Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.21mi
  2. Distance: 0.28mi
  3. Distance: 0.29mi
  4. Distance: 0.32mi
  1. Distance: 0.21mi
  2. Distance: 0.28mi
  3. Distance: 0.29mi
  4. Distance: 0.32mi

Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.21mi
  2. Distance: 0.28mi
  3. Distance: 0.29mi
  4. Distance: 0.32mi
  1. Distance: 0.21mi
  2. Distance: 0.28mi
  3. Distance: 0.29mi
  4. Distance: 0.32mi

About MacArthur Park - Palo Alto

MacArthur Park - An American Experience
For decades, MacArthur Park has been about bringing people together around outstanding California BBQ and comfort food in a casual yet elegant setting.
You’ll find us nestled in the heart of downtown Palo Alto, and walk back in time in to the simple elegance of a bygone era in a dining room designed by Julia Morgan in 1918.
We take traditional BBQ on a ride with the richness of California’s bounty, offering our signature Baby Back Ribs, fresh fish, meats and chicken, steak, unique salads and comfort food using local farm fresh produce. Portions are large, and there is something for every taste including vegan and vegetarian choices. Join us for cocktails and dining on our garden patio, nightly.
A good time had by all! That is the spirit of MacArthur Park.

27 University Avenue
Palo Alto, CA 94301
View Larger Map

Dining Style:
Casual Dining

Cuisines:
American, Barbecue, Comfort Food

Hours of Operation:
Dinner: Monday - Sunday 5:00pm - 9:00pm
Happy Hour: Monday - Friday: 4:30pm- 7:00pm
Friday Through Sunday Night Prime Rib Special

Cross Street:
El Camino; adjacent to Palo Alto Train Station

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(650) 321-9990

Website:
http://www.macarthurparkpaloalto.com/

Entertainment:
Happy Hour Menu from 4:30 to 7:00 Monday through Friday.

Catering:
Call the Banquets line for menus and more details for your event.

Parking Details:
We have ample public parking behind the restaurant

We also offer Valet parking for $6 at dinner .

Public Transit:
Located right next to the Cal Train Station and Bus Stop.

Executive Chef:
Faz Poursohi

Additional:
Banquet, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Special Events & Promotions:
Wedding receptions and larger events are hosted at MacArthur Park which can easily hold 200+ guest. We host everything from a young childs birthday party to large corporate dinners. "We are pros at special events

Specials

Christmas Eve Special Menus & Offers

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Specials

Christmas Eve Special Menus & Offers

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Details

Come and make lasting memories with us at the Park.
Christmas Eve Buffet , Sunday, December 24th from 4pm to 8pm.
Adults $52.95, Children 6 - 12 $27.95 & Children Under 5 FREE.

Send a Gift Card

Buy now and send it instantly by email, or print a card to give in person.

Private Dining

MacArthur Parks private dining facilities were specially designed for parties, cocktail receptions, business meetings, anniversaries, weddings, rehearsal dinners and other celebrations. We offer distinctive rooms that can accommodate a variety of events.

MacArthur Park - Palo Alto Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.2

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.1

service

4.2

ambience

4.2

value

3.9

Noise

Moderate

82% would recommend it to a friend

Special Occasion (14)
Good for Birthdays (13)
Good for Groups (10)
See All
Quiet Conversation (10)
Good for a Date (10)
Neighborhood Gem (10)
Bar Seating (9)
Comfort Food (9)
Business Meals (8)
Good for Anniversaries (8)
Casual (8)
Fun (6)
Authentic (5)
Cozy (4)
Notable Wine List (4)
Pre/post Theatre (4)
Romantic (4)
Fit for Foodies (3)
Handcrafted Cocktails (3)
Paleo Friendly (3)
Great for Brunch (2)
Happy Hour (2)
Seasonal (2)
Worth the Drive (2)
Disabled Access (2)
Kid-friendly (1)
Healthy (1)
Late-night Find (1)
Vibrant Bar Scene (1)
Local Ingredients (1)
Great for Outdoor Dining (1)
People Watching (1)
Sunday Lunch (1)
Tasting Menu (1)
Good Vegetarian Options (1)
Live Sports (1)
Sort by
S
1264 reviews
Loading Reviews ...

 
·Dined 3 days ago

Outstanding meal ...an outstanding Filet Mignon...well prepared. Service also great.

