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Reviews

Nick’s Crispy Tacos/Rouge

Rouge_home

I’m afraid I must start this one on an unfortunate note – Nick’s Crispy Tacos (which is what I’ll call the combined entity of Nick’s and Rouge from here on out for simplicity’s sake) no longer has bottomless mimosas. The good news is they have carafes that are plenty cheap and tacos at reasonable prices, so you won’t have to break the bank to get in some solid hours of brunch.

For those who are unfamiliar with this legendary San Francisco establishment, Nick’s is on the corner of Broadway and Polk in Nob Hill. It’s dimly lit with big chandeliers and a lot of red velvet – a sort of self-aware kitschy vibe. Rouge is the name of the bar/club where you get your drinks, and Nick’s is a counter inside that makes food. For whatever reason, nobody ever calls it Rouge; it’s just known as Nick’s.

The Bottomless

No bottomless, but for $10 you can get a carafe of mimosas that’ll get you a solid five mimosas. The ratio is great – a bottle of champagne in each with a little OJ on top. There are also a number of other brunch specials on margaritas, micheladas and Bloody Marys if you want to mix it up.

The Food

Nick’s Crispy Tacos are well known because they’re some of the best in SF. Not really authentic, but the texture of the tacos and the quality of the ingredients make for great food. You’ll want to order your tacos Nick’s Way, which means made crispy (a hard shell taco wrapped in a soft shell taco) and with guacamole. I love the fried fish and fried chicken tacos, but they’re all great.

The Service

The folks at Nick’s are always nice, and the bartender was great for brunch. At one point he poured us a carafe, let us try it and asked if it was too light on the champagne – we weren’t going to say no to that, so he poured more into it and gave it back.

Overall

Nick’s Crispy Tacos are as good for brunch as they are for any other meal of the day, and cheap drinks and good service make this a nice place to have brunch. It’s definitely not your usual brunch spot, though, so keep it for a casual brunch with friends – nothing classy here.

Rating: 🍾🍾🍾

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Park Chalet

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Park Chalet brunch was one of my main inspirations for putting together this site. Not because it had an especially inspiring bottomless brunch – the opposite, in fact. I found this place an an old list of bottomless brunches in SF, and after we all trekked all the way across the city and waited to sit down at our table, our waitress told us that they no longer offer bottomless. Ergo, the need for an up-to-date bottomless brunch site.
Still, the ride had been long and I was hung over, so we decided to just buy drinks the old fashioned way. This made Park Chalet brunch one of our more expensive ones, but the food was great and the setting is lovely. Park Chalet shares a building with Beach Chalet (you’ll find both in Golden Gate Park across from Ocean Beach), so when you go inside you’ll want to head straight back. The restaurant lets in a ton of natural light and opens out onto a large lawn where you can sip your cocktails and wait for a table. There are also frequently live bands during brunch time, and it all adds up to a great experience.
The Bottomless
Nothing to see here, folks. 
Park Chalet is a brewery (in conjunction with its sister restaurant, Beach Chalet – apparently there’s also a Lake Chalet in Oakland, but I’m not willing to venture that far), so it’s worth trying their sampler of eight 4 ounce beers. They’ve also got some very refreshing specialty lemonades (blueberry pomegranate and guava strawberry) – technically they don’t have alcohol, but the fine folks there are more than happy to dump some vodka in for five bucks.
The Food
I had the fish and chips, which were light, flaky and fresh. Other selections included some calamari and poke to start – both excellent – and the crab roll, which was nicely buttery and rich. You’re by the water, so just make sure you get yourself some seafood and you’ll do just fine.
The Service
Our waitress definitely disappointed us by telling us of the demise of their bottomless, but it’s tough to hold that against her. She also asked about my hangover (which was severe) to the table, which got a laugh. Beyond that, she was quick to get us food and refills and generally pleasant.
Overall
It’s tough for me to recommend Park Chalet brunch given their lack of bottomless, but the place does have plenty going for it. There’s live music, great seafood entrees and some refreshing drinks, all in a beautiful setting. 
Rating: 🍾🍾🍾
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