In case you didn't know, San Francisco is awash in tech money right now. That's good news for the local food scene, which now includes upscale versions of everything from doughnuts to hamburgers. Izakayas haven't escaped the influence—refined versions of Japanese pub food have popped up in the past few years at places like Izakaya Yuzuki in the Mission.
Roku, new on Market Street, keeps it straightforward, simple, and stick-to-your-ribs good, with homey interpretations of bar grub that appeal to both the pocketbook and the palate.
• Roku pot, a pork and chicken nabe with a rich soup base
• Torikawa ponzu, thin strips of fried chicken dressed with citrusy ponzu
• Gyu suji nikomi, slow-braised beef tendon with miso
• A special, panko-crusted fried shiitake mushrooms stuffed with seasoned pork
• The nijujyaga, a stew of thin sliced beef with stewed potato, onions, and carrot
Braised dishes seem to be the way to go at Roku, which embodies the earthy, affordable dishes of typical izakayas in Japan.
Roku [Upper Market]
1819 Market Street, San Francisco
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Photo from Izakaya Roku / Facebook