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- 51%Local Culture
- 51%Green Travelers
- 51%Art & Design Lovers
- 51%Budget Travelers
User Reviews (27)Write a review
- Brenda's French Soul FoodMember ofLocal CultureOutdoor EnthusiastsBudget Travelers+ 9Nov 09, 2013
My taste buds were blown away! My friend and I ordered the watermelon sweet tea, crawfish beignets, and the hangtown fry. The tea was so refreshing. The crawfish beignets were big; I thought they were a bit too spicy for my taste but still delicious. I didn't know what crispy oysters were and was amazed! They were breaded and crunchy, cool! It was amazing. Definitely get the grits and biscuit! Best grits I've had so far and the biscuit was crispy on the outside, fluffy on the inside.Recommended for
- Brenda's French Soul FoodCommunity ManagerMember ofLocal CultureOutdoor EnthusiastsFoodies+ 5Sep 04, 2013
I just LOVE Brenda's beignets and po'boys so much! The beignets are TO DIE FOR. We ordered the beignet flight, which consisted of 1 of each of the following: Plain, Filled with molten Ghirardelli chocolate, Granny Smith Apple with cinnamon honey butter and Crawfish with cayenne, scallions and cheddar. All 4 for $8. We ate them in that order, starting with the crawfish beignet. It was the most amazing beignet I had ever eaten. Ever. I'd never even had a savory beignet before, and I wasn't sure if I'd like it, but it was absolutely the most scrumptious thing. My next favorite was the apple beignet. Oh, that thing was better than any apple pie I'd ever had. Surprisingly, the chocolate one was only ok for me. I'm so glad we ordered the sampler, because I would've gone straight for the chocolate one. The plain, was, well, plain, but still very good!
My fried shrimp po'boy sandwich was huge. But I managed to finish almost all of it because it was so tasty! The fries it came with were also very crisp and delicious. I asked for a side of pesto buttermilk dressing to dip the fries in - a must!
Don't forget to get some freshly made watermelon iced tea. It is so refreshing!
Luckily, we didn't have to wait at all for a table in this tiny little place, where Brenda is in plain sight cooking in the kitchen. It's a tight squeeze, so make sure you don't wear any low-rider jeans if you happen to sit at the counter.Recommended for
- Brenda's French Soul FoodJul 29, 2013
Brenda's doesn't take reservations, so try to get there earlier. We got there around 6 and didn't have to wait at all. The crawfish beignet is salty, spicy, and flavorful. It's a good portion, so 1 is enough for 2 people to share. The broiled oysters are also huge with 3 or 4 oysters in each serving. I liked the Orleans style more than the Tchoupitoulas style. I would highly recommend trying the chicken, sausage, and okra gumbo. It's really tasty and not overly salty like i thought it would be. In terms of the entrees, the shrimp and grits was good, but had too much cheese for me. I did like the grits though. I would go with the fried chicken instead. It comes with 1 of Brenda's famous biscuits (huge, buttery, and oh so good!). The chicken itself was also tasty. The staff is attentive and friendly.
- Brenda's French Soul FoodApr 18, 2013
Been here a few more times after my original review. I know!! In such a short span. I really need to branch out in my foodie adventures, but the last few times in the city, shrimp and grits is all I've craved!!
This last time, my fellow foodie friend and I arrived a little after 3PM. WAY after the crazy brunch rush and scored a parking spot right in front AND no wait to be seated! SCORE!
However, they had an in between menu from 3PM-5PM, no specials. BUT they still had shrimp and grits. Hollaaaaa :) So, between the two of us, we ordered: Shrimp and grits, their shrimp po'boy sandwich with extra grits, the beignet platter, and their cornbread. Nomnomerz! We pretty much devoured most of the food. I know, us girls work hard, work out harder, but can still pack the heat out side the kitchen and into our food lovin' bellies. And with satisfied bellies we did. Oh, and the watermelon ice tea was also very refreshing. Not too sweet, just the way I like it!
I must say, coming here without the rush definitely made the beignets taste so much better! I think it's cause they had more time to make these little suckers, but oh man, they were SO freakin' yummy this time around! My favorite is still the chocolate with the original and apple close contenders. The crawfish is still really good, but something with me and the idea of beignets as dessert turned into something savory has never been something that made my mouth water. Still good though don't get me wrong!
But for now Brenda's, I bid you adieu as there are other SF establishments that require my taste bud a'tasting services.
- Brenda's French Soul FoodMember ofFoodiesFeb 28, 2013
One of my favorite brunch spots in the city. I've been back several times and each time I leave full and satisfied. A lot of people are fans of their grits and although I'm not a fan of any grits in general, I do highly recommend it. It's actually one that I would eat because it didn't taste plain and boring like most grits. I always get one of the Benedicts such as the cat fish or the fried chicken. Both the cat fish and fried chicken are lightly fried, yet really crispy and they come out on a fluffy biscuit. I could just sit there and dip the biscuit in gravy all day and I'd be a happy camper! Even with the big portions, when we go in a group we're still greedy heffers where we have to order a beignet flight or pancakes! The crawfish beignets are to die for! Those are the items you have to order if you make a stop in. I've had the omelettes but they didn't stand out like any of the above previously mentioned. Good thing is they're opened pretty much all day so any time is a good time for breakfast!
- Brenda's French Soul FoodJan 07, 2013
Warning: Brenda's serve Brunch menu til 3pm and starts serving dinner menu at 5pm. I didn't know this information beforehand so my review is solely based on their brunch menu.
