Great for lunch w/your girlfriends!
Great small dishes to try different things when w/a group of friends. Females are trying to eat smaller portions, so this is fun place to try something new.
1/3/2013 12:00:00 AM
So many amazing dishes from
So many amazing dishes from which to choose, we love coming here time and time again. The small plate concept affords the opportunity to satisfy several flavors and combinations, and perfect for sharing. Our favorites: chorizo corn dogs, kale, macaroni and cheese, chicken tostadas, and too many more to name here.
3/7/2013 4:00:00 PM
Each of the appetizers and
Each of the appetizers and entrees that we selected were very good, particularly the fish tacos. This downtown restaurant is a convinient and fun place to have lunch even though it is a bit pricey. The service is good and I strongly suspect we will return again in the near future.
3/14/2013 5:00:00 PM
Best crab cakes anywhere and
Best crab cakes anywhere and the tuna tartare!! Heavenly. We tend to order the appetizers as our meal and have had them all t this point. Delicious
3/14/2013 5:00:00 PM
Great chef makes a great restaurant
Always a treat. The Paris trained chef makes this place special.
3/29/2013 12:00:00 AM
Good to take a business guest
A colleague & I took an international business partner here for dinner this week.
The atmosphere was lively, the food was quite good, and the service was even better. The Mark West Pinot Noir wasn't bad either!
We made all selections from the tapas menu. Due to my guest's diet, we avoided all seafood (though seafood is some of my favorite). From the ~5 dishes we shared, we agreed that the braised short rib tacos were our favorite! The Kobe beef mini-burgers and Mexican empanadas were tasty. Unfortunately, we least liked the chipotle chicken tostadas, but that was our last dish, after a bottle of wine, so know we didn't have the sharpest palate at that point.
When in the neighborhood, I'd happily stop by again.
4/1/2013 4:00:00 PM
A fun, lively restaurant with
A fun, lively restaurant with interesting food and good service.
4/12/2013 4:00:00 PM
Everything tastes absolutely
Everything tastes absolutely delicious. Food quality and flavors were spot on. I am from Orange County and Joya has become one of my favorite dedtination restaurants. I gave three stars because our waiter was absent for a majority of our meal, however the buser and the manager were quite attentive to make up for it.
4/18/2013 4:00:00 PM
I chose Joya sight unseen
I chose Joya sight unseen for an early dinner as I visited my niece and nephew, and was very pleased to find an energetic scene with numerous interesting, tasty tapas dishes. Service was prompt without being intrusive. We sat outside on University Ave and enjoyed the warm evening. Terrific.
4/22/2013 4:00:00 PM
Food is interesting, especially
Food is interesting, especially if you come as a group and order a broad selection. Service was mediocre. Really nice: We had reservations for 8:00; showed up at 8:00; got seated immediately.
4/23/2013 4:00:00 PM
Great spot to share small plates accompanied by an interesting cocktail or glass of wine. Decor is modern and attractive and service is attentive. My husband and I shared a salad and tapas of chicken tostadas and butternut squash croquetas, ending with an apple cobbler with cardamom-laced ice cream. Everything was truly delicious. We'll be back.
4/25/2013 4:00:00 PM
Lovely Birthday dinner.
We treated my sister and her husband for a delicious dinner at Joya for her Birthday. The food was fabulous and the service was very good. The staff made sure we were comfortable although our waitress seemed a bit distracted and we had to seek other staff for services she should've made the effort to attend to. "Jessica" also did not introduce herself , we had to inquire about her name which seemed a little odd.
All in all it was a positive dining experience.
5/17/2013 4:00:00 PM
Joya is a great place to share
Joya is a great place to share bite of good, interesting, different food preparations. The more people in your group, the more tastes!
5/21/2013 4:00:00 PM
Never Disappoints !!
