Portola Kitchen

4.5
617 reviews
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$30 and under
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Italian
Portola Kitchen is a place to gather with family and friends to enjoy the simplicity of rustic Italian-American cooking. Bringing you authentic cuisine, we use locally grown ingredients whenever possible, make our pasta in-house, and give our support to near-by wineries.

We believe the purity of our concept lies in the quality of our ingredients and the simplicity of our dishes. We are dedicated to bringing simple yet refined Italian-American cooking to our neighborhood and look forward to serving you and our community.

Along with our seasonal menu, we offer a full bar and a unique selection of California and Italian wines. Our menus are constantly changing, so the options for Dinner, Lunch and Brunch are endless. We also have a menu just for the kids.

Please join us and enjoy the rustic ambiance of Portola Kitchen. Whether it’s inside or out on our patio, we’d love to see you!
What 617 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.4
food
4.4
service
4.3
ambience
4.0
value
Noise · Moderate
91% of people would recommend it to a friend
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San Francisco
41 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 3

Excellent food preparation. Best cooked fish. Very casual.

L
San Francisco
22 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 4

We went there for brunch. Very expensive and nothing special - food was mediocre. have not been there for lunch or dinner so I cannot comment on whether those meals would be better.

L
San Francisco
26 reviews
Dined on August 16, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Haven't been in here in some time but really enjoyed the evening. Outside dining with lots of options, although the live music made it difficult to hear my dinner companions. Lovely pasta and good selection of wines by the glass.

l
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on August 9, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

I've been coming here for years. The food is always very good and the environment interesting, with the outside seating sharing a breezeway with the produce section of Bianchini's Market.
The hostess is young but somehow she makes it work. The wait staff understand the menu and get people served well.
Unfortunately the bar tenders are uninterested in serving and arrogant once you finally get their attention. I own two comparable establishments in Marin and these guys would be fired. Where's the manager?
4 star restaurant with a 1 star bar.

d
Charlotte
11 reviews
Dined on August 9, 2019
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 2

Service is horrible! 30 minute seated, had to then complain to get someone to our table to order. Same problem trying to pay bill to exit. Only go here if you are very long on patience.

D
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on August 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 3

Quaint little neighborhood restaurant with excellent food. We've eaten inside several times and outside more recently. Outside was much busier & noisier. Service a little slower also outside. But we will return because of the food! Thank you.

SH
San Francisco
35 reviews
Dined on August 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Portola Kitchen is a great place for lunch of any kind .... Birthday, Business, Anniversary or just to eat. Def is the go to place in that area. Food is always good, service the same. Ben there many times and will continue to go.... Yum

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on August 6, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 1ambience 4

I had been here two other times and it was nice. However this time the experience was horrible.

I will give Portola Kitchen another try.

TB
San Francisco
56 reviews
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Fantastic food and service. Noise level a little high, by expected, and understandable. One of the finer establishment on the Peninsula to get fresh pasta.
To the wise, make your reservation. It’s well worth it.
Lunch and dinner are outstanding.
Cute little patio are as well.

OT
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on July 29, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Food varied. Halibut was delicious, lasagna was inedible.

B
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on July 28, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Sunday brunch - ate outside. 2 salads, 1 frittata. All good. Service excellent and sitting outside is wonderful.

RC
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on July 25, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

Good Service. Chicken in Cobb salad was very dry. A little pricey. Pretty noisy. Hard to have a conversation with the person I sat across from.

L
Detroit
11 reviews
Dined on July 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food, the wait staff were very attentive and the restaurant is beautiful.

a
San Francisco
99 reviews
Dined on July 13, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

The pasta with eggplant was delicious and cooked to perfection. The squash soup was outstanding - needs to be on the menu more often - maybe a regular item in season. The espresso and ice cream was fine too - I appreciated the two chocolates on top.

It was lovely to sit outside, but we missed the musicians that occasionally play.

We were served by a delightful waitress who really helped make the evening more enjoyable than usual.

JW
1 review
Dined on July 13, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

From Grandma to little kids, it was something for everyone.

KG
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on July 11, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Got starter and main course together - don’t appreciate that.

DD
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on July 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great place for a casual dining experience with upscale food and service! Definitely a gem in the MidPeninsula!

