Paul Martin's American Grill - San Mateo

Paul Martin's American Grill - San Mateo

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.paulmartinsamericangrill.com/
  • Phone: 6502127400
  • Hours of Operation:


    Lunch: M-F 11:00am-3:00pm

    Dinner: M-Th 3:00pm-10:00pm

    Dinner: F-Sa 3:00pm-11:00pm

    Dinner: Su 3:00pm-9:00pm

    Happy Hour: Su-Sa 3:00pm-7:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Diners Club,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: American, Steakhouse, Contemporary American
  • Executive Chef: Vincent Castillo
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Smoking Area, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Getting there

  • Cross Street: 31st ave/El Camino Real
  • Parking: Public Lot
A word from Paul Martin's American Grill - San Mateo
Seasonal & Delicious.

With Paul Martin's American Grill, Brian Bennett and restaurateur Paul Fleming have realized a long-nurtured dream to create the restaurant "we've always wished was in our neighborhood."

At the heart of all great food is fresh, local, peak of the season ingredients. Paul Martin's aims to serve diners the best ingredients with meat raised in a humane and wholesome way, locally sourced produce, the best of both wild and farmed fish, artisan cheeses and cured meats from small local purveyors. The deep California-centric wine list twists and turns, by glass or bottle, through the Golden State's vineyards, with an occasional stop for an Oregon Pinot Gris or a Washington dry Riesling. Behind Paul Martin's elegantly rustic bar is an interesting array of craft beer and spirited cocktails with fresh garnishes. Good times and thoughtful food are a way of life at Paul Martin's American Grill.
Continued
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerMost Booked
Paul Martin's American Grill - San Mateo reviews from OpenTable diners
298 reviews since May 25, 2014
Overall Rating3.9
  • Food3.9
    Service3.9
  • Ambiance3.9
    Noise LevelModerate
85% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
great for outdoor dining (120)great for lunch (114)good for groups (111)fit for foodies (109)neighborhood gem (106)special occasion (99)vibrant bar scene (78)notable wine list (62)hot spot (50)great for brunch (46)kid-friendly (39)romantic (37)late-night find (17)scenic view (5)Show More
  • Poorly managed
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009VIP
    Dined on 9/20/2014
    service was terrible, food arrived late and cold and that was after calling the manager over just to get some water
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Consistently great
    OptimusDinerVIP
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    We go here a lot after going to a movie (both lunch and dinner) but not usually on a Friday night and as expected, it was very crowded, so we ended up sitting in the bar and got great service and great food, as always. This is one restaurant you can always count on!
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Always great food here..
    pfdinnerVIP
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    I've been hear about 6 or 7 times and have to say the food is great every time. The service was great and Jessica (our server) really knows the menu and how to treat the customers right. The rib eye steak is outstanding, but the new york steak is always a bit tough for me. This place is great for older kids and caters to them perfectly.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Worth the visit
    Chippy23
    Dined on 9/16/2014
    Heard so much about Paul Martin's. We finally had a chance to go. We're not disappointed at all. The food was excellent and oh, so delicious. Everything was made from scratch, so it's fresh! The fried chicken was to die for. Perfect seasoning and piping hot. The short ribs melted in your mouth. The homemade ice cream was silken and smooth. We're coming back for sure!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Pretty Good
    Kierro
    Dined on 9/15/2014
    Returned for dinner with a friend last week after an excellent lunch there a week before. We were promptly seated for dinner at 5:15. We were seated across from the bar but this was uncomfortable because there is single passage too close to the table. The waitress was very good, but at each course I had to ask for flatware for the that course. My friend needed to ask each time for a refill on her tea. She had the chicken; it was fine. I had the ahi tuna. It was baked well, but there wasn't anything special, like seasoning or presentation. It was served on a bed of fresh grilled baby green beans that were slightly under done for me, but in acceptable limits. We had house made three scoops of ice cream that both of us really enjoyed.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • So far - So Good
    kb121
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    Have been here many times for Happy Hour and lunch, but this is actually my first time for Dinner. It was excellent. I had the burger, and others had the Short Ribs and the Skirt Steak. I asked our Server, Corinne (sp?) to recommend a very fruit forward wine, which usually is in the Pinot Noir or Merlot category, but she brought me a Cabernet that fit the bill. We had the Strawberry Shortcake at the end to share with coffee. A very nice experience. Corinne was excellent as our Server, friendly and knowledgeable. We of course will be back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • CraigVIP
