Ultimate Guide to Foster City Restaurants

Nestled in the heart of the San Francisco Bay Area, Foster City, CA, is a charming hidden gem that offers picturesque waterfronts, family-friendly activities, and a bustling food scene worth exploring.

The city’s culinary landscape is as diverse as its population. In this article, we enumerate all the best restaurants Foster City locals love.

A waterfront apartment in near restaurants in Foster City.

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Flavorful History of Foster City

Founded in the 1960s, Foster City was named after Jack Foster, a real estate magnate who owned much of the land comprising the city. He was instrumental in its initial design.

The city was built on the existing Brewer Island in the marshes of the San Francisco Bay on the east edge of San Mateo, enlarged with an engineered landfill. Jack Foster bought Brewer’s Island to build this “new city” with Bay Area business magnate Richard Grant.

In 2009, Forbes ranked Foster City #10 on their list of America’s Top 25 Towns to Live Well. Money has also recognized Foster City multiple times as one of the Best Places to Live.

Seafood Extravaganza

Many Foster City restaurants offer fresh, delicious seafood. Here are some of the best seafood places in the city that loyal guests keep coming back to.

A sushi plate in MJ Sushi restaurant in Foster City.

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MJ Sushi Foster City

A local Japanese restaurant that serves a wide array of fresh dishes, from Hibachi to Teriyaki, and many mouth-watering Japanese flavors that keep delighted guests coming back.


  1. Shrimp Tempura Hand Roll – Shrimp tempura, crab, avocado, cucumber, and unagi sauce.
  2. Salmon Avocado Roll – Salmon and avocado.
  3. Dragon Roll – Shrimp tempura, crab, avocado, BBQ eel, and unagi sauce.


“The rolls were generously sized, the price was great, the staff was attentive and SUPER friendly. The spicy tuna was really tasty and the creamy rolls were NOT overly mayonnaise’d. I kind of wish the tempura appetizer had onion…but I’m just nitpicking. I’m really glad to have a sushi place like this one right in the middle of Foster City.”
Natalie Shimizu

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Grilled fish, cooked vegetables, Foster City restaurants

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California Fish Grill

This restaurant has partnered with reputable fisheries that provide the freshest wild-caught and responsibly farm-raised fish, serving delicious, healthy seafood favorites at a great price.


  1. Atlantic Salmon – A guest favorite, this salmon is treated on the grill by our fish specialists. You benefit from the full flavor and the Omega-3s.
  2. Giant Shrimp – A generous portion of Giant Shrimp is deliciously served Cajun style or doused in our signature garlic butter.
  3. Mahi Mahi – Wild-caught and responsibly sourced! Get it with your choice of sauce and two house sides.


“I usually don’t review chain restaurants but this place is so nummy. The Atlantic Salmon plate and Shrimp Tacos are great tasting. The restaurant experience at least at the Foster City, CA. location is you place your order on the self checkout screen the kitchen gets the order and two others organize and give it to you.”
Curtis Bunch Jr.

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International Flavors

The culinary scene in Foster City, CA, brings a diverse array of cuisines from all over the world.

A bowl of ramen in Foster City restaurant

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Akizu Sushi Bar & Grill

Akizu serves a wide variety of traditional and contemporary Japanese hot food dishes prepared by their expert chef with over 10 years of experience preparing sushi.


  1. Tempura Udon – Plate of two tiger shrimp and vegetable tempura with a bowl of udon.
  2. Curry Katsu Don – Breaded pork cutlet with Japanese curry over rice.
  3. Saba Shioyaki – Grilled marinade mackerel with salt and pepper.


“We really enjoyed our dinner here. Place was neat, music was good and the food was fresh and delicious. The server was attentive and nice, and our order came fast. Worth the drive into this tucked away plaza in Foster City. Will definitely come again!”
Kristen Erica Dela Cruz

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Restaurant in Foster City serving Falafel with sides.

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Falafel Tazah

If you’re craving Middle Eastern food like falafel or shawarma, Falafel Tazah is the perfect place to go to. The restaurant prepares its offerings using only the best quality Halal meat and chicken and the freshest locally sourced produce.


  1. Deluxe Falafel – Regular falafel plus eggplant and potatoes.
  2. Lamb/Beef Shawarma – Thin slices of beef and lamb, marinated, stacked on a vertical rotisserie, and cross-sliced to fine shreds. Served with roasted tomato, seasoned onions, pickles, and Tahini on Lavash.
  3. Mediterranean Salad – Romaine lettuce, tomatoes, Persian cucumber, red onions, red cabbage, and turnip pickles with house special dressing.


“My partner and I have to make a trip down to Foster City every few months and we ALWAYS pick up shawarma here! We haven’t traveled for a while due to the pandemic so we were so happy to see the store still standing strong! Also excited that I can pick up Tazah foul like my mom uses!! Best place!”
Sabina Gallier

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Spaghetti and Meatballs served in a restaurant near Foster City

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Bellini Bistro

Bellini Bistro is a restaurant where taste-conscious people can choose from a wide variety of traditional Italian dishes offered at reasonable prices. Patrons also love the homey atmosphere and modern décor of the bistro.


