Food & Drink

Best Dessert: Susie Cakes.


Great burgers are the hallmark of Jeffrey's Hamburgers, says owner Serge Karanov. The burger meat is ground fresh every day, and nothing is prepackaged or frozen, he says. The restaurant also offers milkshakes and root beer floats, a spectrum of fry options (classic, garlic, sweet potato and chili cheese varieties), and for the health conscious, burger bowls or salads. The menu also offers a garden burger option for vegetarians. Another signature of the restaurant that keeps people coming back, Karanov says, is that there are no surprises. "We just stick with tried and true. They come in, they know what to expect, and that's what they get." Restaurant employees pay attention to detail and are quick to respond to customers' concerns, he says. Open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. every day.
888 El Camino Real, Menlo Park | (650) 322-1959 |


Chef Kwan's continues to be our readers' favorite takeout restaurant. The restaurant prides itself on serving its customers in a friendly, comfortable environment with authentic Chinese food. Owner Jason Kwan says the most frequently ordered meals are the Chinese chicken salad, the pot stickers and the wonton soup. Kwan took over the takeout establishment from the owners of Su Hong To-Go, and the menu largely reflects that of the earlier restaurant. Chef Kwan's plans to add more dishes to its menu in the coming year, according to Kwan.
630 Menlo Ave., Menlo Park | (650) 322-4631 |


Menlo Park'sApplewood Pizza has been voted favorite pizza place again. Applewood offers a selection of signature pizzas along with customizable pies with a wide range of toppings. In addition, the restaurant also has pastas, salads, soups, seafood, and Hungarian dishes on its menu. Applewood's most popular pizza is the Menlo Combo, which is a classic meat-lovers pie. Its most-ordered pasta is the linguine gamberoni, which is made of jumbo prawns, cilantro, marinara and spices. Applewood Pizza prides itself on being a fun pizza parlor for the family in a comfortable environment, according to its website.
1001 El Camino Real, Menlo Park | (650) 324-3486 |


Susie Cakes, on Santa Cruz Avenue in downtown Menlo Park, offers a clean, pastel interior and some seriously fluffy buttercream frosting. The company now has seven locations in Northern California, and an additional 15 in Southern California and Texas. Among the layer-cake offerings are a six-layer chocolate cake, plus lemon, vanilla, coconut, carrot, marble and buttercream cakes, in addition to a spectrum of cookies and dessert bars. The delicacies baked here stand out for their simple ingredients and hand-designed cake decorations, according to the business' menu. Plus, they use recycled paper products, boxes and bags, they say. The dessert shop also offers wedding cakes and local deliveries. Open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday, closed Sundays.
642 Santa Cruz Ave., Menlo Park | (650) 324-2252 |

Best Bakery: Woodside Bakery.


Woodside Bakery in Menlo Park, for the second consecutive year, won the award for best bakery. "We're thrilled and honored that people still appreciate our quality and our products," says co-owner Jan Sweyer. "After all these years, it's wonderful. Customers love that we maintain our old-fashioned bakery style, including offering Danish, Napoleons, cannoli and custom cakes," she says. New this year: the floor, the counters, bench seating and the colors, which are now similar to when the bakery was in Woodside. "It looks like the old bakery but with upgraded display cases," Sweyer says.
325 Sharon Park Drive, Menlo Park | (650) 854-6207 |


Baskin-Robbins has been named by our readers once again the place to go for the best ice cream and frozen yogurt. In addition to its classic ice cream flavors like chocolate chip cookie dough and gold medal ribbon, Baskin-Robbins also has seasonal flavors. This summer, some of the seasonal ice cream flavors include watermelon splash and caramel macchiato. In addition, Baskin-Robbins also offers sundaes, warm desserts, beverages, and parfaits. Cakes are customizable for birthdays and special events, or come pre-designed. Baskin-Robbins continues to be the world's largest chain of ice cream specialty shops, with more than 7,800 locations in 50 countries worldwide, according to its website.
863 Santa Cruz Ave., Menlo Park | (650) 323-9335 |