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TAVERNA, Palo Alto, CA

TAVERNA

4.7
4.7
1383 Reviews
$31 to $50
Greek
For centuries, a taverna has been a neighborhood gathering place where friends can meet to eat, drink and enjoy life. Taverna co-founders Thanasis Pashalidis and Hakan Bala were raised with a shared ethical compass, which the Greeks call "philotimo" or "love of honor". Family and friends are their ingredients of life, and they believe that nutrition, happiness and health are all directly correlated. Both partners have been culturally influenced by the remedies of the old world and incorporate them into the lifestyle of Taverna. Both have an "ethos" that drives them and inspires others to live fully, which they consider the flavor of life's success. They understand that life is to be enjoyed and that time is of the essence. They are aware that every day is a gift.

Taverna has been created to make people happy and feel alive.

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2 people

7:00 PM


Booked 74 times today
Private dining

Private dining

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Additional information

  • Dining style
    Fine Dining
  • Price
    $31 to $50
  • Cuisines
    Greek, Farm-to-table
  • Hours of operation
    Brunch Sat, Sun 10:30 am–3:45 pm Lunch Mon–Fri 11:30 am–3:45 pm Dinner Mon–Thu, Sun 4:00 pm–9:00 pm Fri, Sat 4:00 pm–10:00 pm
  • Phone number
    (650) 304-3840
  • Payment options
    AMEX, Discover, Mastercard, Visa
  • Dress code
    Business Casual
  • Executive chef
    Thanasis Pashalidis & Hakan Bala
  • Private party facilities
    Taverna Restaurant offers private and large party dining for up to 50 guests in our private event room. Taverna’s event room is ideal for corporate events, birthdays, weddings, and special occasions. Choose between one our three family style menus.
  • Private party contact
    Thanasis Pashalidis or Hakan Bala: (650) 304-3840
  • Neighborhood
    Palo Alto
  • Cross street
    Homer Ave
  • Parking details
    Street Parking
  • Additional
    Banquet, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Full Bar, Gender Neutral Restroom, Gluten-free Options, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine

What 1,383 people are saying

Overall ratings and reviews

Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant

4.7
4.7 based on recent ratings
  • 4.7Food
  • 4.7Service
  • 4.7Ambience
  • 4.3Value

NoiseModerate

Loved For

  • San Francisco Bay Area

    Greek

1,383 Reviews
  1. NaiaD

    San Francisco

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined 1 day ago

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Great food! Amazing ambiance! Superb service! Definitely recommend!

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  2. AceC

    San Francisco

    25 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    25 reviews

    Dined 3 days ago

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 4
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 4
    Great food. Good service. Chairs were little bit uncomfortable. Overall, good experience. Will go back.

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  3. Itiswhatitis

    Central Coast

    44 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    44 reviews

    Dined 4 days ago

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Always a wonderful experience! We’ll be back! Thank You……

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  4. helenag

    Chicago

    3 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined 4 days ago

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Wonderful special meal which was both authentic and innovative. Wonderful service!

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  5. RSSLA

    San Francisco

    11 reviews

    vip
    3.0

    11 reviews

    Dined on February 19, 2024

    1. Overall 3
    2. Food 3
    3. Service 4
    4. Ambience 4
    The appetizers and small plates were very good, and the service was also great. Unfortunately, the mains were very mediocre and nobody really enjoyed them. The gyro was really dry with no tzatziki. If we go back, we will just share a bunch of appetizers and small plates and skip the main courses.

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  6. OpenTable Diner

    Los Angeles

    5 reviews

    vip
    1.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on February 18, 2024

    1. Overall 1
    2. Food 1
    3. Service 1
    4. Ambience 1
    Overcharged us, took forever, tried to force us to do a prefixed me when that was not agreed upon in advance

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  7. David

    Greater Boston

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on February 15, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Would have been good to be told that fish was no longer available instead of the long wait. Could have allowed option for a second choice.

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  8. OpenTable Diner

    Denver

    9 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    9 reviews

    Dined on February 15, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    It’s rare that I give a $400 meal 5 stars for value but this place is absolutely incredible.

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  9. AlanA

    San Francisco

    12 reviews

    5.0

    12 reviews

    Dined on February 15, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 3
    A nice place to have a good time. However you have many options

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  10. OncDoc

    Seattle

    64 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    64 reviews

    Dined on February 15, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Most important to me was the food, which was exceptional, particularly the Greek salad, the calamari, and both the lamb chops and the moussaka very good. It's a nice place, good ambiance, and service was friendly and attentive. Really the only thing I can't gush about is the value. This was a Valentine's Day prix fixe menu at $125/person, and I think that was rather steep, but you can understand that pricing will perhaps be aggressive for a holiday where people are going to go out and the cost is almost "inelastic" (people will pay no matter what). Adding the cost of drinks to that is a lot, and then the 20% included as a gratuity --- again, I would have paid that anyway. What galls me is not unique to Taverna, but the 5% "living wage" charge added on top of all of this. With a tip of well over $50, it's hard to justify that an additional 5% on top of that is required to convert it to a "living wage". It would be less frustrating and more transparent to just add the cost to what is listed on the menu. But it seems that this routine practice of adding another 5% just in the fine print is a very unwelcome trick to gouge people who might otherwise feel fine with it if it didn't feel that the way the money was charged is an obviously subversive effort to extract more money without drawing attention to this imposed additional obligation.

