Text Size:-+
03.05.2007

San Francisco Wine Bar: Yield

yield_card.gifSan Francisco has seen an explosion in wine bars in the last six to eight months. Thankfully these newcomers have not been concentrated in the downtown area, but instead (good thinking, folks) have been plopped down here and there in neighborhoods that were lacking any sort of refuge for those more inclined towards Chardonnay than Schnapps.

One such neighborhood was Dogpatch, the scruffy little brother to Portrero Hill, and its recent wine relief has come in the form of a cute little wine bar called Yield. The first thing that occurs to me in thinking about how to describe Yield is that it's pretty much set up exactly how I would set up a wine bar if I had space about that size. A combination of low stools and couches, a standing bar, and a few high tables in a slightly partitioned-off room offer patrons the ability to lounge or perch to their hearts' content and a high-tech fireplace dangling like a picture frame off of one wall makes for a warm, inviting feel for those who stumble in out of the rain.

The lighting is subdued, as is the downtempo house and electronica music that plays in the background, and the crowd (if you can call it that) matches the mood. Dogpatch is off the beaten path, which means that you can find a place to sit and you can carry on a conversation without shouting, two of my personal requirements for having a good time over a glass of wine.

Yield offers something unusual when it comes to the wine list: a focus on Biodynamic, Organic, and Sustainable winegrowing. Every wine on the list is classified as one of the three. Around 45 wines are available by the glass, yield_bar_and_seating.jpgtwenty or so whites and an equal number of reds. The list spans several countries, and generally has a few gems in it, though despite its focus on sustainable agriculture practices some wines from larger, more commercial producers show up more than I'd like. The list changes in small increments only, so if you find something you like, it may very well be around a few weeks later for your next visit, but this means less variety for frequent visitors.

Yield offers a small selection of nibbles to go with the wine that include a trio of nuts, olives, and bruschetta; a cheese plate; and a couple of thin crust pizzas. Needless to say, this isn't a place with a kitchen, so don't go expecting dinner. However if you're looking for something to tide you over, these small plates of organic food will do just fine.

Because of its small size, service is pretty casual. Most everyone walks up to the bar to get a glass of wine, though the owner Chris Tavelli, who is usually behind the bar, generally wanders over at just when you were thinking you wanted to try something else, but didn't want to get up from the couch. The genial Tavelli, who used to be the sommelier at Millennium restaurant in San Francisco, knows all of the wines quite well and is happy to sit and chat about the finer points of organic wine, or any of the producers on the list.

While the wine list is not quite as exciting or dynamic as I might like, the mellow atmosphere, the comfy surroundings, and the nice folks that work there mean that Yield will continue to be a frequent stop for me.


WINE LIST: two and a half stars

STEMWARE: two stars

SERVICE: three stars

FOOD: one star

ATMOSPHERE: four stars

OVERALL: three stars


Yield Wine Bar
2490 Third Street (at 22nd street)
San Francisco, CA 94110
415.401.8984

Open Tuesday thru Saturday 5:00 PM to Midnight, closed Sunday & Monday. No reservations required or accepted. Street parking is easy to find in the neighborhood, especially to the east of Third street.

Comments (3)

sam wrote:
03.06.07 at 6:29 PM


The vegetable flatbreads are stellar, btw.

Jason wrote:
03.09.07 at 8:19 AM

The wine list on the website is a pretty strong/dynamic one, definitely worthy of more than 2.5 *'s...

Alder wrote:
03.09.07 at 9:14 AM

Jason,

One of my complaints is that the list doesn't seem to change very much, and not everything you see on the site is available in the bar. The other thing that I wish they would do is branch out a little bit more from bigger California brands that happen to be sustainable.

Comment on this entry

(will not be published)
(optional -- Google will not follow)
Yes
 

Type the characters you see in the picture above.

Buy My Book!

small_final_covershot_dropshadow.jpg A wine book like no other. Photographs, essays, and wine recommendations. Learn more.

Follow Me On:

Twitter Facebook Pinterest Instagram Delectable Flipboard

Most Recent Entries

Tallying the Damage from the Napa Quake Vinography Images: A Sea of Blue Vinography Unboxed: Week of September 14, 2014 The Taste of Something New: Introducing Solminer Wines Vinography Images: Swift Work Social Media Answers the Question: Where Did Australian Wine Go Wrong Hourglass, Napa Valley: Current and Upcoming Releases Drought Problems? Just Have an Earthquake Vinography Images: Just One Vinography Unboxed: Week of September 1, 2014

Favorite Posts From the Archives

Masuizumi Junmai Daiginjo, Toyama Prefecture Wine.Com Gives Retailers (and Consumers) the Finger 1961 Hospices de Beaune Emile Chandesais, Burgundy Wine Over Time The Better Half of My Palate 1999 Királyudvar "Lapis" Tokaji Furmint, Hungary What's Allowed in Your Wine and Winemaking Why Community Tasting Notes Sites Will Fail Appreciating Wine in Context The Soul vs. The Market 1989 Fiorano Botte 48 Semillion,Italy

Archives by Month

 

Required Reading for Wine Lovers

The Oxford Companion to Wine by Jancis Robinson The Taste of Wine by Emile Peynaud Adventures on the Wine Route by Kermit Lynch Love By the Glass by Dorothy Gaiter & John Brecher Noble Rot by William Echikson The Science of Wine by Jamie Goode The Judgement of Paris by George Taber The Wine Bible by Karen MacNeil The Botanist and the Vintner by Christy Campbell The Emperor of Wine by Elin McCoy The World Atlas of Wine by Hugh Johnson The World's Greatest Wine Estates by Robert M. Parker, Jr.