Vesuvio Cafe

vesuvio cafe san francisco historic bar
Image: Facebook/Vesuvio
EVERY DAY: 6 P.M. - 2 A.M.
415.362.3370 | WEBSITE

Opened in 1948, Vesuvio was the regular haunt of literary luminaries like Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg and hometown hero Lawrence Ferlinghetti. Its prestigious clientele and popular neighbor, City Lights Bookstore, attracts a fair number of out-of-towners, but you’ll find regulars a-plenty perched at the scuffed-up wooden tables, sipping on something hard in the afternoon (likely, over a game of chess or a half-drafted poem). Try to score the best seat in the house—the table by the upstairs window, overlooking Vesuvio’s distinctive painted sign.  

Known For
  • historic
  • day drinking
What to drink
A shot and a beer. Or, if you’re feeling adventurous, absinthe. Neal Cassady wouldn’t have it any other way.
North Beach
Weekend nights get crazy here, and not always in a good way. Vesuvio is best enjoyed in the afternoon—ideally, with a book from City Lights in hand. You can bring food in, so go on and make a day of it.