Bar, Beer-to-go

547 Haight St
San Francisco, California, 94117-3406
United States

(415) 863-2276 | map
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Photo of chrisjws
Reviewed by chrisjws from California

4.29/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 5
Cash only! Don't forget it!

Vibe is dingy dive bar. If you are expecting a modern, slick beer bar, go somewhere else. It's grungy, the tables are dirty, the bartop is worn and the lighting is barely there. The TV is playing movies, don't come here looking for sportsball. Young Frankenstein & Spaceballs were on during my visit. The entire bar sang along to Puttin' on the Ritz. If any of this puts you off, you aren't welcome anyway.

Selection is stellar, and prices are quite reasonable. Expect a lot of Russian River, a lot of great California breweries and some oddball gems.

Service is not great, but again, you don't come here for that.
Mar 27, 2024
Photo of VABA
Reviewed by VABA from Virginia

4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5
A great bar with the greatest beer memorabilia collection. The beer selection was incredible, covering all types of styles. Definitely a worthwhile stop to drink a few beers.
Oct 13, 2022
Photo of erosier
Reviewed by erosier from Connecticut

4.36/5  rDev +1.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5
Very cool spot with a great selection of beers and fun beer forward vibe. Enjoyed this place a lot. The vibe is an old school beer bar - dimly lit, a bit of a grunge vibe with, like other people said, very good music on the jukebox. The tap list was excellent, so many great beers, it's hard to choose. The service was good, we were there on a busier night but we got everything in a timely fashion. Overall, worth a stop if you're in the area.
Oct 06, 2022
Photo of Pivopijak
Reviewed by Pivopijak from Washington

4.16/5  rDev -3.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5
Loud, dark and small. Many craft beers on tap, via cash only policy. They were the first to get the word out on Russian River Brewing's double IPA , Pliny the Elder. They were playing very good indie rock, very loudly when I was there, then a favorite of mine from New Zealand came on, The Clean's "Point That Thing Somewhere Else", and sat there rocking out until that instrumental ended. The signs from Belgian and German breweries, add to the ambiance.
May 19, 2022
Photo of eluvah
Reviewed by eluvah from New York

5/5  rDev +16.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5
This is the greatest beer bar I have ever been in and I have been in a few. Sat at the bar, bartender was a great guy. Selection and quality was top notch. Fantastic music on juke box.
Feb 03, 2022
Photo of sfsunset
Rated by sfsunset

4.56/5  rDev +6%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5
Rad to be at 547, close the door, shut up, sit down, cash, libation, repeat, respect.
Sep 27, 2021
Rated: 4.17 by slasich from Pennsylvania

May 18, 2020
Rated: 4.55 by Montanabeerz from Montana

Nov 06, 2019
Photo of jophish17
Reviewed by jophish17 from Georgia

4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.75
Dive bar vibe, but the selection and quality of beers is incredible. Many local craft options including, yes, Russian River. Pints are poured perfectly and reasonably priced. Hard to beat.
Aug 21, 2019
Photo of RollTide7
Reviewed by RollTide7 from New Jersey

4.86/5  rDev +13%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5
Hands down one of my favorite bars. Rated service a down a bit as they can definitely be a bit surly, particularly if you don't know about beer or if you ask them for advice be prepared to tell them what you like. I've struck up good conversations with the bartenders and other customers on multiple stops in. One of the most reasonable prices for a pint of pliny you will find anywhere besides at Russian River itself. Also have a great selection of other quality brews, I tried moonraker last time I was in there.

Be aware that they also sell beer to go, i bought some plinys to go last time i was in there and the bartender gave me a pint can of alvarado minesweeper for free to try as well.
Mar 13, 2019
Rated: 4.11 by fehrminator from North Carolina

Mar 02, 2019
Rated: 4.22 by acurtis from New Jersey

Dec 25, 2018
Photo of VoxRationis
Reviewed by VoxRationis from New York

5/5  rDev +16.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5
I was in the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood of San Francisco and visited Toronado with a couple of friends on their recommendation. They warned me it was a bit of a "dive" bar, but honestly it is nothing of the kind. It is a rare bar that shows a real commitment to providing such a broad range of quality craft beers.

I was really impressed by the several dozens taps available and the additional range of bottled offerings. All served up fairly inexpensively with the friendliness of your local neighborhood bar. The walls, including the bathrooms, are covered with beer memorabilia, as is the entire space behind the bar. The crowd consists almost exclusively of real beer cognoscenti. I struck up a conversation with a couple of fellows for North Carolina and gratefully ordered their recommendation.

