Tommy's Joynt 1101 Geary @ Van Ness. This building will attract your attention immediately because of the cartoon Victorian characters on the walls which remind me of the JibJab logo or some of the Terry Gilliam Python animation. This place is Peta's worst nightmare. I love it. Meat meat meat and more meat. Huge servings and the guys doing the carving are super friendly. I like the barbecued beef ribs (Tuesdays only, there are different specials every day of the week as well as the regular carving table stuff), the roast turkey, the pastrami, and my only quibble is the roast beef is a bit overdone. I like really rare roast beef. This place is a San Francisco institution. All places in this entry are in SF unless otherwise indicated. A lot of people love the buffalo chili and the place is not too expensive. The bar has one of the longest beer lists I've ever seen including some beers that are really hard to get in the states and the bar waitresses are really efficient.
Mifune Japan Cultural Center. One of the smaller restaurants in a large Japanese-style mall is one of my favorites. They specialize in noodles and both their udon and their soba are quite good, either cold or hot (in soup). A large pot of their noodle soup on cold days will just warm you up completely,and the various seafood and veggies that come with the noodles are excellent.
El Balazo 1654 Haight St. Really good burritos, chicken dishes, guacamole, and a fun Haight St. graffiti atmosphere. You can also get Mexican Cokes here, which I love. the tacos and enchiladas are very good and it's veggie-friendly (no lard in the beans) for those so inclined.
Tropix 3814 Piedmont Ave. Oakland Caribbean food that isn't too pricey and a great outdoor patio area in the back. The jerk chicken and jerk pork are nice and spicy and available as platters or in sandwiches (the sandwiches are the better deal), the jambalaya or anything else with seafood is quite good and so are the desserts. Very friendly service. Interesting drink selection.
Lucky 13 This is one of my favorite bars in the world. It's on Upper Market st. near Church st. It looks like somebody's gonna start a fight any second but the people are actually extremely nice, lots of punk rockers, headbangers, bikers, and guys who look like they listen to nothing but Rob Zombie. The coolest jukebox on the planet, free popcorn, friendly dogs allowed, a pool table, and a patio in the back for smokers. In summer on Saturdays, they do great beer specials and free barbecue (usually hot dogs and burgers) in the patio area. (This review applies only to the Lucky 13 in SF.)