Menlo Tavern

4.2
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144 Reviews
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$30 and under
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American
Menlo Tavern is an American restaurant and bar in Menlo Park, serving comforting classics in a sophisticated, yet relaxed setting.

The restaurant honors the past, featuring elevated tavern fare prepared with a California cadence and shared with a genuine sense of hospitality. The restaurant celebrates community and the age-old tradition of coming together over delicious food and drinks.

Stop for a drink in the bar, enjoy a meal with friends in the dining room, or gather around a fire pit in the courtyard, there’s a place for everyone here. Corkage fee in the dining room and patio is complimentary, $25 in the bar.

Parking is complimentary.
What 144 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.2based on recent ratings
4.1
food
4.1
service
4.3
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Quiet
84% of people would recommend it to a friend
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D
San Francisco
48 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Another greet lunch. Thank you. Server Bianca was greet.

GB
San Francisco
28 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We loved the new menu! Being able to order different sizes is an inspired idea. We were thrilled to have prime rib back on the menu . Thank you for listening to all of us!

CH
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall3food2service2ambience3

I have eaten there a few times and have enjoyed the food and cocktails each time. Service is often cloying and inexperienced, but food usually makes up for that. This last visit, however, was marred by a nearly inedible dish of eggplant parmesan. I will try them again, but will stick to the meat/fish entrees, which have generally been pleasing.

OT
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were slow to be greeted at the host station but then were happily seated into a nice lovely booth. The wait staff accommodated a special drink order at the start and some special requests for the meal and dessert as well! Service was attentive and timely. Noise level was quite low andVery comfortable. We were pleased with our brunch experience and will likely return. However, be warned that the bathrooms are still under construction on the main level and it’s necessary to travel upstairs for the available facilities. For someone who is challenged walking any distance this can be an issue.

O
San Francisco
15 reviews
Dined on November 13, 2019
Overall3food4service5ambience2

Noise level is intolerable once the place is ⅔ full. A shame that they remodeled and didn't take care of this -- used to be a quiet restaurant but no longer. Server was excellent -- coffee arrived cold but she replaced it quickly.

B
San Diego
10 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Outstanding dining experience.
Our server was so well versed on wine pairing...

KO
San Francisco
138 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2019
Overall3food3service4ambience3

We have been there twice and my husband said not again. My clams linguine was good but his eggplant paremsean was mushy and tasteless. Beware: they do an up charge of $5 if you want anchovies on your Caesar salad except there is not mention of that on the menu nor by the waiter.

The ambiance is pleasant but not as quiet as initially advertised. We commend the waitress Ege on her polite and efficient service.

MP
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2019
Overall4food5service5ambience4

Close to Stanford Hospital. Great service and food is a requirement and they hit the mark. Thanks

DC
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on October 31, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I love this place more and more every time I go. The food is delicious, creatively prepared and interesting without being an overdue. The no-corkage policy makes this THE perfect place to bring one of those special bottles of wine you've been saving at home for "an occasion" -- make dinner at Menlo Tavern the occasion, and then splurge and have filet mignon and try lots of great things on the menu. Staff is so friendly and professional. Atmosphere after the remodel is A++. Inviting and sophisticated, and yet comfortable for any day of the week.

Menlo Tavern
Responded on November 4, 2019

Thank you for the kind words. I am glad to know that the goal of making the restaurant the go-to spot in the neighborhood by offering value add amenities like complimentary corkage has made the impact that we hoped for. The chef is very pleased to have confirmation that his offerings, preparation and presentation are on target too. Although it goes without saying: please let us know if there is ever anything that will make your visits even better. With sincere gratitude, Patrick

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FB
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on October 22, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great as usual. Just disappointed that patio was closed on such a warm evening as tonight.

Menlo Tavern
Responded on October 24, 2019

Thanks for visiting us again. I am glad to know that you have enjoyed your experiences and completely understand your feelings about the patio. We do our best to predict the right date to begin and to end full service on the patio. These are decisions that impact our staffing and they have to be made long in advance so that we have a team trained ready to take great care of you. Thanks for understanding our predicament and contact me anytime for special arrangements however.