This place is a gem. If you are in SF, you should go to HA. If you are in HA, you should go to Toronado.
Oct 16, 2018
Rated: 4.28 by VashonGuy from Washington

Sep 04, 2018
Rated: 3.94 by sweetbrew82 from California

Aug 06, 2018
Photo of Thankin_Hank
Reviewed by Thankin_Hank from Texas

4.94/5  rDev +14.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5
This place was just GREAT! Bartender was a hippie looking dude who called us “civilized” because he got a decent tip. Gave me stickers for the beer fridge and a magnet. We were after a taste of the Russian River’s ‘Pliny the Elder’ and had a couple of pints after an Anchor Brewing tour and multiple tastings. The best part was the cool people we met. There was so much nostalgia it was really cool. A place I would love to go back to.
May 10, 2018
Rated: 4.48 by blisscent from Rhode Island

Mar 24, 2018
Rated: 4.46 by gspeer711 from California

Mar 23, 2018
Rated: 4.28 by Craft_Imperial from Pennsylvania

Feb 23, 2018
Rated: 3.2 by Richie_C_Johnson from Minnesota

Feb 16, 2018
Rated: 4.5 by RMW66 from Australia

Feb 16, 2018
Photo of remingtonsteele1987
Reviewed by remingtonsteele1987 from California

4.47/5  rDev +4%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5
Best dive bar in San Francisco. Dusty decor everywhere and the place smells of bad breath. Filthy bathrooms with hot water, soap and plenty of paper towels! Always a good thing. Can get some amateurs and yahoo's on the weekends, but overall the clients are great. The bartenders take care of the locals and anyone who appreciates good beer. Don't piss them off though. Can get busy and patience is essential. Beer selection and price are the best in the Bay Area, in my opinion. Beer is always served in a clean glass at the proper temp. A must for beer lovers!
Dec 23, 2017
Rated: 4.1 by Nrod from Argentina

Aug 23, 2017
Photo of mrcraft
Reviewed by mrcraft from California

4.43/5  rDev +3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25
Toronado is a craft beer institution in the Haight-Asbury neighborhood. It's an unique area with Victorian rowhouses, mixed in with eateries and other businesses. Parking can be tough because it's mostly limited street parking. Uber is probably a better means to get here if you're a visitor, like I was. As others have mentioned, it's cash only.

I visited after work, and it was pretty crowded, but the bartender was friendly and I was served quickly. I heard some bad stories but didn't experience any of it. The inside was split into sections. At the main entrance, you find the bar area with tables and chairs. There's then like a connecting area with some tables and space to enjoy your beers and mingle. And, then there's a third space, more open, lighter and maybe a tad quieter.

I went with a co-worker. She doesn't drink beer, so she was a trooper to hang out with me while I enjoyed my tart cherry sour.
Aug 12, 2017
Photo of lpteague
Reviewed by lpteague from North Carolina

4.88/5  rDev +13.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5
In town for business and I had heard that Toronado was the place in San Fran guaranteed to be serving Russian River. I walked from my hotel over to Toronado on Haight and Fillmore, keeping a close eye as I had heard it was easy to miss.

For a world class bar, this place is tiny and unassuming. For me (at 4:15pm on a Tuesday afternoon where I was easily able to find a stool at the bar), this was a good thing. I can imagine if I came at a more peak time it would be really frustrating trying to get a beer.

I had read reviews in advance and was fully prepared with my cash on-hand and was expecting a surly reception from the bartender.

The bartender (a delightful lady) was very pleasant and quick to take my order. She approached me in less than one minute, I ordered the Blind Pig, she poured in within another minute and I had paid and was enjoying my beer just like that. I followed that up with a Pliny the Elder (a requirement IMO) and a Drake's beer that the bartender actually helped me select based on its New England style.

I had a couple of pleasant conversations with guys at the bar that were just like myself - in town for a short period and looking to check one of the world's best beer bars / best beers off their bucket list.

Overall, it was an extremely pleasant experience. Even the music was enjoyable... mellow folk / rock and not the death metal I was expecting.

I don't doubt the horror stories I've read, so I would recommend that if you're planning to visit, try to hit an off-peak time to maximize the experience. Have your cash ready and have a good idea of what you want to start. After an efficient order and a nice tip, good chance the bar tender will help you out with some advice if you need it. Cheers!