We drive from the East Bay whenever we get the chance. There is nothing like Joya anywhere in the area. We can always count on consistency here: great & attentive service, food of the highest quality each and every visit and as a result we always have a wonderful time. Is there a problem? Yes! What to order! The Mini Burgers are delicious as are the Gambas, the Ahi, and the irresistible Deviled Eggs. My husband ordered the Madrilene for dessert and I ate a couple of spoonfuls. My advice: bring friends, as we did last time. That way, you can share and taste more of the wonderful Tapas and also have Paella. We also had a pitcher of White Sangria which was a lovely accompaniment to the Tapas we ordered. Yum! We'll be returning soon!
5/24/2013 4:00:00 PM
Delicious & Decadent
You literally can't go wrong with anything on the menu. Hubby and I were celebrating his birthday and ordered 2 rounds of tapas..each one was amazing. My favorite thing are the Yucca Fries and hubby's the short rib tacos. Great spot and wonderful ambience..highly recommend. I only have two comments for feedback: a. The hostess seated us all the way in the back awkwardly placed between two empty tables and seemed "annoyed" that we were early for our reservation. 2. It was hubby's birthday and although I specified this in the reservation the server (who didn't know) never said so much as a happy birthday. I don't expect free dessert but it would have been nice to acknowledge. Nevertheless, great spot, would definitely come back!!
6/2/2013 12:00:00 AM
Good food! Bland service.
Overall my friend and I had a great time. The food was delicious and the environment was nice. Our waiter didn't seem to have any personality and barely came by the table unfortunately. It kind of made the place seem a somewhat lifeless since they are the face of the restaurant.
6/8/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great tapas here - awesome place if you're in the mood to share small plates.
6/15/2013 4:00:00 PM
The food is great with a wide variety of Spanish and Spanish-inspired dishes. Will definitely be going back!
6/16/2013 12:00:00 AM
Fantastic! Truly a venue that
Fantastic! Truly a venue that is formatted for every occasion! The executive chef is French, the Chef de Cuisine is from South America, a true tapas fusion with professional servers!
6/17/2013 12:00:00 AM
Service was quite slow the
Service was quite slow the other night and the bar didn't see that busy but always reliable fun place with good food.
6/19/2013 12:00:00 AM
Tapas and drinks are great!
Tapas are unique and great. Loved it and would recommend and to anyone. However didn't like the main dish seafood Paela, rice was very sticky dry and too much lemon... So would recommend trying out the different tapas platters over some wine!
6/20/2013 4:00:00 PM
Every time I dine at Joya, I have enjoyed my experience. Many menu items to choose from that are delicious and the waitstaff always provides great service.
6/26/2013 12:00:00 AM
Joya is an energetic bar/restaurant
Joya is an energetic bar/restaurant with Spanish influences. The menu is vegetarian and carnivore friendly with many choices for tapas, salads and entrees for both. My friend had the chilled cucumber soup which was amazing. I had the latin salad without bacon
and an order of the papas brava, fried potatoes with paprika and a garlic aoli. Very good! Would love to come with more people for a regular meal. The energy is contagious and the food is very good.
6/27/2013 12:00:00 AM
What is not to like?
Gary, Allen Sergio are all fantastic servers. Jytte, Ashton, Shannon, Daniel are fantastic. The hostesses and cocktailers are professional and beautiful. It is what you expect from Palo Alto, A perfect menu with great wines, and great service!
6/28/2013 5:00:00 PM
Can't branch out.....
Now, I'm not saying the restaurant can't branch....I'm saying I can't branch out because I couldn't stand to miss out on the delicious tapas that I seem to dream about on a routine basis: crab cakes, tuna tartare, yucca fries, scallop ceviche, and churros with chocolate. That's it. Simple. Order it every time. Never disappointed. Done.
7/6/2013 12:00:00 AM
A "JOYA" to Experience!
I have been drawn to this restaurant every time I have passed by on busy, eclectic University Avenue. The Atmosphere beckons from the semi open front with white clothed tables to the dusky bar on the left and the darker dining rooms at the back.
