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La Strada Ristorante Italiano - 20 Reviews - 335 University Ave, Palo Alto, CA 94301, Palo Alto, CA - Restaurants Reviews - Phone (650) 324-8300

La Strada Ristorante Italiano

335 University Ave, Palo Alto, CA 94301
Palo Alto, CA 94301
(650) 324-8300
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Four of us had an early dinner on New Year's Eve and thoroughly enjoyed it. The food was excellent, the service attentive, and the atmosphere festive. We appreciated the fact that...


Small portions of expensive, average food. Pretentious. Nice atmosphere, though. Pros: atmosphere Cons: price

BAD FOOD !!! 8/8/2009

I don't understand why this place is so popular. The food is pretty gross and the flavors mixed together are all wrong. In addition, four of us got sick, fish was spoiled. more

Good location, so-so food, bad attitude 6/21/2009

Many restaurants in Palo Alto have been trimming back their dinner hours of late, due to the economy. Once I asked to be seated at about 9:40pm, and the staff said they can only seat me inside (which I refused, since I prefer the sidewalk). Another day, I was asking the hostess for more information when an unkempt, pudgy old man in shorts with wispy white hair and a strong accent approached (turned out to be the owner; I believe the same management also owns the new next-door Joya restaurant --- see my separate review for that). He inquired as to my business, so I explained the matter and asked what the precise hours were. He said they serve dinner till 10pm, outside as well. When I began to politely explain the discrepancy he rudely interrupted me and said I ""complain too much"" and that he wasn't interested. I eat out a lot --- at both upscale establishments (which this one pretends to be) and more humble eateries -- and am on a friendly basis with many restaurant owners on that street. I was totally taken aback by this man's rudeness and lack of interest in my efforts at clarification. I will avoid this restaurant, and advise all my friends and colleagues to do the same! the mediocre food is not worth being subjected to such an attitude. See also my review of the next door, new ""Joya"" restaurant, which (one source informs me) is owned by the same people. Pros: location Cons: arrogant attitude toward customers more

I Don't feel like trying it again. 2/5/2008

Maybe it's just my luck - but I never had such a bad dish in such a nice place. \r \r The mozzarella with grilled tomatoes and eggplants appetizer was very good and balanced. Obviously prepared before (as it was really cold). I would expect the main course to be at least as good as the appetizer, but the pork shank just made me nauseous. And it's a second-expensive dish in the restaurant! I have almost no cooking experience, but I make way tastier meals (from raw ingredients, of course) in my slow cooker. And I'm no newbie to Italian cuisine, and that was just not it. \r Pros: very italian atmosphere - pretty packed and noisy (in a good way) Cons: apparently you have to know what to order and what not to more

Amateur Time 1/25/2008

Strange place. I read several good notices and a strong Zagat rating so I thought it would be a good choice for a Christmas Gift Certificate for my brother in San Jose (I live in New York). I called in mid December and asked for a $100 certificate to be mailed. ""No problem"". She took all necessary info. After a week I realized I hadn't been billed and called again. ""No record of that conversation. Let's do it again"". Gee, Ok. Dec. 20 I'm stll not billed and called again. I speak with a manager who's affable enough. Starts the transactioin all over again, apologizes and guarantees it will be sent out the next morning. Christmas comes and goes. Nothing. I call a fourth time, speak with the same manager who once again apologizes and insists on sending it for free. Not necessary I say. He insists. OK. ""Just pleeease see that it he gets it . . . You see where this is going. My brother never got it. I, instead, had one sent out (after Christmas of course) from Taylor's Refresher in SF. Very professional place. A REAL restaurant that understands services. I've been in the business for 25 years between NY and LA and I recognize a problem. Notice how many people complain about the service here? Like the old saying, a fish rots from its head. Clearly management is AWOL at this restaurant and the proof is in the pudding. Such a shame. Pros: Not sure Cons: Incompetence more

Hard to remember why I hadn't been here more 7/26/2007

Tom Provided by Partner
I came to La Strada for the fourth time in the last few years and while my past memories weren't great, everything we tried today was, so I'm going... more

Hard to remember why I hadn't been here more 7/26/2007

Tom Provided by Partner
I came to La Strada for the fourth time in the last few years and while my past memories weren't great, everything we tried today was, so I'm going... more

I thought my food had committed a crime 9/16/2006

Ok, so I have read the reviews and I though that it was worth trying for myself. I got a great review from someone I know but I think it was outdated. I tried the fried seafood appetizer, it was dried out and bland and the salad was tasty at first but before I finished it had already wilted. The wine is seriously overpriced and it's just aiight. Pros: Great location Cons: Overpriced more

Authentic Italian food made w/ local ingredients 5/28/2006

We have been here a number of times and continue to go back. Really enjoyed the oxtail risotto. The ravioli made with their homemade sausage is a bit oily. Wine list has its highs and lows. Great choice for appetizers include the affettati della casa and the baccala at forno. Mediterranean Whole Fish Prepared in One of Three Way is a tasty seafood alternative. Pros: outdoor seating, homemade pasta more

overpriced 2/5/2006

Small portions of expensive, average food. Pretentious. Nice atmosphere, though. Pros: atmosphere Cons: price more

Excellent Food, Service and Ambiance 1/2/2006

Four of us had an early dinner on New Year's Eve and thoroughly enjoyed it. The food was excellent, the service attentive, and the atmosphere festive. We appreciated the fact that we could order from the regular menu, even on New Year's Eve. They also had a special 7-course meal and we could order any of those selections a la carte. Our only minor complaint was that the wines by the glass are pricey. more