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AH
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Returned to the Menlo Tavern to enjoy the best creamy Burrata, velvety Hummus, light Eggplant Parmigiana and tomato and watermelon salad. They were perfection. We also tried the cast iron macaroni and cheese with toasted panko and calamari. The Cheesecake with berries and cream were smooth and bright. Take your family and friends. Great ambiance and service. We ate inside because it was a cool evening. The trees are lit in the sweet courtyard. We experienced kind staff and wonderful dinners here.

d
New York Area
11 reviews
Dined on October 19, 2019
Overall2food1service5ambience5

Well, I started off with a martini glass that came half filled. I complained; the waitress said "that's the way we serve them here." She kindly went to the bartended and he added a bit more. It cost $15!! My husband ordered lamb shank -- no taste, so seasoning, not enough gravy. I ordered calamari -- a big bundle of bread crumbs and no taste of any calamari. I complained, the waiter gave me a small house salad with little dressing. My friend ordered fish and chips, with the salad in lieu of chips, and it was a skinny slice full of more breadcrumbs. She ate one-third of it and didn't want to take it home. Her husband ordered a crab salad -- mostly lettuce he said. He took his uneaten half home
The place got noisier and noisier. It was a Saturday night, granted, but we had to lean over the table and practically touch foreheads to hear each other.

I used to go here frequently -- your Sunday night prime ribs were magnificent.t I know you have changed, but last the very least, get a new chef!!!

AP
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 14, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Good food. Great experience... EXCEPT for one thing. We brought our own bottle of wine because based on their website, NO CHARGE FOR CORKAGE FEE. Well the hostess, while sweet, told us that there WOULD be a corkage fee. We tried to explain that I had seen different information on their website. Her view did not change. Good thing our waiter, a wonderful young man who has been our waiter many times, told us "no way would he charge a corkage fee", so we had our wine opened. While looking through the MENU, we saw a PRINTED item on their menu that stated, no corkage fee in dining area. So the hostess was not informed correctly. Just thinking that she should have checked and come back to inform us that she was incorrect. We love Menlo Tavern and are happy to take a nice bottle of wine with us for dinner there. There are not many restaurants that do not charge corkage fees.

I will continue to enjoy the great food and ambiance of Menlo Tavern.

Menlo Tavern
Responded on October 17, 2019

Adrina, I am so sorry for the confusion and the anxiousness that we created for you as a result of misinformation. The young hostess is being trained on the nuances and details of how to provide thoughtful assistance to our guests but she did not recall the correct information when she told you about corkage fees and she should have apologized for her mistake while you were here. Thank you for your continued patronage and for your time in providing this feedback so we can get even better.

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TW
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on October 12, 2019
Overall2food2service2ambience3

Maitre d" attempted to seat us outside on a cool evening, but made arrangements to find seating inside.
While the waitress was congenial, she was responsible for too many tables. They need more waiters in the dining room. It took an extraordinary amount of time for our main entrees to arrive. They obviously need more chefs in the kitchen. One guest had filet mignon which was very good, but very little on the side. The salmon was a little dry. The pork chop was good, but again, hardly any side vegetables. The lamb shank needed more herbs or spices as it was rather plain. The best part of the meal was no corkage charge on two bottles of wine.

Menlo Tavern
Responded on October 17, 2019

Timothy, Your feedback is very much appreciated. Chef JD and Chad the Chef de Partie are reviewing their preparations and refining processes that may reduce the preparation time of the entrees. They are also using your comments to help refine the skill set of their culinarians towards consistently perfect execution. Thank you for visiting with us and we hope to have the opportunity to WOW you during your next experience here. We are glad that you appreciated the complimentary corkage too.

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GB
San Francisco
29 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2019
Overall4food4service3ambience4

Just another lovely dinner at MENLO Tavern. Wish there were more low carb appetizers to chose from. We will be back!

D
San Francisco
49 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great lunch outside in the courtyard!! Lovely.

WC
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 7, 2019
Overall1food2service1ambience3

Poor, unattentive service, cold food-an unsatisfactory visit.

