I visited SF for the Thanksgiving weekend and had lots of good food thanks to Chowhound. Nob Hill Cafe was delicious, as was Bar Crudo.
My favorite experience was Saha, in the Hotel Carlton. It was almost completely empty on Friday night (perhaps everyone was at home eating turkey?). The decor is very nice -- a sort of modern Moroccan with hanging traditional lantern light fixtures, and rich red chairs and banquettes.
We started with a couple beers, and the sampler plate. The sampler has pita bread and small bowls of assorted dips: hummus, baba ganoush, feta with chile, leban, artichoke spread, and a chopped spiced eggplant and tomato. The baba ganoush and hummus were standard, if not terribly inspired. The artichoke and eggplant dips were outstanding.
From the small plates menu, we ordered the stuffed artichoke hearts with scallops, which I didn't get a chance to try but others enjoyed.
The soup of the day, a four vegetable puree, was delicious.
We ordered the fattoush (a pita bread salad), which was nice a moist the way I like it.
Three entrees were split between the four of us: the Crab Island, Lamb Shank and the Green Earthy Stew. The crab island was a filo pastry stuffed with a mixture of crabmeat and diced mushrooms, with saffron sauce. The lamb shank came as a giant neanderthal-looking bone stewed in a saffron/cinnamon/ginger sauce and served with sauteed spinach and mashed potatoes on the side. Although I'm not a vegetarian, I think I enjoyed the Green Earthy Stew the most, which featured tofu and okra in a flavorful sauce.
The restaurant offers a prix fixe option that makes dinner especially affordable. Ordered a la carte, most small plates are around $10-12, and most entrees $16-20.
You certainly didn't need a reservation for the night I was there, but I'm unsure if that's normal.