We requested a table to view the street scene on a balmy evening, had an excellent waiter who helped us with the menu and was attentive but not overbearing, and enjoyed the easily navigated menu of small plates and entrees. The small plates won the day for us as imaginative and varied choices ranging from the familiar to the more exotic. The presentation of the food was also attractive.
All in all it was a stunning meal and a lovely summer experience. We will return!
7/6/2013 12:00:00 AM
My husband and I each had
My husband and I each had two of the tapas plates and we shared a salad. The tapas were very good. The chopped salad was rather boring, although it sounded good on the menu. In any case, the portions were quite generous, certainly ample for a dinner. The wine list was ridiculously expensive, although we did manage to find a bottle that was within our budget and it was very good. All in all, we would definitely be inclined to go back.
7/26/2013 12:00:00 AM
My husband and I came her for a small celebration. Thank goodness I'd made a reservation since the place was quite busy for a relatively early Friday night dinner. We decided to just go for Tapas; the calamari was a big hit with me while the brussels sprouts/bacon dish was my husband's favorite. The glass of Syrah was enjoyed by my husband and I had the white peach Sangria which was mildly flavorable. This is a great spot for people-watching (assuming you eat outside)!
8/2/2013 12:00:00 AM
Love Joya! Great drinks and
Love Joya! Great drinks and food...only thing I dont like is the no separate checks policy. Our poor waiter was dcared to do it
Saying it was against the new policy. I like this place but won't come back for a big group event. I just dont
Do the whole bug check thing anymore.
8/10/2013 12:00:00 AM
great menu adds great new dishes
The menu choices at Joya are always great and evolving. Latest additions are fabulous.
8/13/2013 12:00:00 AM
Tapas is the way to go. Four is more than enough to feed a couple on a romantic or casual dinner. Had a great time
8/25/2013 12:00:00 AM
Amazing food and dining experience
we went there today for my husband's birthday and were very pleased with the food, service and ambience. Overall a great dining experience. will come here again
8/29/2013 12:00:00 AM
Love the Tapas
I love the Tapas at Joya, such a nice variety! We can always fine a new tapa to try. A few tapas and a salad makes a great meal!
9/8/2013 12:00:00 AM
Good as usual
We were given a great table that allowed us to have some privacy and talk easily. The servers were very patient with letting us take our time with ordering. Food and wine was great!
9/9/2013 12:00:00 AM
Pricey for lunch, but very good
Excellent food, interesting tapas menu, very professional service, very nice ambiance with open seating on the sidewalk, open windows making inside tables feed outdoors. Lovely setting. 4 stars only because the portions are a little large for a business lunch. Would like to see smaller portions- you certainly get what the prices demand, but this is not the kind of food that lends itself to "take away" nor do I like taking food from a business luncheon. However, overall, would strongly recommend this restaurant for excellent Spanish food and top-notch service.
9/19/2013 12:00:00 AM
something for everybody
Short rib tacos were tasty. The "tapas" type appetizers are broader than Spanish-- ranging from ahi to mac-n-cheese, and can make a filling meal. The crab cakes, taco's, and skewers are substantial. If you order a main dish, you are unlikely to have room for many tapas. Go with a group to try several of the tapas. We had main dish salmon (perfectly cooked), and paella (large shrimp along with squid, mussels, clams, and well seasoned)- both good. The house-made gelato, was so-so, lacking the flavor punch of true gelato- try something else.
9/22/2013 12:00:00 AM
Joya offers a generous list of tapas. In my limited experience, I recommend the sliders, chicken tostadas, calamari...but I keep going back to the items I enjoy, so have not explored much of the menu. The kitchen plates the food attractively and everything looks delicious. This time we tried the original meat-based paella. I think it is the best I have had: dense with seafood, chicken, and sausage slices, the paella is flavorful and has a good protein to rice ratio. It is priced for two, but our group of 4 enjoyed it as a heavy appetizer.
9/26/2013 12:00:00 AM
Always dependable and delicious!
Love going to Joya for lunch (great fast lunch prix fixe) and for dinner (good cocktails and wine). The food is always delicious!
