Be aware that the chef changed last fall (2008). I plan to try the new one soon, but reviews of the food from the past are no longer relevant. The three star rating is only because this website REQUIRES a star rating before it will post.
Hard to rate the restaurant on food or service as I was not given the opportunity to dine. I made a reservation several weeks ago for 12 people. Three days before the reservation the manager called to tell me that they had over booked the restaurant. They told me that I could still come, either an hour earlier or an hour later and would also have to split the table into two. This is not the type of service or attention to detail that I would expect from a restaurant with reviews such as this. Very upsetting!
The drinks are two ounces and I was charged $9.00 for the drink and then told the drink was four ounces. I made the bartender measure the drink and it was, in fact, two ounces. I was still charged 9.00 for a two ounce drink. I won't be back.
Viognier is located on top Draegers in downtown San Mateo.
The atmosphere is nice with lighting on the dark side, an exposed wood burning oven, ample space between tables and booths as well as nice views of downtown San Mateo.
The dinner menu offers both a three and five course chef selection as well as a diverse a la carte offering with dishes for every taste.
The food was excellent. We started with the corn soup and heirloom tomato / mozzerala salad. Both were perfectly presented and of very high quality. We each ordered the filet for the main course, which was a very tender piece of meat, cooked to order and surrounded by roasted pearl onions.
The service was fantastic but not overbearing.
The one downside is that Viognier is a bit on the pricey side. Not that it is wasnt worth the price we paid, but simply makes it difficult to a staple type of place that one visits repeatedly.
Reserve this place for that special occassion. The food is tasty and the service attentive, but the portions (really, delightful tasting) are minuscule. So we kept ordering - this is more like a tapas. The place has a funny way of distributing bread - they show you a basket of offerings and you pick which you want, not unlike choosing your lobster. And speaking of lobster it was hard to find vegetarian items. So what's so good? The ambiance, the service, some originality in the food and quite tasty. We didn't sample the wine, but it looks like the kind of place that has a good cellar, esp considering the name of the place. :) But it is very pricey for what portions you get.
I had my graduation dinner here in 2000. It really impressed my friends from out of town. I have also tried their brunch. They have a good brunch menu as well. They have a cooking class during the weekdays.
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