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“Strange”
Review of MacArthur Park

MacArthur Park
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Ranked #92 of 388 Restaurants in Palo Alto
Price range: US$15 - US$40
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Child-friendly
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: El Camino; adjacent to Palo Alto Train Station
Transit: Located right next to the Cal Train Station and Bus Stop.
Description: WELCOME TO MACARTHUR PARK - An American BBQ Experience. Ribs and a whole lot more. MacArthur Park Restaurant, named after a Jimmy Webb song, has been a neighborhood favorite in Palo Alto since it first opened in 1981. Today's MacArthur Park has been reclaimed by its original owner and its original chef with a revitalized menu and a recent renovation of this historical landmark Julia Morgan building. Historical landmarks are permanent sign posts to a culture's community. This landmark has served the community in many incarnations: as a 1918 Hostess House for visiting families of World War I servicemen, as a community center, a veterans hall and now, once again, as the new MacArthur Park. Home is a place you love, and MacArthur Park is pleased to welcome the community back home with new dishes, old favorites and the warmest of hospitality.
Reviewed 10 October 2018

We had planned on another place but it was closed for a private party so we ended up here. The place's decor was more of an upscale place but we were going for BBQ so that made it a little strange.

The service was OK and the selection fine. The food quality was just acceptable and barely that. Even our server admitted she had had better food. I would not really go back unless it was all that was available.

Date of visit: October 2018
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Thank Ken R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ChuckF299, Owner at MacArthur Park, responded to this reviewResponded 11 October 2018

Ken, I'm glad you decided to join us after your plans changed, though I wish your experience were better. We do pride ourselves in the quality of our food, and I am disappointed it was deemed only fair. Can you share with me when and what you ordered? I can be reached at frankattpg@aol.com. Thank you for taking the time to share your experience.

Sincerely,
Chuck Frank, Co-Owner

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2 - 6 of 127 reviews

Reviewed 8 September 2018

We enjoyed dinner at Mcarthur Park in Palo Alto for our anniversary. We used to go to the restaurant in the financial district of SF, but it is gone. Food was good, nothing incredibly special or unique. Restaurant is nice, relaxed and has excellent service. Their signature dish, ribs was "OK". It's not like Texas or Kansas BBQ --- meat was not "fall off the bone", but flavor was good.

Date of visit: September 2018
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Thank isdn4u
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ChuckF299, Owner at MacArthur Park, responded to this reviewResponded 13 September 2018

Thanks for choosing to celebrate your anniversary with us. I do wish the ribs had blown you away, but I appreciate you taking the time to share your feedback. We look forward to welcoming you back and getting everything just right.

Until next time,
Chuck Frank, Co-Owner

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Reviewed 30 August 2018

Dinner for 3 for out-of-town visitor, attending Stanford symposium, and so glad we selected MacArthur Park restaurant – the entire dining experience was terrific. It is a wonderful restaurant, unique historic Julia Morgan setting, one of the best restaurants in Palo Alto. Highly recommended.
We started with the Tower of Onion Rings, one of the restaurant’s signature dishes; huge portion, very tasty, a fun dish for sharing. Our entrée’s were the Petaluma chicken, the 12 oz Flatiron steak, and the special of the night, pan-seared sea bass . All of the entrées were perfect, very well prepared, and delicious. The portions were large (the 12 oz Flatiron steak was enormous and outstanding). The baked bread for the table was wonderful. We didn’t have room for dessert, but the choices looked delicious. Prices were extremely reasonable ($25 - $29 for our entrées), especially compared to other Palo Alto restaurants, an extraordinary value for this level of service and quality of food. The servers were great, very pleasant, friendly, knowledgeable, and the service was relaxed.
The dining room is wonderful, very unique, one-of-a kind, and historic, as the building was designed and built in 1918 by renowned architect Julia Morgan (Hearst Castle, among many others). Quiet, elegant, white table cloths, plenty of space between tables, fireplace, outdoor patio dining, simply wonderful!
Location is great, at the base of University Avenue, just behind the Palo Alto CalTrain station (two of us took Caltrain to the dinner), at the entrance to Stanford University. Overall impression: One of the best and most enjoyable dinners we have had in several years, certainly the best we have ever had in Palo Alto, far superior to other restaurants at which we have dined in Palo Alto, a real gem. Overall, highest recommendations, wonderful restaurant, great for Palo Alto dining and terrific for special and/or out-of-town guests, special occasions, dates, Stanford occasions, great choice for before or after Stanford Movie Theater, foodies, or for simply a great dining experience and terrific food, in a truly unique, beautiful, historic one-of-a kind setting in Palo Alto. This is now our “go-to” restaurant in Palo Alto; we plan to return soon!

Date of visit: August 2018
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1  Thank Richard S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chuck F, Owner at MacArthur Park, responded to this reviewResponded 4 September 2018

Richard, thank you for such a fantastic review! I'm thrilled to hear you enjoyed your meal after the symposium. From the onion rings to the sea bass, it sounds like you got a great taste for what we're all about, and I'm happy you were impressed. Thanks again for the excellent review, and come see us again soon!

All the best,
Chuck Frank, Co-Owner

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Reviewed 6 August 2018 via mobile

Needed a restaurant during a recent stay at Stanford Park. This is within easy walking distance through a nice park. Nicely appointed. Fits in well with local vibe. Service was attentive and pleasant. Prices were reasonable for the location, though may seem expensive if you’re from out of town. Food is varied and well prepared. Just what my party wanted tonight

Date of visit: August 2018
Thank MandevilleDad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chuck F, Owner at MacArthur Park, responded to this reviewResponded 8 August 2018

I'm glad you found us! It's great to hear you enjoyed a convenient meal while you were visiting Stanford Park. I'm happy everyone enjoyed everything, and I hope we'll get the chance to welcome you back again sometime!

Until then,
Chuck Frank, Co-Owner

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Reviewed 22 April 2018

We had not been back here for 3 years or so. It does not disappoint. White table clothes and attentive service and rally very good, not gourmet, fare. Comfort food of higher end restaurants. The onion strings are to die for as an appetizer. Enough for 4-6. The Cobb Salad is huge and the burger good. Two of our party had shrimp with various avocado and loved it.

Date of visit: April 2018
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Thank Douglas T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chuck F, Owner at MacArthur Park, responded to this reviewResponded 23 April 2018

Douglas, thanks so much for coming back to see us! We're glad you enjoyed everything from the service to the onion strings and your main course. Looking forward to welcoming you back again soon for more!

Until then,
Chuck Frank, Co-Owner

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