Dive Bar Delicacies

Dive bars have always provided sustenance for their pickled patrons, from the salty popcorn that keeps them drinking to the beer nuts whose few nutrients keep them from dying, but several of SF's standout hooch-hovels are now putting out pretty exceptional food--think deep-fried pickles, pulled pork, oyster po'boys, fish tacos and alligator corndogs--and at dive bar-level prices, too; check 'em out.

(Photo: ICHI sushi at Bender's Bar and Grill)

Updated: April 28, 2009

Diving for delicious

Tee Off Bar and Grill

3129 Clement St., San Francisco, CA 94121

Inside this beat-down dive in the Outer Richmond, a former Kokkari chef cooks up high-end everyman food (pancetta burgers, bourbon-braised ribs, achiote pork), plus semi-exotic game like alligator soup and pan-seared kangaroo loin, all at prices PBR drinkers can afford. There's also a pool table inside and ping-pong on the back patio.

Yats' New Orleans Original Po Boys

2545 24th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

Deep in the armpit of the Mission, Yats itself is further hidden in the back of Jack's Club, which is full of the kind of pink-eyed, middle-aged drunks that make it a real dive bar. Walk right past them and belly up to the counter at Yats, which is known for the most authentic Cajun-Creole, N'awlins-style cooking--oyster, catfish and shrimp po'boys, crawfish etouffee and rustic jambalaya, plus plenty of non-seafood stuff--in the city, if not the entire state.

Bender's Bar & Grill

806 S Van Ness Ave, San Francisco, CA 94110

It might seem like an unlikely choice for dinner, but this Mission biker bar serves up fish tacos, beer-battered catfish, and "Yo-Yos" (the famous fried pickles from Weird Fish), Tuesdays through Saturdays, plus FREE BBQ on Sundays and tasty, ridiculously cheap sushi ($4 rolls, $3 Nigiri) from ICHI catering on Mondays, plus Bender's just opened their back patio--giddyup.