Woodside Bakery offers pastries, cakes, cookies and other baked goods that have kept customers coming back for more than three decades. The family-owned European bakery makes its baked goods from scratch every day — from delightfully buttery croissants and fresh fruit tarts to mile-high old-fashioned apple pies.
325 Sharon Park Drive, Menlo Park | (650) 854-6207 | woodsidebakery.com
For more than three decades, Buck's Restaurant has been a one-of-a-kind community institution drawing generations of children and families as well as Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, heads of state and famous actors. The dining room is a museum of the weird, and the menu features down-home meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner, including ranchero breakfast bowls, double smash burgers, fish tacos burgers, soups and dishes like the Big Buck with silver dollar pancakes, bacon and eggs.
What's new: The MacNiven brothers, who took over the restaurant from their parents in 2020, added an outdoor wood-fired pizza oven and outdoor dining. On some summer evenings, the restaurant hosts a bluegrass band.
3062 Woodside Road, Woodside | (650) 851-8010 | bucksrestaurant.com
This pastry shop, inspired by traditional Parisian cafes and unique French flavors, serves breakfast, lunch and aperitifs as well as pastries to go. Its traditional and creative cuisine is made from fresh, organic, local and seasonal produce.
816 Santa Cruz Ave., Menlo Park | (650) 644-8469 | mademoisellecolette.com/
Since opening in 1966, Dutch Goose has been the go-to place for Certified Angus Beef burgers, brews and pizza in a family-friendly atmosphere, where the staff "call you by name and not a number or a text." Dutch Goose is open for delivery, takeout and outdoor seating.
3567 Alameda de las Pulgas, Menlo Park | (650) 854-3245 | dutchgoose.net
With its outdoor terrace and late happy hour from 9 p.m. until closing, it's no surprise that Left Bank's happy hour is once again a Readers' Choice winner. In addition to an assortment of cocktails, this authentic brasserie serves a diverse selection of simple and fresh Southern French cuisine.
635 Santa Cruz Ave., Menlo Park | (650) 473-6543 | leftbank.com
ICE CREAM/FROZEN YOGURT
This shop is a classic and familiar spot to grab ice cream, milkshakes and other frozen treats. The shop also offers customized cakes, pre-packed and fresh-packed ice cream quarts and DIY sundae kits to take home.
863 Santa Cruz Ave., Menlo Park | (650) 323-9335 | baskinrobbins.com
INDEPENDENT COFFEE & TEA HOUSE
This relaxed neighborhood cafe offers breakfast items, pastries and outside seating in a soothing ambiance seven days a week. The shop also displays and sells works by local artists.
3130 Alpine Road, Portola Valley | (650) 854-8616
Amici's has been serving up pizza — along with pasta, soup and salad — to Menlo Park patrons for the past decade. The thin-crust New York-style pies are cooked in traditional brick ovens next to an open flame.
880 Santa Cruz Ave., Menlo Park | (650) 329-8888 | amicis.com
PLACE TO BUY MEAT
This high-end supermarket offers upscale food, wine and housewares, a floral department and an onsite cooking school. It also offers holiday meals that can be ordered in advance. The family-owned market has been in operation in the Bay Area for more than 90 years.
1010 University Drive, Menlo Park | (650) 324-7700 | draegers.com
Since 1998, shoppers have counted on Bianchini's Market for fresh local produce, gourmet cheeses and groceries from small producers whose items aren't found at chain stores. Readers praise the family-owned market for its meat counter and deli sandwiches, which can be ordered online and are ready for pickup on arrival. The market also offers delivery in as little as one hour.
3130 Alpine Road, Portola Valley | (650) 851-4391 | bianchinismarket.com
Chef Kwan's offers a full menu of authentic Mandarin and Szechwan-style Chinese dishes and lunch plates made to order. Among the restaurant's more popular dishes are General's Chicken, Chinese chicken salad and dry sautŽed string beans. The restaurant is open for takeout seven days a week.
630 Menlo Ave., Menlo Park | (650) 322-4631 | chefkwans.com