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Bourbon & Branch

Bourbon & Branch

Speakeasy, Cocktail Bar, and Whisky Bar$$$$
Tenderloin, San Francisco
310 Tips and reviews
  • cocktails
  • whiskey
  • bourbon
  • good for dates
  • trendy
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  • Kristina L.
    Kristina LeeFebruary 23, 2015
    Been here 5+ times
    Everything! If you can, get a reservation, that way you have access to the full menu! Don't be intimidated by the menu, tell your server what kinds of things you like, and they'll steer you right!
  • Adrian P.
    Adrian PhillipsDecember 18, 2015
    Enter through the second door on the right to go directly to the Library. Their take on the Rusty Nail is fantastic. These guys can make anything so just ask if you're not keen on the menu choices.
  • Bravo
    BravoNovember 12, 2010
    Once you get the daily passcode online, walk into a dark moulin-rouge setting and have yourself the finest cocktails around. This place is the french laundry of bars, good luck getting in. -Yigit Pur
  • Natalie
    NatalieApril 29
    One of the best speakeasies I've been to! You are completely transporter to the Prohibition Era. Perfect lighting, music, ambiance. Cell phone use is restricted which makes it intimate & sets the mood
  • Caro S.
    Great bar ( very nice door keeper) with great cocktails. Small menu but you can order everything you want. Fantastic whisky selection. Better reserve than you have access to a more secret room.
  • Alex L.
    Alex LobovJanuary 17, 2015
    The drinks are great but the pretension is overpowering. Try it but I'll wager you won't return. Plenty of friendlier cocktail bars in San Francisco.
    Upvoted Jun 18
  • John E.
    John EMarch 13, 2015
    Cool speakeasy w/ fantastic cocktails (especially of the bourbon variety) made by knowledgeable mixologists. Cool library-esque decor. Enter through the left-most unmarked door for general admission.
  • Sam J.
    Sam J.September 20, 2012
    Straight shot back to the Prohibition Era. Try the front door and you might get in without a password or try your luck unlocking the bookcase in the bar space in back then try the Cucumber Gimlet!
  • Stephen P.
    Stephen PolettoMay 26, 2014
    The best cocktails I've found in the city. The menu is huge. The environment is cozy & romantic -- good for a couple or a small group. Make a reservation about a month in advance.
  • Jenn E.
    Jenn EstradaAugust 13, 2014
    If you're seated at the front bar ask if Justin is working! Very knowledgeable on all spirits! Definitely will have well made drinks if he's around!
  • AFAR Media
    AFAR MediaJanuary 22, 2015
    This is a traditional speakeasy. Their 8 house rules—hushed voices and no cell phones among them—encourage neighborly conversation in a very relaxed setting. Read more
  • Jeremy K.
    Jeremy KrantzAugust 14, 2014
    Make a reservation online ahead of time and make sure to get the door password. Also don't dress too casual and don't be on your phone inside. Just enjoy the experience and the drinks.
  • Anna S.
    Anna SellemOctober 29, 2016
    Try the Air mail cocktail! (pinapple rum, honey, lemon and sparking wine! )They also have great JM Rum! 💓 And first time for me: Californian Rum Agricole 43%! 😮
  • Patrick W.
    Patrick WJanuary 8, 2015
    Friendly bartenders that lack the pretension of normal speakeasy cocktail bars but still make a mean drink. Prices are reasonable given location and ambience ($10/cocktail, $6/beer).
  • Sarah J.
    Sarah Judd WelchAugust 21, 2012
    The bartender told me that all the old speakeasies and hotels in the area were once connected by underground tunnels, but that they are now mostly buried. Hmmm... Anyone up for an adventure??
  • safia r.
    safia r1 week ago
    Major love for their cocktails - had the daily special! You'll need to make a reservation ahead of time, and check your email for confirmation and password which you will need to provide at the door.
  • J Crowley
    J CrowleyJuly 27, 2016
    If you can weasel your way into this cliché of a speakeasy, the Imperial Eagle is actually really good. It's like a peachy vanilla tea-like cocktail.
