the prices are laughably high. I feel bad for anyone gullible enough to pay their prices.

Food is pretty good - trendy, expensive pub fare, largely organic and local. Nothing amazing, but always good. They also get a nod from me for keeping the kitchens open until 1 AM.

This spot seemed promising when they first opened, but I'm afraid it's been downhill since then. Best avoided, check out The Trappist in Oakland for a similar selection at better prices.

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Photo of francisweizen
4/5  rDev -8.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

This place is good. A nice small bar area and few tables with some nice pics on the bay area up on the wall. Quality of the beer s I tried was pretty good and I did not get a chance to try the food. Still, this place was pretty cool. About 16 drafts and quite a few bottles as well. Nothing I have not had before, but that is kinda bar for the course these days. They did have $21 1 oz samples of utopias which is kinda cool even though the markup is hardcore on the drafts and bottles. Seriously for 16th and mission the prices here are HIGH. The service was decent but kinda slow, but than again this place is brand new, so I will give them the benefit of the doubt, and give them some time.

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Photo of chelovek
4/5  rDev -8.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

The place opened up in December of 07 but they seem to have settled in quite nice already. It is a small place but it is definitely cozy and packed with quality. The tap and bottle selection is well thought out and is all top choice. Each bottled beer on the menu had a quip about the style and a recommended pairing was provided on the food menu for each plate. The bartender and staff were extremely friendly and knowledgeable. Proper glass where was provided for each beer, my Houblan Chouffe coming in the specific glass brought that extra little touch I always enjoy. Some beers were pricy some were very reasonable but the quality of the place in its entirety made it worth it. The food was pretty darn good as well, everything being very, very fresh. I have used the word quality a whole bunch of times in this review but I think that pretty much sums up the place, a high quality beer bar with an extremely well thought out selection with great service. A repeat place without a doubt and worth going your way out of to visit. Just two blocks walk from the bart 16th exit in The Mission so get off your lazy ass and check it out.

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Photo of oggg
4.58/5  rDev +4.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

My wife and I visited on 12/26/07 for dinner.

Max capacity 49. Maybe 8 tables, the booths having hard wooden benches that killed my back and bum by the end of the night (I have issues -- I'm going to sit on a stool next time). The lighting is somewhat dim and intimate, with a candle at each table. The bar itself is a beautiful wooden one, behind which is a humongous display of beer and wine glasses and goblets. On either side of this shelf are these two tall wooden... shelf ends(?) that look like they were lifted from a Transylvanian ski lodge -- well, you'll have to see them for yourself. The place is beautiful. Oh yeah, one regular TV that was showing Derby vs Liverpool.

Our server, Nick, was great, although it looked like he was the only one covering all the tables. A nice touch was having a carafe of water at each table. No complaints here.

There are something like 24 taps and a whole mess of bottles. Prices are about right for most beers ($4-$4.75), although imported stuff seemed to skyrocket quickly. I expect the taps will rotate, as that will keep beer geeks coming in over and over (also, I can't stand Downtown Brown). Proper glassware in effect. My wife's Fullers London Porter was $6+ but automatically came in an imperial pint glass.

The menu looks pretty well thought out. It's quite varied and seems to have something for everyone. We got the charcuterie plate (perhaps a bit overpriced at $12) and the pulled pork sandwich (disappointing). We saw other people getting the potpie and it looked pretty good, so we are going to come back and try the burger and the potpie before we give up on the food.

Overall: At worst, it's a great beer bar with ok food, stuck in the gritty Mission. That's actually pretty damn good. We're definitely going back.
For selfish reasons, I wish this place were bigger and less busy. There's literally like 4 booths if you're thinking of bringing more than one person with you. Sure, groups can go to the bar, but fat chance that you'll get to sit at the bar with ~6 seats total. In the back there is a ledge that you can sit at, away from the bar and with barely any place to eat. Do not come here with more than one friend, and if you do, don't expect to hang out and drink, because they need those booths for dinner service. Again, this is all being a little selfish, and it's not really their fault, as I'm always looking for a beer hangout like O'Briens, whereas this really is a restaurant with space for singles and couples to have a beer. I do have to upgrade the value meter for the food -- 4 spears of asparagus, 4 slices of proscuitto, shredded cheese, and a wallet sized grilled salmon = $20. At $17.50, the lobster pot pie was chock full of huge lobster chunks, but still just a pot pie. The fries are probably the cheapest thing on the menu ($5); it's decently sized and comes with some good dipping sauces. The beer is excellent, with the option of half pints for some. Pliny the Elder is great, but I think that was their only IPA or DIPA on tap, unless you count Deschutes Cinder Cone. Btw, major kudos for having an updated tap list online. Again, prices can skyrocket for the Belgians.

Overall: Honestly, I might come back with one person for a beer and fries, but not if I have 3+ in my group, and not for dinner.

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Photo of Murchmac
4.95/5  rDev +13%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 5

As foreigner sings "i've been waiting", i've been waiting for a beer joint like this to come into my life.

Went here for lunch today and knew it was going to be good just because I got parking right in front. If you're from out of town, bart goes two blocks away to mission and 16th, and the 14, 49 and 22 bus lines go right near it.

Walking into this classy place there are artsy pictures taken by the owner of bay area places and beyond (Sat near a picture of fenway park). The giant gothic/baroque bar piece backdrops the entire establishment. The wood is a very warm color and there are clean lines and very earthy themes throughout. The lamps on the bar are kinda cool along with a giant chalkboard to write what you want on.

Dress warm as the front door doesnt close all the way yet and it's kinda cold. Also, if you sit at a booth, the slats of wood that go over the bench can be uncomfortable after a while. The booths are pretty to look at though. I also love how under the bar there are hooks for your things.

On to the beer. It is an impressive list. Even 21 dollar, 1oz samples of utopia. They have many many local, national, and worldwide beers on tap and an extensive bottle list, explaining the style, the beers, prices, and abv. Everything from maredsous to olympia in a can. Many beers on nitro, which is mucho good.

Dont let the beer fool you, this is actually an organic, upscale, eatery, using local fresh ingredients with beer thrown in to compliment. All the food was amazing, and on the menu you were given a choice of 2-3 styles that pair well with that dish. I got the pan seared goat cheese with bruschetta and greens for an appetizer and a lobster pot pie for the main course. The food was better than the beer.

Overall this place kicks ass. It's a little expensive, I only got two beers, an appetizer and two meals and it was up around 60 bucks, but this place was well worth it. If you are near the area, you should go at least once.

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The Monk's Kettle in San Francisco, CA
Place rating: 4.38 out of 5 with 132 ratings