I've always wanted to go to Brenda's ever since I saw a friend of mine post some food pics from Brenda's on fb. Then I looked up Brenda's on yelp and I was in shock! Almost 3000 reviews and Brenda's had solid 4 stars! Last but not least, it was SOUL FOOD. With all that in mind, Brenda's easily became one of my must go location.
After waiting for about a year, I finally made a trip to norcal to visit my college roomie and she was kind enough to take me to Brenda's. I was so stoked! Once we got there, we waited for about 25 mins for party of four. I was expecting to try some of their dinner platter but was bummed out when I realized they were only serving brunch menu when we were there. That's the reason for -1 star.
Anyway, I ended up order a cup of gumbo, shrimp & grits, and crawfish beignet. My favorite dish was definitelyyy the crawfish beignet! Ohmygod, it's so good. It's a savory beignet with oozing cheese inside with some scallions and little bits of crawfish. The beignet has dusted paprika seasoning around the surface and it enhanced the flavor. I think I would easily eat 2 beignets next time hah
Shrimp & grits was also great! It gets heavy towards the end of the meal because of all the cheese but flavor wise it's so good. It was my first time trying grits but it wasn't bad at all! Think of porridge but the grit is a lot smaller than a rice grain so you can hardly taste the mushyness. Oh and the shrimp in the gritz is so good! It's seasoned well that I wish I can order a plate of their seasoned shrimp separately.
Gumbo had bits of okra and andouille sausage so it was tasty. Brenda's Gumbo definitely tasted like traditional gumbo and it was like a comfort food to me. Nice warm soupy-rice dish with good flavoring can never go wrong!
All in all, I was satisfied with my trip to Brenda's but next time I'll go during their dinner menu. :)
- Brenda's French Soul FoodJan 04, 2013
Brenda's is my go-to spot for a delicious rampage on my arteries. It's good old-fashioned soul food with a welcome twist that will leave wonderful impressions on your tastebuds. The wait is long for weekend brunch, but the food is definitely worth it.
I've had Brenda's countless times and every dish is as good as it sounds. My personal favorite is the fried catfish eggs benedict, which is heavier than anything you've ever had, but packs so much buttery fried goodness that you completely forget that you're essentially swallowing sticks of butter and shots of oil into your bloodstream.
The crawfish beignets are also not to be missed. Granted the beignets are not as light and crispy as beignets should be, but the cheesy crawfish interior is worth every decadent bite.
Wash it all down with their unbelievably refreshing watermelon sweet tea and you have yourself a delicious brunch that will guarantee painful laziness for the rest of your Sunday, plopped on your couch with intermittent proclamations of "Why the hell did I eat that shit for brunch?!?" Enjoy!
- Brenda's French Soul FoodMember ofFoodiesTrendstersArt & Design LoversDec 18, 2012
This is my favorite brunch place in the city, and with SF's ample options, this is a big deal. Get the crawfish beignets, shrimp and grits, and a watermelon iced tea! The biscuits are the best I've ever had, too. They don't take reservations, so be prepared to wait. Luckily, the expansion has cut down the wait time dramatically. I usually only go on the weekdays and only have to wait a few minutes, if at all.
- Brenda's French Soul FoodOct 12, 2012
Upon mentioning that I would be heading to San Fran for the weekend, Trina D's only comment to me was,
"Are you going to Brenda's?" to which I replied:
"My personal life is none of your business."
Fortunately for me, Brenda's happened to be within walking distance of my spot, and we were able to effortlessly find a seat as it was midday on a Tuesday, and the renovation has been completed. There are quite a lot of tables, and although the decor is a bit bland, the food certainly was not.
Our service overall was good, our food came out fast, and our drink orders were filled quickly. I ordered the watermelon iced tea which was balanced well with just enough pulp to still be make it an iced tea, and not a smoothie.
We shared the beignet flight, and I had the Shrimp Po'boy.
The Beignet flight had a lot going on. I actually felt bad for the regular beignet, like it was the runt of the family who got no attention and was always left behind. The chocolate beignet was like the overly done up cheerleader, presumably tasty, but slightly overpowering. The apple beignet was the normal looking "girl next door" beignet, sweet, and full of depth, and the crawfish beignet was the sports superstar, packed full of flavor and slamdunks of flavor.
Leaving only the normal beignet, who may excel in a lesser family, but in this flight, he was just left hopelessly behind. He sat nibbled on, but almost wholly uneaten.
My sandwich was unabashedly delicious. The bread was crispy and basically doused in butter, the shrimp was perfectly breaded and crispy, yet full of flavor, and the sauce played into the dish as a whole, adding a great blend of flavors. The slaw was also flavorful and crispy. I got two meals out of that one.
All said, we got a great meal for about $20 bucks each. I can't really find anything wrong with Brenda's. And while I may be the normal beignet of the bunch, I certainly didn't eat like one on this day.
- Brenda's French Soul FoodMember ofLocal CultureBudget TravelersFoodiesOct 08, 2012
The gumbo is good, the baked oysters were excellent along with the crawfish étouffée. We also ordered the fried chicken, which didn't live up to expectations, although the biscuit was fantastic. The prawns with grits suffered from having way too much cheese on top of the grits. Overall I felt like they were just a tad too heavy handed with the flavors and spices and it started taking the attention away from the ingredients themselves.
Address:652 Polk St, San Francisco, CA 94102
Total Reviews:27 Reviews
Open Hours:Mon–Tues: 8am–3pm. Wed–Sat: 8am–10pm. Sun: 8am–8pm