Where to Eat: Fairfax

Fairfax restaurants

Perched on the line between Central and West Marin, the small town of Fairfax comfortably straddles new and old Marin with a mix of casual watering holes and trendy hot spots. Noted for its mountain bike culture, one-of-a-kind stores and independent spirit, Fairfax’s dining options are equally diverse, ranging from upscale wine bar to casual brat ‘n beer hall, Michelin Bib Gourmand notable Japanese pub to family-run Italian.

Be sure to check each restaurant’s website or social pages to confirm its most current hours of operation and services.

Bakery | Barbecue | Breakfast | Burger | Brewery | Ice Cream | Indian | Italian | Latin American | Mexican | Pizza | Sandwiches | Sushi | Thai | Vegan & Vegetarian

Readers' Choice, Best of Marin

This symbol indicates a Best of the County Readers’ Choice recipient.


For more Bakeries, in Marin check out our Best of the County picks here.


Amelie Cafe and Wine Bar, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of Amélie

Stop in for a quintessential French breakfast of coffee and a croissant at an outpost of the original San Francisco wine bar. Stay to enjoy plates of Cal-French escargot with garlic butter, salad Nicoise with pickled egg or slow-baked steelhead with persillade and radishes at lunch and dinner and an extensive French wine list. A petite streetside patio features dining atop wine barrels.

2023 Best of County Winner for Bakeries.

Outdoor seating | Brunch | Happy Hour | Dogs Welcome | Date Spot | Meal under $20
71 Broadway Blvd, 628.253.5161


For more Barbecue in Marin, check out our Best of the County picks here.

Way Station

Way Station, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of Way Station

Barbecue from a trailer embedded into the wall is the main attraction at this mechanic’s shop turned eatery where tall former bay garage doors slide open to reveal washed concrete floors and a craft beer garden with fire pit. The ‘cue gets all the love but salads, BBQ tacos, those famous pickles, and a wide selection of tapped and bottled beers plus wines round out the menu. Kid-friendly and dog-friendly with outdoor seating and frequent live music.

2023 Best of County Winner for Barbecue and Brewery.

Kid-friendly | Outdoor Seating | Dogs Welcome | Date Spot | Meal under $20
2001 Sir Francis Drake Blvd, 415.300.3099


For more Breakfast in Marin, check out our Best of the County picks here.

Barefoot Cafe

Barefoot Cafe, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of Barefoot Cafe

Chef Tony Senehi’s all-day cafe in the heart of town is known for California-inspired dishes made from local, organic ingredients. Pear almond pancakes and eggs Benedict (ask for “the Brady” to get lox) are popular at breakfast, while a BBQ pulled pork sandwich is a hot seller at lunch. The cioppino is only available at dinner.

Kid-friendly | Brunch | Meal under $20
1900 Sir Francis Drake Blvd, 415.460.2160

The Hummingbird

The Hummingbird, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of The Hummingbird

Though a taco or two is known to make an appearance, this New Orleans–style restaurant goes all-in on Creole staples like fried chicken and waffles, shrimp and grits, po’boys, gumbo, and beignets at breakfast, brunch and lunch. Opt for the spicy syrup or homemade hot sauce to get that Cajun kick. Cash only.

2023 Best of County Winner for Breakfast.

Kid-friendly | Outdoor seating | Brunch | Meal under $20
57 Broadway Blvd, 415.457.9866


For more Breweries in Marin, check out our Best of the County picks here.

HenHouse Brewing

HenHouse Brewing Co., Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of HenHouse Brewing Co.

The second coming of HenHouse features an onsite craft-malt certified 10-barrel brewery and an updated menu from executive chef Lauren Garcia. In the comfortable, hen-adorned space with plentiful bar, table and outdoor seating, a sushi sandwich, moules frites steamed in Saison, or avocado toast topped with house-cured trout are right at home alongside an Incredible IPA or 10th Anniversary Oyster Stout. Don’t worry, there’s a wine program, too.

2023 Best of County Winner for Brewery.

Kid-friendly | Outdoor seating | Dogs Welcome | Watch the Game | Meal under $20
765 Center Blvd, 415.48


For more Burgers in Marin, check out our Best of the County picks here.

M&G Burgers

M&G Burgers, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of M&G Burgers

Looking for a classic burger, fries, and shake? M&G serves up quality without the frills at their Larkspur and Fairfax locations.

