Best Comedy Club - 2007
The Purple Onion - CLOSED
Located in the heart of North Beach, the Purple Onion has one of the most refined pedigrees of any comedy club around. Phyllis Diller, Barbra Streisand, and Woody Allen all once trod the venue's diminutive boards. Robin Williams has even been known to drop in on occasion to try out new material on unsuspecting crowds. Yet the place remains quirky, cozy, and resoundingly unpretentious with its dimly lit nooks, elegant round tables, and old-fashioned bar. These days, when you walk down the rickety spiral staircase into the womblike club, you never quite know what you're going to get. The programming has taken an increasingly eclectic turn in recent years, with standups being joined by bizarro cabaret and musical acts. From hosting comedians like Will Durst and Will Franken at SF Sketchfest to staging "Hammond Organ Night" and 1950s Italian music groups, the Onion sees the world through a gloriously purple haze.