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Smuggler's Cove

Smuggler's Cove

Tiki Bar and Cocktail Bar$$$$
Civic Center, San Francisco
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8.7/10
1,474
ratings
  • Stars
  • Stars
    Has a stamp of approval from Eater and Travel + Leisure
    • Eater
    • Travel + Leisure
  • Tips
    Tagel S.
    "Unique pirates' atmosphere, great cocktails."(21 Tips)
    Shelly Z.
    "Get the hot buttered rum, drink it through the cinnamon stick."(14 Tips)
    Michael M.
    "Try the Puka Punch - For a rum drink, this is really good"(7 Tips)
    Gregory K.
    "So many different rum drinks."(7 Tips)
Tips and Reviews icon327 Tips and reviews
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  • Nader F.heart icon on user image
    Nader FarzanAugust 13, 2014
    Been here 100+ times
    The best bar in San Francisco. Can get pretty crowded, with a line on weekends. Pro-tip: Go at 4:59pm and grab a seat at the bar and chat with the super friendly staff. Order a Jet Pilot or Pupule!
    Upvoted 6 days ago
  • Eater
    EaterApril 16, 2013
    Bet you never thought a crazy kitschy den of all things tiki could actually serve high-fructose-corn-syrup-free, all-natural drinks. This one can, and the cocktails hold up to the best in town.
  • Noah W.heart icon on user image
    Noah WeissAugust 6, 2015
    Been here 5+ times
    One of my favorite bars in America. Amazing tiki drinks that aren't overly sweet. The puka puka served in a huge goblet is always great. Perfect for a date or a group of friends.
  • SFist
    SFistJuly 20, 2015
    The Zombie, made with three different rums, falernum, absinthe, grapefruit, lime, grenadine, and cinnamon syrup, is one of the shining examples of how Smuggler's Cove does Tiki perfectly right. Read more
  • Doug d.heart icon on user image
    Doug de WetJuly 25, 2015
    Ask one of the highly skilled, knowledgeable barmen to select an aged rum for an Old Fashioned. Though not on the menu, this simple, delicious tipple was one of our favorites of the evening.
  • Time Out San Francisco
    Time Out San FranciscoOctober 10, 2014
    Rum lover? Sign up for the Rumbustion Society, a punch card program that will help you chart your exploration of the spirit. Members who try at least 100 rums become Guardians of the Cove. Read more
  • John E.heart icon on user image
    John EMarch 13, 2018
    Been here 5+ times
    Unparalleled selection of rare and vintage rums. Endless tiki cocktail menu. They also have a unique loyalty program for frequently visiting rum tasters 🍹
  • Michael
    MichaelApril 16, 2016
    Up on the wall. To your left. See Dom and Lauren's names on that plaque? Bow down to their rum knowledge.
  • Michael L.heart icon on user image
    Michael LunøeDecember 11, 2016
    Been here 5+ times
    Great tikki drinks, but wasn't positively surprised with their Mai Tai. Pro tip: For some reason I have found that the bartenders down stairs are makes better drinks.
  • Zack S.heart icon on user image
    Zack SheppardJune 13, 2015
    Definitely one of the best Tiki bars in the world, the competence with which they blend divey with quality is jaw-dropping. Try their Mai Tai or the Smuggler's Secret Barrel cocktail.
  • Craig V.heart icon on user image
    Craig VillamorJanuary 19, 2015
    They really know their rum here. Let the bartenders educate you on different rums instead of just going for the giant volcano shaped drink with 6 straws in it, though that's good too.
  • Tasting Table
    Tasting TableAugust 22, 2014
    Yes, most of the drinks at this tropical-paradise bar contain rum. Yes, some of them include coconut, pineapple or allspice, too. No, they are not cloyingly sweet. They're quite excellent, in fact. Read more
  • Jacob B.heart icon on user image
    Jacob BriarsJanuary 11, 2015
    Been here 10+ times
    This might be the best rum bar on earth. The brilliant staff are fast and friendly. Try a Tiki drink, or keep it simple with a classic Daiquiri or a Rum Old Fashioned with Bacardi 8
  • David H.heart icon on user image
    David HeiserAugust 24, 2022
    Maybe my favorite tiki bar I’ve ever been to. Cocktails are great and the manager is more knowledgeable about rum than anyone I’ve ever met.
