13 Fabulous Christmas Dinners (+ Takeout) at Bay Area Restaurants
The Morris' chef Gavin Schmidt is pre-smoking his signature duck for you to roast at home. (Courtesy of The Morris)

13 Fabulous Christmas Dinners (+ Takeout) at Bay Area Restaurants


Seems like more Bay Area restaurants than usual are closing for the Christmas holiday—and who can blame them? It's been a tough year (or two).

But for those of you whose cooking skills amount to boiling water, there is hope: We've got a dozen restaurants in San Francisco, Oakland, and Marin that will be serving decadent feasts in their stylish dining rooms or packing it up to go.

Here are the best options for dining out or grabbing restaurant takeout on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day 2021.

Luce (Dining)

Chef Rogelio Garcia of Luce is whipping up a six-course tasting menu to celebrate Christmas Day. Kick things off with a sunchoke volute, followed by a course of Japanese shima aji crudo, and then a crispy skip John Dory fish with turnips, carrots, and Brussels (add black truffle tagliarini if you like). Entrees include a San Joaquin Valley roasted guinea hen and a 100-day dry-aged ribeye with yukon gold potatoes. End on a sweet note with a sticky toffee pudding. Golden osetra select caviar is available for $200 an ounce with blinis and accoutrements. // Dinner is $165 per person, reserve via OpenTable; 888 Howard St. #3011 (SoMa), lucewinerestaurant.com.

Villon (Dining)

Executive chef Jason Fox is serving a proper four-course Christmas dinner. Options of starters include a deviled egg with caviar, endives stuffed with squash, and a mortadella truffle tart, followed by antipasti or a smoked duck breast salad. Choose from two sophisticated mains—sablefish with crispy artichokes or thick roasted prime rib with potato puree and Yorkshire pudding—and save room for dessert (green apple sorbet with pecan streusel or warm chocolate cake). Christmas brunch more your thing? Morning and midday meals are offer from 8am to 2pm. Indoor and outdoor seating is available. // Dinner seatings $(115/person, $55/kinds under 12; $45/wine pairings) are available from 5pm to 9:30pm by reservation at OpenTable; Proper Hotel, 1100 Market St. (Civic Center), properhotel.com.

Cafe Zoetrope (Takeout)

Christmas dinner that includes focaccia bread and a bottle vino? Si, per favore! This North Beach mainstay is prepping meals for two ($84) for delivery and takeaway. You'll dig into crab and mushroom strudel, a roasted leg of lamb with spinach stuffing, butternut squash farro risotto, and crispy Brussels sprouts. There's an orange cake with olive oil, raisins, and roasted apples for dessert. // Place orders by Tuesday, Dec. 21st, for pickup or delivery from noon to 4:15pm on Dec. 23rd and 24th, via Tock; 916 Kearny St. (North Beach), cafezoetrope.com.

Alexander's Steakhouse (Takeout)

Got a few sides you love to make but need some help with your main? Alexander's to the rescue! The meat masters here are doing all the prep work on a seven-pound prime rib special so all you need to do is take-and-bake at home. They do include a few basic sides too, like mashed potatoes and green beans, plus au jus sauce and creamed horseradish for the beef. // The prime rib special ($395/serves six) is available to order by 5pm Friday, Dec. 17th, for pickup or delivery 1:30pm to 4:30pm on Christmas Eve, via Tock; 448 Brannan St. (SoMa), alexanderssteakhouse.com.

The Cavalier (Dining)

We love the moody, lux vibes of The Cavalier in regular times with it's dark wood finishes, marble tables and brass finishings -- so when it gets decked out for the holidays it really just gets that much better. Get ready for four courses of classic Christmas dishes includeing an amuse, appetizer, a few entree options, classic sides, and dessert. Exact menu is to-be-announced, but keep an eye on their website. Optional caviar service, cocktails and wine pairings will also be on deck. // Dinner is $100 per person, and $50 for children 10 and under. Reservations available from 11:30am to 8pm, reserve via Tock. 360 Jessie St. (SoMa), thecavaliersf.com

Café de la Presse (Takeout)

Bring a taste of French elegance home for the holidays. Café de la Presse is doing meals for two featuring lobster bisque, a salad of smoked duck breast and truffle vinaigrette (with optional foie gras), and beef wellington with pinot noir sauce and parsnip puree. Dessert is a melty, chocolate lava cake with a drizzling of raspberry sauce. // Dinner ($150) if available for pickup or delivery from 11:30am to 4pm on Christmas Eve when you order via Tock; 352 Grant Ave. (Union Square), cafedelapresse.com.