2023 Best of the County for Burger.

Kid-friendly  |  Meal Under $20  | Outdoor Seating 
2017 Sir Francis Drake Blvd, 415.454.0655


Stillwater, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of Stillwater

Fairfax native Margaret Ruiz and her life and business partner, David, bring the bounty of the county to the table. Appetizers and salads feature local cheeses, oysters, and produce while the cheeseburger with Stemple Creek beef and the miso-glazed black cod have dedicated followers. Try one with a Golden Valley Gimlet from the modern cocktail menu. Two patios provide ample outdoor eating space.

Full Bar | Kid-friendly | Outdoor seating | Happy Hour | Dogs Welcome | Date Spot
23 Broadway, 415.524.8478

Ice Cream

For more ice cream in Marin, check out our Best of the County picks here.

Fairfax Scoop

Ice Cream

Readers' Choice, Best of Marin

Fairfax Scoop serves up organic, seasonal ice creams and is famous for its Honey Lavender Vanilla, Mexican Chocolate, and Raspberry Sorbet. Always quality, make sure to try one of their handmade waffle cones.

2023 Best of the County for Ice Cream/Frozen Yogurt.

Grab ‘n Go | Kid-friendly | Worth the Hype
63 Broadway, 415.453.3130


For more Indian food in Marin, check out our Best of the County picks here.

Cafe Lotus

Cafe Lotus, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of Cafe Lotus

Run by Surinder “Pal” Sroa and his son Jyoti Sroa, also founders of the award-winning Lotus Cuisine of India in San Rafael, Cafe Lotus uses organic, local ingredients and fresh spices in their authentic, home-style Northern Indian. Their quality and tasty dishes have made them a local Marin favorite.

2023 Best of the County for Indian Food.

Grab ‘n Go  |  Kid-friendly  |  Meal Under $20 
1912 Sir Francis Drake Blvd, 415.457.7836


For more Italian food in Marin, check out our Best of the County picks here.


Fradelizio's, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of Fradelizio’s

Locally raised chef-owner Paul Fradelizio has served inspired Northern Italian fare (homemade gnocchi, wild boar cannelloni, Monterey Bay calamari, tiramisu) for more than 25 years. A perennial neighborhood gem winner, the cozy space welcomes all with daily specials (salmon, line-caught in Bolinas, with a golden beet and arugula salad, house made Meyer lemon fettuccine with salmon and asparagus) and a wine by the barrel program, sourced from Napa and Sonoma.

2023 Best of County Winner for Italian Food.

Full Bar | Kid-friendly | Date Spot
35 Broadway Blvd, 415.459.1618

La Gastronomia Di Porchetta

After 15 years at Sausalito’s Osteria Divino, chef Elena Fabbri, who grew up in the restaurant business in Tuscany, decided that focaccia sandwiches with porchetta would be her niche, launching a catering company that highlighted the dish in 2017. (Her husband, Gustavo Mutul, runs Pibil, serving Mexican and Italian pork tacos and sandwiches at the San Rafael Sunday farmers’ market.) Cooked on the in-house rotisserie, pork belly is cut right at the ribs to remove the loin. It’s a one-two punch that makes Fabbri’s porchetta juicy, crispy, irresisitible. Fabbri’s full-service restaurant, which opened last spring, leans into Tuscan flavors with a complete menu of antipasti, primi and secondi. The porchetta — on a sandwich at lunch, with eggs at brunch, with Brussels sprouts and roasted squash at dinner – is destination dining-worthy.

New Hot Spot | Brunch | Date Spot | Outdoor Seating | Worth the Hype
123 Bolinas Rd, 415.419.5465

Sorella Caffe

Sorella Caffe, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of Sorella Caffe

Run by sisters Sonia and Soyara, Sorella, which means “sister” in Italian, serves fresh Italian with a northern influence. Customer favorites include the cioppino, butternut squash ravioli, and pollo alla Sorella, others insist on returning just for the garlic bread.

2023 Best of County Winner for Italian.

Date Spot | Meal under $20
107 Bolinas Rd, 415.258.4520

Latin American

For more Latin American food in Marin, check out our Best of the County picks here.

Holy Chile Mole

Holy Chile Mole, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of Holy Chile Mole

A 10th-generation Romani-Serbian and current resident of Novato, Mark Adams runs a food truck with his wife, Deanna, that includes Serbian, American and Mexican flavors. He has a family recipe called chile mole salsa that goes back generations: Tomatoes, peppers and jalapeños are slow-roasted, then blended with seasonings and oil for an addictive sauce that is layered on everything from a street dog to vegan tacos and a club melt on sourdough. “Most people say it’s like nothing they’ve ever tried,” Adams says, who admits he will turn anything into a taco. Look for the truck on Saturday and Sunday at Larkspur’s Marin Country Mart and at the seasonal markets in Novato on Tuesday nights and Wednesdays in Fairfax.

