Phone Booth

20s / 30s / 40s / Average Joes / Blue Collar / Budget-friendly / Chill / Dive Bar / Diverse / Dresses / Flannel Shirts / Groups / Grungy / Happy Hour / Hippies / Hipster / Intimate / Jam Packed / Jukebox / Laid back / Laid back / Oldies / Pool (Billiards) / Regulars / Rockers / Skinny Jeans / Smoking Area / Smoky / Snack Food / Students / T-shirts / TVs / Unpretentious / Vintage / Yupster
Phone Booth Phone Booth in San Francisco's Mission is a classic dive with a diverse crowd, cheap drinks, & a friendly vibe. Pull up a seat in SF with Party Earth. San Francisco United States 37.7509063 -122.4162847
3.5 8
Phone Booth - Dive Bar in San Francisco.
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Ratings:
Lucas
Adriana
Jonah
Emma

Party Earth Review Located south of the heaviest Mission drinking scene on a largely residential stretch, Phone Booth may have a cream-colored façade that’s as understated as, well, a phone company’s, but the similarities end there. Open... ... read full review

  • Metro:

    BART: 24th St. Mission;

  • Phone:

    415-648-4683

  • Hours:

    M–F 1pm–2am, Sa–Su 2pm–2am

  • Recommended as:

    • Day Spot
    • Night Spot

Party Earth Phone Booth Review

The Scene

Phone Booth in San Francisco's Mission is a classic dive with a diverse crowd, cheap drinks, & a friendly vibe. Pull up a seat in SF with Party Earth.

Located south of the heaviest Mission drinking scene on a largely residential stretch, Phone Booth may have a cream-colored façade that’s as understated as, well, a phone company’s, but the similarities end there.

Open since the 80s, the name stems from a long-gone Pacific Bell office that stood across the street, when the regulars were comprised of mostly gay company men in need of a casual after-work drink.

These days it draws a more diverse, but still wholly unpretentious crowd, which packs the tiny single room for cheap beer, free popcorn, and a chance to light up cigarettes in unified scorn of anti-smoking laws.

The décor appears to have been executed by someone who began setting up for the holidays and got sidetracked, with fake branches and Christmas lights strewn across the ceiling, all mixed up with a bizarre chandelier of naked Barbie dolls.

Midweek plays host to sedate groups of area yuppies, hipsters, and older barflies, who take to the scattered tables with cans of PBR and heavily poured cocktails, either to chat or wait for an opening on the lone pool table.

On Fridays, the tiny space is routinely packed with a younger but still chill crowd of rockers and grunge kids, keeping the vibe casual and the air relaxed – even if all the smoke makes it hard to see.

Slightly removed but well worth the trip, Phone Booth is an easy spot to drink away any hang-ups with a happy bunch of disconnected souls.

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Tip from Jonah:

Consistently voted one of the best jukebox bars in the Mission, this place steams up on weekends with a great mix of blaring old-school tunes. It’s worth coming here just for the music, though if you can’t handle the persistent smoking, you’re in for a struggle.

  • Crowd

    Hipsters, cool cats, hippies, college kids, blue-collar Joes, chill yuppies, old-fart barflies, 20s to 40s.

  • Entertainment / Music

    Jukebox or bartender’s playlist fill the room with a rather random assortment of music that this crowd always seems to love.

    Couple of TVs tuned to whatever.

    Pool table.

  • Food / Miscellaneous

    No food. Venue is known for being one of a handful of SF drinking dens that ignore the citywide smoking ban – though there’s no telling how long that can last, so keep your mouth shut! Happy Hour daily 4–7pm.

  • Prices

    Beer $3.50–$4, cocktails $5–$10, shots and hard stuff $4–$10, coffee and soda $2, beer and shot combos $7–$15.

  • What to Wear / Dress Code

    Fashionably anti-fashion: skinny jeans, leather jackets, graphic t-shirts, boots, high-tops, granny jumpers, plaid, vintage dresses.

  • Hot Nights / When to Go

    Thursday through Saturday nights for a guaranteed packed house by as early as 7pm, or early in the week for a relaxed drink and round of pool.

  • Close By

    Beauty Bar (2299 Mission Street) accommodates a similar crowd and touts a dance floor that is rarely empty.

