Downtown San Jose Restaurants
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American. With two exquisite granite-topped bars, upstairs and downstairs dining and a beautiful rooftop garden patio the Loft Bar and Bistro is Downtown San Jose's newest hot spot. The menu consists of unique and familiar dishes such as Panko Crusted Chicken Breast, Scampi Prawns and Braised Lamb Shanks. Enjoy free Live Jazz every Thursday night and call ahead to reserve a table.
Steak, American. Executive Chef Michael Mina describes as Arcadia's cuisine as "modern, innovative twists on classic American dishes." Some of these new takes include entrees such as Dry Aged Slow Roasted Prime Rib or Michael's signature entree the 'Lobster Pot Pie'. Arcadia is located in the San Jose Marriott hotel.
Mexican. Located near the corner of 1st and San Fernando in downtown San Jose, Mezcal Mexican Restaurant & Bar is a comfortable and stylish gathering spot for flavorful fare, potent margaritas and a great selection of its namesake libation. The menu of authentic Oaxacan regional cuisine emphasizes owner Do˝a Libo’s family recipes, expertly prepared by her son, Chef Octavio Gomez, and includes homemade moles, traditional chapulines, estofadas, grilled seafood and more. Mezcal also has an outside patio which can hold up to 120 people and is ideal for private events.
Mexican. Located in downtown San Jose, Chacho's Restaurant is the perfect location for Valley natives to get their mexican fix. The key to Chacho's popularity isn't their distinctive menu—which offers such classics as their famous name-brand tacos, Pozole or Ceviche—but rather their emphasis on social over stuffy. The restaurant boasts 'Social Bar' as a subtitle, and it shows: its full service bar features the famous Chavela's Choose, where patrons can choose from four different "must taste" Chavelas. When it comes to location and quality, there's a reason Chacho's is known for doing it best.
Californian. San Jose-based fans of the Los Gatos Brewing Company are sure to be thrilled with the new location in San Pedro Square, a destination that makes it easy to enjoy the upscale, creative California cuisine and well-crafted beers without a trip into perpetually cluttered downtown LG. Also, this location is in the heart of the considerably larger downtown San Jose, which means that gormandizers can get their fill before walking to the movies, the San Jose Repertory Theatre, or any of San Jose's popular bars and nightclubs.
American, Steak, Seafood. Located in the heart of Downtown San Jose, the stylish Grill on the Alley is a Rat Pack-inspired destination decked out with crisp white linens, espresso furnishings and a menu of classic cuisine designed to please. The service here is poised and white-jacket, and the list of over 500 wines is easily navigable with the help of the professional staff.
Once the site of Eulipia Restaurant, Cafe Stritch aims to ditch the white tablecloths in favor of live music, beer and cocktails, and inexpensive food. The bar keeps a handful of regional favorites such as Anchor Steam and Lagunitas on tap, plus enough varieties of the hard stuff to keep things interesting. On the menu, the cafe's mac n cheese has emerged as a favorite, and the vegan French dip sandwich really pulls it off, despite lacking the seemingly integral component of meat dipped in meat sauce.
World Cuisine. Downtown San Jose has a plethora of fabulous dining options and Fahrenheit is the only downtown restaurant that serves World Cuisine. From Grilled Cabernet Steaks to Garlic Noodle dishes, dinner reservations at Fahrenheit are truly a treat. Their relaxing atmosphere and tasty menu selections make it hard not to become a regular. Fahrenheit is perfect for banquets, meetings and large group events. Make reservations online or call for Fahrenheit's Private Event Coordinator.
In the heart of San Jose's downtown, one finds no shortage of good places to grab a bite or a much needed drink. Vyne Bistro has staked its claim as more than just a wine bar, thanks to its incredible menu that features options for lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch. The restaurant carries over 40 wines (all by the glass and half-glass), and its gorgeous interior (minimalist design, low lighting, cozy fireplace and crystal chandelier) makes it stand out amongst the many quality eateries that downtown San Jose has to offer.
Latin American. Az˙car delivers an eclectic mix of Latin cuisine from Central and South America, Cuba, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. If this isn’t enough, Az˙car provides European and Asian cuisine as well. This San Jose restaurant has an energetic and fun feel to it, with its brightly painted walls and Southern dÚcor. Whether looking for a refreshing Margarita, a spicy dinner or a lively getaway, Az˙car Latin Restaurant provides it all.
Contemporary American. Billy Berk’s provides a hearty menu of classic American cuisine that includes surf, turf and greens. Located in a picturesque brick and timber dining room, this San Jose restaurant boasts of its amiable and familiar atmosphere. Enjoy a drink during Happy Hour, catch the game on one of the Plasma TVs, or get cozy in a corner with a loved one. Billy Berk’s is a memorable dining experience, whatever the dining experience.
Italian. Il Fornaio is a classy Italian restaurant providing authentic cuisine. Whether craving some Risotto alla Milanese, Pasta Arrabbiata, fine rotisserie chicken or Filet Mignon, this San Jose restaurant provides it all and provides it well. Il Fornaio’s elegant interior, wide windows and fully stocked bar makes it a cozy venue for curious gourmands. They also provide private banquet rooms as well as catering services.