  • Maroon 5
    Maroon 5June 7, 2012
    You have to make a reservation to get into this 1920's bar AND know the right password to get in! The old-time bar has no sign outside so you better pay attention or you'll miss it.
  • Frances M.
    Frances M.August 5, 2013
    Must visit speakeasy in SF. Need to make reservations in advance & a secret password to get in. Strong drinks & cozy atmosphere. FYI, the bathroom is really dark & a bit creepy.
  • Amanda B.
    Amanda BOctober 11, 2011
    One of the coolest speakeasies I've ever been too. The decor and ambiance make it ultra mysterious too. I recommend the Elderflower cocktail which was so sweet and delicious. Good luck finding it!
  • Carlos B.
    Carlos BApril 13, 2013
    Don't expect this to be your typical bar experience. Amazing drinks and love the speakeasy atmosphere. Always ask for recommendations and have fun.
  • Allie P.
    Allie PJune 28, 2013
    Great prohibition-era speakeasy. For serious drinkers only. Absinth is a frequent ingredient in many a drink! Make sure you reserve a table in advance and receive a password.
  • Jori L.
    Jori LalloAugust 18, 2011
    Speakeasy bar with excellent (but a bit pricey) drinks. The place to visit if you want to impress your friends who are in town. You also need a password to in (read other comments for tips)
  • Danielle F.
    Danielle FAugust 15, 2014
    One of the few speak easy's left with actual ritual. Obey the no phone rule and enjoy an egg white cocktail over conversation with friends. They are all delicious!
  • Jacqwi C.
    Jacqwi CampbellNovember 17, 2013
    Went inside the library section. I had the revolver, a version of an old fashion. It was smooth with a kick. I suggest this place for a date, not a group - intimate, cozy and but beware of hipsters.
  • safia r.
    safia r1 week ago
    You can request access to the 'secret' bar The Library in the back after you are done at B&B. Prefer the main bar to the library both for drinks and ambience.
  • ˜ ˜.
    ˜ ˜December 22, 2012
    Act shocked that there is a password. Look older. Wear a suit. You'll still get inside and shuffled to the back bar. Seating fills up early so be prepared to stand. It will be very warm.
  • The Daily Meal
    The Daily MealJune 30, 2011
    A date night that’s drinks-focused is still a date and the location should be chosen wisely. Bourbon and Branch is the right atmosphere with mood lighting, cozy booths, and creative minds tending bar. Read more
  • Molly K.
    Molly KApril 11, 2010
    In the time you could order a drink at Bourbon & Branch you could fly to Anaheim, go to Disneyland and visit Mr. Toads Wild Ride. You would get the same atmosphere and enjoyment on the ride as B&B
  • Marc S.
    Marc SOctober 16, 2014
    Try their twist on a whisky sour: the Skulll Island Sour. A bit sweeter and spicier. With the egg white, of course.
  • Shayan S.
    Shayan SanyalJanuary 3, 2014
    The killer Queen is fantastic. The medicine man is awesome, but it will be taken off the menu... The Sazeracs are great, be sure to order 50/50
  • Bill C.
    Bill CopelandNovember 12, 2011
    A great speak easy with expensive but fantastic drinks. Look on the website for all of "the rules" and the password to get in. The password to get into the Library is "books".
  • Justine C.
    Justine Chevrier-LordAugust 27, 2014
    Great and extended spirits selection and the speakeasy mood of the place really makes you believe you are back in the prohibition era, but the cocktails are overrated. Good but far from great.
  • Bernice C.
    Bernice ChowApril 20, 2013
    "It's getting hot in hurrrr, so take off all your clothes" soooo stuffy in the library area, got to come back with reservations next time to check out the exclusive side.
  • SillyCamilly
    SillyCamillyMarch 10, 2012
    Get your 1920's outfit on and enjoy your night. Oh and I would suggest to have a couple of drinks at the main bar first before asking to go to the library. ;)
  • Matt S.
    Matt SnowFebruary 16, 2014
    Vodka Lime Gimlet is the best drink you'll order all night. That said, any whiskey cocktail is amazing (tho not a fan of Blood & Sand).