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  11. andie

    Sacramento

    3 reviews

    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on February 15, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 4
    Great Valentine's Day experience, wonderful food and top-notch service. I loved that the music was curated to be popular ballad-y love songs, nice touch. It was a bit loud, however, where we were sitting (Emerson Street outdoor). Overall excellent!

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  12. Michael

    New York City

    1 review

    2.0

    1 review

    Dined on February 15, 2024

    1. Overall 2
    2. Food 2
    3. Service 2
    4. Ambience 3
    Not even close to worth the nearly $400 we spent to eat here on Valentines day, after their 5% living wage fee ON TOP of the 20% required gratuity. We reserved the $125 per person, four courses option. Having seen great reviews, we were excited. But the food was bland, or if not it was unbalanced with either too much olive oil or too much salt. The fish had little taste at all, and was rubbery from being overcooked. Even the dessert was unremarkable, with little flavor. We left most of the food unfinished, with the exception of the small plates of starters. To tell the truth, this place left us with the impression of the quality of food that you expect to eat at a bar.

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  13. MercyS

    San Francisco

    2 reviews

    4.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on February 4, 2024

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 4
    3. Service 4
    4. Ambience 4
    Tasty food and cozy place, it’s a nice place for meeting friends.

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  14. DavidS

    San Francisco

    6 reviews

    5.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on February 4, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 4
    Fantastic food and wonderful service- we love having Moose as our server. Great night

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  15. KyleS

    San Francisco

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on February 4, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    The food and service is very good, the wine was nice too.

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  16. AlyssaT

    San Francisco

    3 reviews

    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on February 3, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Very knowledgeable and friendly staff that explained the menu, made recommendations, and presented every beautiful dish that came out. All of which were delicious. Highly recommend this restaurant that transports you to Greece!

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  17. KyleS

    San Francisco

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on January 30, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Food is always very satisfying, the server is very kind and thoughtful plus his suggestions are also nice.

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  18. RogerK

    New York City

    26 reviews

    4.0

    26 reviews

    Dined on January 28, 2024

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 4
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Great venue great service good food. Like it quite a bit

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  19. DavidY

    New York City

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on January 28, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    We celebrated our anniversary at Taverna. It was fantastic! The service, food, ambience and everything was exceptional.

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  20. Bbpx

    San Francisco

    30 reviews

    2.0

    30 reviews

    Dined on January 24, 2024

    1. Overall 2
    2. Food 3
    3. Service 3
    4. Ambience 3
    Had a team dinner for 9. Because of the group size, Taverna required us to do a fixed price at $85/person, plus 20%, plus the Palo Alto living wage addition. (9 isn't that large but fine.) After being seated we waited quite a while for any food, our waiter was nowhere in sight. A server came around with an open bottle of water, asking us if we wanted some, or whether we wanted sparkling. At no time did anyone tell us that the already opened bottle of still water would cost us $15/bottle!! Also, never did anyone leave any bottles on the table, they always just walked around with the water. (I would have preferred a bottle on the table rather than waiting with empty glasses.) The food was fine. One of the items was a dip with pita, which they brought out 8 small pieces of pita (2 pitas cut in to 4 pieces each). Given there were 9 of us, and I was being charged for 9, I said we needed one more piece of pita, which they charged us extra for! Imagine my surprise at the end of the meal that we were charged $65 for water!!! Plus an extra charge for the 9th small triangle of pita. Also, the quantity of food for $85 was pretty skimpy, and we ran out of a couple of items. Overall, very disappointed, especially given this was an $1100 dinner--didn't expect to be charged $65 for ordinary water without being asked.

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  21. NermineM

    Tampa

    4 reviews

    5.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on January 22, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    This was a fantastic experience from the ambiance, to the wait staff, to the food. The setting is cozy and warm. The food was absolutely delicious, and all the dishes were full of amazing flavors. The wait staff was kind, inviting, and attentive. They gave space to enjoy a dinner with my spouse. They also seemed to know exactly when to check in, and were thoughtful in directing us to options on the menu. Fabulous experience and would recommend this spot to everyone.

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  22. AneeshK

    San Francisco

    1 review

    vip
    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on January 21, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Great food, excellent service, cute ambience, it all felt like authentic experience

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  23. OpenTable Diner

    Denver

    4 reviews

    4.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on January 13, 2024

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 4
    3. Service 4
    4. Ambience 5
    Good was great! And appreciated the ambiences both the indoor and outdoor spaces are pretty

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  24. EmlynM

    New York City

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on January 13, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    The food was great and the service was excellent. I really enjoyed the chicken skewers and salad. The waitstaff was always making sure that we had enough water and our table was cleaned between courses. Will be going back!

