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Cathay House

$$ - $$$
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718 California St, San Francisco, CA 94108-2404
+1 415-982-3388
11:30 - 21:30
Closed now
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Sun - Sat 11:30 - 21:30
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312 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveller rating
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Showing 224: English reviews
Bologna, Italy
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Authentic I loved the service and the variety of food! Everyone at my table shared food and it was all sooo good! I want to go back next time I visit San Fransisco!

Thank ugetoutthere
Pleasant Hill, Ca.
Level Contributor
44 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

So it's New Years day and we are wandering around the tacky-but-colorful Chinese shops in Chinatown..and decide to eat dinner here. It happens to be right across from the Old St Mary's church and at 500pm on a dreary day..the church bells rang..the red lanterns that were draped across the narrow street were lit up and swaying in the wind...and... More 

Thank Ca Mama
Level Contributor
75 reviews
35 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 weeks ago

We had a few hours to spend in San Francisco and we have always loved Chinatown. We have eaten at several other Chinese restaurants in the area a thought we would try the Cathay House. The food was hot and the service was good but the food lacked that special something that draws people to enjoy Chinese food. The view... More 

Thank Lorraine G
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
6 reviews
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

Place seems historic from the outside but you should keep walking and dine elsewhere. Our appetizers were awful. It all tastes as if they had not changed the oil in a very long time. The food tasted as bad as it smelled (the smell made my stomach ache- I should've listened). The restaurant needs a good cleaning.

Thank DocAlG2016
Level Contributor
149 reviews
80 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 December 2016

The bar area was packed but the dining room was not. Food was good. Definitely could use a facelift though.... had a real 90's vibe.

1 Thank scubatimm
West Covina, California, United States
Level Contributor
205 reviews
84 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 November 2016

From the outside the restaurant looks nice and is even used as a motive for a Chinatown postcard. When you enter you will see photos of celebrities and past presidents with the owner. But if anyone ever dared to eat here the pictures were taken before the food was served. Otherwise they would not be smiling. We expected a good... More 

2 Thank Koln101
Level Contributor
14 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 November 2016

This place was outdated and the food was fair. Upon entering you notice all of the pictures on the wall with celebrities and politicians, etc. This place was probably great in its heyday but no longer. There are probably dozens of Chinese restaurants in the area that are much better but one of the people in our group had been... More 

Thank BradnOC
Crater Lake, Oregon
Level Contributor
38 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 November 2016 via mobile

Stopped here for a business lunch with coworkers during meetings nearby. The ambiance is very good and from the star studded gallery of photos on the walls in the entry it leads one to believe it's going to be a great experience. The old adage holds true - photos can be misleading. Ordered the lunch combo special of sweet/sour pork,... More 

1 Thank CascadesRanger
Royal Tunbridge Wells, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
39 reviews
24 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 November 2016

A friend had suggested eating in this restaurant in Chinatown as it was near her hotel, but I wished we'd had time to check the reviews first. It was diabolical! Dreadful, rude service - plates snatched from under our noses barely had we put them down, taciturn staff and service added incomprehensibly to the bill even though we'd definitely not... More 

1 Thank GardenerCook16
Rew, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
180 reviews
58 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 November 2016

Waiter was not very engaged. Had to convince him to halve an order of potstickers as an appetizer. Ordered the lemon chicken, it came before the appetizer. Potstickers didn't come with dumpling sauce, the waiter told me I could make it from the condiments on the table but didn't provide a bowl to do it in. The only really good... More 

1 Thank Rebekah B

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Restaurant Details

Rating summary
  • Food
    2 of 5 bubbles
    2.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    2 of 5 bubbles
    2 of 5 bubbles
Average prices
Chinese, Asian
Lunch, Dinner, After-hours
Restaurant features
Seating, Waitstaff, Serves Alcohol, Reservations
Good for
Open Hours
11:30 - 21:30
11:30 - 21:30
11:30 - 21:30
11:30 - 21:30
11:30 - 21:30
11:30 - 21:30
11:30 - 21:30
Location and Contact Information
  • Address: 718 California St, San Francisco, CA 94108-2404
  • Location: United States  >  California (CA)  >  San Francisco>  > Chinatown
  • Neighbourhood: Chinatown
  • Phone Number: +1 415-982-3388

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from Cathay House staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?

Staying in Chinatown

Neighbourhood Profile
As the oldest in North America, San Francisco's Chinatown is an exotic experience. A unique neighbourhood decorated with colourful shops, historic streetlights, hanging lanterns, and pagoda roofs awaits behind the stone-carved dragon gates. Feast on dim sum at the tea houses, or meet the locals who gather at historic Portsmouth Square to play chess or practice Tai Chi. Fish markets, produce stands, tourist shops, jewelry stores, fortune tellers, temples and restaurants come together to create a world unto itself in this historic neighbourhood.
Explore this neighbourhood