Tags: Cozy, Good for Anniversaries, Comfort Food, Good for Birthdays, Bar Seating, Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion, Pre/post Theatre, Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined 4 days ago

Went there to celebrate our son's acceptance into graduate school. Waited for 25 minutes just to get our cocktail order. Restaurant was half full, although there was a private party in another room, I was told. Food came an hour and 15 minutes after we sat down at the table. My fish (the special for the evening, halibut) was good but dry.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food2
ambience4
service1
value2

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined 6 days ago

We haven't been to MacArthur Park in a while, so my husband and I thought we'd have dinner and see what they are doing now. We thought the food was more creative. He had the grilled prawns, which was done with a guajillo glaze, cilantro rice, grilled avocado and stone fruit. Interesting flavor combinations that worked well! I had the hamburger which, although a standard dish, was really delicious! And we started with the stack of thin onion rings, which is always fun to snack on with a glass on wine. The service was outstanding - Pattie took such good care of us that I would ask to sit in her section next time. And MacArthur Park does such a nice job of decorating for Christmas - huge tree - and it feels so festive at this time of year. Now that we've "rediscovered" this place, we plan to come back soon. I hope the kitchen continues to try new, innovative flavors and combinations.

Tags: Seasonal, Bar Seating, Happy Hour, Disabled Access, Good for Birthdays, Notable Wine List, Sunday Lunch, Special Occasion, Local Ingredients, Business Meals, Good for a Date, Good for Groups, Good for Anniversaries, Comfort Food, Great for Brunch
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 2, 2017

Great environment, very friendly service, birthday dinner success! I can't thank the staff enough for all there help in making my mother in law's birthday dinner extra special. We had a great time and the food was excellent. Thanks again to everyone at MacArthur Park! We will be back soon!

Tags: Bar Seating, Good for a Date, Fun, Business Meals, Cozy, Good for Birthdays, Good for Groups, Romantic, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Pre/post Theatre, Quiet Conversation, Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience5
service5
value3

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 26, 2017

Empty parking lot and no car in sight but valet parking guy waiting to collect $6. That’s funny.

Th restaurant is in a nice location, limited parking, but other than that it’s looks ok. We have been here few times for dinner and it is always so empty. I always wonder why and now I know...

Do not order wine by the glass. My wine was sour and my guess is that it stays open for too long and oxidizes.

The food is so horrible. The bbq chicken is super dry and obviously sitting there for a long long time. The shrimp is dry and super spicy. No wonder the place is so empty!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food1
ambience3
service3
value2

vip
 (New York Area)·Dined on November 25, 2017

Big family get together. They were very tolerant of the children!!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on November 24, 2017

The food was OK, steak was very good and salad was great. However the service was bad. We had a reservation and we arrived on time. There were people ahead of us so we waited a couple of minutes to check in. The lady told us our table will be ready momentarily. We waited for about 10 minutes. I asked the lady at front desk and she said, it's not based on reservation time but they call ppl in order of the check in time. I confirmed with her that I did checked in 10 minutes ago. Later on, they seated everyone who was waiting, including those we arrived after us, I saw him checking in right after I asked the lady about the order. I went to ask again why everyone was seated before us though some of them arrived after us. Another lady said, oh they have earlier reservations like 5 or 6. So I asked, "And they arrive at 7:15 for a 6 pm reservation?" They finally got a seat for us. I was very disappointed.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience3
service2
value3

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 24, 2017

Nice Thanksgiving buffet, excellent variety of main dishes and side dishes, but place was pretty chaotic w/people all over the place trying to get to the food. A few specific comments on the food: 1) the cranberry sauce was way too sour. If I go again next year I'll bring my own--for me it really took away from my turkey dinner, 2) the sweet potatoes were also a little blah and not sweet enough; would have liked candied sweet potatoes, and 3) the gravy was too thin, almost watery, and pretty much missed the mark for a good, robust turkey gravy.

Tags: Special Occasion, Casual, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service3
value4

vip
 (Hawaii)·Dined on November 24, 2017

We came for Thanksgiving dinner so our choices were limited. The place was super busy which was understandable. I am not a fan of a buffet and that is what this was. It wasn't made clear when I made the reservation. The food was mediocre at best. At least they had a full bar.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience2
service3
value3

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 24, 2017

Went for Thanksgiving meal and was impressed by the well-executed flow of people, minimal wait time, and quality . Our waiter, Hector was friendly, competent, and helpful. There were plenty of options for my husband who avoids gluten, most meat, and dairy. Thank you for a lively holiday meal!!

Tags: Good for Groups, Seasonal, Good Vegetarian Options, Comfort Food
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
·Dined on November 24, 2017

Buffet dining is not enjoyable for me. That overshadowed everything. Service was inconsistent at best. A confusing and disorganized atmosphere.
Getting the car was another fiasco

Tags: Good for Anniversaries
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience2
service2
value2

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on November 23, 2017

Thanksgiving buffet. Good time. Coffee and tea were awful. Drink something else. Good selection of proteins and excellent salad. Smoked salmon was undercooked. Ribs were a bit lean but tasty. Staff was less than attentive. But responsive when called upon. Chive mashed potatoes had no chives. Liked the gluten free zucchini spaghetti. Like the Mac and cheese. Kale salad excellent. Desserts were good. But lacking whip cream. We asked for more and were given a plate of it. Gravies were not warm enough but tasty. Good chicken and turkey.

