La Mere Michelle

3.7
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344 Reviews
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$31 to $50
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French
Since 1972, this charming upscale French restaurant has an atmosphere of a private home throughout. Located in the heart of fashionable Saratoga, it has been owned and operated by the Masek family almost four decades! Renowned for its attention to service and excellent cuisine, la Mère Michelle is a superb combination of traditional ambiance with every modern amenity. Each dining area is decorated in a different style to give an overall impression of comfort and refinement.
What 344 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
3.7based on recent ratings
3.8
food
3.8
service
3.7
ambience
3.4
value
Noise · Quiet
80% of people would recommend it to a friend
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M
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on March 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

GREAT as usual!

DC
1 review
Dined on March 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Pâté and mushroom appetizers, seafood crêpes, rack of lamb, (with vegetables as only the French can cook them!), crême brûlée and chocolate mousse torte—every bite delicious!

e
San Francisco
37 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2020
Overall3food4service2ambience4

We were there for Sunday brunch. It was not our first time in the restaurant. The food was good, the service was fine except the prices on their menu and the web site are different from what they charged. Paid more for 3 items compared to what was listed. The menu should be updated in a timely manner. No prices for desserts or drinks listed on the menu either. Unlikely to go back.

S
San Francisco
14 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

La Mere Michelle is our favorite place to celebrate special occasions. The food is excellent, particularly the sauces. The menu is varied. The service is excellent as well. The location is convenient, right on BigBasin Way, with adequate parking available on site.

OT
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall1food1service1ambience1

Terrible experience and we never even sat down. I booked an 8:30pm reservation for 3 of us (Valentines Day dinner w/ my wife and daughter) a week ahead, and we showed up a few mins early... To absolute chaos in the waiting area.

The crazy continued as we and another party of two were asked to wait by a small unattended bar in the (empty?) dining room extension area off to the left of the entrance. The very nice elderly hostess/owner proceeded to forget about us, and we then watched her seat 2 other parties with 9pm reservations EARLY (8:45pm?). When we and the other couple came back to her after having waited 20 mins and witnessed this, she asked if we had checked in. FOR REAL.

We tried, politely, for another 15 mins. Confusion was never addressed. She just kept throwing her hands up, making not-funny jokes, and saying “where are they all coming from” as more parties entered to check in and not be seated. Other employees and waitstaff were walking past making funny faces. Like they knew exactly what was going on but could care less.

Finally at around 9pm we were promised the next table. We watched her/another member of the staff set it up with 3 chairs. Then she wandered around for 10 mins, came back and asked “ok who was next?”. “Remember us? Table for 3?” I reminded her. “No, I have 2 tables for two” as she proceeds to seat another couple who showed up well after we had- AND REMOVES THE 3RD CHAIR FROM THE TABLE FOR 3 THEY HAD SET UP JUST 10 MINS PRIOR IN ORDER TO GIVE THEM A TABLE. We walked out- should have done just that waaay sooner. Ridiculous.

Get it together people. Unacceptable nonsense under any set of circumstances- we never even got an apology during the course of this whole debacle. So no plans to ever try eating here again, and will try my best to warn friends away as well.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall1food1service1ambience1

Disorganized and poor service. Waiters were very rude and condescending.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall1food1service1ambience2

Waited 20min to get seated even with reservation made 2 weeks ago. Another 20min wait to get served. Salad was not fresh. Steak was overcooked and very salty. Would never come again

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall2food3service1ambience2

Dined on Valentines day with Open Table reservation. 10 min backup at door. Waiter said "I help out for emergencies." Poor service
Poor food. Poor experiance. Convinced me to stop 30 year tradition of dining out on Valentines day. Will cook for my wife in the future.

RD
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall2food3service1ambience3

The service was extremely poor, I had to ask at least 5 times for water and ice tea. The waiter was rude (maybe because he was to busy) I was not asked how I wanted my meat and it was extremely well done and had to send my entree back.

OT
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall3food5service3ambience3

The food was delicious but the service was exceptionally slow! It took 3 hrs from seating to getting out the door for a valentines dinner.