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    Butcher's Plate was awesome - great prosciutto and nice presentation. Have been to this restaurant multiple times and this time was the 1st we were truly disappointed in the main course. Tow of us ordered the cedar plank salmon - over-cooked and had a mustard glaze that did not go well with the salmon. Management addressed the problem by crediting "one" of the entrees. Because of past history we will return
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 9/10/2014
    Great place to meet the girls for lunch. Lots of time to catch up. You don't feel at all rushed. Food and wine wonderful!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Diner
    Dined on 9/7/2014
    We were there on Sunday for the prime rib dinner special. Came with soup or salad and prime rib with potatoes. The potatoes just don't taste real to me. For $25.00 dollars the prime rib was a thin cut, very fatty and did not have a lot of flavor. I have had a better piece of meat at Outback. Was not impressed. The desserts however, are very good. Homemade ice cream is rich and creamy. The chocolate cake is to die for. I may go back for dessert and skip the dinner.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Okay, but nothing special
    PestoPest
    Dined on 9/1/2014
    Pleasant setting for a shopping center, very good service. We expected more from the menu. Apparently some favorites (of our son's) were recently taken off the menu. Limited appetizer selection for shell fish allergic (me). My grilled salmon was delicious and kitchen agreeable to switch from carb to veg as accompany. My husband had a burger: good, but nothing special. Chicken was very good (per one of our party) and a large portion served. No bread was offered - probably to my benefit, but I missed it.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • pricey with small portions
    NinaG
    Dined on 9/1/2014
    I ordered the heirloom tomato and burrata salad... I am not exaggerating... there was literally one tablespoon (at most!) of burrata cheese on the plate with 4 tomato slices for $14.00 I don't mind the price, but come on... where is the burrata on this dish?! My husband ordered the french dip sandwich. The meat was grizzly and the flavor was simply ok... nothing great. My Dad ordered the salmon with quinoa salad. The salmon was delicious, but the quinoa salad was drenched in dressing. Unfortunately, we won't be going back anytime soon!
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great addition
    goldbloodedgrillerVIP
    Dined on 9/1/2014
    P.M. Is a great addition to the renovation of hillsdale. I was worried when we waited about 15 min. Past our reservation to be seated in a near empty restaurant. I thought we might get "mall type" food, but all the surrounding restaurants don't even compare to the food at P.M. Calamari, burger, kids meals & spinach dip were standard. Steak Cobb, fish tacos, & mushroom burger were superb. Devils food cake, strawberry shortcake, & pie were just ok. One peeve, the "All Day Wine for Two" is NOT all day.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great service
    Disappointed
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    The staff satisfied all our needs and more. A great place.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, hot spot, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • No Sunday prime rib dinner
    VivianVIP
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    We dined on Sunday to get their prime rib special dinner...they were out by 6:30 pm. Come on - it is your advertised special each week and you don't have enough for customers? Waitress was surly, service is slow and disorganized...they got one entree wrong then we had to wait a while for correct order. Last they over charged on the bill. What more can go wrong with this restaurant?
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • candyVIP
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    We tried their brunch menu for the first time and it was excellent, great value for the price, tried their spinach omelet and it was delicious! Great service as well!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for brunch, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Faultless, but uninspired
    DaveInSanFran
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Located at Hillsdale Mall, this was convenient for us. We were greeted warmly, promptly seated, well accommodated by the friendly staff, and served quickly. We found menu choices for everyone and were encouraged by the stated fact that all items were scratch-made in house. Our appetizers were tasty: fried shrimps cooked perfectly, oysters bright and fresh and satisfying spinach dip (although we think it could be better without the chicken stock.) Our main courses of short rib, polenta, fish tacos and tomato soup were all perfectly adequate. The wine list had a good variety of choices by the bottle or glass. Our shared dessert was fine. Despite all this, we left unimpressed. Better to find one of the Bay Area's many more creative kitchens.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Consistently Good
    FoodieVIP
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Consistently good food and service once again! The heirloom salads were lovely with a beautifully creamy burrata, the cedar plank salmon fresh and tastefully presented on a bed of spinach. Coupled with a great Reisling, it was a wonderful meal!
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Mass produced food & terrible svd
    shoefly