JU
San Diego
9 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Great food and very pleasant outdoor patio lunch. Quiet enough for conversation, beautiful setting.

m
San Francisco
53 reviews
Dined on October 2, 2019
Overall3food3service4ambience5

NIce, clubby atmosphere. Buratta was fresh. Calamari was terrible - the manager explained it was a new supplier which they wouldn't use again/charge removed. The main courses were fine and straight forward: chicken moist; one guest felt the pork chop was small for the price; hamburger lover liked the hamburger and lamb shank was tender.

GB
San Francisco
29 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Had another delicious dinner at MENLO Tavern. Please consider bringing back the wonderful Prime Rib Sunday night dinner! Loved the Eggplant Parmesan👍

Menlo Tavern
Responded on October 3, 2019

Grammy, We love your comment: ANOTHER delicious dinner. Please keep coming back and we promise to consider your request for Prime Rib too.

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H
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on September 27, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great time at Menlo Tavern! Thank you for the awesome service and delicious food.

Menlo Tavern
Responded on September 30, 2019

Hans, Thank you! We obviously love positive feedback and we are happy to have earned your vote of confidence.

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OT
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on September 26, 2019
Overall2food2service1ambience2

The new interior design is appealing, but staff may still be catching up or uncomfortably pretending to be something it’s not. Condescending host when reservation was incorrect, no server or kitchen flexibility for vegetarian menu request, server ghosted us, no acknowledgment of our birthday dinner (as noted in ressie) with a dessert menu so we bolted and happily had ice cream at home. We won’t be back for dinner, but seems perfectly doable for a working lunch.

D
San Francisco
155 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2019
Overall5food4service5ambience5

We had turkey club sandwiches. The appearance and flavors were fine. The problem was with the design of the sandwich. They were served so thick, that there was no way to put them in your mouth without avocado or bacon slipping out. I like this restaurant, but will not select this specific lunch item.

Menlo Tavern
Responded on September 30, 2019

Thanks for the positive review. Chef JD and his Chef de Partie, Chad will review the sandwich presentation with your thoughtful and constructive comments in mind. We appreciate that you visited with us and look forward to your return and making sure that everything meets your expectation. Let us know if there is ever anything special that we can do for you so that we become your very favorite and reliable go-to spot.

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CT
1 review
Dined on September 25, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It is a cozy, pleasant setting with excellent service. Our water glasses were frequently filled, and the staff was cheerful. The lunch was delicious and just the correct amount of food.

Menlo Tavern
Responded on September 27, 2019

Christine, Thanks for the great review. You and your guests were delightful. Thanks for allowing us the chance to take care of you and we look forward to seeing you again soon.

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FB
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on September 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

One of my favorite dining spots. Especially love sitting outdoors and listening to featured musical guests. Great food, service and ambiance.

Menlo Tavern
Responded on September 27, 2019

1FoodBuff...what a great handle...super creative. We are glad that you enjoy being at MT and look forward to always being your reliable go-to spot. Thanks for visiting and for the recommendation.

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TJ
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on September 21, 2019
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Lovely meal outside on the patio. Our server and all of the staff were very attentive. I had the seafood salad, which was delicious. My wife had the burger, which was also very good. We both had drinks prior to dinner. Portions were good and the food was tasty. There was live music that was not too loud - just the right amount of back-ground noise. We will be back.

Menlo Tavern
Responded on September 24, 2019

TJ, Thanks for the great feedback. We are always pleased to know that we have done well and if there is ever anything that we can do special for you, please don't hesitate to let us know. Thanks again.

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RM
1 review
Dined on September 18, 2019
Overall3food2service4ambience2

After many years of this being our go-to place when we visited the area, it is no longer. Since they have made changes we found the menu to be somewhat pretentious, while at the same time pedestrian. Too much focus on the latest trends. Also the food preparation was only so-so. Finally, they had a guitar player/singer on the patio where we ate. The guitar playing was good but the singer could not carry a tune or keep on key. Need to do better in the entertainment booking.

Menlo Tavern
Responded on September 24, 2019

Rick, It was disappointing to learn that we missed the mark with you. After many years of doing it right, we hope that you won't give up after a single experience that did not meet your expectations. The menu changes are evolutionary so during your next visit you should experience both Tavern Classics and new seasonal offerings. The musicians change nightly so maybe the artist was just a little off that night but each and every artist has also received positive comments. Please come back.