JE
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall3food4service4ambience4

We enjoyed our meal on Valentines Day. Unfortunately both my wife and I got sick after we got home. Once things passed, we were fine. We got in on time, service was good and we enjoyed ourselves. They had a prix fix menu with a very high price $125/p plus wine and tip, that was not disclosed online. We first saw the menu with the price when we sat down. It's a nice french restaurant so we weren't expecting it to be cheap but it was still a surprise. Others around us had the same reaction.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall3food4service3ambience2

Decor very dated but food was good. Service was average and what we didn’t know was that the place is filled with regulars all the time—not negative just interesting.

I don’t think the price was worth the ambiance, but the food was good.

J
San Francisco
59 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience4

This is a lovely, classic French restaurant that I've wanted to go to for years. We look forward to going back, and really enjoyed the traditional atmosphere and menu, along with the great quality. The salmon with hollandaise was perfectly cooked - very tender. And the Caesar salad delicious.

KS
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on February 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience3

The food was great. They provided great service. The restaurant needs to be a little refurbished but I don’t think they are able too at this time. We will definitely be returning❤️

JA
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on February 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This is the kind of comfortable place where you enjoy going for dinner. Gourmet dining in a relaxed atmosphere with a friendly staff. Be sure to say hello to Michelle,

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

All over excellent

j
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on January 25, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience5

The service here was top notch! They treated us like family. Great location to enjoy a good meal and to then take a nice walk around Satratoga. The food was delicious from bread to dessert, with only a slight exception of the scallops being a tad overcooked. Peaceful, quite ambiance the evening that we went.

OT
1 review
Dined on January 11, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The proprietor, Michelle, lavished is with attention and stories as we are what her son, the chef, created for our dinner. If you’re looking for something a little different, to maybe learn a bit about Saratoga over the last 40 years, this is your spot. The wine, food, and service were perfect.

GA
Hawaii
1 review
Dined on January 9, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Quiet atmosphere, great service, very good food. Always enjoy coming to La Mere Michelle.

B
San Francisco
15 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2019
Overall3food3service5ambience5

Michelle was gracious as ever with pleasant and friendly banter. Monsour , our server, was gracious, pleasant, and Compt part of my meal for a less than desirable slice of roast beef. We were disappointed in the cheese cake that may have not been as fresh as it should have been. My wife’s lamb chops were excellent. The decor remains outstanding.

TA
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything was fantastic. I would go back again and again

C
San Francisco
20 reviews
Dined on December 13, 2019
Overall2food2service3ambience2

This place is lost in time. Why not invest in updating the place and the food? The staff is very nice but so much more could be done with this restaurant. It's a great location, good space inside just needs to be remodeled inside. It's just a fuddy-duddy place. The staff was all very nice, but the service was soooooooooooooooo slow. We must have been there an hour before we got our salads and then it took even longer to get our entrees. Some of the food was decent, but the weiner schnitzel was horrible. It tasted like it was fried in old grease. The chicken with mushroom sauce and sides were average. Also, wine connoisseurs beware. They keep their wines in the refrigerator! We had to wait quite a while to drink the red. Also, the wines by the glass are random with no list, one random choice per type. I had hoped for better, but alas am very disappointed.

KJ
San Francisco
22 reviews
Dined on December 5, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Very nice welcome from the owner herself. Service was almost perfect, and the food was flawless. We will return there soon!

RL
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on November 28, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

"Like home" atmosphere for a tasty Thanksgiving dinner with entree options.

