Neighborhood Update: The Mission at 16th & Valencia

The Roxie Theater

Established in 1909 The Roxie Movie theatre is the oldest continually operating theatre in San Francisco. Known as “provocative and risk-taking” the Roxie shows more documentaries than any other theatre in the country. In my opinion, the Roxie’s mission statement most thoroughly describes the theatre: “Through exhibition of diverse films, film festivals and special events, the Center seeks to be the premiere community resource and venue for San Francisco’s diverse Bay Area film community, and a model for the future of independent film exhibition in the United States” ( I attended 13 Going On at the Roxie and American Teen at the little Roxie, a smaller cozier screen attached, and must say that both film provided an eye-opening look into the teen world. The theatre certainly seems to be fulfilling its mission… in the mission.

After digesting a movie as provocative and inspiring as those shown at the Roxie, you might get hungry. And after all the brain processing you definitely need some protein, like in sushi! However, in the block surrounding the Roxie there are plenty of options, but I do have some advice…

Sushi: Try and Avoid…

We Be Sushi. I stopped in there one night fairly early. The cute sign advertising the bar and sushi drew me in. Oh the powers of marketing. I was beyond disappointed. The sushi was bland and uninspiring. The staff was rude, which is something I have rarely experienced anywhere, especially in San Francisco. And in fact the green tea, which of all things should be easy, was actually disgusting. It really was sushi like my mom would make, but that is anything but a compliment.

Instead, I would recommend…

Yoyo sushi. Caddy-corner from the Roxie, the neon signs of Yoyo sushi caught my attention. I was looking from an improvement from We Be and I found it. While the sushi was nothing special and a bit more expensive, it was a lot better. They had a wide selection of rolls, both traditional and not. While the sushi was not up to par of something I would expect from the mission, it was definitely an improvement.

If anyone has any recommendations on where to get better sushi in this neighborhood, please share! In the mean time…

If you just want a latte before the show…

I would recommend Ritual Coffee Roasters. A bit farther up Valencia, Ritual Roasters is a great hip coffee shop that offers a great atmosphere for studying. The coffee is Ritual’s claim to fame though, so make sure to check it out if you’re the espresso connoisseur.

The Roxie Theatre
3117 16th Street
San Francisco, CA

We Be Sushi
538 Valencia Street (Between 16th and 17th)
San Francisco, CA

Yo-Yo Restaurant
3092 16th Street
San Francisco, CA

Ritual Coffee Roasters
1026 Valencia
San Francisco, CA



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