Phone Booth User Reviews

Average rating:
Meh
Gor G. Jun 8, 2013
The Phone Booth is the only bar in SF where I was called out for what I was wearing. The sooooo ironic hipster bartender refused to acknowledge me because I was sporting a gray brooks brother polo shirt and pressed chinos. Sorry man, but I didn't get the memo. I didn't know knee socks and tattered t-shirt was the preferred dress-code. Will you serve me a drink anyway? Douchebag. Listen hipster, one day you are going to have to grow up and get a real job with real responsibilities. Your days of skateboarding on South Van Ness won't be so COOL anymore. In retrospect, I really shouldn't be writing this review because I live about 10 feet from here. I can already hear the sound of chuck taylors making their way to my door. Hipsters are like zombies. They congregate in small packs and once you kill them; there are a hundred more ready to impress you with their precious "irony". If the city ever puts all the hipsters on their own island, it would be filled with establishments like Phone Booth and Boogaloos. God, I'm such an a-hole when it comes to these people. I hope you burn down, just like "Benders" did. 1 star.
Life Doesn't Seem as Bad When You're Looking Through a Cloud of Stogie Smoke
Caitlin M. Jun 5, 2013
I was traveling though the Mission with my friends. I was already drunk, pretty tired, and was ready to throw in the towel. We had already gone to Delirium and Killowat, and I wasn't feeling it. "We need to meet my friend, though", said Friend number 1. "You're allowed to smoke inside", she said. Bingo. I was in. That is probably the principle aspect of the bar: the ability to smoke inside. Also I greatly appreciated the Halloween decorations still hanging late into December. It was dark, smoke everywhere, and there were literally cobwebs hanging from the ceiling. It feels sort of intimate in there, which was cool, and it turned my night around. Apart from the fact that my friend spilled my drink and I spent the whole night thinking we were at "Photo Booth", I would definitely go back.
A Sanctuary In Plain Site
Carlos M. Apr 3, 2013
Though now largely obsolete, the phone booth once stood as the pinnacle of modern communication and interconnectedness. There was something compelling about a box in the middle of the city that provided privacy in a helplessly public environment; a sort of free haven. It’s hard to say if the owners of the Phone Booth had this analogical mentality back when they named the bar in the 80’s; it probably had more to do with the Pacific Bell offices that stood directly across the street. Regardless of intent, the Phone Booth lives up to its name as a refuge in a bustling city. You’ll often find the doors of the Phone Booth wide open as the sound of casual chatter spills onto the sidewalk. Inside you’ll experience the unique swirl of clean San Francisco air mixed with the smoke of several lit cigarettes; a unique departure for anyone familiar with strict California smoking laws. The jukebox will probably be playing one of your favorite songs, or a song that will soon become one of your favorite songs. On a typical Friday night you’ll find a group of hipsters in the left corner, a trio of tie-sporting professionals in the right, and your token group of mixed stereotypes in the middle; in other words, a diverse demographic representative of San Francisco’s world famous diversity. Like any good dive bar, the lighting would put the dark reaches of you parent’s attic to shame. The poorly assembled red Christmas lights double as a reminder that any effort to make the space aesthetically pleasing died with the wired telephone; and rightfully so. Most people here are eager to saddle up a table, enjoy a good drink and partake in good conversation. Though counter instinctual, the compact and loud environment makes for a setting in which conversations flow freely and stay private. After all, can you remember the last time you said anything worth saying at a Starbucks as you sat next to the guy quietly reading the New York Times? To say that this is the best dive bar in the world would be a stretch by most standards, but it’s safe to say that it’s modeled after the best; wherever that may be. The libations flow pleasantly, and cheaply. The friendships come easy. The Phone Booth stands as a sanctuary in plain sight, a reminder that without a break from the bustling machinery around us, life would be absurd.
Decent time
Rachel G. Dec 11, 2012
Totally assumed that when I walked in that the whole place would be phone booths! I expect that booths would be "phone booths", but that's just if I made this bar! I had a decent time here, nothing special though. Nothing jumped out to me in particular. I wouldn't travel here normally. I would say this is a local neighborhood bar where you would only go if you lived near by or if you happened to be in the neighborhood for some reason. The crowd was totally weird for me. But then again, I felt that way when i first walked into the Beauty Bar next door so it really explains a lot for me. It's an okay bar, nothing special and nothing bad about it.
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