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Farmer Brown - 33 Reviews - 25 Mason St, San Francisco, CA 94102, San Francisco, CA - Restaurants Reviews - Phone (415) 409-3276

Farmer Brown

25 Mason St, San Francisco, CA 94102 (at at Market)
San Francisco, CA 94102
(415) 409-3276
Incorrect info? Correct your listing


Farmer Brown - San Francisco, CA
Farmer Brown - San Francisco, CA
Farmer Brown - San Francisco, CA


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They had me a mac & cheese... and boy was it gooooood! I usually despise fried food but after a few long hours of tossing back some brews in the sun I obliged. Between the 5 of us...


The atmosphere is great, the food is great and the staff is so-so. For the neighborhood that it's in, they should have a BIG bouncer at the door to keep out and filter the riff-ra...

Best Fried Chicken 7/19/2010

They had me a mac & cheese... and boy was it gooooood! I usually despise fried food but after a few long hours of tossing back some brews in the sun I obliged. Between the 5 of us we had 3 orders of fried chicken and mac & cheese and 2 orders of shrimp and grits. Safe to say there wasn't a morsel of food left at the end. Highly recommend this place (despite the highly questionable neighborhood) more

Best.Fried.Chicken.EVER! 7/16/2010

This is the best fried chicken I have ever had. If you are a fan of southern food, this is the only place you should go in San Francisco. The restaurant not only has a great atmosphere, but the food is authentic. more

best soul food brunch in town 6/1/2009

This spot has the best soul food in town and their brunch spread has grits to die for - love the music and staff - just don't go with a headache unless you plan to drink it away! Also, don't let the hood keep you away or you'll miss a real treat. Pros: live jazz Cons: very loud more

Great Food! Unsafe Environment!!!! 9/12/2008

The atmosphere is great, the food is great and the staff is so-so. For the neighborhood that it's in, they should have a BIG bouncer at the door to keep out and filter the riff-raff as this restaurant is in the Tenderloin or the 'Tender K*@b"" as some of us call it in SF. I've been there several times, however, a patron got her purse stolen. Now, I don't know if the owner/manager compensated the couple their drinks and meals for a miserable stay at their restaurant, but when I left, I realized that there isn't a single camera nor any solid security for a place that has a 'nightclub' vibe in the middle of a compromised neighborhood! The mix of people present is great! But when you step a toe outside the door, you're surrounded by prostitues, dealers of illegal substances and other bonafide thugs. Sure, one must always be careful when they are in public and think about their public safety, but I think the ownership really needs to step up their game for keeping creeps out of the place!! The theft of that woman's purse last week really ruined my experience at that place. You just don't feel safe! I would have given this place 4-1/2 stars, but that experience took it down to 2. I still recommend this place, but bring your own bodyguard, because management doesn't seem concerned about your safety while dining in their establishment. Pros: Great bar menu of small plates and appetizers; drinks excellent; great full menu Cons: They need a bouncer to screen out jerks and theives or at least catch them on the way out. more

Great Party Scene in the Tenderloin! 4/19/2008

Wow! You wouldn't have guessed it by looking at the outside of this place that it's a happening place to be. You're in the middle of the Tenderloin, and the place looks pretty dumpy from the outside, but that's where it's deceiving! Pros: COCKTAILS! Ambiance, people Cons: Service average more

Inconsistent 4/14/2008

Update* 9/18/07 Well, to be honest, they have been sliding downward in both food quality and service....No... more

Inconsistent 4/14/2008

Lara Provided by Partner
Update* 9/18/07 Well, to be honest, they have been sliding downward in both food quality and service....No lie, the last 8 times I have been the... more

Its o.k. 2/26/2008

I heard all the hype and wanted to try it out. We went in and sat at the bar the bartenders were kind of nice but also not very helpful. I ordered a beer and they said the keg was shot so they gave me half a beer and said they would give me the rest when they changed it, they said they would change it when they had time. There were two bartenders and 4 customers at the bar. Needless to say they never changed it and they charged me for a whole beer. The food was REALLY salty, I wonder if the chef smokes? Probably won't go back. I really like the atmosphere though. more

Great ribs 8/21/2007

The ribs here were delicious: seasoned well, and the meat fell right off the bones. The portions were smaller than I would have expected for the price, but overall a good meal. more

Ambiance is Nice, However Food is Not Worth the Price 6/21/2007

Cons: I had dinner with friends this past Tuesday night, I ordered the fried chicken and macaroni. The fried chicken was so salty. I thought I'd avoid the skin to avoid the salt, well the chicken must have been brined because the meat also was extremely salty. The macaroni was not as cheesy and creamy as you'd think soul macaroni cheese to be, it actually had some cayenne pepper dusted on it giving it a kick so that was interesting but not what you'd expect. The portion was also pretty paltry and dish was expensive. It's sad to say, but I would've been better off ordering fried chicken and macaroni at KFC and got better tasting-food for a better deal. My friends agreed. The overall space by the bar while waiting for a table was really tight. The location is in the area of Civic Center where it starts to get real shady. The grits and biscuits (side dishes we ordered and shared) were good, but nothing to boast about or charge $5. more