Italian. Located in the De Anza Hotel, La Pastaia provides contemporary Italian cuisine, and fine wine to accompany it. This San Jose restaurant’s art deco dÚcor and Mediterranean ambiance make it a delightful getaway for a romantic evening or an upscale dining event. Located just minutes away from the Center for Performing Arts, Convention Center and Tech Museum, La Pastaia is centrally located to provide patrons with entertainment resources. They are also available for weddings.
Seafood, Steak, American. McCormick & Schmick features over thirty species of fish from which to choose, as well as steak and other American classic cuisine. Dedicated to fresh ingredients, this San Jose restaurant prints out a new menu daily to reflect what is currently in season. Set in wood and rich colors, McCormick & Schmick provides a traditional and familiar setting to make customers feel welcome and at home. McCormick & Schmick also provides banquet accommodations.
Steak, Seafood. Morton’s The Steakhouse is a Diner’s Choice Winner for its surf and turf specialties. The menu includes contemporary American classics, USDA prime cuts, seafood and a vast selection of wine. Morton’s The Staekhouse is also known for its tableside menu presentations, in which servers display and describe each menu item by rolling it out in a cart to the table.
World Cuisine. This San Jose restaurant and nightclub offers not only delicious, worldly cuisine, but it also hosts events on a weekly basis. Motif’s modern dÚcor and personal ambiance make it an enticing venue with an eclectic array of dishes from which to choose.
Italian. Paolo’s serves authentic Italian cuisine and various regional dishes. With a menu that reflects seasonal ingredients, Paolo’s is constantly redefining good food. This San Jose restaurant’s elegant setting and amiable service make it a memorable venue, cherished by locals and visitors alike.
Seafood, American. Scott’s Seafood offers a variety of fish as well as USDA prime cuts, a full bar and classic American cuisine. Visitors can indulge in this San Jose restaurant’s inviting ambiance or enjoy views of the city from the sixth floor. Some delicacies include Sesame Crushed Ahi, Prime Dry Age New York Steak and Australian Lobster Tail.
German. Teske’s Germania Restaurant offers authentic and delicious German cuisine in a cozy, familiar setting. With live music and dances, this San Jose restaurant takes dining and turns it into an event. Delicacies include Hunter Steak, Breaded Veal Cutlets and Pork Medallions. Teske’s Germania is a delightful bit of Germany in the heart of San Jose.
71 Saint Peter71 N. San Pedro St., San Jose CA 95110; Tel. 408.971.8523
French, Italian. Cozy 71 St. Peter restaurant has a worn charm that draws you in right away. Steamed mussels and clams, roasted garlic and bacon vinaigrette, spinach salad with goat cheese and pears, and pan-seared foie gras all make great appetizers. Wild mushroom risotto, dry-spiced grilled lamb sirloin and roasted duck are all great, too.
Bella Mia Restaurant & Bar58 S. 1st St., San Jose CA 95113; Tel. 408.280.1993
Italian-American. One of downtown San Jose's most attractive eateries, Bella Mia serves regional dishes with flair. Located between Santa Clara Avenue and San Fernando Street on First Street, there is a convenient parking garage across the street from Bella Mia. Call fro reservations and mention SanJose.com.
Britannia Arms San Jose173 W Santa Clara St, San Jose, CA 95113; Tel. 408.278.1400
British. Britannia Arms, affectionately known as The Brit by faithful regulars, brings British pub flavor to downtown San Jose. Featuring 19 beers on tap, a full bar and a menu with pub grub classics from across the pond, there’s something for everyone here. A 3,000-square-foot outdoor patio provides a welcome opportunity for fresh air and several interior TVs offer an opportunity to catch up on sporting events from around the world. It's proximity to SAP Center make it the perfect spot to start the night before events and Sharks games.
French. Emile’s has been recognized as one of the leading French restaurants in the Bay Area. Located in San Jose’s SoFa district, Emile’s continues to stun visitors with its elegant flair, courteous service and traditional dishes. This San Jose restaurant also serves authentic Swiss and Italian cuisine, all made from the freshest, seasonal ingredients.
Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant33 E. San Fernando St., San Jose CA 95113; Tel. 408.294.6785
Brewery. With a wonderful garden patio, cozy dining room and beautiful banquet facilities, Gordon Biersch in San Jose is perfect for all occasions. Serving creative brew-house favorites, like Oven-Fired Pizza, Barbeque Burgers and Jambalaya Pasta, Gordon Biersch aims to satisfy the craving customer. Regularly hosting local bands on their patio stage, G.B. is a wonderful restaurant for live music and scrumptious eats.
House of Siam151 S. 2nd. St., San Jose CA 95113; Tel. 408.279.5668
Thai. This popular establishment runs the gamut of Thai treasures. Decorated with intricately carved wood and traditional Thai artifacts, the House of Siam is casual and elegant. The quiet atmosphere is a perfect setting to enjoy some of the tastiest Thai cuisine San Jose has to offer. From fried sweet potatoes to curry dishes, House of Siam is delicious for lunch and dinner.