2023 Best of the County for Latin American Food.

Grab ‘n Go  | Kid-friendly | Meal Under $20 | Worth the Hype


For more Mexican food in Marin, check out our Best of the County picks here.

Mas Masa

Mas Masa, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of Mas Masa

Chef and owner Patrick Sheehy focuses on the ancient technique of corn nixtamalization, using organic, non-GMO blue corn to make its handmade tortillas featured in sweet potato quesadillas, recado rojo tacos and house made chips and guacamole. The beer and wine lists highlight local California microbreweries and wineries. It’s all available to enjoy on the shaded patio.

Kid-friendly | Outdoor seating | Dogs Welcome | Meal under $20
31 Bolinas Rd, 415.295.7443


For more Pizza in Marin, check out our Best of the County picks here.

Split Rock Tap & Wheel

Split Rock Tap & Wheel, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of Split Rock Tap & Wheel

The former Fairfax Cyclery space is one part bike shop, one part community gathering space and café serving pizzas, sandwiches, and salads alongside an ever changing list of California’s freshest micro-brews from their 15 taps. The inside-outside space features dirt resistant seating so you can sit a quaff a brew after you finish your ride or while you wait for a repair.

Kid-friendly | Outdoor seating | Grab ‘n Go | Dogs Welcome | Meal under $20
2020 Sir Francis Drake Blvd, 415. 721.7644


For more Sandwiches in Marin, check out our Best of the County picks here.

The Lodge

The Lodge, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of The Lodge

The menu is designed to power up the many riders and hikers who swing by, featuring all-American eats like a breakfast burrito stuffed with eggs, spinach and salsa; share plates like a sausage board served with Lodge tots and slaw; and pour-over coffee and draft beer. A growler and can program means your favorite beer, cider, or wine can be sipped in the backyard where shaded picnic tables await.

Kid-friendly | Outdoor seating | Dogs Welcome | Meal under $20
1573 Sir Francis Drake Blvd,


For more Sushi in Marin, check out our Best of the County picks here.

Village Sake

Village Sake, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of Village Sake

Chef Scott Whitman’s izakaya is a Japanese-style community pub with a 2021 Bib Gourmand designation from Michelin and a place on the Top 25 Restaurants list from the San Francisco Chronicle. In the compact interior space and at the seven outdoor tables, you’ll find sushi and skewers, salads and small plates, plus sake and craft beer. The daily waitlist opens online at 5 p.m.

2023 Best of County Winner for Sushi.

Outdoor Seating | Worth the Hype | Date Spot
19 Bolinas Rd, 415.521.5790

Thai / Southeast Asia

For more Thai in Marin, check out our Best of the County picks here.

Bah Mi Ba

Bah Mi Ba, Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of Bah Mi Ba

A takeout-only spot from the Village Sake team down the street homes in on Southeast Asian flavors. Gluten-free spring rolls and vermicelli bowls line up against Vietnamese bánh mi on a sub roll. Tradition dictates five types of pork layered with cucumber, jalapeño and cilantro, but modernists will savor a sandwich stuffed with Impossible laab or Korean fried chicken instead.

Grab ‘n Go | Meal under $20
1 Bolinas Rd; 415.209.5314

My Thai

My Thai, Thai Food Marin
Photo Courtesy of My Thai

With over 40 years of Thai Food Making experience, My Thai brings the fresh and flavorful tastes of Thailand to Mill Valley, San Rafael and Fairfax.

2023 Best of the County for Thai Food.

Grab n Go | Kid Friendly | Outdoor Seating | Meals Under $20
25 Broadway, 415.435.5967

Vegan / Vegetarian

For more vegan and vegetarian food in Marin, check out our Best of the County picks here.

Leaf & Sage Plant-based Cuisine

Bite-sized plant-based vegan appetizers from Leaf and Sage Fairfax
Photo Courtesy of Leaf & Sage

Laying claim as the only 100% whole food, plant-based caterer in Marin, Amanda Denny opened her personal chef and catering business in October of last year and launched a stand at the seasonal Fairfax Farmers’ Market in June. The Fairfax resident uses no processed food or animal products in any dish. “The business is new, the concept itself is emerging, and I thought to myself, “me and my family eat this way, and there aren’t any options for us in Marin,” Denny said. “Let’s create some!” 


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