Good times to be had inside 5/25/2007

The location is a little sketch- but don?t let that deter you. From the moment you walk in- Farmer Brown is a real treat. The atmosphere was festive and populated. The decor, and great attention to detail, helps set the mood / era: Mason jar water glasses, cucumber water, maple butter and fresh (warm) corn muffins. (We like them so much we ordered another basket). Our food was delicious and reasonably priced for the quality / quantity. I had the grilled pork chop with mashed potato-plantain, shredded cabbage and sweat syrup. YUM. I didn't want to share- but knew I would have to, if I wanted any of my husbands fried chicken. Pros: Good food, Clever details Cons: Neighbourhood- it is what it is more

Great place for drinks! Food has improved! 5/11/2007

I've been going to Farmer Brown since the beginning. The food originally was awful and disappointing! I had been going back just to hang out at the bar. Imagine my surprise when a friend ordered their food (against my strong wishes) and it was actually good! I've been back a few times since and I have to admit this restaurant has seriously improved! Glad I keep going and got a second chance at the food. It's still not authentic soul food (I stick by my soul food fusion label) but it's good. I'm also impressed that this restaurant purchases from African-American farmers. Pros: Great drinks and social scene Cons: Little pricey for soul food more

Excellent Southern Food and awesome Wines by the glass by quality and Price! 4/21/2007

I went here last night and found it was very busy, however, the service was excellent, Nahill, was on top of it the whole time - and very knowledgable. We started w/ 2 specialty cocktails that were delicious, then had wine by the glass - both great, a vermentino and a riesling with our poppers appetizer. He had the catfish which was better than Louisianna (and he's from there and an excellent chef) - lightly battered and seasoned with greens and yams. The yams were a little sweet so better at the end. I had the fried chicken, well we shared it - very good. Not as good as he makes it, but some of the best in San Francisco by far! And we both loved the mac and cheese, which was baked and then finished with shredded cheese - I don't know where the last review came from? Loved it and then finished w/ a delicious pecan pie. Pros: Southern Food, Price and Wines by the glass!!! Cons: noisy but fun more

This isn't soul food 11/20/2006

This food was not even close to comfort food. I made the mistake of taking my mother here, who happens to cook very delicious soul food. She laughed. The dishes on the menu that vaguely relate to soul food are not prepared well. For example, the macaroni and cheese was just noodles with grated cheese on top! That's it! I could do that at home, but better. Overall, go here for drinks but not the food. Pros: Cute atmosphere, good location, good drinks Cons: not really soul food more

Great Comfort food! 11/16/2006

My friend and I had the roasted chicken with fennel/grape stuffing, pork chop with an awesome walnut cabbage salad and the cheddar mac and cheese (with quite a zing to it!). I found the service to be very pleasant, the vibe energetic and the portions extremely generous. Pros: The chicken, mac and cheese and pork chop! Cons: If you sit by the door, a draft is very apparent. more

horrible service!!!!!!!!! 10/25/2006

We saw an add about this place's Southern Cooking and went to try it out. What a dissappointment. We got there 10 minutes before the posted closing time and asked the door man if they were serving dinner before we went in. When we walking in the door no one greeted us or even gave us eye contact. We assumed that it was self seat so we grabbed a seat in the area we saw the most people seated. We waited another 10 minutes without any service so my husband decided to go to the open kitchen to ask them if they were still serving dinner. They replied, ""ask your server"", g how come we didn't think of that, oh yeah maybe because no one evened looked at us before we waved down the server. She then dropped off a glass of water and went on her way again without even dropping off a menu. After 20+ minutes of nothing we decided to take our business else where. Before we left, we told the helpful doorman a little bit about our service and he insisted that we talk to a manager. The manager came out and introduce his self and we then told him about our experience. To our surprise he wasn't even paying attention to our feedback. If we new the manager didn't even want to hear about what was going on why waste our time. Just like this entire experience. Farmerbrown across the board a wasted experience. more

Good Concept; Needs Work 10/17/2006

I loved the concept of a casual soul food place, but I admit I was a bit disappointed with this restaurant but I have high hopes that this relatively new restaurant will be able to turn it around. First of all, the watermelon margarita I had was bland. Second, the menu was a bit limited (I was surprised there was no mac & cheese, collard greens or corn, etc. on the menu). Third, while we waited for our fried chicken we were offered muffins, but they were cold and mediocre. Finally our chicken came, but each of us got it at different times and one person got undercooked chicken. Fortunately, the chicken was quite good - but it wasn't so good that the other problems could be overlooked. The service was nice and friendly, but overall the restaurant needs to improve its food offerings, service and coordination with the kitchen. Random tip - the restaurant has a cute interior (like being in a barn or something), but it's not in a particularly good part of town. Pros: Good Fried Chicken Cons: Limited Menu; Uncoordinated Between Waitstaff and Kitchen more

