Mantra Restaurant & Lounge
632 Emerson St, Palo Alto, CA 94301
(650) 322-3500Add Hours
Mantra Restaurant and Lounge
Cuisines: Fine Dining, American, Family Style, Middle Eastern, Bar & Grills
Price Range : Average
04/23/2011Provided by Citysearch -
My wife and I decided to celebrate, at Mantra, our 9th anniversary of the moment when we first met. I checked on the web and found multiple dinner hours listed on the web - Mantra's own website stated that they close at 11pm on Thursdays. To be safe, I called the restaurant and spoke with a polite lady who made reservations for us and told us that they'll stop letting people in after 9:30pm tonight so as long as we are in before that, they'll serve us and we'll not be rushed. We reach there at 9:25pm and called them from my car to get exact location (we were only 2 car distance away from the restaurant at that time) and the man that picked up the phone said that they are closed and could not let us in - doesn't matter if there was a lady who had made a reservation for us and had told us that if we are in by 9:30pm we are good.
This was our first time visiting this restaurant but I assure you that I am never going there and will strongly discourage my friends, family and colleagues from going there. There is a serious lack of professionalism in there.
We ended up going to Evvia in Palo Alto and what a wonderful reception we got from the host, the owner and the waiter and the food was just out of this world. They saved the evening for us.
01/08/2009Provided by Citysearch -
A girlfriend of mine came across Mantra as she passed by and since we were meeting for dinner suggested I meet her there. She had to wait about 20 minutes for me as I took a wrong turn so she sat at the bar having an appetiser and a drink holding a seat for me. Apparently a man approached her wanting the seat and she explained I was soon to appear so could not give it up. Once I arrived we had dinner and enjoyed the design of the restaurant and bar area, warm yet modern. I had Chicken Masala and she had a lamb curry both were good and our bartender/waiter provided good service. The place is not inexpensive however the food was well seasoned and they took into consideration our desire for spicy and delivered.
The down side came at the end when the owner told off my girlfriend for holding a place for me! Mind you he waited until we had paid the $88 bill -seems he was the man who had approached her earlier. We were both offended and will never go there again - there are far too many other places who appreciate our business!
10/18/2008Provided by Citysearch -
It was our reunion party all my friends has gather together but we were not getting any idea where to celebrate this occasion, one of mine friend suggested that there is a best place to celebrate. Before this I have never been to this place. I liked this place when I entered in this restaurant. What to about this restaurant everything, I mean everything was perfect. From Looks to Food everything was nice. Not getting words to describe.
09/26/2008Provided by Citysearch -
We decided to try out Mantra and must say that they have a great place. There was live music on that Saturday evening. However we were disappointed with the food. We had the chicken curry and arugula-cheese platter with naan and found it to be really ordinary. Specially for the price for each of them. It was almost $18-$19 per plate and didnt taste very good.The dessert we had was nice (cant remember the name now but it was a torte). I would skip this place the next time I am in University ave area..there are other good eateries!
04/19/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I went with a friend of mine for a casual dinner. The best samosas I have ever had. I focus on the little things like chutneys and raitas and Chef Sachin Chopra delivered what I have been looking for over 9 years in US now - both were the best by far.
Sure the items on the menu were a bit expensive (Entre: 18-50 I guess), but food quantities were quite generous. We knew we ordered a bit extra, but the left overs laster me for 2 full meals. Our total bill was $87 (plus tip) - not bad huh!!
I haven't tried their non-veg menu yet, but can't wait to go again.... at the very least once....
If you like authentic Indian food, made and served gourmet style and don't mind paying that little extra price, then you have to give this a try. Hope you like it just as much too.
12/17/2007Provided by Citysearch -
We had a large dinner party here. The food was good. Experience was great until the end when we got the bill.
We asked the lead waiter to split the check for more convenient payments for us. His attitude gave me the impression that we were giving him hassle. This, after $160 for gratitude?
We will not come back.
11/09/2007Provided by Citysearch -
Tasty mussels and great curry chicken, I would recommend this place if you have at least 1 hour and half. This being said the service was slow, at least on the server side, the water and dish guys were operating at great speeds.
The food was different, and quite good.
07/18/2007Provided by Citysearch -
Mantra was hugely dissappointing, it has so much potential, but the kitchen just doesn't execute. It is a beautiful restaurant with nice art on the walls and it has a fun hip vibe, and the menu sounds great, but it doesn't come together on the plate. I'm not against Asian fusion, I 've actually started becoming quite fond of it, but I think Mantra is an example of why some people are so against fusion. The paneer appetizer lacked flavor. The samosa's are way overpriced for being as simple as they are. The lamb chops were undercooked, we asked for med. rare and got very rare. The seabass itself was very nice, but the accompaniments lacked flavor. All this and you walk out with a big hole in your wallet.
01/06/2007Provided by Citysearch -
I was at Mantra a few nights ago with a friend, and had a terrific experience. The bar, called ""Daru Lounge"" may just be my favorite physical part of the restaurant. Grandly yet sleekly designed, with friendly, accommodating bartenders, it wouldn?t be out of place in a chic neighborhood in Manhattan. Of the drinks we tried, I particularly enjoyed the pomegranate ""pom-pom"" martini and the red mist martini, although my friend preferred the slightly harder ""Mantra"" special. We also tasted the chocolate martini, which was too sweet for my palate, but our bartender Jerry said it's a favorite with the ladies. The martinis were a little pricey at $10 a pop, but given the exquisite ambience of the bar, and the fresh naan and chutney we were given as a special treat from the owner, it was entirely reasonable.
Dinner was equally impressive. The dining area at Mantra is actually separated from the bar quite effectively, which makes for a more private dining experience. We shared the Paneer Cuboid as an appetizer, whose only fault may be its slightly diminutive size. But I was very pleasantly surprised by the portions of the entrees. I had the Kashmiri Sea Bass, which may just be the best, most tender, and agreeably spiced sea bass I've ever had. My friend ordered the Chicken ""Moilee"", which he seemed to enjoy. I had a taste of it and found it just a little bland though the meat itself was very tender and well-prepared. For dessert we split the chocolate ""bombe"" in passion fruit soup, which I think really showcases the chef's creative ability to infuse Indian flavors into an otherwise Western dish. It's a must-have.
All in all a delightful dining experience, with perhaps one of the most underappreciated upscale bars in Palo Alto. Mantra is not your typical Indian restaurant trying to attract attention by abusing the ""fusion"" label. I wouldn't compare it with other Indian restaurants in the area ? it really is fine dining experience with an Indian twist.