  • Diplomatico Rum
    Diplomatico RumApril 11, 2013
    Ask for Darren Crawford at the bar. At the Smugglers Cove event he got classified to represent the West Coast at the Diplomático World Tournament 2013 with his amazing drink: Juancho Sour. Cheers! Read more
  • J Crowley
    J CrowleyJuly 27, 2016
    Take a ride on the Imperial Eagle if you like frothy, citrusy, bourbon drinks. This bird got me surprisingly cranked. If only it could fly me home.
  • Diplomatico Rum
    Diplomatico RumAugust 19, 2013
    Check-out the video of Daniel Crawford's presentation at the Diplomático World Tournament 2013, held in Barquisimeto, Venezuela, where he represented the US West Coast. Read more
  • Raj S.
    Raj S.August 17, 2014
    Hand crafted cocktails in a speakeasy setting. Try a Frank Lloyd Wright if you want a solid drink without too many frills. Too many others to try but must do so.
  • Marc S.
    Marc SOctober 16, 2014
    Craft cocktails. Ask your bartender for suggestions based on the base liquor or tastes you like.
  • Ronaldo T.
    Ronaldo TarucDecember 12, 2012
    Get the French 75 or a classic Old Fashioned. I had the Bourbon flight, which was time I'll have the Irish Whiskey flight...
  • Zack🍕🍕
    Zack🍕🍕June 7, 2012
    Awesome speakeasy. Great drinks. Try the Holy Smokes! Managed to sneak in here for a few hours without a reservation but that's probably not a sure thing.
  • Berk K.
    Berk KapiciogluJuly 22, 2014
    The password for the library section is "books". Bartender was great. I recommend the "Hot Pursuit" for something spicy or "Citizen Cane" for something yummy.
  • Jessica R.
    Jessica RaeNovember 26, 2013
    1920’s style Speakeasy, world renowned cocktails.Password required for entry, see website for reservations or drop in for a drink in The Library (the password for the library is “books”).
  • @JaumePrimero
    @JaumePrimeroOctober 28, 2011
    for the cocktail aficionado who likes the speakeasy type atmosphere. If you don't have much time to see a lot of places, you should definitely make time for this destination.
  • ViatorStaff
    ViatorStaffAugust 13, 2010
    Incredible cocktails (seriously, don't order a beer here). House made mixers & interesting concoctions make this our favorite place to celebrate with a fancy drink. Don't miss the secret library room.
  • Camilla S.
    Camilla SøgaardMarch 22, 2014
    Ask the waiter which cocktails match your preferences, or you might end up with a very strong guys cocktail. The waiter's suggestions are great.
  • Clara S.
    Clara SNovember 7, 2015
    In the Library, let the bartender make you a cocktail of his own creation. They know their mixology, regardless of which room you're in.
  • MyCityWay
    MyCityWayMay 2, 2012
    This is a great place to have a wonderful cocktail while feeling like you are in the back of a saloon wondering how alcohol could ever be banned.
  • Candace S.
    Candace SooHooSeptember 13, 2010
    You can never go wrong with ordering the Cucumber Gimlet - it has a nice limeade taste to the drink. Also, they take enforce the "no photographs" rule seriously...but you can always sneak in 1 pic
  • Léna Le Rolland
    Very nice place, loved the atmosphere. Drinks were very good. Music is pretty loud tho
  • BarChick
    BarChickAugust 22, 2013
    There are some rather stern house rules (no phones, no Cosmos, etc), but the drinks are totally worth it.
  • Kit C.
    Kit CodikOctober 26, 2011
    During Prohibition there was an actual speakeasy at the bar’s location. (There are still five tunnels underneath the establishment that provided an emergency escape during a raid.) Read more
  • Lisa G.
    Lisa GApril 26, 2013
    Speakeasy in San Francisco. ... door, requires a password to enter, and leads guests through secret passageways and hidden rooms.
  • SFGate M.
    SFGate ManagerJuly 16, 2012
    The Wilson Room at Bourbon & Branch specializes in cocktail "flights" - an aperitif, main and digestive - that get more intense as you go along.
