Foreign Cinema – More than a Show!

You can’t walk into Foreign Cinema in Mission and not be impressed with the size and scope of the restaurant tucked amid some cramped quarters in other parts of the neighborhood.

  • unnamed-9The grand red runway to the check-in desk builds anticipation.
  • You’ll walk by the open kitchen to get a glimpse of where you great food will be prepared.
  • There are two main dining areas – one inside and one outside (covered and well heated). The atmosphere is intimate but spacious at the same time. Low lighting, a high ceiling and appropriately spaced seating give you that feeling of an intimate space while at the same time knowing you’re in one of the largest dining areas in that part of Mission. The owners have described their goal as a “sensual experience”.

Foreign Cinema opened in 1999. A bit of history about  Foreign Cinema from its own website, “In recognition of 15 years of distinctive service and community stewardship, unnamed-5September 18th was proclaimed “Foreign Cinema Day” in San Francisco. California State Senator Mark Leno presented a City Proclamation acknowledging Foreign Cinema on their unique neighborhood and city-wide leadership and standards in excellence.”

And this from a 2014 profile on, “”We have this quinceañera, so in the most phenomenal, beautiful way, we will present Foreign Cinema as the girl to become a woman,” laughs co-owner ™n possibly have while having dinner.”


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Now, let’s get to the experience and the food.

You know it’s off to a good start when the server is basically waiting for your when you are seated. You ask for water and an ice tea (no alcohol for me this night). His response, “Of course. The tea will take an extra minute as it’s all custom brewed.” Every detail was attended too. Water glasses refilled before even half empty. An offer of more bread before the plate was empty. And, the server checked with us on the quality of food for every course.

The dinner menu is heavy on seafood but offers a variety to suit your tastes. The butternut squash soup and shaved Brussels sprout salad were among the many choices. The soup was creamy and light. The salad was perfectly dressed with just a hint of a nut flavor. The seafood dishes ordered were attentively prepared and plated.

Finally, yes, you can also catch a show here in the outdoor courtyard during dinner!



COCKTAILS –The wine and champagne list looked wonderful but I choice no alcohol this night.

LOCATION – In the heart of Mission. The understated entrance is misleading for the “grand” nature of the cinema food halls.

PATIO – (This is a courtyard) Popular, heated and a talking point for other guests around the tables seated inside.

SERVICE – Very good.

By Jeff Parsons – Food blogger, photographer and editorial content manager.

WHAT ARE “EXPERIENCE REVIEWS” The goal of our posts is to offer you insight into what you may see, hear and experience when visiting an eatery. We’ll never question how the food was prepared. Great chefs know their foods well and know how they want it prepared. We’ll only ever comment on our reaction to the tastes and flavor if at all. Our goal is to create the “experience” for you before you book a table or stop by.


Eat with creative foodies who ARE always looking for something different

EatWith hosts range from professionally-trained, Michelin-starred chefs to the most passionate and practiced home cooks. Every host is interviewed by the EatWith team and currently only 4% of all applicants are accepted. Think you have what it takes?

Chefs set the menu based on what inspires them and use the freshest ingredients to prepare a personalized dining experience. Try an authentic ethnic meal or custom-designed tasting menu-dishes you won’t find anywhere else in town.
Choose your menu
Browse our unique dining experiences to find an event that looks delicious and suits your schedule.
Book a seat
Reserve a seat at the table as soon as possible. Events will fill up quickly.
Get ready to party
The host will confirm and send the exact address and directions. You’ll also get access to the guest list and group messages thread, so you can start chatting with your fellow diners.
Have fun
Show up and enjoy yourself! Savor your gourmet meal and end the night with new friends.


We enjoy creating a full dining experience, serving you delicious food with bold flavors plated to be as pleasing to the eye as to the palate, with an emphasis on fresh and healthy ingredients.  From appetizers to main courses and desserts, we aim for a unique dining experience!

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