I don’t know when Plow in San Francisco’s Potrero Hill became popular for brunch, but there’s no denying that it’s white hot right now.

I’ve seen this quaint neighborhood restaurant mentioned often for its brunch, and when I visited this weekend with my friend Craig, we were quoted a wait time of 60 to 90 minutes. And that was at 10 a.m.

Thankfully, several people before us were put off by the long wait and gave up. So we were able to get in a tad under an hour’s wait.

The spot, owned by Joel Bleskacek and Maxine Siu who met working at Oakland’s Oliveto restaurant, has classic brunch offerings like pancakes, French toast, and eggs benedict – but presented in perfect execution and clean presentation. It was like homey, refined brunch.

Cider-brined pork chop with two poached eggs and house potatoes ($16)

For example, Craig’s French toast ($13) was a generous slice of bread topped with caramelized apples and marscapone. He said the fluffy but spongey texture was perfect in absorbing the maple syrup.

My dish of cider-brined pork chop with eggs ($16) was a filling plate of the best pork chop I’ve eaten for awhile, with tender meat from the brining. I got my eggs poached, which provided a nice yolk sauce to blend with the pork. But I was equally excited about the side of house potatoes, made by boiling them first, then squashing them almost into florets, and flash-frying them in rice oil. They were perfection.

Despite my huge platter of food, I did order a side of the lemon ricotta pancakes ($5 for one pancake). It wasn’t fluffy but more like cake, and I really enjoyed the subtle flavor of the lemon. Also, the pancake wasn’t overly sweet.

Even though there was a constant flow of people coming and going, and others waiting outside, I never felt rushed, and the service was excellent, always friendly and accommodating.

Plow’s popularity can seem daunting, but if you stick it out the reward comes in the friendly staff and solid dishes. And with brunch, what more can you ask for?

Rating: 3 out of 4 camera snaps



Plow, 1299 18th St., San Francisco. PH: 415.821.PLOW (7569). Open weekdays for breakfast and lunch, 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.; weekend brunch, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Closed Mondays. Major credit cards accepted. No reservations. www.eatatplow.com

Plow on Urbanspoon

Diners eating outside at the sidewalk seating while others waited for their turn at the popular Plow

French toast with caramelized apples and marscapone ($13)

Blossoms gave the room a homey feel

My cup of Bergamot Black tea from Five Mountains added to the refined brunch experience

A side order of lemon ricotta pancake had a nice, subtle lemon flavor

The handsome and busy dining room of Plow

4 Responses to Patience Pays Off When Dining at Plow

  1. hungry dog says:

    I had lunch here awhile back and thought it was pretty good. The brunch does sound good…but I’m not into waiting an hour+ for brunch. Although if there’s a pork chop involved…

    • Ben Ben says:

      The wait goes by fast when you get together with friends you haven’t seen for awhile, nice way to catch up. And like I said, they seem to over estimate the wait to manage expectations (one party of four was told two hours) but seems like you end up getting in earlier than later like we did.

  2. Row says:

    Wow, the pork chop looks superb and the potatoes look perfectly crispy! Great call on the poached eggs… I love to break the yolks and make a sauce of sorts.

  3. Carolyn Jung says:

    I love how you got a side order of a pancake. Sounds like something I would do. You know me — I love my carbs. 😉