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Hearty meat dishes and over 100 domestic and imported beers are the draw at this more than 50-year-old Civic Center German Hofbrau, with a tchotchke-crammed interior featuring communal tables as well as intimate booths with red-checked cloths. Tommy's Joynt serves steam-table fare (including such oddities as buffalo stew as well as more common American fare such as hand-carved deli sandwiches).
From the outside, with that neon sign and garish, over-painted exterior, Tommy's Joynt looks like a haven for freaks and weirdos. Then you go through those heavy double doors and find a series of interconnected rooms bursting with random kitsch from the better part of a century: Lots of new and old beer signs, dusty old German oil paintings, beer steins galore, and various pieces of Bay Area memorabilia. (There's even an autographed photo of Metallica hanging from the bar.) So, okay, Tommy's... More »
In an age when pubs ply patrons with 200 esoteric Belgian offerings at insane prices, isn't it nice to know you can drink beer from well over 30 countries and rarely drop more than $5 per beer to do so? Bar and beer manager Zack Katzman is Tommy's Joynt founder Tommy Harris' third cousin, helping keep this breweriana-laden watering hole in the family for 63 years. Among the selection of 100-plus bottles, barflies can globe-trot through the alphabet of beer from Armenia, Brazil, and Croatia... More »
Dinner at Tommy's is always something of an adventure, starting with the warm glow of the heat lamps above the food line that meets you at the door and ending with the last bite. But all the kitschy, cluttered décor and way-back nostalgia makes taking dinner at this institution (open since 1947) a strangely thrilling experience. It's not just that it feels haunted by the ghost of Old World S.F. -- the foggy days we hear about in Dino ballads and read about in Herb Caen columns... More »
The best sandwich on Earth is the roasted dark meat turkey sandwich on LaBrea Bakery sourdough at Greenblatt's Delicatessen in West Hollywood, but a reasonable facsimile is available at Tommy's Joynt, the ornately rendered cafeteria/ bar at Geary and Van Ness. Shards of meat are sliced from a freshly roasted turkey before your eyes and nestled between the folds of a sourdough roll. That's all there is to it -- no lettuce or tomato or apricot-wasabi aioli, nothing to distract the taste buds... More »
Turkey dinner, extra gravy. Open late-ish. Cash-only though, but ATM on premises. Weird set up where you order and receive your food at the counter, but have to order drinks and pay for them separately from the roaming (and slightly unfriendly) waitresses.
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