Pros:
Good quality food
Good atmosphere
Comfortable
Good variety.
Valet parking
Location
Responsive staff

Cons:
Crowded
Noise
Bland side dishes
Limited mertitage, Bordeaux style, blended wine selection.
Need more whip cream.
Awful coffee and iced tea. Coffee too strong and bitter. Iced tea too weak. Tasteless
Need more spice in food.

Tags: Good for Groups, Paleo Friendly, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service3
value3

vip
 (Baltimore)·Dined on November 11, 2017

Convivial place near Stanford. We had a nice meal before a football game and have gone there after games too. Great Ribs.

Tags: Comfort Food, Live Sports, Happy Hour
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

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

There are many menu options, but the BBQ, especially pork ribs, are great. I selected included sides of horseradish cole slaw and potato skins. Service was perfect.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Bar Seating
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 28, 2017

Food was delicious and surprised the restaurant was not very crowded for a Friday night ! This is a Palo Alto Icon..

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Fun, Worth the Drive, Comfort Food
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 23, 2017

The entrance was VERY dark, dangerously dark, once inside, it was okay, very ordinary.
Lamb chop and pork chop were excellent. Signature bbq ribs and chicken were good.
We loved the onion strings, it’s a must have for us.
Services were a bit understaffed, we didn’t feel neglected, just not as good as usual business lunches during the week.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service4
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 16, 2017

Our server had to be prompted about daily specials and failed to tell us of dessert specials. But food very good

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service3
value4

 
·Dined on October 13, 2017

Local history interest! Story of WW1 building by Julia Morgan !

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Comfort Food, Fun, Good for Groups, Notable Wine List, Business Meals, Casual
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 8, 2017

This is such a lovely place, i keep going back hoping things are better. Sadly, they aren't and this was my last attempt. We had an opentable reservation for 7:00, and when we arrived we were told that they had a table, but weren't ready for us, so we waited. When we were finally seated, it took 15 minutes for someone to take a drink order and another 15 to come back with the drinks. We finally ordered and when the food arrived about 30 minutes later, two orders (seven in our party) did not. The waitress explained that there was a problem, and we wouldn't be charged for those two. So, the five of us ate while the two watched and when we were done, their food came and we watched them eat. No one at the restaurant seemed very apologetic. Oh, and the food I got (I was one of the five) was cold!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food1
ambience4
service1
value1

vip
 (Palm Springs)·Dined on October 4, 2017

I was so glad to find this restaurant still here (from my college days!), its Julia Morgan-designed building intact and still creating the open and classy feel of space.

Tags: Authentic, Quiet Conversation, Business Meals, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 3, 2017

Outstanding BBQ. Server Rosa made the evening very special.

Tags: Bar Seating, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 1, 2017

We had a wonderful dinner after the Giants game. Staff was so friendly and fun. The food was superb! My dad and I had the ribs and they were out of this world but the cole slaw stole the show! Who would've thought to put horseradish in with the mix! LOVED IT! Mom had the bbq chicken and just enjoyed every bite and my husband the prawns. Sensational!! I think this will be my parents new place for dinner.
Thank you for a wonderful experience!

Tags: Fun, Quiet Conversation, Casual, Business Meals, Good for a Date, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 30, 2017

I went with girlfriends and the food was not good. Ordered pasta which was bland and Caesar salad was a plate of bad lettuce with so so dressing. We asked to be moved to the patio as it was very noisy inside and it wasn't very crowded inside. The patio lighting is welcoming but the tables could look so much better with other tablecloths and decor.
Overpriced and won't be back

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food1
ambience1
service3
value1

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 30, 2017

Great Option in Palo Alto close to Stanford
This restaurant is an old standby that is not on the main drag and too often gets overlooked. It has a very nice atmosphere, a good variety of great food, and excellent service. Great choice for a group event -- we often have family celebrations there with 6-10 family members and friends.

