As you know, we're not Vegas — and in most cases, mercifully so. However, when it comes to all-you-can-eat dining, sure, there's something to be jealous of in that town's glitz and plenty. And yet, don't say we don't have options in San Francisco — ones that include chicken and waffles, tiki drinks on the side, and drag shows, no less. They might not be the jackpot, but they're a good haul, these spots.
The frequently crowded Amber India located off Market Street near Yerba Buena has a lot to recommend it — chiefly, perhaps, is the all-you-can-eat lunch buffet. Offered seven days a week (albeit a bit pricier on the weekends), and with meat heavy and vegetarian friendly options, the place will please all your very hungry friends. Last, the Sunday brunch bottomless mango mimosas combine with the buffet for quite the filling experience. — Jack Morse
25 Yerba Buena Lane, between Market and Mission Streets, $19.95 Monday through Friday, and $23.95 on weekends.
The Cliff House's Sunday Champagne Brunch Buffet
You'll want a reservation and need a stack of cash to get a seat at the Cliff House's Sunday Brunch: The seatings at 10 a.m., 12 p.m., and 2 p.m. book up nearly a week in advance, and you'll be dropping $55 on the experience. But once you're in (preferably on someone else's dime) you'll get unlimited food and champagne, live harp music, and a stunning view of Seal Rocks, Ocean Beach, and the lovely Pacific. The buffet features all of breakfast's greatest hits (eggs, bacon, pastries) as well as lunchier options like salads, steak, and pasta. It's a lot of fun with, say, a parent or if you're just feeling like doing some people watching. And did I mention the unlimited champagne? — Eve Batey
1090 Point Lobos
Photo via Yelp.
The Ethiopian spot on Divisadero does the all-you-can-eat thing differently than a lot of other restaurants around San Francisco. Instead of a buffet, the $12 vegetarian dinner is served to you one plate at a time — if you're still hungry, they'll keep 'em coming. With six veggie options to choose from and happy hour prices on drinks from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., it's hard to beat what they have going, not least because that Injera bread is on point. — Jack Morse
543 Divisadero between Fell and Hayes Streets.
Folks like Yelper David T (who took this photo) love Fogo de Chao's beef skewers with "minty" sauce.
Fogo de Chao
SF Weekly described Fogo de Chao as "Vegasy" and they're not wrong! Between the glossy/brassy decor, the all-you-can-eatness, and the $59.95 price ($39.95 for lunch) there's a gambler's splendor that can leave you feeling a bit heavy. But that's what you're there for, right? No one goes to any locations of this Brazilian buffet chain for a light meal. At Fogo it's all about the meat (though they proudly announce on their site that they do offer "fresh vegetables" for the vegetarians): Beef, chicken, lamb, and pork, much of it "fire roasted" and brought to you, I'm not kidding, by spear-bearing waiters. It's a great place to get stuffed with your paleo buddies, end a vegan juice fast, or just go to get your inner caveperson on. — Eve Batey
201 Third St., Suite 100, between Howard and Folsom Streets
Chicken and waffles are yours for the taking at farmerbrown's Saturday and Sunday brunch buffet. Kent D./Yelp
Farmerbrown's "Come And Get It Brunch"
Clear your schedule! You won't want to do anything after hitting farmerbrown's Saturday or Sunday breakfast buffet, which is laden high with fried chicken, eggs, bacon, catfish, biscuits, gravy, and on and on. You will be in a comfort food coma after chowing down at their surprisingly affordable — $25.95 — spread, which also offers salad (wimp!) and dessert. Their cheesy grits are especially remarkable, as are their fluffy waffles. And now, naptime! — Eve Batey
25 Mason Street at Market Street
Photo: Michael J./Yelp
Goat Hill Pizza
Potrero Hill's Goat Hill Pizza may not have made the cut for our best-of pizza list, but nowhere else in town that I know of do they do an all-you-can-eat pizza night on Mondays, and for this reason alone we've had to give them props before because even OK pizza is still pizza, and all-you-can-eat pizza is kind of amazing. And it's only $12.95 per person, which is insane. You sit down, you order some wine, you visit the salad bar, and then servers continue circulating with vegetarian and meaty pizza slice options throughout the evening, until you're so full you can't talk, or just so ashamed you have to leave. Yay, America. Jay Barmann
300 Connecticut Street at 18th - The deal is available Mondays only, and only at the Potrero location, 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Photo via Hi Tops.
OK, so this one is a little different, but don't worry we promise it's great. While technically not "all you can eat," the $.25 wings (Mondays) and $.25 corn dogs (Wednesdays) offered at Hi Tops are so inexpensive that we're including them on the list. Also, Hi Tops is great, so there's that. You can order either (or both!) at the gay sports bar any night of the week, however the super cheap price is only offered on the aforementioned night for each. Get there early to grab a table (it opens at 4 p.m. Monday through Wednesday). — Jack Morse
2247 Market Street, between Sanchez and Noe Streets.
Photo courtesy of Olive Garden
The Olive Garden
No one here is admitting to enjoying the Olive Garden. Their over-salted food comes out of a freezer, the service is awful, and the Stonestown Mall location has seen better days that is unless anything has demonstrably changed since I visited there, in honor of Olive Garden fan Marilyn Haggerty, back in 2012. But you could do worse than those fried lasagna squares, or the "Never-Ending Pasta Bowl" promotion when they offer it (not on offer currently), not to mention the salad and those never-ending breadsticks, which I will say are edible. In a town as bereft as this one is when it comes to all-you-can-eat meal deals, we'd be remiss without making sure you knew there was an Olive Garden within our borders. Jay Barmann
3251 20th Avenue, Stonestown Galleria
Feathers and glitter complement eggs and bacon at "Sunday's A Drag," the long-running brunch show at the Starlight Room where the bouffants are as good as the buffet. While the affair costs a pretty penny at $60 a head (and might require reservations for one of their two seatings at 10:30 a.m. and 1 p.m.) I say, honey, you're worth it. —Caleb Pershan
450 Powell Street between Post Street and Sutter Street
In the basement of the Fairmont Hotel high atop Nob Hill sits the Tonga Room & Hurricane Bar, San Francisco's premier kitsch palace of yesteryear. As you may be familiar, it's the product of an underused swimming pool converted to a tropical lagoon as conceived of by a Metro Goldwyn Meyer set designer. The cocktails here got a refresher in the last few years, but the pan-Asian and Polynesian cuisine — purest in its happy hour form as served from Wednesday to Friday, 5 to 7 p.m. — lumbers on unaltered. It's an all-you-can-eat choice of egg rolls, fried rice, chow mein, wings, and the like. Though this may not satiate the gourmand in you, it will certainly keep you warm and happy when the fake rain rolls in, as it does every hour.—Caleb Pershan
950 Mason Street between Sacramento and California Streets