  • Michael D.heart icon on user image
    Michael DempseyAugust 1, 2014
    Been here 5+ times
    Amazing tiki bar in terms of menu and appearance. If you want the bartenders to experiment, don't go on a weekend. Completely unique cocktail experience either way. Must-go for tiki fans.
  • PUNCH
    PUNCHSeptember 24, 2015
    Smuggler’s Cove has all the trappings of Polynesian paradise: rum, skulls, & a babbling brook. It’s one of the few tiki bars that perfects the traditional formula while establishing its own style. Read more
  • Diplomatico Rumheart icon on user image
    Diplomatico RumApril 11, 2013
    Congratulations to Darren Crawford as he's now the representer of the US West Coast in the Diplomático World Tournament in Venezuela! His cocktail Juancho Sour rocked the Smugglers Cove on 04/10/13 Read more
  • Nicole S.heart icon on user image
    Nicole SandsmarkAugust 25, 2012
    Been here 25+ times
    Smugglers Rum Barrel is on 7x7 's top 50 list of 2012. Also try 3 dots and a dash and don't miss the Chartreuse Swizzle created by Marco- the 'wizardly' bartender. Stay for the ambiance.
  • T.R. F.heart icon on user image
    T.R. FullhartMarch 8, 2019
    Been here 100+ times
    The menu is intimidating but, if you don’t know what you want, you probably want a Mai Tai or Smuggler’s Rum Barrel.
  • Kathy M.
    Kathy MatthiesenJune 27, 2016
    Awesome Tiki bar that doesn't serve excessively sugary drinks. Highly recommend the Volcano if you're looking to share between friends or the Jet Pilot if you're drinking for one
  • Brad T.heart icon on user image
    Brad TJanuary 4, 2015
    Menu has been reduced to two pages but prob for the better for all of us given the crowds. Over 200 rums and really no bad drinks here. Don't be afraid try a flight!
  • Rally by Eventbrite
    Rally by EventbriteMarch 29, 2017
    Walking in is like walking onto a movie set. And the drinks, while tiki and tropical, aren’t those sugary sweet hangover-in-the-making concoctions you get at so many other bars with a similar theme. Read more
  • Badger B.heart icon on user image
    Badger BadgerMarch 20, 2016
    Wow. A place to go for the rum pro's. Non-pro's will enjoy the amazing variety of cocktails made by the incredibly knowledgeable staff. Awesome decor
  • SFist
    SFistApril 14, 2016
    Tikis are no longer tacky so make your way to this contemporary Tiki temple that's been one of SF's most decorated bars for some time now. Read more
  • Daniel G.heart icon on user image
    Daniel GordonJune 13, 2013
    Been here 25+ times
    You can't go wrong with anything on the menu that has the Smuggler's Cove logo next to it. That's doubly true if it also has a barrel next to it. (It will taste good AND get you drunk!)
  • c0uPheart icon on user image
    c0uPSeptember 3, 2013
    The Corn & Oil is a simple rum cocktail done incredibly right. This entire place is heaven for rum drinkers, pirates (of the nautical kind) and alcoholic misanthropes.
  • OkCupid Daters' Choice
    Smuggler's Cove was voted the Best Instagramable Date Spot by OkCupid users in the first-ever Daters' Choice Awards! Tap Read more for additional date spot categories in San Francisco. #daterschoice Read more
  • V A.heart icon on user image
    V AJune 7, 2015
    I LOVE this bar! Amazing drinks, chill and unique atmosphere, easy parking if you get there early. 👍👍
  • Kevin R.heart icon on user image
    Kevin RipperApril 1, 2015
    The absolute standard for Tiki Bars and one of the largest collections of rum in the world. Martin Cate's love for all things rum oozes through and surrounds you. Noteworthy experience.