Tags: Comfort Food, Good for Birthdays, Good for Groups
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 24, 2017

My husband and I went to MacArthur Park recently for an anniversary. I was really disappointed. We went for 7pm on a Saturday night and the place was dead. No candles lit, no background music ... just empty ambiance as we waited for a server. Service was OK. Food was OK for the price but the overall experience was lacking the "experience". Shame as I remember this place years ago as being lively, fun, sassy, sophisticated and elegant. Now it seems like the old age pensioners diner, in a big barn with nothing around, no music or ambiance. Seems like it lost all its pizzazz .. :-(

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience1
service3
value2

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 23, 2017

Had a wonderful dinner and cheerful, good service. Definitely want to go back.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Good for a Date, Casual, Cozy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 19, 2017

Delicious cuisine with excellent service and a great place for conversation.

Tags: Fun, Good for a Date, Notable Wine List, Romantic, Authentic, Quiet Conversation, Bar Seating, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 13, 2017

MacArthur Park is an underrated and often overlooked restaurant because of its location. It cannot depend on foot traffic because it is an island between the train station and El Camino but it is well worth searching for if you want a nice meal and conversation. Food is well prepared and staff are attentive.

Tags: Quiet Conversation, Tasting Menu, Disabled Access, Special Occasion
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service3
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 10, 2017

My birthday with out of town relatives. They loved it. Came here often with my daughter and we love the ribs. Wonderful atmosphere. Nice menu selections. Everything I have had here was always yummy. Came last New Years Eve and watched the golden balloons drop. Fun!

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on August 18, 2017

Even better than usual, new menu items are great! Super bar, and bartender. The sauce on my t-bone was excellent, and I appreciated the cut down size of the wedge, just large enough. And the bread pudding was delicious !

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, People Watching, Bar Seating, Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion, Good for a Date, Healthy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on August 13, 2017

This was a birthday celebration! We enjoyed the dinner, the service and the patio seating. Thanks especially to our server for helping to make the evening memorable. We will be back1

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on August 3, 2017

We celebrated a birthday and everything was perfect and the price was more than reasonable.

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

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on July 30, 2017

Great spot for a casual bite. Good size portions. Hamburger yummmy.
Seafood pasta has plenty of seafood.

Tags: Seasonal, Casual, Comfort Food
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value3

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on July 29, 2017

Quiet, great menu, delicious food.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Adelaide / SA)·Dined on July 16, 2017

I've been to this restaurant 3 times and tried different dishes every time - they are all good!!! The 8 oz Filet Mignon I tried on the first visit was exactly what I craved at the time, grilled and flavored just right, with a perfect portion of juicy in the middle and lightly charred on the outside; I like it so much that I went back for a second time - fortunately the nice waitress recommended something else or I might've missed out on the lamb rack! It was so tender and juicy at medium, you could just tear the meat off the bones with your teeth. So the third time I went back I knew I had to try something new again. As luck would have it, the Grilled Prawn salad really took the cake - I can honestly say it exceeded all expectation! The boneless chicken did not disappoint either, but it just couldn't compare to the fresh jumbo prawn, the sweet mango, and the baby greens liberally sprinkled with lime vinaigrette offering that refreshing tinge for a warm summer's night. I don't usually like avacado, but when it's been grilled, warm with aioli sauce filling, I could understand why it's popular! All in all, Compliments to the chefs and the friendly staffs! Next time I am definitely trying something else again!

Tags: Cozy, Authentic, Casual, Healthy, Comfort Food, Neighborhood Gem, Organic
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on July 13, 2017

We really like MacArthur Park.......but the menu is not as good as it used to be.

Tags: Bar Seating, Happy Hour
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on July 11, 2017

are used to go to this restaurant along time ago so I decided to try it again and was vastly disappointed. Upon entering the restaurant, the smell it was very musty and an appetizer. Then, the service was simply terrible! The food was OK, but not enough to surpass the first two comments.

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience3
service2
value3

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on July 9, 2017

A nice place but was too quiet for us

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience3
service5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on June 18, 2017

Food was excellent as always. Most enjoyed the Fathers Barbeque brunch.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Great for Lunch, Neighborhood Gem, Sunday Lunch, Tasting Menu, Creative Cuisine, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Birthdays, Business Meals, Great for Brunch, Special Occasion, Kid-friendly, Good for Groups, Notable Wine List
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on June 18, 2017

Father's Day brunch was not spectacular here. It's our first time eating at this place since all the places we like are booked. First was the parking, $6 Valet and self parking is very limited. Second, the waiter didn't know if there was other options for mimosas, I would think they would know since it's Brunch! Then came with a drink spilling on the way to the table. Lastly, Coffee was self served and I askedifvthey have soy milk they just looked at me sternly and said "No!". I felt like I was scolded!!! I guess we just won't go back again. Too bad, it has potential since the prime steak was good.

Tags: Casual
1 person found this review helpful.
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience3
service2
value2

Report this review as inappropriate?

If you believe this review should be removed from OpenTable, please let us know and someone will investigate.