The Plant Café Organic

By Meesha Halm

The Plant Café Organic
“Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” With cocktails. Those opening lines from Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food (ok, not the cocktails) could just as well be the mantra behind The Plant, a stylish, all organic perch on the Embarcadero. This redesigned shipping warehouse deserves its Metropolis magazine Smart Environments award, and we give high praise to the raw, vegan, vegetarian, and sustainable fish and fowl options on the menu. FiDi workers dash in to the adjacent quick-service café for smoothies and sandwiches, but the restaurant really shines in the evening when fruit-infused rye replaces wheatgrass shots and the twinkling lights of the Bay Bridge turn it into a romantic lair. Oysters and pizzas make fine starters, but a faux “boudin noir” (sweetened wild rice stuffed into yuba skin and drizzled with carrot-tarragon puree) was a highlight on a recent chef’s tasting plate. The house-made lentil-mushroom patty—red and juicy from the addition of beets—saves the veggie burger from an otherwise bad rep. Gluten-free desserts such as raspberry cashew cheesecake are further proof that eating lower on the food chain doesn’t mean forgoing indulgences.

sweet seats

Perched directly on Pier 3, the waterfront patio (with roll up walls and heat lamps at night) is the place to be. Inside, the high communal table and low-slung zinc bar offers casual diners a peek of the wood-fired pizza oven in action.

chew on this

A six-kilowatt solar panel system installed on the roof provides the restaurant with approximately 30% of its electricity. So when you see the line on the menu “We use the power of the sun to cook your food,” they mean it.


lunch: Mon.–Fri. 11 AM–2:30 PM
dinner: Thurs.–Sat. 5:30 PM–10 PM; Sun.–Wed. 5:30 PM–9 PM
brunch: Sat.–Sun. 10 AM–2:30 PM

price range

$14 (Plant burger) to $22 (halibut)