Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.13mi
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  4. Distance: 0.31mi
  1. Distance: 0.13mi
  2. Distance: 0.20mi
  3. Distance: 0.30mi
  4. Distance: 0.31mi

Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.13mi
  2. Distance: 0.20mi
  3. Distance: 0.30mi
  4. Distance: 0.31mi
  1. Distance: 0.13mi
  2. Distance: 0.20mi
  3. Distance: 0.30mi
  4. Distance: 0.31mi

About Central Park Bistro

Central Park Bistro is a 100 seat contemporary restaurant in downtown San Mateo featuring fresh seasonal American cuisine, in the $15-$26 range. We offer a carefully chosen eclectic Wine Spectator award-winning wine list. Central Park Bistro is an affordable sophisticated, fun dining experience. Relax and unwind with a house specialty cocktail at our wonderful Martini Bar. We also have several intimate private dining rooms perfect for that corporate presentation business meeting, wedding rehearsal dinner,
retirement/anniversary dinner, or any special function you may have in mind. Check out our private wine cellar room which seats up to 8 people for that extra special dining experience.

181 East 4th Avenue
San Mateo, CA 94401
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Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
American, Comfort Food, Southern

Hours of Operation:
Lunch: Monday - Saturday: 11:30am - 2:30pm;
Dinner: Sunday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:00pm Friday- Saturday : 5:00pm - 10:00pm

Cross Street:
Ellsworth Street

Dress Code:
Business Casual

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(650) 558-8401

Website:
http://www.centralparkbistro.com/

Catering:
We can recreate our menu or customize it to your needs. Please call for details.

Parking Details:
Metered parking on street and large lot in back of restaurant.

Executive Chef:
George Garcia

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine

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Private Dining

We are a family-owned restaurant that specializes in individual personalized service and simple home-style American cuisine, all in an intriguing and intimate environment. You'll be met by a seasoned staff, who are prepared to indulge your group with an extraordinary private dining experience.

Central Park Bistro Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.3

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.4

service

4.2

ambience

4.2

value

4.0

Noise

Quiet

89% would recommend it to a friend

Neighborhood Gem (16)
Special Occasion (15)
Business Meals (13)
See All
Fit for Foodies (12)
Notable Wine List (11)
Good for Anniversaries (10)
Good for a Date (10)
Great for Lunch (10)
Good for Groups (9)
Healthy (7)
Good for Birthdays (7)
Romantic (7)
Quiet Conversation (7)
Casual (6)
Comfort Food (6)
Creative Cuisine (6)
Worth the Drive (6)
Cozy (5)
Bar Seating (4)
Paleo Friendly (4)
Handcrafted Cocktails (3)
Pre/post Theatre (3)
Authentic (2)
Kid-friendly (2)
Disabled Access (2)
Gluten Free Options (2)
Hot Spot (2)
Great for Outdoor Dining (2)
Sunday Lunch (2)
Tapas (2)
Great for Brunch (1)
Fun (1)
Happy Hour (1)
Late-night Find (1)
Local Ingredients (1)
Organic (1)
Spicy (1)
Good Vegetarian Options (1)
Vibrant Bar Scene (1)
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802 reviews
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·Dined 2 days ago

I was pleasantly surprised by Central Park Bistro - the food was fantastic, service was great, and the atmosphere was very pleasant. The prices are a bit high, but at the same time the food was so good that I wouldn't necessarily say it was over-priced. Maybe it just felt a bit high for San Mateo (seemed more like SF prices). But overall, we loved it!

Tags: Fun, Bar Seating, Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Pre/post Theatre
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on February 12, 2018

Clam chowder, grilled octopus, Australian lamb chops, and filet mignon were delicious. I've been here previously and the burger is less exceptional this time (not worth the price). My friend had told me that the dessert would be amazing but the cake was dry and had clearly sat in the fridge for a day or two. Floor manager was unfriendly, rude, micromanaged the two wait staff, and led the team in non-existent customer service. There was one nice waiter who brought out our water (who had the highest chance of making eye contact) but he was not allowed to serve the main dish. Our entrees sat on the counter for a few minutes -- the wait staff walked by 6 times! -- before the [micro]manager got to it. It felt like we were intruding on HIS bad day. We were very uncomfortable but tried to make the best of the celebration.

We usually like to thank the staff on our way out but no one took notice when we got up. Fortunately, the gentleman in the kitchen by the bar warmly acknowledged our thanks! Food/kitchen is decent but I have strong mixed feelings about coming back. Also, I thought it was a little more dressy but the regulars dress very casual.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Casual
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food4
ambience3
service1
value2

 
·Dined on February 11, 2018

Great place for gathering... however, I would recommend to build a air conditioning. We were sitting in front of the kitchen and we can feel and see the smoke.

