Cafe Pro Bono

4.8
1065 Reviews
$30 and under
Italian
We’re open for limited indoor AND outdoor patio dining! We look forward to seeing you soon!

Cafe Pro Bono is Palo Alto’s crowning jewel for exceptional Italian food. For over 27 years we’ve been serving a wide variety of authentic, reasonably priced Italian and European dishes with a freshness you can see and taste!

Our menu includes delicious, attractively presented appetizers, fresh pastas, fresh fish, steaks, chicken, salads, sandwiches, homemade desserts and wines to complement your meal. We also have a full bar, so we’re ready to make your favorite cocktails too - or try one of our unique craft cocktails.

Buon Appetito!!!

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
  • Sealed or wrapped utensils used
Physical Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
  • Staff temperature check required
What 1065 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.8based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.7
service
4.5
ambience
4.5
value
Noise · Moderate
100% of people would recommend it to a friend
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n
vipnotoutallthetime
New York Area
99 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall4food4service4ambience5

We returned after a couple of years away. Still an amazingly good neighborhood place with nice people, good food and relaxing ambiance.

MF
vipMiketheFoodie
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on June 8, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Always a warm and welcoming environment. Great food and great service.

FB
vipFrankB
San Francisco
21 reviews
Dined on June 7, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I always enjoy Cafe Pro Bono. One of my absolute go to restaurants for great food and attentive service.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Austin
5 reviews
Dined on June 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Amazing food and wine pairing. Not a disappointing dish on the table!

D
vipDonna
San Francisco
72 reviews
Dined on May 22, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always friendly and consistent!

AC
ACBH
Central Coast
3 reviews
Dined on May 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience3

We love their food, and the service was excellent.

TC
TammyC
San Francisco
21 reviews
Dined on May 18, 2021
Overall4food3service5ambience3

Excellent COVID precautions. Food was not as good as it normally is. Missed the “buzz” of a full restaurant, but COVID is still around. Excellent service, as always. Will definitely be back. This is still my favorite restaurant, despite the food not being up to par. I chock that up to maybe turnover due to Covid???

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
18 reviews
Dined on May 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Delicious fresh food in a lovely ambiance. Friendly and attentive service.

SB
SandraB
Denver
6 reviews
Dined on May 16, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Excellent food as always. Low key ambiance but classy.

DF
vipDianeF
San Francisco
39 reviews
Dined on May 14, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful service as always and fantastic food! We shared a butter lettuce and warm goat cheese salad. My husband had a special pasta with fettuccine and lamb shank and a glass of Syrah. I had the special swordfish with cannelloni beans, lobster sauce and mixed veggies, with a glass of Landmark Chardonnay. We shared an apple tart with caramel sauce topped with pistachios. All delicious and the staff is so welcoming! Tables far apart and all wait staff fully masked. High ceilings and air purifiers- we felt very safe.

s
saltdoll
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on May 8, 2021
Overall4food4service3ambience3

Great food, outdoor ambience all right, indoor really good. Accommodating and nice staff.

m
michaels
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on May 8, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Great variety on the menu, outstanding selection of spirits. A much warmer setting than the chain IlFornia no charge for the bred basket

G
Gwoman
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on May 7, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great venue, wonderful service, delicious food .

SP
SandyP
Dallas
5 reviews
Dined on May 7, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

A nice glass of wine with the chicken salad was perfect. Susan's Downfall Ravioli appetizers was amazing!

f
vipfoodclan
San Francisco
26 reviews
Dined on May 6, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Of course, we ate outdoors so it was quiet. The owner greeted us & was so warm & friendly. Food as always just terrific! Had the owner pick a wine for us - it too was great (and not over priced!). Gotta love this neighborhood gem!

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on May 5, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Cozy dining experience. Great food and drinks. Excellent service and friendly staff.

MY
MeilingY
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on May 1, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience4

I ordered home made pasta, it is very good. Will go back again for sure.

S
vipSlowww
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on April 28, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always awesome

I
vipItiswhatitis
Central Coast
17 reviews
Dined on April 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food, great service!

