San Francisco has strong bakeries slinging sourdough and folding croissants, but it isn’t a party without cake. Whether you’re putting in an order for a special occasion or just vicariously ordering dessert on a Tuesday night, the city’s best cakes come from both bakeries and restaurants, crafted by acclaimed pastry chefs and cute neighborhood shops alike. From elaborately layered opera and princess cakes to Italian custard, Mission-style tres leches, and Japanese cheesecake, there’s something to suit every sweet tooth. Plus, birthday party emergency resources, if you just need a set of cupcakes with American buttercream, like grandma always made them.
From old-fashioned faves to elaborate layers, here are the sweetest cakes in San Francisco, ordered geographically.
Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.