WELCOME TO TADICH GRILL
Located in the heart of San Francisco’s Financial District, Tadich Grill is the oldest, continuously run restaurant in California, and third oldest in the United States. We prefer to keep it simple. For your convenience we now take reservations for half of our seating and the remaining half will be available on a first come, first serve basis. If there is a wait, enjoy a beverage or appetizer at the bar – always fun!
We are easily accessible via BART, Cable Car, Ferry Boat, and Bus, but if you must drive, valet service after 5pm or nearby parking lots are available.
Casual to dressy casual is the norm for dress, however often times business attire is worn.
Looking for a place to host a private party? We reserve Sundays for your occasion – just call!
There’s really no place cooler than the Tadich Grill...everything’s good.
No matter what religion you are, you are not truly baptized until you have lunch or dinner at Tadich Grill.
Tadich Grill One of the World’s 10 Great Classic Restaurants Well Worth Visiting.
The menu of seafood, creamy casseroles and hearty stews may be the draw for many, but continuity and nostalgia is what brings most back day after day, week after week, year after year.
Few restaurants last 50 years, let alone 162... In a city known for cutting-edge restaurants, Tadich’s is old-fashioned, a nostalgic shrine to local piscine tradition.
I like this place! This is wonderful, I am ashamed we don't have something like this in New York.
In 1849, Nikola Budrovich, Frano Kosta, and Antonio Gasparich, three immigrants from Croatia, set up a tent on Long Wharf and posted a sign on it that read Coffee Stand. Long Wharf was a pier that reached half a mile into the Bay. Hundreds of sailing ships were tied up there, and the pier was lined with hastily built shops, saloons, markets, and gambling dens. Coffee Stand served fresh fish grilled over charcoal to the merchants, sailors, and argonauts who frequented the pier. At one point, a ship carrying a load of iron tied up at the pier, and the crew immediately deserted the ship to go off in search of gold. Shortly thereafter, the Coffee Stand tent was replaced by a shanty made of corrugated iron. At the time, the shore of San Francisco Bay lapped at the edge of Montgomery Street. But bay fill was expanding the city eastward, and Long Wharf was turning into an extension of Commercial Street. In this reclamation process, Coffee Stand was obliged to relocate to the New World Market, the city’s central produce market, at Commercial and Leidesdorff streets and was renamed New World Coffee Stand. Before long, success required larger quarters, and the Croatians moved their place to Commercial and Kearny and promoted it from Stand to Saloon.
In 1871, sixteen-year-old John Tadich arrived in San Francisco, after a long voyage from his home in Dalmatia on the Adriatic coast of Croatia. After a few years working in various saloons, he was hired as a bartender at the New World Coffee Saloon. When it moved again to 221 Leidesdorff, he went along, and, in 1887, he bought the establishment.
In 1882, due to a remark made by Alexander Badlam, Jr., San Francisco’s tax assessor, the New World Coffee Saloon acquired a new name. Badlam, running for reelection, bragged that it would be “a cold day” when he’d be defeated. He was soundly defeated, and the newspapers had a field day over his remark. Since Badlam was a regular at the New World, everyone began to call it the Cold Day Restaurant; the restaurant’s name when Tadich bought it. The 1906 earthquake and fire destroyed the place and, along with it, another nearby Croatian restaurant, the Adriatic, owned by John Sutich. Tadich and Sutich joined forces and opened a new Cold Day at 417, and later at 411 Pine Street and of course called it Tadich Grill, the Original Cold Day Restaurant. In 1912, Tadich dissolved the partnership and opened a new place at 545 Clay Street and called it, of course, Tadich Grill.
In 1913 Mr. Tadich hired a countryman, Tom Buich, as a pantryman. Five years later Tadich fired Buich for constantly trying to tell him how to run the establishment. But Tadich was a forgiving man and hired Tom back in 1923 as a waiter. By 1934, Tom and his brothers, Mitch and Louie, were the sole owners, and they revived the Coffee Stand’s practice of grilling fish over charcoal, using mesquite exclusively.
Once again, redevelopment forced the restaurant to move; this time, in 1967, to its present location at 240 California Street.
Tradition is as much a part of Tadich as is the kitchen. The Buich family still owns it and runs it. Employees serve loyal customers for generations. John “Duke” Dukich worked there as a waiter from 1924 to 1966, forty-two years. John Skorlich started waiting tables in 1939 and kept at it until he retired twenty-seven years later. John Markovich also served for twenty-seven years, 1943 to 1970. Several of today’s employees have been part of the Tadich Family for over 20 years. The restaurant has survived rough spots over the years: prohibition, the food shortages during World War II, and the 1989 earthquake. The evening of Loma Prieta, the restaurant shut as gas was turned off downtown. The next day we served cold crab, shrimp and prawn louies and seafood cocktails, and free Blood Marys to our many loyal customers who arrived on foot to make sure we were still standing. In August of 2009 thirteen fire trucks pulled up to combat a blaze that had started in the kitchen. The next day business resumed as usual. The Covid-19 pandemic forced the restaurant’s first closure in its history. However, while the restaurant was temporarily closed to dining for 55 weeks, take-out, delivery and online merchandise sales continued thanks to a loyal customer base.
Tadich Grill ownership and management pride themselves on a staff reflective of the rich heritage and tradition of the restaurant. Our servers know your name and our bartenders remember how you like your martini. Our Chef procures the freshest ingredients daily and prepares your order with the same care delivered over the past century and a half. Our guests deserve the best and that is what Tadich Grill consistently delivers.
Our Servers average 33 years in the industry and over 16 years with Tadich Grill. Our service is European Bistro Style. While you dine on white linen, the atmosphere is meant to be FUN – not stuffy. Service is swift once seated, in order to accommodate all of our guests; with our business clientele usually appreciating the pace.
The average Tadich Grill bartender has been a professional bartender for over 30 years and with Tadich Grill for over 17 years. Pouring drinks at this establishment is all about tradition and consistency. Tadich Grill is known for classic handmade cocktails such as Martinis, Manhattans, Negronis, Old Fashioneds, and Side Cars. Making these classics consistently is easy because of the number prepared day in and day out.
The average Tadich Grill cook has been working in the foodservice industry all their professional lives and for Tadich Grill for over 17 years.
Since the 1920’s, there have been only 10 Head Chefs at Tadich Grill. Mitch Buich became Head Chef in 1924. His brother Louie shared chef duties with Mitch until 1953. Mitch retired in 1961 and was followed by Dominic Ivelich, who began working for John Tadich in 1912. Dominic retired on January 21, 1966, and was succeeded by David “Garo” Sokitch, who remained until the same date in 1982. “Garo” Sokitch’s successor was John Canepa. When John retired in 1996, Fritz Braker took the position as Head Chef until 2003. Rajko Marin, after working as Sous Chef since 1981 for Chef’s Sokitch, Canepa, and Braker, took over the Head Chef position from 2003-2013 until his return to Croatia. Adriano Dela Rosa, who began as Sous Chef in 2000 has maintained the unsurpassed sanitation, food safety and quality of the kitchen as the current Head Chef of Tadich Grill.
The counter at Tadich Grill is primarily dedicated to serving parties of one or two during both lunch and dinner. The action is fast and the stools turn quickly; these are the best seats in the house.
“Imagine all the people living life in peace.”
John Lennon, 1971
Open Sundays for private parties only – call now to plan your event.
Monday-Friday 11am-2:30pm, 4:30pm-9:30pm
Sunday – Closed