  • Staff Picks
    Staff PicksDecember 6, 2016
    Bourbon & Branch was one of the more wished for places throughout 2015’s I Want Somewhere holiday campaign. Where’s your somewhere? Enter to win a bucket list experience. Read more
  • OkCupid Daters' Choice
    Bourbon & Branch was voted the Best Hidden Gem 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
  • Alexander W.
    Alexander WinterFebruary 7, 2013
    Tom Bulleit told me this is one of the 10 top mixology bars in the world. Beautiful atmosphere and great cocktails!
  • Michael L.
    Michael LunøeDecember 11, 2016
    Speakeasy. You need to ~1 month in advance, otherwise you can go to Wilson & Wilson next door. Same owners, but a little more relaxed.
  • Troy C.
    Troy ChandlerMarch 15, 2014
    The gin Spice Trader may be the best cocktail I've ever had. The wait for drinks is worth it. Great bar.
  • Frank N.
    Frank NeillJuly 30, 2015
    Among the best Old Fashioneds I've ever had. A must visit. DeDe at the Library Bar is a cocktail artist.
  • SFist
    SFistMarch 25, 2015
    The Naughty Sun Dress is a crisp, complex, slightly sweet concoction that looks like a deceptively simple, clear martini. Read more
  • J Crowley
    J CrowleyJuly 27, 2016
    Speakeasies are cool. But this place is trying WAY TOO HARD to be cool. The bouncer, Peter, was hilariously pretentious. I had to talk my way in on an empty Tuesday night. Bright side: solid cocktails
  • Alan G.
    Alan GrinbergMarch 28, 2013
    Newly 21. Already been here two times. This place has the tastiest and highest quality drinks I've had. Any others in the same boat?
  • Lynn J.
    Lynn JohnsonFebruary 17, 2014
    This is just one of those bars that you have to go to if you love cocktails. It's like how you have to go to Disneyland if you like rides and fun.
  • Andy C.
    Andy ChauNovember 9, 2013
    You will need a reservation to enter and have a table but the "library" is open for everyone, first come first serve
  • Larry H.
    Larry HallSeptember 21, 2012
    It's quite memorizing to watch the barkeep mix cocktails. Why was I born in this day and age? This nostalgic establishment makes on yearn for prohibition and derby hats.
  • Tavo B.
    Tavo BeltranMarch 19, 2014
    Exclusivity at its best! Scotch never tasted so good in a Martini glass. Go for the "High Plains Kilter" and Slainte!
  • Candy E.
    Candy Eros DiazFebruary 24, 2013
    Imperial Eagle was delicious. Better for small groups (3-4 ppl). Rowdy big groups need not apply. Beautiful atmosphere.
  • Sujatha K.
    Sujatha Krishnan-BarmanNovember 26, 2012
    Lively and lovely. Ask the bartenders for recommendations, they're pros. And if you like whiskey, get the Laphroaig project.
  • Trevor F.
    Trevor FilterAugust 22, 2014
    Make sure to make a reservation in advance. The best (read: reserve) spirits are in Wilson & Wilson.
  • The Tastes that Make the City
    The citizen cane is the best speakeasy cocktail in SF, making our list of "The Tastes That Make the City: SF Edition." Read more
  • Joanie
    JoanieOctober 23, 2014
    Never met a more enthusiastic bartender in my life. Justin makes great cucumber gimlets
  • Jenny L.
    Jenny L.April 13, 2015
    Reservations needed. Extensive cocktail menu. Need to figure out how to get in the hidden bar inside Bourbon and Branch.
  • Toby P.
    Toby PhillipsAugust 7, 2014
    Neat place. If you're just looking for a couple drinks, skip the door with the password and just go to the open door around the corner.
  • Shannon C.
    Shannon CoulsonJuly 23, 2015
    Been here 5+ times
    Fun environment, even if the secret is out. If you don't like bourbon, I recommend the Hemingway's Daiquiri.
  • Stephanie L.