9/30/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great service... okay food.
We'd been hearing several people say Joya was their favorite restaurant in Palo Alto, so we decided to take a trip to Joya to celebrate an anniversary. The restaurant was quite busy, but we were able to get a late reservation (9:15pm) for that same night (Friday) even though we asked during that afternoon. We got there and 3 of our group ordered sangria - the red was a hit but the white came off sour and bitter. The waiter exchanged the white for another red and everyone was happy. We stuck to a vegetarian tapas and had the croquettes, patatas bravas, macaroni and cheese and the mushroom paella. Overall - it was okay. Underseasoned on the whole and the pasta was overcooked. We'll come back for drinks/dessert but the food didn't do it for us
10/4/2013 12:00:00 AM
Par Excellence in Palo Alto!
All it took was one amazing lunch at Joya, and I was hooked. It is now my "go to" restaurant for a business meeting or when I want to impress my out-of-town friends. I'm not a drinker, so I cannot give an opinion of the "bar scene" or wine list. But the food is amazing every time, and presented with flair! On my most recent luncheon, I ordered the fish tacos and expected the usual fish in a soft tortilla folded in half. Nope. What I got instead were 3 amazing fish wraps artistically arranged, standing on their sides, with lambs lettuce bursting out of the tops. And a spicy, creamy red sauce for dipping. They were outstanding, and Joya never disappoints!
10/16/2013 12:00:00 AM
Joya for Tapas
Took my mom for a birthday lunch calibration. A very good place for tapas, but a little pricey for everyday lunch. The tuna tartar and the charcuterie platter were great. My five year old could not get enough of the Serrano ham and the gazpacho. Margaritas are good, but the sangria was just ok. I'll comeback for a date night with my wife.
Okay for older kids (my girl is 5) after lunch time rush (got there at 1pm). Might be different on another day.
10/17/2013 12:00:00 AM
Terrific Spanish and Latin-inspired fare... with plenty of twists! Started off with the pink taro and spinach croquettes, light on the inside, a bit crispy outside, with vibrancy from piquillo peppers. Mains were the shrimp with mescal cream and the cod crusted with green plantains--both delicious.
10/18/2013 12:00:00 AM
We made a reservation at Joya for my son's 31st birthday celebration. We had not been before and we were pleasantly surprised with the service and food.
Excellent tapas and the waiter was amazing. He suggested items and they were all delicious.
Will definitely be back!
10/20/2013 12:00:00 AM
Enjoyable experience all around.
Service was friendly and attentive. We ordered off the tapas menu only and enjoyed each of our dishes. Wine list is only so-so and pricey for the offerings, but overall I would return and recommend.
10/28/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great yucca fries!
I love stopping at Joya for a Caipirinha and some yucca fries, yum! Their tapas are great and it's the best Caipirinha I've had in the Bay Area.
10/31/2013 12:00:00 AM
We had great service. And
We had great service. And when our server found out we were celebrating birthdays she offered us a dessert on the house - a nice touch.
11/9/2013 4:00:00 PM
I always love coming here! I'm so happy there's a place in the neighborhood with a great atmosphere, amazing food, and wonderful drinks!
11/21/2013 4:00:00 PM
good experience overall
Good food with no equivalent here (a mix of Spanish, Peruvian and Argentinian), can be very spicy (not mentioned in menu)
Service a bit slow but friendly
Loud fun atmosphere in the early evening
11/21/2013 4:00:00 PM
Typical tapas place
The food was good but nothing to really write home about. Had the sliders, crab cakes and mushroom risotto. Also had the sangria, which were really good. Other than that, the service was good and they were attentive. Ambiance was nice and intimate.
12/1/2013 4:00:00 PM
Fun atmosphere and tasty food
2nd time for me at Joya in Palo Alto. Great atmosphere - lively but not too over the top. I had the Lingcod on kale and red quinoa which was superb and a glass of awesome Malbec.
The only downside is the tables are a bit too close together
12/3/2013 4:00:00 PM