The Tadich Grill is a seafood restaurant located in the Financial District neighborhood of San Francisco, California, United States. It is the oldest continuously running restaurant in San Francisco, having opened in 1849 as a coffee stand. In the 1920s, the Tadich Grill claimed to be the first American restaurant to grill seafood over mesquite charcoal, a traditional Croat method.
The original restaurant opened in 1849 as a coffee stand on Clay Street in San Francisco. In 1887, John Tadich from Stari Grad (island of Hvar, Croatia) purchased and renamed the restaurant after his surname. In 1928 the Buich family bought the restaurant from Tadich; they continue to own the restaurant today. In 1967 the restaurant moved to its present location at 240 California Street; this was after Wells Fargo bought the Clay Street location for redevelopment. The current space is one-third larger than the original, and the Buiches worked with contractors to recreate the Art Deco interior design that the Clay Street space had. All of the moldings and woodwork were copied, and the original Clay Street bar was moved to the present location. The restaurant reopened within one month of moving.
In 1925, Louis Buich advised that the chefs use a mesquite broiler for cooking fish. A native of Croatia, Buich was familiar with the technique, as it was a traditional Croatian style. The Tadich's use of grilling became popular, and in a single day the restaurant can go through four 40-pound bags of mesquite charcoal. Little has changed in regards to the restaurant's cooking techniques, and the restaurant has had only seven chefs since 1925 (as of 2011).
Today, the menu focuses on seafood, stews, and casserole. Ingredients are locally sourced, including seafood such as Dungeness crab and sand dab. The restaurant also offers a day-of-the-week menu, which has remained unchanged for many years. Items on the day-of-the-week menu include lamb roast on Mondays, beef tongue on Tuesdays, and corned beef and cabbage on Thursdays. Oysters are also a major feature on the menu and most, if not all, menu items are prepared in restaurant. Prawns are the only frozen fish at the restaurant, and the Tadich actively avoids selling fish that is overfished, limiting sales of fish such as sea bass.
Waiters wear white jackets and black pants and the restaurant does not take reservations. On busy days, the Tadich can see between 600-800 patrons waiting in line to dine at the restaurant. On average, the restaurant serves 700 meals a day.
- Briscoe, John. The Tadich Grill: The Story of San Francisco's Oldest Restaurant, with Recipes. Berkeley: Ten Speed Press (2002). ISBN 1-58008-425-7
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- Official website for the Tadich Grill