    Stephanie LeavittSeptember 7, 2013
    Such a fun night. Great atmosphere. Could have stayed all night listening to music and testing new/old cocktails and hanging out with friends.
  • Delaney O.
    Delaney O'BrienApril 8, 2013
    f you can, make a reservation after 6:45...AMAZING place, but a little charm is lost when you're standing in a line outside of a speakeasy & don't get to say your password through the speaker.
  • Talisha H.
    Talisha HillMarch 31, 2014
    The Scofflaw taste a lot like a side car. Very tasty if you're into drinks that are on the sweet and tart side.
  • Clare B.
    Clare BautistaDecember 15, 2011
    You don't need a password if you take the O'Farrell entrance straight into the library bar. Amazing cocktails. Order a paper plane.
  • Natalie K.
    Natalie KOctober 21, 2015
    Wonderful atmosphere - very romantic place, or good for a double date. Don't come here with a big group.
  • Brian L.
    Brian LongtinApril 28, 2015
    Great drinks, true commitment to theme and decor. Dark, wood-paneled and pretty much perfect.
  • Alessio S.
    Alessio SanzogniAugust 21, 2012
    Outstanding 20's atmosfere And cocktails... But for a full prohibitiobism experience.. Ask for the Library!
  • Suzanne .
    Suzanne 🍋July 8, 2016
    A glimpse of the 1920s with swanky handcrafted cocktails in a dimly lit room, and you'll want to "spake-aisy"
  • Esquire
    EsquireFebruary 1, 2011
    Congratulations, you've found one of Esquire's Best Bars in America. This place is a speakeasy with cocktails that would have made a pre-Prohibition Broadway dandy smile. Our vote: a daiquiri.
  • Brian V.
    Brian Van HornJune 22, 2014
    Total yuppie bar. They make awesome cocktails, but it's really aimed at the Google bus crowd. Okay over all. 4 Japanese single malts, which is pretty decent.
  • Men's Health Mag
    Men's Health MagNovember 15, 2011
    These old-timers are keeping things on the hush-hush, and not just with the lack of a marquee. No cell phones. No cosmos. No standing around at the bar. Get a Buffalo Trace bourbon. Taste the history.
  • Lori W.
    Lori WhiteSeptember 18, 2012
    My uncle asked me what i liked ("weird & old"), AND went to the trouble of looking up the password & bringing me here b/c he fundamentally knows how to make his hipster niece feel loved & special.
  • Nick J.
    Nick JordanAugust 24, 2014
    The speakeasy theme may have been brought an inch to far, but the cocktails are so good all is forgiven.
  • Alison B.
    Alison BradyOctober 8, 2014
    Amazing place and amazing cocktails. Try the 'breakfast at Annie's' or mezcalifornication.
  • Marissa C.
    Marissa CoughlinAugust 20, 2011
    Cucumber gimlet is super delicious and refreshing. The splash of sparkling wine adds just the right amount of fun.
  • Nick P.
    Nick PinoJanuary 28
    Go for the Snakebite (sp?). It's the one that has absinthe, pineapple rum, honey, lemon and egg white. It's delicious and very alcoholic.
  • Natalie R.
    Natalie RayJanuary 6, 2013
    Try the cucumber gimlet. Be sure to call ahead or make a reservation online for the password.
  • Hatice U.
    Hatice U.May 23, 2013
    Try rum w/ coconut and lime when they have it. Also be cautious about ur phone to keep old atmosphere alive!!
  • Dave M.
    Dave MorinFebruary 12
    Best speakeasy in San Francisco.
    Upvoted 1 week ago
  • Pamela R.
    Pamela Ringer-BritzDecember 9, 2011
    My favorite thing here, is the cloth napkins they place your drink on. Also - the around 40 page drink book.
  • Jarkko A.
    Jarkko AineJuly 27, 2016
    Great coctails, friendly staff and best atmosphere
  • Gavin S.
    Gavin SchulzSeptember 6, 2014
    Can't go wrong with the seasonal fruit smash cocktail or the cucumber gimlet.
  • Ava
    AvaMarch 23, 2016
    definitely a fun place to bring people from out of town, make a reservation well in advance!
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