Tags: Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on February 9, 2018

Nice staff from the moment we walked in and all through. Wine by three glass was very well done and the food was delicious. Definitely a gem in the San Mateo area!

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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on February 4, 2018

This neighborhood gem has wonderful food and is one of our favorite places to eat.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on February 4, 2018

We waited a while for our table as they were packed. The table they gave us was small and really good for 2 people only so I requested a bigger one and of course that’s more waiting time. It was confusing as there was no host to sit you down all the waiters were also doing The hosting.

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food4
ambience3
service2
value3

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on February 3, 2018

Another fabulous meal with friends at Central Park Bistro. Service is very professional and attentive. Food is plated beautifully and even something as simple as a butter leaf salad was phenomenal. We will be back!

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies, Bar Seating, Notable Wine List
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on January 29, 2018

Overall good food and quiet restaurant for meeting

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service4
value4

vip
 (Las Vegas)·Dined on January 27, 2018

This place is got excellent food and service at very reasonable price. I love their grilled seasonal vegetable dish. The disk includes many kinds of fresh veggies and is so delicious!

Tags: Worth the Drive
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on January 27, 2018

We went for a business lunch and had a wonderful meal. It was quiet mid day, perfect for conversation and we had great service. The grilled salmon was absolutely sumptuous, perfectly cooked and great lunch accompaniments of tossed salad in a light dressing and fingerling potatoes with asparagus, so good. I was happy to find a Resling by the glass on the menu, and we shared desserts of the toffee bread pudding and a red velvet cake, both were a sweet finish to a fabulous meal!

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Good for Groups, Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies, Great for Lunch, Business Meals, Quiet Conversation
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on January 26, 2018

The service was very slow

1 person found this review helpful.
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience3
service1
value3

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on January 23, 2018

Always a pleasure.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on January 20, 2018

The food was good. We all enjoyed our dishes, but the serving sizes could have been bigger. The service was very professional and attentive, but not very friendly. We had a tough time understanding the host, the waiter, and even the person refilling the water. They needed to speak up more and not mumble their communication. Finally, we missed out on the bread! For whatever reason, our table never got bread. We could have asked, but by the time we saw other tables with bread, it was well past when we would have liked to have received it.

1 person found this review helpful.
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on January 15, 2018

The food is good, every one enjoyed their meal from appetizers to dessert. It’s a great option for small to larger group gathering. The fire place enhanced the ambience, the place is good for kids too, it can easily become one’s go-to place. My only feedback is that the waiters can put on a happier face although their service was on point.

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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on January 14, 2018

Service was off that night, no specials, no bread. Disappointing

1 person found this review helpful.
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food4
ambience3
service2
value3

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on January 14, 2018

Great Food. Wonderful service. There when needed, let us alone to enjoy our meal. Great time was had by all.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Chicago)·Dined on January 13, 2018

Very attentive service coupled with great food and atmosphere. We will be returning.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on January 7, 2018

Oh how the mighty have fallen. CPB’s food is as good as ever, but the service we had was atrocious. Our party of 8 Was ignored, and had to tell our waiter how to do every step of his job. 2 entrees had to be sent back (steak way over done when asked for med-rare). After a wait, then they cane out and told us they were “out” of the steak so guests had to pick something else. After another wait they brought the replacements and one of them was totally not what was ordered (asked for pizza and got pork roast). Then had to wait again for the pizza. Rather than crediting us the cost of the Twice-screwed up meal, they “apologized” with two tiny bread puddings (to be shared by 8 people), but was useless because we had brought in a birthday cake for them to serve for the birthday we were celebrating. Then they automatically added a 20% group gratuity rather than 18%. Will never go back.

1 person found this review helpful.
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food5
ambience4
service1
value2

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 31, 2017

Really enjoyed spending time with our good friends at CPB. Included celebrating owners wife’s birthday. Special menu of the evening we had the Squash Soup, Tower of Beets, Confit Duck, and Lobster Tail. This was paired with an excellent bottle of 2012 Shafer Merlot Napa Valley. Before going home we walked next door to Pausa for night caps and wished our good Pausa friends happy new year, while enjoying a Sibona Grappa & Nonino Amaro dessert wine.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 20, 2017

I invited a client for a holiday dinner and was disappointed that there were no holiday decorations at all, not even lights. I asked the waiter about this and he said they decided not to put up any decorations this year??? What's up with that? I arrived about 20 minutes before my client and no one asked me if I wanted water, a drink or anything. I had to flag down the waiter to pay attention to me. My petrale sole was dry, but my client did enjoy her petite filet. I was disappointed to say the least.

1 person found this review helpful.
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food2
ambience1
service2
value3

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 15, 2017

Enjoyed the food and service. Both were very good despite the fact the restaurant was very crowded and a large group arrived at the same time we did, but the service team managed it very well. It was moderately noisy but it was easy to carry on a conversation at our table.