Edited to add: I was lucky and hit happy hour - $1 off all pints. Blind Pig for $4 and Pliny for $5? That's insane to an East Coaster like myself. Wish I could have made an entire day of it.
Jul 19, 2017
Rated: 4.65 by daem3384 from California

Jul 06, 2017
Rated: 4.54 by miragetheautobot from Florida

Jun 21, 2017
Rated: 4.64 by Adamplus4000 from Wisconsin

Jun 21, 2017
Rated: 4.68 by Spoda1983 from Pennsylvania

Apr 26, 2017
Photo of IanBrock
Reviewed by IanBrock from Kansas

1.41/5  rDev -67.2%
vibe: 1 | quality: 1 | service: 1 | selection: 2.5
I went to Toronado because I'm into US craft beer, and I'd heard they have a large number of drafts. I was happy to find an English bartender, but things quickly turned bad. The bartender was abusively rude. Okay, okay, so get that attitude is this place's quirk, and it's what to expect, and that's sort of fine... until they start giving you the wrong order. The bartender served the wrong beer three times. The first time, he reluctantly poured a random other one for me. The second time, he swore at me, refused to replace it and verbally abused me, and the third time, he ignored me. Beer people will probably want to seek out this place, but they seriously shouldn't bother. I know Toronado is a chain, and I don't know what the owners think of all this. I'd love to be recommending this place to others, but I'll be doing exactly the opposite.
Feb 25, 2017
Rated: 4.97 by kylehay2004 from Illinois

Feb 05, 2017
Rated: 3.95 by 22Blue from Kansas

Feb 01, 2017
Rated: 4.36 by ha-sheem from North Carolina

Jan 17, 2017
Rated: 4.58 by CanConPhilly from Pennsylvania

Jan 01, 2017
Photo of SportsandJorts
Reviewed by SportsandJorts from Virginia

3.69/5  rDev -14.2%
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3 | selection: 4.25
Atmosphere: dive bar feel with overloaded walls of beer paraphernalia, loud music and slightly sticky feel. even in the evening on a weekday it was pretty busy and hard to get a good spot. not the greatest set up I've encountered for a bar.

Quality: no complaints on what they had to drink. offering the best of the bay-area. with some very hard to find bottles (for a price.)

Service: no real issues while I wasn't there but they certainly weren't the best/nicest workers there.

Selection: again their selection is tough to beat. nice variety of sours, ipas and stouts. everyone should be able to find something they like to drink here.

Overall: if you are looking for something rare and expensive in SF look no further than Toronado. If you want to have a good time and a great beer I'd recommend somewhere else. Also remaining cash only in a modern city is archaic, especially considering offering bottles of beer for prices well up into the triple digits. I had one beer and headed back down the road to drink elsewhere.
Dec 28, 2016
Rated: 4.44 by Eman17 from Illinois

Dec 11, 2016
Photo of flagmantho
Reviewed by flagmantho from Washington

4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5
I couldn't pass through San Francisco without visiting Toronado. The atmosphere is outstanding; just the kind of breweriana explosion that I love. 48 taps including 2 cask offerings were available when I visited, including lots of local beers and plenty from farther afield: Belgians and the like. The place was pretty full with the after-work crowd, but service was efficient nonetheless. Be advised: they are cash only, so be prepared for that. Toronado is a great place to hang out, and I wouldn't hesitate to return.
Nov 04, 2016
Rated: 4.45 by soze47 from Massachusetts

Aug 23, 2016
Photo of NickyDee21
Reviewed by NickyDee21 from Pennsylvania

3.03/5  rDev -29.5%
vibe: 2.25 | quality: 4 | service: 1.25 | selection: 4
Great draft offerings, though not much I would not be able to find on draft in my home of Philadelphia. Most of the more notable drafts would have been better had at the breweries that are within driving distance. Prices were good. The place is cash-only, but there is an ATM across the street. Place really loses points for the vibe and service. The staff there is horrible. It consisted of a bunch of rude, tiny, old men who treat customers as an inconvenience and literally did nothing to warrant a tip (yet seem to live by the saying, "Tip well, or GTFO."). The place also looks like a breeding ground for Cellulitis. I will never go back. I have heard much better things about the San Diego and Seattle locations, but not sure I would even risk it. On a positive note, I suppose it was kinda nice to be able to check this place off my beer bucket list.
Aug 08, 2016
Rated: 3.48 by SmokingWood from Connecticut

Jul 17, 2016