  1. Ravioli Portobello Alla Boscaiola – Pasta stuffed with portobello mushroom with tomato, sage, butter, and cream.
  2. Affettati Panini – With Mortadella prosciutto, mozzarella cheese, sliced tomatoes, and pesto mayonnaise aioli. Served with French fries or salad.
  3. Tiramisu – Made of ladyfingers in amaretto and espresso, layered with a whipped mixture of egg yolks, mascarpone cheese, and shaved chocolate.


“My family and I had a pre-flight dinner here on a Friday evening and thankfully wasn’t too busy. Easy ample parking through the plaza’s lot. Cozy and clean atmosphere inside. Appreciated how quickly we were seated. Kind and attentive staff team. We got the mussels (appetizer), the day’s risotto special, and the seafood fettuccine. Appropriate portion sizes for a justified price. Absolutely delicious food. Nothing too greasy or salty. Huge thanks to the Bellini team for a welcoming and positive dining experience (great way to wrap up our California trip).”
Charlie Chung

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A bowl of soup in a Thai restaurant in Foster City

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Sweet Basil Thai Cuisine

If you happen to be looking for dog-friendly Thai restaurants, Foster City‘s Sweet Basil Thai Cuisine is the perfect place. Nestled near a biking and walking trail, this restaurant serves delightful curry, seafood, noodle soups, pan-fried noodles, and more.


  1. Tom Yum Gai – Hot and sour soup with chicken, mushrooms, tomatoes, lemongrass, and kaffir leaves.
  2. Tom Kha Gai – Coconut soup with chicken, mushrooms, lemongrass, galangal, and lime juice.
  3. Pad Thai – Pan-fried rice noodles with tofu, bean sprouts, egg, and ground peanut.


“This is our go to place for Thai food in foster city – go for the Golden Pompano and Bangkok Duck. Everything else is go too but those are the standout dishes. Service is prompt even with crowds but it’s usually pretty chill.”
Wee Khim Lee

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Dining With a View

Enjoy a wonderful gastronomic experience in these restaurants, where the views are just as delightful as the food they serve.

Ribeye steak with asparagus and baby carrots served in a restaurant in Foster City

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Café Florian

Café Florian at the Crowne Plaza – Foster City Hotel offers daily breakfast buffet and classic California and American fare for lunch. Enjoy your meal in the garden atrium with cascading waterfalls.


  1. Flat Iron Steak – Served with wild mushroom sauce.
  2. Salmon – Served with Langostino sauce.
  3. Chilled Prawns, Green Lip Mussels, Dungeness Crab Section, Oyster on Half Shell – Cocktail sauce, fresh lemon, tabasco.


“I like the Cafe Florian Sunday Brunch for its great food and service, and have gone back many times. Food is very good, from fresh seafood appetizers, salads, cheeses, breads, waffles to hot dishes, roasts, custom-requested omelettes and egg dishes, and decadent and irresistible desserts. Champagne and juices flow freely. Good coffee. It’s all-you-can-eat! Service is excellent. Servers are very attentive, and the manager is efficient and helpful.”
Elsie Sze

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Pizza restaurant in Foster City

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Waterfront Pizza

One of the popular Foster City restaurants on the water, this Mediterranean restaurant is situated by the lake, with patio seating so you can enjoy your food while taking in the beautiful views of the lake houses.


  1. Baba Ganouj – Roasted eggplant mixed with sesame oil, garlic, and lemon juice.
  2. Lamb Shish Kabob – Grilled lamb kabobs with rice and salad.
  3. Mousakka Pizza – Onions, tomatoes, pepperoni, eggplant, and garlic.


“This is one of the few restaurants in Foster city with amazing views and great pizzas + Mediterranean food. They have a great deck for outside seating with lovely ambiance. Apart from pizza, we also had a hummus, pita, dolma and falafel plate. The food was fresh and good.

Vegetarian options: There are plenty of vegetarian options. One can get pizza, dolmas, falafel plate, hummus, etc.

Parking: There is ample free parking available. The parking slots are wide so a larger vehicle can also park.”
Gaurang Mehta

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Cafe's and Restaurants serving pastries in Foster City

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Nina’s Café

This family-owned restaurant is known for its delicious homemade empanadas and authentic cooking of home-style Ecuadorian-infused food. The café also has patio seating overlooking the water.


  1. Cotopaxi Breakfast (Ecuadorian Style) – Made with 2 eggs and your choice of bacon, chorizo or ham. Topped with house-made peanut-based sauce. Choose from 2 patties: plantain, yuca, or potato.
  2. Chimichurri Steak Sandwich – Grilled fresh New York steak with lettuce, tomato, grilled onions, and chimichurri sauce. Choice of bread served with organic mixed greens tossed with house dressing and plantain chips.
  3. Quito Beef – Ground beef, raisins, minced bell peppers, onions, and seasoning.


“Ninas cafe is one of my favorite empanadas places. They sell them at the Burlingame farmers market and a physical location in foster city. At the sit down resturant they have Ecuadorian dishes and drink options. Would highly recommend.”
Shana Marie

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Wrap Up

The lovely Foster City is indeed a haven for foodies. If you’re planning to visit the area, be sure to drop by these restaurants!

And if you happen to fall in love with this place, feel free to give me a call at 650-218-3353 so we can start discussing your home options. You may also send me an email at dingesnonnie@gmail.com to schedule an appointment.

Frequently Asked Questions

The average bill at these Foster City restaurants ranges from $10 to $30.

Yes, some of them are Sweet Basil Thai Cuisine, Falafel Tazah, and Bellini Bistro.