GL
vipGregoryL
Tahoe
1 review
Dined on April 23, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great service and food. I've been coming here for 20 years for a reason.

j
vipjoycerey
San Francisco
14 reviews
Dined on April 16, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and service. Four of us sat outside last Friday evening.... first time going to Pro Bono in over a year (but we have continue to enjoy Pro Bono as take out throughout this Pandemic year). All staff are vaccinated, heaters kept us warm and it was a delightful evening. Two of us got the incredible Horseradish Salmon! Highly recommend for a delicious and safe evening out.

b
vipbigfella
San Francisco
27 reviews
Dined on April 14, 2021
Overall4food5service3ambience4

Excellent food, but the service was too uneven for a restaurant charging what Café Pro Bono does. Example: we were almost finished with our entrees before the wine we had ordered arrived. Example: the empty glasses from our pre-dinner cocktails were not cleared until the end of the meal.

NB
vipNeilB
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on April 6, 2021
Overall4food5service4ambience3

Our first indoor lunch as restrictions retreat. No trouble getting a table. Food was superb: elegant cream of asparagus soup; perfect linguini with seafood, especially salmon.

BR
BobR
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on April 3, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Still reliably good food, even after 12 months of hibernation.

D
vipDebra
Orlando
20 reviews
Dined on April 3, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

A friendly neighborhood restaurant. Attentive servers, delicious food, well-spaced tables inside and outside dining available. Lovely atmosphere for an enjoyable dinner.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Hawaii
3 reviews
Dined on April 1, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Cafe Pro Bono never disappoints!! Fantastic food with an incredible staff.

p
pinnie
Hawaii
9 reviews
Dined on March 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Finally able to get back to one of our favorite restaurants. Wonderful service, great rigatoni, and corkage fee vey reasonable.
Will be back soon.

e
enjoysgr8food
San Francisco
12 reviews
Dined on March 21, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience5

It was wonderful to be back at Cafe Pro Bono. Food and ambiance was outstanding as always.

d
dede
San Diego
11 reviews
Dined on March 20, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

One of the best restaurants anywhere. From the beet salad to the main courses (pasta, rack of lamb), and dessert, meal was wonderful. I will be back.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on March 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It was a wonderful experience all around, service, food, wine!!!!

PA
vipPaloAltoN
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on March 9, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Despite it being windy and raining, it was great!
Outside was well ventilated with heaters and the staff were great!

S
Stack
San Francisco
17 reviews
Dined on March 5, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience4

We enjoyed ourselves. The carpaccio was terrific.

A
vipAnon
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on March 5, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

A friend and I had lunch at Pro Bono. We were the only ones in the dining room, probably because restaurants had just opened for indoor dining. I know this restaurant is very popular, so I hope people will come back to it. We had a wonderful time and received excellent service. They deserve to be busy and do well.

CS
ChristineS
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on March 3, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This is our favorite restaurant. We have been going for years and it has never disappointed us. the food is fabulous and the wait staff is wonderful, polite cheerful and efficient.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This is our favorite place. Wait staff is friendly and efficient.
Food is fresh and outstanding.
Price is right!
Love love this restaurant.

MK
MichaelK
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on February 27, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience5

One of our favorite places. Food and service are very good. Reservations are easy to make, tables and chairs are comfortable. Prices are reasonable.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on February 13, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Valentine’s

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OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
8 reviews
Dined on November 16, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We ate outside and it was wonderful...well, as great as it can be given the choice of not eating at this fabulous restaurant!
Owner couldn’t be kinder and more helpful.
Food was excellent. Three of us had panini’s and we’re still raving about the bread and couches we made; two of us had the steak and one had the mushroom panini. Our fourth had the duck confit - fabulous.
I’ve been here before and will be celebrating our 39 anniversary on Friday there. 👏👏

DW
DonnaW
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great solid food and wonderful patio dining. Thank you.

CA
CalAve
1 review
Dined on November 6, 2020
Overall3food3service4ambience5

Really appreciate the kind waitstaff and nice outdoor environment at ProBono. Unfortuantely the food portions are fairly small and the drinks were weak. We had four pastas and the chicken dish and were fairly underwhelmed. Might have been an off night but that was our experience.

FAQs

Cafe Pro Bono offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (650) 326-1626.

Cafe Pro Bono is rated 4.8 stars by 1065 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.