The Broken Record – Best Dive Bar at San Francisco
September 23, 2020
At first glance, you wouldn’t think of The Broken Record as much of a destination. Located on a strip in the Excelsior District featuring a convenience store and a laundromat (among other local institutions like the CUR), it is quite a climb from Balboa Park Bart, but MUNI does run through Geneva Avenue. There is abundant parking, something that’s rare in other San Francisco areas. Do not be discouraged by what seems to be a typical dive bar or the neighborhood as you make your way through the door. Walk straight ahead in the backroom direction and be welcomed by a menu featuring gourmet twists on a regular bar menu. You will be hard-pressed to find another dive bar featuring duck confit potato skins and specials such as French toast with seared foie gras toppings. When you visit the establishment, you realize that the kitchen is kept pretty clean, and so is the dining area featuring tables with a cool beat up vibe around the edges. You will find the menu conveniently displayed on a vast chalkboard over the kitchen. When you decide on a meal, you would like to indulge in, make an order and pay for it at the counter. After that, sit back and relax until your order gets ready.
The Broken Record (now Hood Grub) is the ideal place for group occasions. However, if you plan to go in a group of 30 people or more, it would be a good idea to inform the establishment ahead of time so that they do not get overwhelmed by the orders since each person orders and pays individually, including the bar. The staff is very hospitable, and the service offered is excellent. The Broken Record offers an unbeatable four-star experience. The meals are well priced, including the proto-Southern food featuring a generous amount of bacon. The restaurant also has a rich selection of meals for vegetarians such as macaroni and cheese, Portobello burger, and tomato soup. So, whether you are a vegetarian or otherwise, you are guaranteed to find something delightful for your palate at the Broken Record.
As you move around the place, you start to get the idea of what a dive bar is all about: a no-frills joint dedicated to serious drinking and good bar food. The front room features loud 80s metal music with a bar featuring a shell of over 200 whiskeys located to the left and a pool table to the right. It is a Haul to get to the Broken Record, and it is a total dive: loads of tattoos on the regulars, raw and edgy–these are some of the reasons why you will love the actual bar. The bar usually features an edgy, fun crowd, and you will definitely want to revisit the establishment after your first time. Broken Record’s MO is self-service. Food can be accessed straight back via an interior tunnel with a bathroom located along the tunnel. The kitchen counter is located to the right behind a counter where a person makes their order. Above the kitchen is a chalkboard scrawled with the bill of fare.