CG
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on July 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love this place - our neighborhood gem! Food is great, service is friendly, outdoor seating is lovely :)

OT
1 review
Dined on July 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Been there many times. We chose outside dinning And the outdoor live music was too loud for conversation.

t
New York Area
47 reviews
Dined on July 1, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Very pleasant outdoors. Excellent service. Good food.

OT
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on June 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We chose the Portola Kitchen, from Yelp, to have lunch with our friends mid way through a drive in our Corvettes.
Glad we did!
Everything aspect was excellent. Food, service, selection, everything.
Can wait to return.

PP
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on June 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The lasagna special is perhaps the best lasagna I have ever had. Yum!

OT
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on June 28, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

First time diners here. Debated over a long period of time because of the mixed reviews, but, we thoroughly enjoyed everything. Husband had skirt steak (would have preferred it with a teriyaki sauce but it still was good). I had a filet, cooked perfectly medium rare with a sweet burgundy sauce. Have to say the drinks were the best! Highly recommend the Mai Tai and the Italian Mule was the best mule I’ve ever tasted! The PK sundae with vanilla gelato and chocolate sauce was delicious. We also had coffee and a glass of wine and felt the cost was reasonable for all that we had. We will be back soon!

GJ
Tahoe
1 review
Dined on June 27, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

The waiter was very pleasant but he brought the wrong dish for each of our entrees. Comped my wife a glass of wine since she wanted the correct dish.

JQ
1 review
Dined on June 17, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Service was a little slow. My salad was good but the casa sandwich seemed dry

OT
1 review
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We love PK!

BM
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on June 14, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 5

Always fun!

JB
1 review
Dined on June 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always excellent food and service. The sugo (meat tomato sauce) rivals Nona and Godmothers.....superb! Polpette sammich, Pear salad, and Rigatoni al Forni are topnotch!

KM
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on June 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and lots of choices. Also a nice wine list. Tried the gnocchi with beef sauce and it was decadent. Would not recommend the ice cream chocolate sundae with strawberries.

KD
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on June 10, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Great food, great ambiance, friendly and helpful waitstaff, gluten free pasta!

OT
San Francisco
30 reviews
Dined on May 28, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

I wasn't crazy about the pizza this time. Too much pesto and the sausage was dried out.

AM
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on May 27, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 1ambience 2

I ordered a BLT toasted
They grilled it instead so lettuce was wilted. Very tiny portion of bacon. Server never returned to ask how everything was or to ask if we needed our drinks refreshened.

S
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on May 26, 2019
Overall 5food 1service 5ambience 5

For the first time in many visits I was disappointed in my food selection. I had the chicken mattone and it was so spicy I couldn't enjoy it. My Caprese first course was lovely so didn't complain and decided to take the chicken home for my husband to enjoy as he loves spicy foods. It was even too spicy for him!!! A note in the menu about which entrees are spicy would be helpful.

CW
San Francisco
19 reviews
Dined on May 25, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 2

Expensive, high noise level, pasta dishes ordinary, meat dishes tasty but expensive

JB
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on May 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always great food, friendly service and wonderful atmosphere.

SM
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Took a while to get a server to our table. Very noisy family that let their kids run around their table, scream/laugh loudly to the point we couldn’t not hear each other at all until they left. Would’ve appreciated staff nicely asking the adults at the table to intervene or take kids outside.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 1

Ridiculously overpriced food ($19 for a tiny chicken Caesar salad or $12 for a side of Brussels sprouts or $9 for a small bowl of soup) and a Waiter who could not remember the order in which we wanted our dishes.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 2ambience 3

The food quality has steadily gotten worse ever since the new menu with hundreds of options was introduced. Even the wine from the reserve list last night was of poor quality.

AC
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Menu not vegetarian friendly but can ask for anything to be modified. Pasta dishes on salty side but homemade pasta well made. Omelette dishes value not better than diner quality. Friendly wait staff once we ordered but initially impatient. Mother’s Day brunch we sat outside view is of the market across the way.

S
San Francisco
29 reviews
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

What a find! Excellent food! (the bolognaise sauce is the best I have had in years)
Pastas cooked perfectly.
Nice sitting outside with the beautiful view of the colorful produce across the way.
Can't wait to return!

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