Comstock Saloon 155 Columbus Ave./Kearny St., North Beach, (415) 617-0071.
Located on a corner, this saloon-bar has been open since 1907. Walking in the doors is like stepping back in time. Hanging from the high ceiling, old-time Asian paddle fans cool the air, and comfy oversize booths line the wall. Live music emanates from the hidden mezzanine, generally beginning around 7:30 p.m. and lasting for hours. GQ ranked this spot as one of the top cocktail bars in America, and my to-try drink list includes the Blood and Sand (Scotch, sweet vermouth, orange, and cherry liqueur) and the Cherry Bounce (Bourbon, cherry brandy, lemon, Angostura, Champagne). The menu is short but includes plenty of appetizers plus a burger, roasted chicken, and mushroom pot pie.
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images ©2016 Carole Terwilliger Meyers