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food4
ambience4
service4
value3

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 12, 2017

Really good food and service. Australian lamb chops are a must as is the pomegranate margarita! Wish we had discover Central Park sooner!

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Birthdays
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food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 8, 2017

I went there with my boss. I took him there for his birthday lunch. he goes there all the time. we both really like it. super food and excellent service.

Tags: Great for Lunch
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 7, 2017

The food at Central Park was outstanding. The service wonderful and provided our group with a small dessert on the house. We were put in the "wine" room that I did not request but a great way to celebrate the holiday with our group.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 4, 2017

Rude waiter, slow service, badly cooked food. Don't bother.

1 person found this review helpful.
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience3
service1
value3

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 1, 2017

The food was good and the service was very good, but the meal was expensive for what it was and we felt a little rushed. We both enjoyed the salmon but wasn't thrilled with the steak tartare - all that awesome beef was completely overwhelmed by the dressing. Overall an ok experience and if I'm back in the neighborhood I may try it again.

Tags: Business Meals
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food4
ambience3
service4
value3

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 25, 2017

It was our first time dining at Central Park Bistro but it won't be the last! The service was excellent and the food came out promptly even though there were very few empty tables. Martinis were fabulous and generous! Pasta with lobster and scallops was divine -- but there were so many other delicious-sounding choices on the menu that we'll be back soon to sample a few. This is a great place!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 24, 2017

As usual, lunch with friends, family, or my grandchildren is great: friendly, accommodating and delicious.

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Groups
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on November 22, 2017

Never disappointed! Excellent dishes, wonderful service, chic atmosphere, and attentive Management. Highly recommend for dinners, dates, lunches, larger special parties, and just drinks at the bat. 5 stars in all areas!

Tags: Spicy, Handcrafted Cocktails, Neighborhood Gem, Bar Seating, Cozy, Special Occasion, Comfort Food, Tapas, Notable Wine List, Great for Lunch, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on November 20, 2017

Food was excellent, presentation also was appealing. Had a 5 PM reservation -- yes it was early, but it was also quiet and good for talking. Been here a number of times and the food is always terrific. Some of the best lamb chops you'll find and the portion is hefty -- a rarity. The drinks are respectable -- not watered down. Definitely going back.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Worth the Drive, Good for a Date, Neighborhood Gem, Business Meals
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 17, 2017

Wonderful waiter who was very attentive. The food was delicious ( all 4 or us raved about the food) and beautiful presentation.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Business Meals
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Joaquin)·Dined on November 10, 2017

Outstanding food, exceptional service. We look forward to dining here again and highly recommend.

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food5
ambience5
service5

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 7, 2017

We had hoped to get a dish of mussels. Unfortunately chef was still on vacation. Instead we had salmon (cooked perfect), Petrale Sole (new preparation quite good), and finished off with a bread pudding. Paired meal with Gls ZD Pinot Noir. Service a little spotty this visit.

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food5
ambience5
service3
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 3, 2017

We came here because we were meeting friends from the Hillsborough Antique Show, and we didn't know the area. Given that we didn't know if anyone had allergies (e.g. fish) or disliked ethnic foods (e.g. Italian), we chose an 'American' style eatery. Boy were we blown away! We each got something different, and each entree was fantastic. We decided this is definitely a place to keep in mind when guests from out of town come into the city. We'll definitely return.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Casual
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 3, 2017

Central Park Bistro is our favorite neighborhood restaurant. The food is consistently good, the owners are always gracious and welcoming, and the service excellent. We also appreciate the restaurant's acoustics, which keeps the noise level to a minimum.

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Comfort Food, Neighborhood Gem, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays, Notable Wine List, Good for Groups, Great for Lunch, Business Meals, Cozy
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 2, 2017

This is definitely our "go to" restaurant in San Mateo. We are always satisfied with the food, wines and service.

Tags: Comfort Food, Casual
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 2, 2017

Got the 8 person private table in the wine room. Quiet and comfy.

Tags: Business Meals
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 27, 2017

I booked this restaurant because of my gluten free diet and my cousin needed to bring her dog. Food was surprisingly good and staff was quick to service. Great find overall. Will be back for sure.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Gluten Free Options, Good for a Date, Great for Outdoor Dining
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (Atlanta)·Dined on October 21, 2017

We were in the wine cellar which was very charming. The restaurant says it seats eight but really six is the max. The door swings into the table and can be very disruptive for the two diners that are sitting on that side since it is a round table. The food was truly exceptional , its our favorite SM restaurant!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 18, 2017

Delicious food. Excellent service. A wonderful dining experience. We loved the sea bass, scallops, and signature desserts.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Cozy, Authentic, Sunday Lunch, Good for a Date, Quiet Conversation, Pre/post Theatre, Good for Anniversaries, Romantic, Great for Brunch, Good for Birthdays, Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies, Business Meals
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

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