The Top 6 Restaurants in San Francisco for the High & Hungry
Under attack by crazy cravings? It’s time for… Munchie Madness
Smoking marijuana produces side effects such as red eyes, dry mouth, and an increased appetite. That last one is colloquially called “the munchies,” which occur because of THC — short for tetrahydrocannabinol — the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.
The overwhelming cravings plague many stoners, and while some potheads prefer to light up behind closed doors — and delivery services, for food and pot alike, make the stay-at-home high much more tolerable — other smokers are social and toke up at a lounge or on the go, thanks to the various dispensaries San Francisco has to offer.
Storefronts and lounges can be found in nearly every neighborhood, making pot purchases more convenient than ever for the hungry pothead. We’ve crafted a list of the six best munchie restaurants within a five-minute walk of some of the city’s most revered dispensaries.
Dispensary: Sparc (1256 Mission St.) This one-stop-shop is a favorite among potheads because of its wide selection of products, weekly in-store events, and top-notch delivery service. With a clean aesthetic akin to that of the Apple store, Sparc also offers a vape lounge where customers can rent Volcano equipment, or bring their own vape-only devices.
Restaurant: The Market (1355 Market St.) Five-minute walk, $11-$30, Mexican, seafood, pizza.
Hours: Monday – Sunday, 8:30 a.m. – Midnight.
Located on the bottom floor of Twitter’s headquarters is the Market, a plaza of eateries from all parts of the globe. Serving options as diverse as Mexican tacos, tapas, oysters, and sushi, it offers daily food specials as well as a hot bar and grocery items. There’s something for everyone at the Market, no matter the craving or price range.
Why It’s Great: “There are endless options at the Market, and it’s convenient to be able to visit one place that fits all of my food needs. If I’m super-stoned, I can food-hop and pick up a pizza, and something different, like a poke bowl.” — Steven, a patron
Standout Dish: Tacos (from Taco Bar), which run at three for $11 every day, or $2 each on Tuesdays, 2-5 p.m.
Dispensary: The Green Door (843 Howard St.) One of San Francisco’s first dispensaries draws a large line for its storefront, though the spot’s real breadwinner is its plush smoking lounge. Located one door down and a couple floors up from the shop, Lounge8four7 is the newly remodeled club open to customers of the Green Door. They allow smoke in the lounge and have space available for rent for private parties.
Restaurant: Box Kitchen (431 Natoma St.) Four-minute walk, $7-$11, American.
Hours: Monday – Friday, 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.; 4:20 p.m. – 1 a.m.; Saturday and Sunday, noon – 2 a.m.
Tempest is a beloved local dive bar that is perfect no matter what time of day. Their restaurant, Box Kitchen, serves food inside the bar as well as on its own — directly from a window facing the street. Stay entertained by their pool table and big-screen TV, and keep the night going with classic bar bites with a New American twist, cold brews, no-frills cocktails, and alcohol, straight-up.
Why It’s Great: “This place has everything you’d want from a bar, except the food is kicked up a notch. Artisanal ingredients and creative dishes make for fresh, restaurant-quality food that keeps the aesthetic of the bar, without compromising on cheap drinks.” — Randy, a regular
Standout Dish: Potato skins, which are dressed with rich ingredients like pork belly, gouda, and quail egg ($10).
Dispensary: Shambhala (2441 Mission St.) Located in the heart of the Mission, this not-for-profit cannabis collective has a wide variety of products for sale. It also has amazing deals like the occasional two-for-one ounce special. Though this dispensary doesn’t have a lounge, it’s accessible by public transportation and even has glassware for purchase.
Restaurant: Mateo’s Taqueria (2471 Mission St.) One-minute walk, $7-$12, Mexican.
Hours: Monday through Wednesday, 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.; Thursday, 11 a.m. – 10:30 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Just a few doors down from Shambhala is Mateo’s Taqueria, one of Mission Street’s newest residents. The restaurant has a funky, colorful interior with bright walls and modern art. The menu features Mexican street food, ranging from traditional tacos to gourmet burritos.
Why It’s Great: “Mateo’s has a friendly atmosphere and great-tasting food that extends beyond its home region to bring amazing and affordable eats to the best street in the city for that cuisine.” — Megan, a patron
Standout Dish: Dulce Diabla burrito, which comes with carnitas, plantains, and chipotle sauce ($11).
Dispensary: Purple Star (2520 Mission St.) This dispensary is one of the smallest in the city, with a homegrown feel and affordable flower, but Purple Star also has a friendly staff and quality products. You’d never notice it walking down the street, since it’s next to the popular line-out-the-door rooftop-bar El Techo.
Restaurant: Loló (974 Valencia St.) Four-minute walk, $10-25, Mexican.
Hours: Monday through Thursday, 5:30 p.m. – 11:30 p.m.; Friday, 5:30 p.m. – 1 a.m.; Saturday, 11:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. – 1 a.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Though Loló is the priciest restaurant on this list, patrons won’t find themselves spending much on its neighboring dispensary. Take those extra bucks saved and go out for a nice night at this upscale dinner spot. The hip decor and ambient lighting make for a perfect date spot, and the range of options — from tapas-size to full-scale — can make for a diverse and delicious meal.
Why It’s Great: “There’s a colorful energy here that matches the flavorful ingredients found in our food. The vibrant environment is really warm and perfect for a night out with our bar or ideal for a cozy date.” — Sarah*, the hostess
Standout Dish: Taco tropical, with breaded shrimp on a jicama tortilla ($10).
Dispensary: The Apothecarium (2029 Market St.) This well-known dispensary just opened in its new location, a few blocks from its old home, showing off a brand-new and much larger storefront. Though still without a lounge, Apothecarium stands as one of the city’s classiest joints, now with more floor space and comfortable waiting room chairs.
Restaurant: The Myriad (2175 Market St.) Four-minute walk, $5-$12, sandwiches, crepes, poke.
Hours: Monday – Sunday, 8:30 a.m. – midnight.
Market hall-style spots are currently trending, and this Castro location offers one of the city’s more diverse collection of eateries. Patrons can enjoy coffee and a juice bar, or chow down on BBQ, sandwiches, crepes, sushi, or poke bowls.
Why It’s Great: “There’s a variety of options here, all under one roof. From coffee to cocktails, and poke to crepes, you can look around and pick what entices you, and even entertain yourself with pinball games.” — Henry, a bartender
Standout Dish: Poke bowl from Poke Delish, $12 for three types of fish and unlimited toppings.
Dispensary: Grass Roots Non- Profit Collective (1077 Post St.) As the older sister of SoMa dispensary Barbary Coast, Grass Roots is an up-scale stop that makes shopping more of an experience than an errand. Would you expect anything less from Nob Hill’s only storefront dispensary?
Restaurant: The Chairman (670 Larkin St.) Five-minute walk, $5-$10, Taiwanes.
Hours: Monday through Sunday, 8 a.m. – 10 p.m.
The popular San Francisco food truck has a brick-and-mortar location in the Tenderloin, bringing a new wave of fusion food to an area defined by traditional Asian restaurants. The restaurant is all about buns, with bao or baked versions as the base, and an assortment of protein to choose from.
Why It’s Great: “We focus on flavor when making our dishes, and we want to make it stand out. We really try to touch on a spectrum of sweet to salty, balancing the dishes in a way that produces an incredible and unique taste.” — Curtis, founder
Standout Dish: Coca Cola-braised pork buns, $4 and up.