632 Emerson St, Palo Alto, CA | Directions 9430137.443487 -122.161081
Tues-Wed: 11:30am-2:30pm, 5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Thurs: 11:30 am-2:30pm, 5:00pm-11:00 pm
5:30pm - 11:00pm
Neighborhoods: University South
Beautiful restaurant with great California/Indian Fusion food – My wife and I had dinner at Mantra last week. We were impressed by Mantra's warm modern decor, vibrant colors and contemporary art work. Mantra has a very long very urban, New York style bar and lounge. We were greeeted warmly and seated near the fountain. The server recommened Sea Bass and Mixed Grill as their signature dishes. We had an interesting Vegetarian Starter called Paneer Cuboid that came with a shot of delicious cold soup. The Sea Bass was the best I had. We had their one of their Burgundy Pinots by the glass. The service was prompt. Will highly recommend this new addition to Palo Alto.
Poor service - don't come here – My husband and I went there for dinner tonight. I ordered the lamb chops and he ordered the steak. We were seat at 7 pm. They totally forgot our orders. When we follow-up on our orders, neither the maitre-d nor our waitress apologized. I got my order at 8:05 pm and my husband got his around 8:15 pm. In addition, my husband ordered medium done for his steak and it came out rare. When we brought that to our waitress' attention, she stood there for 30 seconds before offering to have it cooked more. Again, she didn't apologize for not getting the order right. Basically, she took his plate in and had the kitchen cook the section of the steak that was rare. When his plate of steak came back out, it was half cold and half warm. For what this restaurant charged us, the service was quite poor. The portion size was also small. I'm giving Mantra a 1/10 because my lamb chops tasted good but that's all it had going for it.
Incredible wine and food at great prices and wonderful service! – Learned about this restaurant from Michael Bauer's blog. Incredibly talented chef trained in New York at some hot restaurants. We got fresh California cuisine with Indian influenced spices and flavors. Tasty scallop app, lamb kebobs, and watermelo salad to start. Then the sea bass, mixed grill with lamb, shrimp, chicken, and a vegetarian timbale. The wine list was really well selected and priced low! How refreshing. They have 18 wines by the glass. I wish everyone had this friendly of service. We loved our waitress>nice and well trained. The lounge is a cool place to meet up before dinner. They have awesome cocktails and played Bollywood movies on their plasma>a weird but cool touch.
Nice but not special – I ate there on 8/20/06.
The waiter told me he had been there only one week & that they were on their third chef in the last few months. None of the dishes I read about on this website were on the menu. Our meal was good but it was not special.
Sophisticated Californian cuisine offers fine dining with an Indian accent. – In Short
Innovative Californian cuisine with a smattering of Indian flavors provides options in this fine-dining establishment. Executive Chef Sachin Chopra's training in both America and India is evident in eclectic dishes such as the Shrimp "Vinhaleaux" appetizer and the entrée of Prosciutto Wrapped Swordfish with tomato infused oil and sautéed artichokes. Separate tasting menus cater to meat eaters and vegetarians; wine pairings are available at an additional cost.
A plus experience – We haven't had service this good in years and years. Very accomodating on the phone with
our size party. Nice table up front by the large window and neat fountain. Actually sat on time for once even though it was packed. Impressed with the nice atmosphere even though they have a rather large lounge and bar. The way they separated the dining room is cool. Just overall a good night out. We came for the Indian fusion and were not let down. The way they throw in a spice here and there is interesting. Wine list is matched well to the food. Lots of crisp whites and spicy reds. Very, very good prices. You would never see these low prices in SF or elsewhere. Get the halibut if they have it, the tuna, the lamb (anything lamb). They just put out a new menu which is really reasonable. Our new favorite spot on the Peninsula.
Awesome food and atmosphere – My friends dragged me here and now I will go back on my own. The food is a great
mix of Cal-french and Indian. All fresh, all wonderful. Definately have the chicken tikka? and the short ribs which were the best my boyfriend has ever had. As a wine snob I loved the
wine list--far cheaper than most Paly restaurants for the same wine! The bar is cool and dark and they play hip vibe music. I had the "Mantra" cocktail to start--with fresh cucumber juice no less. All in all a great place to go where you can dress up without getting too fancy and enjoy a quiet sidestreet in Palo Alto. Start in the bar if you meet up early.
Misleading menu descriptions for tiny portions. – Veal tenderloin w/potato gratinee means 1 thin slice of potato under the filet. The waiter quickly brought salt when it was requested, but it should be on the tables. 3 people, 3 courses each - good but not sufficiently spectacular to warant the prices. At $7 each, I want my appetizer scallops to be sand-free. Diced artichokes in sauce w/scallops wasn't mentioned on menu, & artichokes are notoriously hard on any wine. Meant we couldn't finish up the champagne with the appetizers.
Mantra is cool, hip and ecclectic – As you walk in you are vowed by the beautiful Newyork Look hip bar & beautiful Daru lounge. After having couple of drinks at the bar we were escorted to our table that was located right next to a beautiful fountain. What followed was some the most interesting and tasty food that I have ever had. They serve california/French food with Indian influence. Every thing that we had was beautifully presented. I found out that the chef used to work at French Laundry and Ritz Carlton Hotels. No wonder the food tasted so good. I can't wait to go back . And by the way they have a great wine list.
Well-executed Californian with Indian flavor – Unlike so many PA restaurants, the food is just as good as the decor. It's a stylish restaurant more like you'd expect in SF, perfect for nice dates or special occasions.
We had the foie gras appetizer (seared perfectly), veal tenderloin (best I've ever had) and sea bass (even better than the tenderloin). Decor and ambiance very beautiful (the pics don't do it justice), and the service was flawless as well. Plenty of menu choices to suit those who aren't big Indian cuisine fans. Highly recommended for foodies.
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