Greatly overprices 11/18/2005

Went with a group a of people to have vin santo with biscotti at their terrace. We were ripped off 16 dollars per person for a ridiculously small glass, as small I have ever seen for wine, --which wasn't even poored before us, so for all we know it could be tetrabrik wine. Very poor service. Outrageous prices. Pros: Ambiance Cons: Overpriced, Service more

Wonderful Food with so-so service... 11/5/2005

The ambiance was low lit, relaxing and comfortable while the food was excellent! My husband had pasta with Colorado lamb and I enjoyed an exquisite dish of house made, asparagus-filled raviolis topped with fresh cherry tomatoes and olive oil. The bread was served fresh and warm, and the olive oil/balsamic vinegar was some of the best I've had. For dessert, we split a chocolate soufflé topped with coffee sauce and vanilla gelato on the side (which was perfect because I love chocolate and my husband loves vanilla) and a cappuccino. Even the prices were reasonable! The only downside was that we were there at a time where the shifts were changing and the service took a bit longer than we would have liked, but they were very kind and helpful. Overall, it was a good experience. Would definitely go there again! Pros: Food, Prices, Location Cons: Service a little slow more

Disgusting 10/29/2005

The food was disgusting! We both left our dishes unfinished: ""Spagetti with Clams"" and ""Wild Boar Pasta"" The Clams' entree smelt fishy and was very oily. The Boar entree, special menu item, lack an extra special ingridient. The overall bill $46.00. Please decide if this is worth your next trip to La Strada. Pros: location Cons: bad food more

Incredible Food, Fantastic Service 10/15/2005

Everything from our seat on the front patio to the food to the service was wonderful! The impressive wine list allowed us to pick a perfect bottle that complimented the homemade pastas. I would highly recommend this place to any critic with a discerning palette. Pros: Food, Wine , Atmosphere Cons: A bit pricey more

Dinner for 2 in Stanford? 7/24/2005

I was looking for a place that was romantic, not overpriced, and not so pretentious my girlfriend and I would feel out of place. We found just that at La Strada and much more. The food was spectacular (I had pizza and she had pasta, both of us were completely satisfied). The service was outstanding, my glass was never empty and all of my questions were answered by a very well informed waiter. If you are looking for a good date location under forty dollars you will be hard pressed to find a better venue than La Strada in the Stanford area. I highly recommend La Strada for groups of four or less that do not include children. Experience La Strada for yourself and see why I was compelled to write a review. Pros: Great food, Wines, Service Cons: Crowded, Minute variety, Clamor more

great service, so-so food 5/20/2005

The waiter was fantastic, one of the few times I actually remember the service at a small restaurant. The place is packed on evenings with hip wine sipping crowd. nice place for a casual date. The food is edible biut nothing to write home about. more

Bland food & below average service 4/16/2005

The menu selection was unique, but the taste of the food was below average. The menu had oxtail risotto besides the normal seafood rissoto, and had wide homemade noodles besides the normal spaghetti & linguine fare. Unfortunately the food tasted bland and boring. The sausage & brown butter ravioli entree was tiny in size and tasted like an oily version of Chinese dumplings. The oxtail in the oxtail rissoto was delicious, but the rissoto it sat on was tasteless & boring. La Strada seemed to have put a lot of effort into developing good LOOKING unique dishes, but needs to put in extra effort in taste. Service was slow. When we sat down, we had to wait a short while before getting menus, another while before getting water or drinks, and waited even longer each time we needed anything else: placing our order, getting bread refills, and getting our check. Pros: Unusual menu items Cons: Bland food, Slow service more

Service has to get better 4/8/2005

Service just killed this experience for me. We were sat at a terrible table and had to wait for a server just to come over and say hi. Order stuff to share and never get extra plates. Then they cleared the flatware and never replaced for the main course, amateurs. Why is it that all authentice Italian chefs are the ones that make the same boring dishes that were around from the 70s. Try something new in your repitiore! Pros: Street scene, Fancy meat slicer Cons: service, food more

Come if you have the time 2/9/2005

I went here on Saturday for a Birthday dinner. Party of 2. We waited forever once we got seated. They placed us between two other tables where we felt like we had to scream to be heard. Not private at all. The service was horrible. Once we were seated nothing was brought to us. No Water. No Bread. Not even a greeting. After flagging down a served we order drinks. After 10 mins or so we got our drinks but they just dropped them off and did not take our orders. We then had to flag down a waiter to order out meal. At the end of the night we still didnt know who our server was. The food was average. They only good thing to say was their chocolate souffle was good. Do not go, there are better places. Pros: chocolate souffle Cons: Service, service more

Just Wonderful 10/11/2004

Perhaps it was my company or the air that night but I simply loved my expreience at La Strada. The staff was amazing and the food was impecable. Thank you from a picky New Yorker Pros: Friendly Staff, Amazing Food more
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Menu for La Strada Ristorante Italiano

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  • Classic Italian fare made with fresh, seasonal ingredients; space features heated patio and a private dining room.

  • 7/7/2005 Provided by Citysearch

Additional information

  • Hours:

    Fri-Sat: 11:30am-11pm, Sun-Thu: 11:30am-10pm
  • Payments:

    American Express, Discover, Master Card, Visa
  • Neighborhoods:

    University South