  • squeasel
    squeaselOctober 9, 2014
    Any bar with a waterfall is ok in my book, but this place makes delicious drinks too. Painkiller, yes. Need to go back and try the hot buttered rum apparently.
  • Lulu T.heart icon on user image
    Lulu TangSeptember 28, 2017
    Great drinks and awesome decor and atmosphere. Unfortunately gets REALLY loud and crowded on weekend nights. Your throats will hurt trying to talk to you friends.
  • Virginia C.heart icon on user image
    Virginia CardozoMarch 4, 2019
    The OG “new” tiki bar in Sf. Go right at 5 to avoid crowds. Upstairs is best!
  • Men's Health Mag
    Men's Health MagAugust 3, 2014
    An American tiki bar basically defines kitsch, but while this fresh incarnation boasts plenty of tropical pirate decor, it also sports an impressive rum collection and mixers that don't skew neon. Read more
  • Christine W.heart icon on user image
    Christine WuAugust 17, 2015
    It was crowded when we went on a Saturday evening, but the staff were sweet! It seems like a fun place for a chat or small party!
  • Easy S.
    Easy SpyJune 15, 2015
    Rum is great, but only in moderation. Do you know someone who hits the rum too often? Easy Spy puts the easy in cell phone monitoring. Read more
  • SFGate M.
    SFGate ManagerJuly 16, 2012
    The drinks never fail to hit their mark, whether Cate's tributes to colonial-era rum love or the tiki classics that are honed to perfection. Also, there's an indoor waterfall.
  • Serious Eats
    Serious EatsJanuary 4, 2013
    A haven for rum lovers; be sure to chat up the bartender if you're at all interested in tiki history. These guys know their stuff.
  • DKheart icon on user image
    DKNovember 4, 2015
    Probably the City's best cocktail bar. Try Billionaire Cocktail - and many more. Incredible!
  • Matt D.heart icon on user image
    Matt DickerJune 11, 2019
    They’re willing to make a non-alcoholic version of any of their cocktails for you teetotalers out there.
  • Christian B.heart icon on user image
    Christian BakerApril 12, 2016
    Most people don't know what a Batida is, and most skip to the bowls and call it good (and they are!), but even if you only do it once, treat yo'self to a Batida. No one does'em better than Smugglers.
  • Zuzheart icon on user image
    ZuzJune 25, 2016
    Cool people and good drinks ✌🏻️ there was no music though.. I found it a bit weird
  • Damian B.heart icon on user image
    Damian BayonaJanuary 26, 2017
    All drinks are delicious and there is one hot toddy that's good for when it's raining. Great vibes and decor
  • Sanjay S.heart icon on user image
    Sanjay SugarekSeptember 6, 2015
    All the drinks I've tried are flavorful and nuanced. Watch out because it's easy to get drunk here..
  • Gregory K.heart icon on user image
    Gregory K.September 20, 2017
    So many different rum drinks. Hard to choose at first, but they are all expertly made
  • heidi h.
    heidi harmanJune 11, 2015
    Quality coctails in the basement. Do try the Ake Ake if you fancy a anis aftertaste.
  • Katelyn
    KatelynOctober 8, 2011
    great place for a meet and greet with your new friends. and only a 15-20 minute walk from Hotel Whitcomb! we spent hours just sitting and getting to know one another with only having one drink.
  • Sherry L.heart icon on user image
    Sherry LiSeptember 6, 2015
    Good, strong drinks here. Takes a long one to get one but worth the wait!
  • Michal K.heart icon on user image
    Michal KlofacAugust 19, 2018
    I fell in love with tiki here. Everything from the ambience to the drinks to the staff are incredible!
  • Ramnik S.heart icon on user image
    Ramnik SinghDecember 7, 2014
    Hidden gem of san fran. Must visit if you like rum based cocktails. Go to the basementand look fit Melissa behind the bar
  • Trent O.
    Trent OstranderFebruary 3, 2015
    Go for the Captains Grog. Full of delicious rum. These guys know their stuff! (also try the painkiller #5)
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