La Pe˝ita Restaurant601 S. 1st St., San Jose CA; Tel. 408.295.0434
Mexican. La Pe˝ita restaurant serves not only good Mexican standards such as tacos, burritos and enchiladas, but also a number of first-rate specialties that make it a local favorite. The house specialty at La Pe˝ita is the wonderful soup, caldo de camaron, menudo, pozole, albondigas and the excellent cocido de res.
Los Cubanos Restaurant22 N. Almaden Ave., San Jose CA; Tel. 408.279.6037
Cuban. Looking for good Cuban food in the Bay Area? Los Cubanos restaurant is the place. Cuban food exudes an earthy, slow-cooked seduction: pork-accented black beans, sweet fried plantains, Spanish garbanzo beans and pigeon rice accompany entrees such as Lechon asado, roast pork that has a tangy, salty flavor, carne asada, and fricase de pollo. To complete your immersion in Cuban food at Los Cubanos, order a bottle of Hatuey beer.
American, Pan-Asian. Mosaic is located in the historic Hotel Montgomery and offers casual dining in a contemporary atmosphere. With its Asian inspired American cuisine, this San Jose restaurant lives up to its name. Mosaic’s romantic lighting, private seating and warm ambiance make it an intimate escape from the outside world.
Greek. A stylish spot for dining in downtown San Jose, Myth Taverna & Lounge boasts fashionable and seductive indoor and outdoor settings for everything from lunch and dinner to happy hour cocktails and late night revelry. The menu of modern Greek cuisine focuses on traditional ingredients and bold flavor combinations, and the bar offers an extensive selection of fine wines, signature cocktails and great beers. Live music brings happy hour to life each day while DJs spin house and techno beats late into the evenings.
Naglee Park Garage505 E. San Carlos St., San Jose CA 95112; Tel. 408.286.1100
Bistro. Open lunch and dinner, the Naglee Park Garage serves rotisserie meats, smoked seafood and accents each dish with seasonal vegetables. Their bistro style restaurant also prepares wonderful gourmet sandwiches and side dishes for quick bites. The Garage has a fantastic Sunday brunch that includes baked egg dishes and their signature French toast. Tell them that SanJose.com sent you. Enjoy!
Original Joe's301 S. 1st St., San Jose CA 95113; Tel. 408.582.7935
Italian. Known as a staple for San Jose residences this classy and classic rat-pack-style diner, featuring tuxedo-clad waiters is one of a kind. From the homemade chicken soup to the Veal Scaloppini, Sinatra would be right at home. O.J.'s is perfect for lunch and late night eats.
Paolo's Restaurant333 W. San Carlos St., San Jose CA 95110; Tel. 408.294.2558
Italian. Filled with artistic spins on California-meets-Italy, the kitchen turns out elegant entrees spearheaded by seasonal vegetables. The impeccable service compensates for the modest portions. Call for reservations and mention SanJose.com.
Poor House Bistro91 S. Autumn St., San Jose CA 95110; Tel. 408.292.5837.
New Orleans Style. Poor House Bistro bills itself as a "New Orleans joint" with a low-priced menu that includes po' boys, barbecued shrimp, gumbo, red beans and rice, burgers and Louisiana's Abita Ale on tap. The New Orleans combo includes a sampler of gumbo, red beans and rice and jambalaya. The file-seasoned gumbo of chicken and okra is hearty and good.
Sonoma Chicken Coop31 N. Market St., San Jose CA 95113; Tel. 408.287.4098
Californian. Ordering at the counter is the order of the day at the Chicken Coop, but if you don't mind carrying your own tray and fighting for a table you'll be rewarded with hearty spit-roasted chicken that requires at least six napkins. Pasta, Wine Country duck and hockey-themed desserts round out the menu. The Sonoma Chicken Coop is perfect for dining in or take-out.
Tengu Sushi111 Paseo De San Antonio, San Jose CA 95112; Tel. 408.275.9491
Sushi. Offering a wide variety of fantastic sushi, Tengu Sushi is the ideal spot for a quick sushi lunch. From California rolls to tasty Ahi and Yellow Tail sushi, every sushi lover is sure to be pleased. Only moments away from SJSU and several theatres, Tengu Sushi serves affordable sushi for any occasion.
Vegetarian House520 E. Santa Clara St., San Jose CA 95112; Tel. 408.292.3798
Vegetarian. This restaurant-cum-temple provides a slew of spiritual paraphernalia along with a menu offering vegetarian dishes from around the world. Located moments form San Jose's new city hall, the Vegetarian House is a great lunch idea for conscientious business people.
Vung Tau Restaurant535 E. Santa Clara St., San Jose CA 95112; Tel. Tel. 408.288.9055
Vietnamese. Recently remodeled in warm earthy tones with and wood and bamboo details, Vung Tau Restaurant celebrates its 20th year serving traditional Vietnamese food. Shrimp and pork spring rolls are a staple, as is green papaya salad, both of which Vung Tau restaurant does well. Grilled dishes and sweet and sour fish soup are great, too.
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