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Third time was NOT the charm! Terrible service from Dan B! Happy hour food (ribs & chicken skewers) tasted mass produced and served cold - terrible! Dan B was our waiter and never once cracked a smile or faked the friendliness. Asked him for water 4 times and everytime he acted like it was the first time he heard it. The only saving grace was the calamari - but I still left hungry, no hangry :( I must be a glutton for punishment because I'm still thinking about trying the Sunday 3 Course Prime Rib Dinner for $25 paulmartinsamericangrill… Should I? Maybe...as long I don't get Dan B!
    • Food
    • Ambiance
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    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Modern scene with decent food/drink
    SunsetDinerVIP
    Dined on 8/28/2014
    Good, predictable food. Great drinks/wine list. Love the outside patio. Great happy hour!
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Pleasantly surprised
    satisfoodie
    Dined on 8/27/2014
    With previous reviews being all over the map, we were not sure what to expect. Looks like they have worked out the kinks. We were seated promptly at our reservation time, on the patio, as we requested. The server was prompt and knowledgeable. The food was top quality. Baby kale salad with white anchovies, grilled corn soup (would go back just for that!), salt & pepper prawns with linguini, cedar planked salmon with an au jus and topped with as impressive garnish--not enough room here for more details, but suffice it to say that they use the very best ingredients, and creative recipes. Prices a little higher than we expected, but ultimately worth it. Manager constantly checked on tables. Would definitely return. Maybe the seafood platter?
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Good quality & friendly service
    RonL
    Dined on 8/25/2014
    Spinach artichoke dip was to die for! Knowledgeable staff in recommending the best wine with your main course selection.
    Special Features:
    notable wine list, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good food, convenient location
    MunchingMarkVIP
    Dined on 8/25/2014
    Have been here a few times and always enjoy the experience. The fish tacos were excellent. Good and efficient service.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Excellent addition to San Mateo
    SFDiner
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    Fantastic food, and will likely become our new go-to restaurant.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Dessert
    Foodee
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    Ooh did not like the dessert choices .. Wish they had creme brulle and tiramusu
    Special Features:
    special occasion, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Delightful waitstaff, mediocre food
    jar2
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    The hostess was gregarious. Upon seating, I inquired about happy hour. She explained that HH was not served in that section and immediately relocated me to the patio, where I waited for my pal. While I'm glad I asked, it would have been nice to know in advance. Our server was friendly, though he seemed uncomfortably formal; he had a forced-looking smile, and he read my entire name when bringing back my credit card after payment! As for food, it was mediocre. Salmon tacos were tasty, but it only came with 2 tiny tacos for $9. Overpriced. The triple chocolate cake was so so and also overpriced. At $5 a pop, the drinks were good & affordable. While I would go back if someone else wanted to dine there, it would be no big deal if I don't return.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, good for groups, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Party time
    Fab6
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    Service was wonderful for our birthday party of six. Nice gesture that one dessert was complimentary for birthday girl. Strawberries, their ice cream, in cream puff pastry topped with whipped cream. How can one object. Lunch was delish too!
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Unhappy with the service
    Dinnerqueen
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    I've been to Paul Martins twice before and I like the food. This time I brought my two friends who have never been there before and I'm not sure they will ever go back. The service was horrible. We were seated a little after our reservation time and our order was placed a little after. 45-50 minutes later our food finally came. Our server never came back to let us know why it was taking so long. We didn't even order anything that should have taken that amount of time. When we finally got the bill, the check was split between two credit cards and after explaining that to our server what we wanted him to do, he came back doing the complete opposite.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • tasting menu 3-7p
    diningout
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    One tasty option on this limited menu: burger, fries & beer for $13.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Splendid tacos
    sfnativeVIP
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    Their fish tacos are superior and fresh and the braised short ribs excellent. Service is consistently good
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • convenient location
    SMRealtorVIP
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    came here with a large party, service was good but very slow, food came out warm not hot, picked over cheesecake factory because they take reservations. nothing special but could be.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Not Stellar, But Will Return
    NapiliGirl