S
1 review
Dined on November 28, 2019
Overall2food2service4ambience1

Well, it's hard to know for sure what was going on here, and it's difficult to generalize. La Mere Michelle is a place sort of frozen in time, visually, a little too bright, stark, and stilted. On the other hand, the owner and hostess, Michelle, is lively, warm, and welcoming, immediately making you feel at ease and like a guest of honor. The two waiters working that night (Thanksgiving!), were both impeccable. They knew the answer to everything, and ours was completely candid about which wine would please; we trusted him, and he was right! Questions about the menu were answered cogently, and yet with enough passion that we felt absolutely confirmed in our selections! Now. As for the food. It was so mixed! We all know Thanksgiving fare, and we both agreed, the Turkey was great, the stuffing tasty, the mashed potatoes yummy, the gravy savory, and the green beens good, if a bit too few. The carrots and single chunk of yam were both inedible, maybe canned. The desserts were totally agreeable, except for the cheesecake, which was excellent! I don't know how different the holiday evening was from average, but the food needed to be hotter and so did the coffee. On the 3rd pour, I finally had a hot beverage! So, while we were grateful for everything that was good, we felt disappointed and sad about the the things that weren't . I'd go back to see what an ordinary evening is like, but I'm afraid the unevenness would still be there, like they're cutting corners, which is understandable after almost 50 years, but Bay Area diners notice. So Michelle, you deserve to be admired for your unique contribution to local dining, for your openhearted gift with people, and for being OPEN this Thanksgiving! Please add a fresh veggie, find a way to keep the coffee hot, and heat up the food a bit more before serving? Turn the lights down SEVERAL notches! We wish you the BEST, because obviously, your heart, the chef, and your restaurant ARE IN THE RIGHT PLACE!

JL
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 21, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent dinner with friends, celebrating our anniversary. The staff was friendly and so efficient. Michelle was a delight to talk to. We will definitely return soon.

d
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 10, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Love Michele who owns the restaurant and Monsour who is the waiter is so attentive
While the restaurant is a bit outdated the food is great!

LF
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on November 9, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

From incredibly prepared dishes and first-rate service to the charming European atmosphere, La Mere Michelle does not disappoint. All the classic menu items are present as well as some inventive twists. Some sauces that I haven't had in years are present and retain the Old World traditions . We had veal and duck dishes which were simply marvelous with high quality meats. The service is perfect with the proper amount of attention and friendliness. We can't wait to join them again for another memorable evening.

HL
San Francisco
104 reviews
Dined on October 25, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

A delightful and superb place for lunch or dinner, with a terrific menu with a variety of dishes offered, plus excellent wines at fair prices. Highly recommend...

JV
Hawaii
6 reviews
Dined on October 17, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The restaurant is fantastic ! There are parking spaces dedicated only to the restaurant. It is quiet, a perfect place to have a conversation. The food is always delicious. Try the baked Brie appetizer as a starter. All the entrees are good!! The service is outstanding! Enjoy!!!

ES
San Francisco
43 reviews
Dined on September 22, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Amazing experience! Beautiful setting. Delicious food. Incredible service!!! Surprisingly big portions.

AP
San Francisco
49 reviews
Dined on September 21, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Michelle is great and Madam is always welcoming

NY
San Francisco
16 reviews
Dined on September 17, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

What a great find. Superb service, a wonderful menu making it very hard to decide what to order, a very reasonably price wine list with excellent choices and a window table with a window that slides open on a perfect evening. What more could you ask?

All this with none of hte "stuffiness" that is so prevalent with Saratoga restaurants. I would give it two Michelin stars, in other words, don't miss out on this gem.

OT
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Quaint dinner spot with good food!

w
1 review
Dined on August 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food and service was remarkable!! The food was delicious especially the escargo!! I will return to this restaurant many times!!

DA
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on August 13, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Very quiet. Delicious food. Great Service. Seems to have everything we like. I especially enjoyed the escargot this time.

F
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on August 11, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Always a lovely experience and good food. I’m not a fan of their coffee, but everything else was very enjoyable, and the owner is a lovely lady.

JA
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

La Mere Michelle has been our favorite French restaurant for 40 years.

Jim Allen

S
San Francisco
15 reviews
Dined on July 30, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

This is my favorite restaurant. We come here for most of our special occasions. The menu selections are excellent, the food quality is excellent. The location and parking are very convenient. I had the pork special of the day with the apple and endive salad. Both were delicious. The chef’s command of sauces is the best that I have experienced. They have limited but wonderful dessert menu. We were the last diners of the evening but the service was perfectly timed and we had no sensation of being rushed. I highly recommend this restaurant.

OT
San Francisco
23 reviews
Dined on July 24, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Food quite good as usual, as was service, attentive and knowledgable, without being intrusive. Menu varied without being so extensive mediocrity is inevitable. La Mere Michelle consistently provides very good traditional food and service.