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 14, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great outdoor dining. Wonderful live music. Perfect ambience. Delicious food. Good drinks

VF
San Francisco
38 reviews
Dined on September 12, 2019
Overall2food2service3ambience4

Dinner started well enough, but the chicken in the chicken kale salad was missing from the salad and the chicken flatbread had ONE bite of chicken shredded into 3 tiny pieces. We pointed out both issues, refused the chicken flatbread and looked at the menu to find something else that would not take forever. to prepare, since the third diner did get his food as ordered. The new GM, (there only a couple of days), interceded, comped both the chicken kale salad, (brought a whole new salad, this time WITH the chicken), as well as the replacement entree . He offered to comp any desserts we chose to order and was very apologetic. But the evening/dinner was, by now, fragmented and not enjoyable. Clearly the kitchen lacks quality control, which is not survivable; we hope the new GM who was very apologetic and did whatever he could to right the situation as much as he could, can get the kitchen straightened out.

PM
San Francisco
7 reviews
Dined on September 11, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

You are missing out if you have not tried this place. Delicious food and choices of seating from a little dressy dining room to bar area to outdoor area. We always have a blast there.

CS
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 8, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful place, service & food!

Menlo Tavern
Responded on September 19, 2019

Carla, Wow! We are pleased to know that you thoroughly enjoyed your experience and we will continue to work hard to make sure that you always trust our service and food. Thank you.

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DM
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 8, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

While staying at the Stanford Park Hotel, my friends and I enjoyed a wonderful breakfast on the patio. The food was delicious, my coffee was perfect and the service was attentive and professional. If I were local I'd come to this restaurant frequently. Thank you Menlo Tavern!

Menlo Tavern
Responded on September 19, 2019

Diana, Thank you for the positive comments and the great review. Your recommendation in multiple categories means a lot and we are all truly appreciative of your endorsement and glad to have earned your trust.

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J
San Francisco
22 reviews
Dined on September 5, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience2

Food and service very very good. We had an outside table as requested but we didn't count on the yellow jackets being such a constant during the meal. Perhaps the restaurant needs more repellents for these creatures as it makes the dining experience less than comfortable.

OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on September 2, 2019
Overall1food1service1ambience4

Terrible service and Terrible food. Embarrassing as we took friends there.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 2, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience5

Reservations were made days before for 4 for a birthday brunch on the patio at 10:00. They had us down for 2. Upon arrival found that the reservations person on the phone was mistaken and the patio didn't open until 11:00. So we ate inside, disappointed, but had a nice breakfast.. good service..and asked to be seated at 11:00 on the patio for coffee and desert. But found the patio was being spray washed so we waited for 20 minutes being assured again and again it would be finished soon. A manager? Finally arrived and asked the workman to finish up.

Things improved and our patio time was very pleasant, and were told that the coffee and deserts were "on the house." Very nice of them and did leave us on a positive note.

We will be back, but will double check on reservations and hours before coming. There seems to be poor communication between employees on several counts.

S
New Mexico
6 reviews
Dined on August 29, 2019
Overall3food3service3ambience3

Ok food, rookie server, scant cocktails, overpriced wines. Not superior compared to other local restaurants.

M
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on August 19, 2019
Overall2food3service2ambience2

My lamp shake was fantastic. The salad was delicious. The service was really spotty the steak was mediocre the desert offering was limited. None of the four of us want to go back

KR
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on August 19, 2019
Overall5food4service4ambience5

A great place to have a delicious lunch with a friend in a quiet setting. It was so relaxing!

V
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on August 18, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent service and everyone enjoyed their meal. Love coming here because it’s unassuming and low key compared to other venues in the area. The remodel is very tasteful. The dining room was a little noisier than I expected but nothing to complain too much about. They were especially nice about letting us linger to talk long after we finished our meal - no rush at all. Thanks!

LC
1 review
Dined on August 12, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Every thing great although music too loud. Microphone needs to b turned down. Best, L