I remember Scott's as a Bay Area institution as I grew up there and had a fantastic meal back when I was in high school for prom in their Oakland location. Many years later, when I was looking for a dinner location on Valentine's Day, I figure that I might have a similar experience in the Palo Alto location. I was very wrong on that count.
I recognize that a restaurant is going to be busy on Valentine's Day; however, it was a bad omen when I entered the restaurant and was greeted by a cluster of folks standing at the entrance waiting to be seated and the hostesses looked like they didn't want to be there. One guest walked up at 7:30 asking when they may be seated for a 7pm reservation as I was checking in for my 7:30 reservation. I saw the hostesses seating multiple other tables that came in after we came in and learned at 7:50 that they completely forgot that we had checked in.
This neglect continued when we were finally seated where our server brought us the wrong wine. Our appetizers of the seared tuna and bowl of clam chowder were fine, but the server had to ask us what we had ordered for dinner again after serving our appetizers. After waiting for another 45 minutes, we asked him where our main courses were and it took another 20 minutes for our dinner to come. I enjoyed the salmon that I ordered, but the lack of service made dinner rather awkward. When we asked for the dessert menu after our meal, I saw our server taking multiple orders and delivering drinks to another table and it took another 20 minutes for us to get our dessert menu. At that point, we ended up paying and leaving and getting dessert elsewhere.
A large amount of butter and cream were used in both my chowder and salmon. I found my stomach rather unsettled for the remainder of the evening. The food was tasty, but rather expensive and for a fine dining experience on a special day, I expect the restaurant to try to provide a pleasant experience for its guests. There are many great restaurants that actually provide a pleasant experience for its guests in Palo Alto. I do not think I will be returning here.
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