Shizen, San Francisco



370 14th St

San Francisco, CA 94103


Must goto for vegetarians. Plant based cuisine satisfying even Carnivores.

Shizen, San Francisco

Why did we dine here? – Shizen Vegan Sushi Bar & Izakaya has remarkable 4.5 stars on Yelp. With the plant based revolution booming, we just had to try this spot. We’ve returned a couple times..  They started offering takeout during the pandemic.  If you like this spot, be sure to try BAIA

Our last visit was in Mid 2022 during the Pandemic. Indoor/outdoor dining with masks when not actively eating/drinking. Service has slipped due to staffing issues (no surprise). Waits are still there. You need to reserve a week in advance to the day on Yelp.

shizen san francisco interior decor

Shizen was created as an experiment in ocean conservation through responsible dining. They’ve been doing this for a while and have massive lines even on a Monday pre-Pandemic. Pre pandemic: The Yelp waitlist opens at 5:30, we instantly made a reservation and still had to wait 90 minutes.

We liked it enough to return for takeout, during the Pandemic. No lines for take out!

Insider Tip – When indoor dining returns. Go early

Cuisine – Japanese, Vegan
Location – San Francisco Mission District
Opened – 2015

Service – Shizen had far better service than we could envision. The restaurant is small and hectic. Nice menu recommendations and the food came fast.
Verdict – Shizen blew us away. We did not expect much, but were surprised how good the food was, even for omnivores. A must visit spot for Vegans and Vegetarians. Nearby Cha-Ya is a little more traditional Japanese, with a shorter menu.

Is this restaurant worth a 5 minute drive? Yes. 30 minute? Yes. 1 Hour? Yes.

Shizen Signature Dishes – Open Invitation, Surprise Ending

Shizen’s Menu is very large. Many options from appetizers to ramen to sushi rolls and more.

Website Shizen Menu

Shizen Food Picks:

shizen san francisco cocktails

Shizen Margarita ($10) uses soju that is not as potent, but still made for a well balanced drink. 8/10

Kin-San-Gria ($10) is slightly fruity and also good. 8/10

shizen san francisco croquettes

croquettes ($9) sweet potato, onions, carrots, celery had 5 perfect deep fried nuggets. Crunchy on the outside and soft inside. 9.5/10 – Summer 2021 this dish was removed from the menu.

shizen san francisco beet salad

Beet Salad ($11) gluten free – mixed greens, arugula, roasted golden & red beets, roasted cauliflower, sliced orange, toasted pumpkin seeds, citrus ginger dressing is good but with the other stuff on the menu.. You would normally get stuck with this at a traditional spot. 7.5/10

shizen san francisco spicy miso garlic ramen

Spicy Miso Garlic Ramen ($15) comes with bean curd chashu, bamboo shoots, tempura mushroom, grilled mushrooms, nori, and green onion. Wow, this dish has hearty broth, tender noodles, and chashu that blew our mind. Very filling, so order with care, there are so many other delights. 9/10

Spicy cold ramen salad ($11) was served during the Pandemic. Next best thing to real ramen. 8.5/10

Colonel’s Pipe ($14) smoked beets, cashews, creamy tofu, asparagus, avocado, sweet mustard, orange zest. Sweet, messy, but worth it. 9/10

Hidden Agenda ($14) tempura eggplant, bell peppers, zucchini, carrot, yellow onion, garlic aioli, sweet soy sauce has an also crab like texture. Wow. 9/10

shizen san francisco open invitation

Open Invitation ($15) pumpkin tempura, spiced burdock, shredded tofu, tapioca, avocado crema, renkon chips is one of this popular rolls. A nice blend of textures and flavors. 9/10

shizen san francisco proud peacock

Proud Peacock ($15) cucumber, avocado, shiitake, eggplant, tofu, pickled mango, roasted peppers, seaweed pearls tasted almost like California roll. Another good one. 8.5/10

Secret Weapon ($15) marinated eryngii mushroom, avocado, spicy shredded tofu, pickled jalapeño, pickled pineapple, sweet shoyu, habanero sauce is for spicy food lovers. We had it on the side. 9/10

Surprise Ending ($17) has one piece containing a lots of spicy elements.  A fun game of finding the one.  You then get to drink the shot in the middle.

Brussel Sprouts ($12) are fried and come on a hot skillet.  Very similar to other spots. 7.5/10

Karage ($7) is similar to the real thing, but more textured. 7/10

Mushroom Yakimono ($9) had several varieties – eryngii, shiitake, enoki mushrooms, tare and hit the mark. Bigger than expected. 8.5/10

Asparagus Yakimono ($10) is a bit on the spicy side due to the sauce. Otherwise it is grilled fine. 8/10

Avocado Nigiri ($8) was great finger food. Very fresh, quick slurp. 9/10

Shiitake Nigiri ($8) was also a nice simple veggie dish with 2 large mushrooms. 9/10

Tempura ($9) was also a large portion with carrot, eggplant, asparagus. Eggless tempura batter! 9/10

shizen san francisco donut dessert

Mochi Donuts ($9) were the weakest dish of the night, but still decent. 2 dipping sauces. 8/10

OK: (Order if you like this dish)

The Green Roll ($8) spinach, avocado, asparagus, cucumber, okra is very stiff and harder to eat. 6.5/10

Garlic Edamame ($6) is ok, other items are more special. 6.5/10

Lily Flower Curry ($10) has strong medicinal curry flavor. 7/10

Pans: (We would not reorder these dishes)
Kale Kimpira ($7) was too salty. 3/10

Do you agree with our review? Have you found other similar restaurants that are better?

Restaurant Map:

Shizen Overall Rating: (Excellent 3)

Come Back?

Food Rating: (Excellent)
Service Rating: (Very Good)
Atmosphere Rating: (Very Good)
Value Rating: (Good)

Guide: 0 = poor, 1 = Below/Average, 2 = Good, 2.5 = Very Good, 3 = Excellent , 4 = Extraordinary

Alcohol:Beer, Wine

You Might Also Like

No Comments

    Leave a Reply

    By using our site you agree to our: Privacy PolicyTerms of Use.

    Subscribe to the Free Foodnut Newsletter