Having a cocktail party? These Mission mixologists have you covered. Pre-order trays (for six to eight people) of charcuterie, cheese, crudités and accoutrements, or step up your game with Chezchez's Feast of the Tinned Fishes, a medley of preserved tapas including mussels with tomatoes and tuna with onion jam that comes with nuts, olives, and dips ($195) and even cocktail spritz kits ($350) should your heart desire. Speaking of drinks, bottled libations, wine, and beer are also available for purchase, as well as Martini & Rossi gift packs. // Platters, sides, and tintins are available for ordering daily; Feast of the Tinned Fishes will be available with for takeout 12/21 through 12/2; pre-order at OpenTable; 584 Valencia St. (Mission), chezchezinsf.com.

Duende (Takeout)

Globetrotting non-traditionalists won't hate this Spanish feast starring a braised veal (a veggie option is available, too). Start with cabbage salad with Mahón cheese, anchovy-stuffed green olives and pistachios, then team your entree with potatoes au gratin and sautéed chard with leeks and garlic. Dessert is a rich pot de crème. Spanish wines, pitchers of mulled wine, and bottles of Spanish sherry are also available. // Dinner ($94/serves two, $30-$45 beverage pairings) must be ordered by Dec. 21st for pickup 11am to 4pm Christmas Eve; 468 19th Street (Oakland), 510.893.0174, duendeoakland.com.

Murray Circle Restaurant at Cavallo Point (Dining)

As at Thanksgiving, Sausalito's Cavallo Point has an array of decadent dining options for Christmas including brunch (7am to 11am), a four-course dinner (3pm to 9pm), and the grand buffet (4pm to 7pm). The prix-fixe option highlights gourmet fare such as lobster risotto torte, chestnut and apple soup, slow-roasted prime rib, Sonoma duck breast, and a roasted rack of lamb. If you're into the buffet, expect stations galore for soups, cheese and charcuterie, salads, and seafood including crab cakes, oysters, and prawns. There are also pastas, a carving station for pork loin and prime rib, countless sides, and several types of dessert. You'll be rolling home from this one. // Dinner ($115/person and $30/kids 2-12) and buffet ($149person, $65/kids) will be served by reservation only; 601 Murray Circle, Fort Baker (Sausalito), cavallopoint.com.

Lazy Susan (Takeout)

If Chinese food is your Christmas Day tradition, then Lazy Susan is your go-to this year. The Hayes Valley restaurant is teaming up with Kung Pao Kosher Comedy (Dec. 24-26) to offer holiday takeout and some virtual standup. The special four-course menu ($45) includes veggie potstickers, your choice of soup, garlic broccoli, white rice and, of course, Kung Pao chicken (plus an option for vegetarians and add-ons like chicken wings and chili hoisin green beans). The show—featuring comics Ophira Eisenberg, Jessica Kirson, Arline Geduldig, and Lisa Geduldig—can be streamed via Zoom and YouTube starting at 5pm; tickets are sold separately. // Dinner orders must be placed by Dec. 19th for pickup 3:30pm to 4:30pm or delivery 4pm to 5pm on Dec. 25th; meals are also available on Dec. 26th; 208 Fell St. (Hayes Valley), lazysusanchinese.com. Tickets for the show ($25-$50) can be purchased on cityboxoffice.com


Maison Nico (Takeout)

For Francophiles, no traditional Christmas would be complete without a bûche de Nöel, that fanciful Parisian pastry depicting a beautifully decorated branch. This year, Maison Nico debuts its version ($75), layered with chocolate, hazelnut, and pear. At about 10-inches long, it will easily serve eight to 10 guests. When you place your order, you can also opt in for duck pithivier ($85/petit, $105/grand) and a holiday pâté box ($65/feeds) complete with pickles and hazelnut financiers. Caviar, pastries, wine, and cocktail packs are also available. // Pre-order by Dec. 13th for pickup Dec. 23 -24 (as well as New Year's Eve); 710 Montgomery St. (Jackson Square) maisonnico.square.site.

The Morris (Takeout)

Chef Gavin Schmidt is pre-smoking his signature duck for you to roast at home. Pre-order half or whole birds plus root vegetables, charcuterie, a duck noodle soup kit, and chocolate pudding for dessert. // Order via ToastTab by Dec. 17th for pickup Dec. 23-24; 2501 Mariposa St. (Potrero Hill), themorris-sf.com.

Fog Harbor Fish House (Dining)

Fog Harbor does Christmas in true SF style with a Dungeness crab feast and festive holiday decor with bay views. Go in for the whole garlic-roasted crab, filet and lobster surf 'n turf, and seared scallop and crab risotto. After your meal, enjoy a walk along the Embarcadero to stave off that holiday food coma. // Dinner is priced a la carte, walk-ins only 11am to 9pm Christmas Day; Pier 39, (Embarcadero) fogharbor.com.

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