Madera of Menlo Park
Tried Madera for dinner last night for the first time. Mixed results:
Bustling, lively space with humming bar and lounge area.
Impressive art collection throughout the Rosewood Hotel location
Delicious mescal based cocktail.
Incredibly impressive wine list with a friendly, helpful Sommelier
Cavernous space lacked intimacy of a more authentic Arts & Craft style. No comparison to the Inn at Torrey Pines in creating a warm environment
Service was of a robotic/corporate style. Server was efficient but remote.
Entrees (no apps ordered) were delivered within 7 minutes of ordering. Sometimes service can be too fast, making us suspicious that the food may have bee a bit pre-cooked prior to being finished.
The eggplant vegetarian entree was a beautiful plate but was essentially bland. Likewise, the veal special was an impressive and precisely frenched chop. But, flavors were modest.
In sum, Madera came across as a sharp, efficiently managed and shiny corporate restaurant that you might find in Orange County (eg, St Regis in Dana Point or The Pelican Hill resort near Newport Beach). A good solid meal with outstanding wine can be had. But, I'd look elsewhere for an intimate and special dining experience.
2825 Sand Hill Road, Menlo Park, CA 94025