Known as the “French 4th of July,” Bastille Day is widely celebrated, even in the U.S.A. Here are some of the best places to celebrate France’s Fête Nationale in San Francisco this year.
1. Visit Belden Place.
Belden Place is known as the French Quarter of San Francisco, where francophiles flock for restaurants, such as Cafe Bastille and Plouf. On Bastille Day, Belden Place goes all out! Guests will see French flags, streamers, balloons, and general excitement. The official website touts Belden Place as the place to be for Bastille Day.
2. Get groovy at the Bardot a Go Go Post-Bastille Day Dance Party (The Rickshaw Stop, 155 Fell Street, San Francisco).
On July 15th from 9-11 p.m., check out this 20 year running dance party at the Rickshaw Stop. The party will feature French music from the 1960s, with artists such as Brigitte Bardot and Serge Gainsbourg. The party will include groovy music videos, fancy drinks, and free ’60s hairstyling. The event is open to all ages, and tickets are on sale for $10. Funky attire is encouraged.
3. Visit the Bastille Day Block Party 2016 (Hosted by The Irish Bank Restaurant, 10 Mark Ln, San Francisco).
Taking up two whole city blocks, this party will feature outdoor bars, a DJ, and a New Years Eve-style ball drop. The event goes from 5 p.m. to midnight, and is free if you arrive before 5:30. Past 5:30, admission costs $10. Guests are encouraged to dress in bleu, blanc et rouge.
4. Dine at Café Claude‘s Bastille Week (7 Claude Lane, San Francisco).
Café Claude is a French restaurant that will celebrating Bastille Day in style. All week, the restaurant will feature live jazz music, prix-fixe menus, cuvée wine, and specialty cocktails (with names such as “La Victoire” and “1789”). Stop in for an evening of music and French cuisine.
5. Watch Ratatouille featuring the San Francisco Symphony! (Davies Symphony Hall, 201 Van Ness Avenue)
In honor of Bastille Day, take your kids to see Ratatouille at the San Francisco Symphony! All of the music from the movie will be performed live by the symphony, as the film is projected onto the big screen. This event will take place at 2 p.m. on July 16th and 17th, and tickets are available on the official website. This is the perfect way to celebrate Bastille Day with the whole family.
6. Get jazzy at the Mechanics’ Institute Bastille Day Celebration, Featuring Le Jazz Hot (The Mechanics’ Institute Library and Chess Room, 57 Post Street).
On July 14th from 7-10 p.m., the Mechanics’ Institute will feature Le Jazz Hot, a jazz combo group from the world famous Hot Club in Paris. The venue’s café opens at 6:30, and will offer French food and wine throughout the evening. Tickets range from $15-25, and are available here for a night of Parisian fun.
7. Try the special Bastille Day menu at the La Folie French Restaurant (2316 Polk Street).
La Folie is a critically acclaimed French Restaurant in San Francisco’s Russian Hill. For Bastille Day, they will be offering a special menu featuring items such as the “Louis XIV Beef Tenderloin” and the “Marie Antoinette Potato, Leek, and Truffle Terrine.” For $150 per person, guests can enjoy the high-quality prix-fixe menu.
8. Visit San Francisco’s oldest French bistro, Le Central (453 Bush Street).
Opened in 1974, Le Central is proud to be San Francisco’s oldest French bistro. They offer classic French cuisine such as filet mignon au poivre, and they feature a special menu for Bastille Day. Be sure to stop by for the best of classic French cuisine.