SAN MATEO BEST FOOD

Voted best small town in the United States for food in the 2013 Rand McNally Best of the Road Competition.
San Mateo is a creativity hub. It’s the birthplace of YouTube, AdMob, Epocrates, the high-tech Draper University
and the Draper Collective, a pop-up retail space that nurtures entrepreneurs.

Learn more

FEATURED RESTAURANTS

Founded in 1894 as an agricultural community,
you could say that food is embedded in San Mateo’s DNA.

219
Restaurants & Bars
16
Desserts
28
Coffee & Tea
23
Specialty Foods

Locally Sourced Options

There’s a big push for sustainability these days and the feeling in San Mateo is let’s do it sooner rather than later. Places like 31st Union make their locally sourced items a centerpiece of the entire restaurant. Even smaller shops and cafes here pride themselves on finding local ingredients for the food they serve.

Imagination

We have all the things you would expect in a great culinary town and many that will surprise you. There’s a distinctly San Mateo bravado you can see at restaurants like Attic, where the philosophy seems to be any world cuisine can be made to play well with others. It’s a philosophy running deep in the food scene here.

Variety

“We have it all” has a tendency to be thrown around with abandon. We’re not going to say that. We are going to say “We have a lot!” All the biggies are here, Mexican, Chinese, Sushi, Northern and Southern Italian, but we also have Hawaiian, Cajun, Moroccan, local tofu, and markets with fresh Portuguese meats flown in weekly.

Locally Owned Restaurants

Tradition is another important element to the chefs of San Mateo. We love that local concepts like Pacific Catch and Curry Up Now have a home in town. San Mateo, after all, is home to innovation. We are all about the start-up. The diversity of our residents makes for a world community of new cuisine.

Attitude

We’re genuinely happy to have you here. We love our town and its food scene and are excited to share it. When someone happens upon San Mateo we love to wow them, and when Bay Area residents proactively venture in we’re more than happy to exceed their expectations.

Proximity

We are quite literally in the middle of everything in the Bay Area: East Bay, San Francisco, Silicon Valley, even the airports. We’re close enough to them all to be a short drive and far enough away that visitors still feel like they’re in a quaint town once they arrive.

"THREE is a 10. Their yam fritters are totally sublime and service is great.
Very friendly and fast."

− Collin at THREE RESTAURANT AND BAR

"Delicious fresh, local ingredients.
The fish and chips is great comfort food. "

− Rebecca at 31ST UNION

"The flavors of the Mediterranean in San Mateo. Everything is fresh and healthy.
Try the roasted beet salad and the baklava. "

− Denise at HUMMUS MEDITERRANEAN KITCHEN

"Great location - San Mateo's Central Park is across the street.
The CPB Skirt Steak is the best. Hits the spot every time!"

− Michelle at CENTRAL PARK BISTRO

San Mateo Restaurant Tour 2014

San Mateo was named the Best Small Town for Food by Rand McNally in the 2013 Best of the Road Competition. A group of food and travel writers descended upon Downtown San Mateo to capture San Mateo’s food and dining scene and highlight the many flavors of our culinary community.

Visit our video gallery

Contact us to learn more about San Mateo