MAJOR LETDOWN!!! 9/22/2006

Was looking forward to dining here for quite awhile. Went to Farmer Brown on a Thursday night. Bartender was extremely short with our party, as well as several of the patrons sitting near us. The hostess was very kind, but waitstaff was HORRIBLE!!!! My husband and I had the iceberg salads and the black eyed pea soup, which were very good, and later split the fried chicken--again good. However, we were basically invisible to the waitstaff, though we tried several times to attract our server's attention when she passed out table. Our drinks were finally refilled when one of the table bussers noticed our empty glasses lining the edge of the table and took our order himself (thank you to him!!). Our server did finally approach our table ONCE near the end of our meal--to apologize for not bringing us plates (my husband and I ate off of the same plate) and bring our check. Pros: fried chicken, black-eyed pea soup Cons: HORRIBLE service ruins entire experience more

Misses the mark 9/8/2006

My best friend and I went to farmer brown based on the fact that he had heard it was a soul food restaurant. I should have read the CitySearch reviews first. We went on a Friday night and the restaurant and bar area was packed (I highly recommend reservations). Based on the crowd in side we began to realize that this was not going the the soul-food experience that we had anticipated. The drinks from the bar were good and strong. Once we were seated and flipped through the limited menu and all we saw on the menu that was related to soul food was fried chicken, pulled-pork sandwich, mac-and-cheese, a po boy sandwich, gumbo and some desserts. We order the ribs and appetizer and the fries. The ribs were good but the fries arrived cold so we sent them back for another plate of the ribs. He had the pork chop, greens and mac-and-cheese and I had the steak. The steak and pork chop were average, the greens were swiss chard with a sweet glaze and not collard greens, and the (small portion of) mac-and-cheese was just the right size because it was not good. On the positive side, the wait staff was great. They were very friendly and attentive. When I think about soul-food I think about comfort food and I just did not feel it. If you are a fan of soul food, as I am, skip this restaurant. This is California cuisine meets Soul-food and the Soul gets lost in the mix. If I look beyond my disappointment regarding the lack of soul, I would say that overall this is a very average restaurant with nothing unique enough to make me want to recommend it. Pros: Strong drinks, close parking, great staff Cons: Area, Not real soul-food, limited menu more

Very dissappointing.... 9/6/2006

I've been looking forward to going to this place for some time now. As it came highly recommended by some friends. Our first atttempt was interrupted by the ""walk ins welcome"" over the phone greeting, only to get there and find there was a two hour wait. So we left and decided to try another night and make a reservation. I'm really glad we did!! I can't begin to describe how upset I would have been if I waited two hours for an extremely sad attempt at soul food. First things first, I found myself terrified of the neighborhood and the overly helpful homeless man who tried to help me park in a no parking zone. Upon entering the night club, I mean restaurant, the atmosphere was entirely too loud. However, we were sat promptly. The staff was great, very friendly, etc. The shrimp cakes were okay, no complaints really. The lettuce wedge salad also okay. After about 30 minutes we received our entrees.......and the reason for going......Fried Chicken, with macaroni and cheese and some watercress leaves or something like that, accompanied by our sides, scalloped potatoes and sauteed greens. The first thing I noticed was how small the pieces of chicken were. Then how small the portions of mac and cheese and the two or three leaves were on the plate. Anyway, I immediately dove into the mac and cheese, I still regret that decision, the taste still lingers. Next the greens......I still don't know what I just encountered. Not like any greens I've ever had or ever wanted. Could the scalloped potatoes make up for the other two.......absolutely not!! They were the worst of all!! I do have to say though, the chicken was great! And the three tiny pieces I had were a great appetizer. Needless to say 70 dollars later, we left the restaurant, braved the streets of the tenderloin, paid 8 dollars to get my car out of prison and off we went to Subway. As for my friends that recommended this place....they are from CA and didn't know any better. Pros: shrimp cakes, chicken Cons: mac and cheese, scalloped potatoes, greens more
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Menu for Farmer Brown

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  • This place serves soul food--made all the more soulful by being organic, and locally sourced from black-owned farms wherever possible--and specialty drinks with fresh-squeezed exotic juices to a...

  • 9/11/2008 Provided by Citysearch

Additional information

  • Hours:

    Sun.-Thu. 5-11 p.m.; Fri.-Sat. 5 p.m.-midnight.; Sat.-Sun. 10 a.m.-2:30 p.m. brunch.
  • Payments:

    Visa, Master Card
  • Neighborhoods:

    Northeast, Tenderloin