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  25. FuzzyBeaver

    Toronto

    202 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    202 reviews

    Dined on January 11, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    The meal and service were great. We opted to order a variety of small plates plus main and have everything family-style. This allow us to try many items. We ordered grape leaves, beets, spankopitakia, and moussaka. Everything was good. The grape leavers were the best we have ever eaten. The moussaka was was very rich and well done. Service levels are very high. Nice wine list. The restaurant is divided into multiple rooms so the noise level was relatively low. This restaurant is definitely recommended. Great value for the price.

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  26. OpenTable Diner

    San Francisco

    3 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on January 8, 2024

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 4
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Overall a good experience at lunch. I had soup of day and chicken gyro both were solid. Server was attentive and helpful.

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  27. PattyP

    San Francisco

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on January 3, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    First time here, food was out of this world.. will be returning!!

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  28. CJnFLA

    Tampa

    24 reviews

    5.0

    24 reviews

    Dined on January 1, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    We were a party of 4 that sat outside. Wonderfully attentive service and tasty food. The outdoor area is enclosed and very warm. You’ll love this place.

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  29. Itiswhatitis

    Central Coast

    44 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    44 reviews

    Dined on January 1, 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Great food! Excellent service! Very personal and knowledgeable staff. Always consistently great.

    1 person found this helpful

  30. OpenTable Diner

    San Francisco

    5 reviews

    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on December 30, 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Amazing as always. My favorite restaurant in all of Palo Alto

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  31. drblynnware

    San Francisco

    117 reviews

    5.0

    117 reviews

    Dined on December 27, 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Taverna is a hidden gem in Palo Alto. The owners defected from Evvia, a more well known Greek restaurant in Palo Alto but Taverna has more interesting food and is more intimate and not so loud. There is a wide variety of small plates and entrees to choose from. I took a friend out to lunch on this visit. We had a wonderful beet salad with three different kinds of fresh beets. I had the grilled octopus which was wonderful. The service was perfect and we were not rushed. A fabulous meal and delightful afternoon.

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  32. LubaY

    San Francisco

    2 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on December 27, 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    one of the best restaurants in palo alto: great food and service!

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  33. maryg

    San Francisco

    9 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    9 reviews

    Dined on December 25, 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Went on Christmas Eve dinner! Great service ! Owner was there and service and everything was top notch. Delicious appetizers on the house! So much fun❣️

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  34. OpenTable Diner

    San Francisco

    1 review

    4.0

    1 review

    Dined on December 24, 2023

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 4
    4. Ambience 4
    Holiday dinner

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  35. JoshuaT

    San Francisco

    2 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on December 23, 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 4
    4. Ambience 5
    A favorite of my family, and the best lamb chops around… 🤤

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  36. Nancy94022

    San Francisco

    39 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    39 reviews

    Dined on December 18, 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    We had a lovely dinner with old friends who were visiting from out of town. We had hoped for a nice ambiance, yummy food, and good service! Taverna did not disappoint…it was fantastic!

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  37. JohnS

    San Francisco

    11 reviews

    4.0

    11 reviews

    Dined on December 18, 2023

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 4
    3. Service 4
    4. Ambience 4
    Good but not outstanding food. For the prices was expecting better. Service was fine, odd "greeting" from the head waiter who asked my spouse "how long did it take to convince him to take you out?" - certainly set the mood for a romantic dinner.

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  38. LaurenC

    San Francisco

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on December 17, 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 4
    Best food I’ve had in Palo Alto in a long time, very attentive service as well

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  39. ThomasC

    San Francisco

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on December 17, 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    A delectable meal and perfect service. The food was excellent without a step astray.

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  40. JenniferL

    San Francisco

    2 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on December 17, 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Very attentive and kind service. The food was amazing and definitely will be going back!

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FAQs

TAVERNA is rated 4.7 stars by 1383 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable.

Make a reservation

2 people

7:00 PM


Booked 74 times today
Google Map for TAVERNA

800 Emerson St, Palo Alto, CA 94301-2412

Additional information

  • Cross street
    Homer Ave
  • Neighborhood
    Palo Alto
  • Hours of operation
    Brunch Sat, Sun 10:30 am–3:45 pm Lunch Mon–Fri 11:30 am–3:45 pm Dinner Mon–Thu, Sun 4:00 pm–9:00 pm Fri, Sat 4:00 pm–10:00 pm
  • Price
    $31 to $50
  • Cuisines
    Greek, Farm-to-table
  • Dining style
    Fine Dining
  • Dress code
    Business Casual
  • Parking details
    Street Parking
  • Payment options
    AMEX, Discover, Mastercard, Visa
  • Executive chef
    Thanasis Pashalidis & Hakan Bala
  • Additional
    Banquet, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Full Bar, Gender Neutral Restroom, Gluten-free Options, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Phone number
    (650) 304-3840
  • Private party facilities
    Taverna Restaurant offers private and large party dining for up to 50 guests in our private event room. Taverna’s event room is ideal for corporate events, birthdays, weddings, and special occasions. Choose between one our three family style menus.
  • Private party contact
    Thanasis Pashalidis or Hakan Bala: (650) 304-3840
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