2,000 Millimeters Under the Sea

Forbes Island

OK. I realize this review is glowing a bit too brightly -- and in the interest of journalistic integrity I should point out that I am in no way related to, acquainted with, or secretly enamored of either the chef or the proprietor -- but, incredibly, things only got better. The warm summer fruit crisp with Tahitian ice cream ($8) proved a brilliantly delicious cobbler, stuffed to the brim with blueberries, raspberries, and peaches. As delightful as the crisp was, however, it doesn't haunt me the way that evening's "chocolate inspiration" still does: A warm chocolate torte ($8) smothered in luxurious chocolate sauce and garnished with raspberries and fresh whipped cream, it was so completely satisfying that I was tempted to lick the plate clean after we'd finished.

Before departing, we took a quick tour of some of the rest of the island's features: a private -- though somewhat cramped -- one-table dining area in the wine cellar, and one of those cumbersome, old-fashioned, bubble-head diving suits. Then we ascended the 56-step spiral staircase into the lighthouse, which features beautiful stained-glass windows and spectacular, 360-degree bay views.

Location Info


Forbes Island

The Embarcadero
San Francisco, CA 94111

Category: Restaurant > California

Region: Embarcadero

"H" Dock at Pier 39 near the Blue & Gold Fleet, 951-4900. Open for dinner Wednesday through Sunday 5:30 to 10 p.m. (the Island also hosts special events). Reservations accepted. Parking: $5 for six hours with validation at the Pier 39 parking lot, availability varies. Muni: 42, 15, 32. Noise level: soothingly quiet

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On our return to shore, we took a quick stroll along Pier 39, past Kitty City and Krazy Kaps and umpteen thousand tourists in their shorts and tennis shoes, shivering in the frigid summer wind. Normally, I'd rather spend an afternoon in a South of Market traffic jam issuing death threats to the world than pay a visit to the city's tourist ghetto. But in the case of Forbes Island, with its friendly service, enchanting cuisine, and endless variety of amusements, I'd definitely make an exception.

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