ATLAS Workshop/Visitor Information

Local Dining & Drinking


Below are some suggestions for nearby restaurants. Click on the larger map for specifics. Click on individual markers for restaurant details. It may be helpful to read the reviews for opinions.

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Basic Info on Local Dining

  • Dinner hours around here are closer to what you find in the northern half of Europe, starting fairly early, and most restaurants have closing times between 9:30-10:00pm.
  • If you missed the dinner hour, there is a useful page on nearby restaurants, which are open late hours, but not many of them stay open that late either. If you are very late (past midnight), Stanford Late Night Dining has a few places with simple hot food until 2am. There is a small Sharon Height shopping center (SLAC is just below the map opposite to Saga Ln.) just diagonally across Sand Hill Road towards the Guest House corner, which is a <10min walk (or better 2min driving at night). An 24-hours Safeways supermarket has a deli, bakery with heated/heatable food.
  • If you are stuck at the Guest House without transportation, you can also try food delivered to you with Waiters on Wheels (but selection availability is best in the regular dinner hours).
  • Note that US restaurants (and shops) list item price before tax and a 9% sales tax will charged on top of the listing price. In addition, tips to services are not included in the price in most cases and you are expected to "voluntarily" add roughly 15-20% of the total cost before tax as a tip, which can be cash left on the table or written in to credit card bill.

Restaurant List Disclaimer: Choosing a list of restaurant is a very subjective process. The list is biased towards restaurants with more Bay Area local flavor which may be a bit different from the familiar cuisines for visitors from Europe in particular. There are 180+ restaurants in Palo Alto alone so that even a collection of locals will not know all of them. The list is therefore also from a rather limited sampling.

  • Bangkok Bay Thai Restaurant: Downtown Redwood City a bit north from Stanford. A regular spot for seminar dinners and other outings well known to SLAC people.
  • Burma Ruby and Rangoon Ruby: a pair of sister Burmese restaurants with same menu that has worked well reqularly with SLAC meeting crowd and seminar dinners.
  • Chef Chu's: Chinese restaurant which had many celebrity visits. The reviews are also generally favorable, but many locals were unimpressed from their visits.
  • Darbar Indian Cuisine: A popular Indian restaurant downtown Palo Alto which has been regularly visited by locals and seminar dinners.
  • Estrellita: Mexican restaurant with good reviews for food and ambient. Suitable for large groups.
  • Evvia Estiatorio: Consistenly well rated Greek cuisine.
  • Fey Restaurant: Chinese restaurant with some less commonly seen Sichuan and Northen Chinese cuisine.
  • Fish Market: A popular place with speciality on fish with generally good quality with consistent satisfactory results. They used to not taking reservations and just queue for seats in the past, but reservation works for at least a less busy day
  • Flea Street Cafe: A restaurant very close to SLAC but often forgotten by people. Known for using organic ingredient and respected for quality.
  • Fuki Sushi: A relatively formal sushi restaunt that has been used for many of our postdoc candidate dinners that worked well regularly. If lost in the selections, the combo box "Sushi experience" can be a good starting point. The fixed price/person family styled party menu has worked out well for large groups on many occasions.
  • Garden Fresh Vegan Restaurant: Chinese vegan cuisine using tofu based product of various textures to imitate meat dishes. This should be an interesting extension to broaden vegeterian options and even interesting for non-vegeterian diners.
  • Il Fornaio: Italian restaurant used by SLAC reviews on many occassions which is used to deal with large groups.
  • Kanpai: A relatively small Japanese restaurant in down town Palo Alto which worked well with our visitors each time. Some of the special rolls are well known good choices although not much experience with full menu.
  • Mac Arthur Park: Famous for their ribs.
  • Nola's restaurant and Bar: Cajun food of New Orlean style. The bar is also very popular with Stanford crowds.
  • Reposado: Upscale Mexican restaurant, but no direct experience from locals.
  • Sancho's Taqueria: A popular small restaurant serving Baja styled traditional Mexican food.
  • St. Michael's Alley: Not just because the Clintons were there, but some locals are quite fond of the cooking at this place.
  • The Sundance steak house: Their steaks are well regarded.
  • Trellis Restaurant: Popular Italian restaurant for SLAC group lunches, seminar dinners etc. There is an open air balcony dining area.
There are many more diners' reviews on if you'd like more opinions and specifics. It may be better to pay more attention to the comments from the "Elite" who reviewed many restaurants with more Gaussian profile for their star ratings with perhaps better calibration.

Restaurants on the Michelin list

For the upscale gourmet connoisseurs, there are 40+ restaurants with 2012 Michelin star ratings in the San Francisco Bay Area (including Napa Valley). Among which, 3 of them are in the Stanford vacinity:

A few places out of local area

  • Koi Palace: This is rather far from SLAC in Daly City (23 miles or 37km). It's listed because while asking a Chinese what's their favorite Chinese restaurant the result can be all over the map, this place seemed to be most consistently rated as one of the best Dim Sim places and for dinners as well. in general among Chinese, while not necessarily work for non-Chinese.There is a long wait time during the weekends.
  • Cliff House: Scenic spot in San Fracisco on Pacific beach. Reservations necessary.
  • Thomas Fogarty Winery: Up on Skyline which takes 30min drive from SLAC on very windy road. However, it has a great view of the Bay.
Bars, Pubs, Breweries

Below are some suggestions for local bars, or generally places to drink. These typically also serve food. Click on the larger map for specifics. Cloick on the individual markers for details on each place.

View larger Bar Map.

Bar List

  • Dutch Goose: The is the local "Pub" closest to SLAC, although it is more of a burger place which serves some beer. There are groups from SLAC coming here for lunch regularly.
  • Gordon Biersch: Restaurant and bar of the Gordon Biersch Brewery. Comments from people about their beer are generally positive.
  • Oasis Beer Garden: A burger/pizza place serving selection of beer.
  • Pioneer Saloon: A rather unusual old Western styled saloon on Woodside Road which is suprisingly with little direct knowledge from the locals. Live country music on some days and occassional spotting of celebrities.
  • Rose & Crown English Foods: This is closest to a real pub. A rather popular place in downtown Palo Alto.
  • The Village Pub: More of an restaurant (Michelin 1-star) on Woodside Road but got an extensive wine/cocktail bar and some selection of beer.
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