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    I hate to write this review. Eaten at Paul Martin's twice before w/ great service. Was disappointed with this particular visit. Fairly certain server was new or had too heavy a load, which was likely an anomoly. Unfortunately, wine for two in our party of four was delayed an unreasonable amount of time, and food was cold on arrival. Three of us had the the Sunday Prime Rib Special and one had Cedar Plank Salmon. Other than being cold, flavors/presentation were good. "Medium" steaks were a bit uncooked in the center, but servings are generous, so plenty to take home and reheat for a future sandwich. Nice price range on food/beverage, lovely to eat on covered patio with good weather. Would go again & recommend. Husband was unhappy.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    Food was just okay for the price. Was surprised they couldn't accommodate a group of 8 inside, only in bar area. Made reservation a week in advance and we had to sit in patio area.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Excellent Meal and Service
    pfdinnerVIP
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    I've always had a great time here and would recommend it to others. While this is a chain-like restaurant, their food is great and the service is outstanding. The rib eye is fantastic!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, late-night find, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Nothing Special
    Familyof4
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    Dinner reservation at 6:45 on Friday. Arrived at 6:00pm for Happy Hour, no seats available. Told could sit outside, grabbed table that ended up being for dining only, moved inside, where again the table was for dining only. Went to hostess/host stand was told we could sit at bar. Told them I had a 15 year old daughter, they said no problem. Sat at bar and was told by bartender that minors could not sit at bar. Sat for dinner outside, cold and loud. Server was nice but overwelmed with little help. Drink order was wrong. Food was average. Felt the dinner was overpriced, the salmon dry, and the house wine lousy.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • fun time
    laselva
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    this is the second time we've been here...I'll be back next time in San Mateo. Easy to please just about everyone. Food's good, lots of choices and good atmosphere. If you're on a budget, come for happy hour...4-7pm, as it can get to be $50/person
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • special times
    retiredteacher
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    This was my second visit to this restaurant...first was for dinner with a group of friends. We so enjoyed it that we decided to return for lunch and seating in the Patio. Both experiences were delightful.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Paul Martin makes dining fun!
    FCdinenwine
    Dined on 8/12/2014
    Thank goodness for a slice of excellent dining and savory delights in San Mateo! Finally!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Not impressed
    RHusa
    Dined on 8/12/2014
    This was my first time at Paul Martins. I will not be going back. First the noise level was intense even though we asked for a table away from several noisy groups. The service was spotty. Maybe they were short handed. Finally I was totally unimpressed with the food. I had the cedar plank salmon. The recipe was did not work. My friend had the salt and pepper shrimp; they were bland and uninteresting. The ice cream was ok. However, when I looked at the price for the meal, I definitely decided that, for the money, I could go to a number of other places and receive better food/service/value. I guess if you are at Hillsdale & are looking for somewhere to eat, you could go here. I'd just as soon eat at California Pizza.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Excellent Service by Maria
    FosterCityGastronome
    Dined on 8/10/2014
    We were hesitant to go last Sunday night because of negative comments about the service and reported wait-times for a table even with a reservation (per Yelp and Open Table reviews). When we arrived at 5:20 p.m. for our 5:30 reservation, we were seated immediately. The only drink we ordered was Pellegrino sparkling water; when Maria asked if we wanted lemons or limes as an accompaniment and saw that we were uncertain, she brought both. That was just an example of her thoughtful service---it's a delicate balance between obtrusiveness and inattention, and she navigated it well without interrupting our conversations. We both ordered the 3-course Sunday Prime Rib special ($25), an excellent value and medium-rare, as we both like it.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Disappointing
    CJB89
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    We attend Happy Hour here regularly and always enjoy it. This visit we had dinner in the restaurant with another couple and received poor service. When the food was brought to the table, it was not delivered by our waiter, but one of his helpers. He had no idea which plate went where, and I feel in a restaurant of this caliber, this is unacceptable and annoying. When I pointed it out later to our waiter, he agreed and said it shouldn't have happened. Later, when we ordered 2 coffee's he did it again. I ordered the salmon, which was mediocre. I'd say skip the restaurant and stick with Happy Hour in the bar area. Many of the appetizers served there have been excellent.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic