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How to spend the perfect day eating and drinking in Los Altos

Written by
Virginia Miller

You might hear the name Los Altos and draw a blank. Located near the bustling Silicon Valley towns of Mountain View, Palo Alto and Sunnyvale, sleepy Los Altos is easily passed by. The quaint South Bay town, however, is perfect for a laid back, walkable weekend away. Peruse cookware and home decor shops, watch the loaves rise at the second outpost of Manresa Bread, learn about the Asian Pacific American Story at the Los Altos History Museum (until January 8), and, of course, do lots of eating and drinking.

Black cod at Ambience
Photograph: Virginia Miller


If you're celebrating a special occasion, try the intimate fine dining experience at Ambience. Grounded in French technique (expect a heavy dose of cream and butter in most dishes), Chef Morgan Song really shines when he adds Korean touches to his dishes. We like the silky black cod accented with radish, leeks, beets and tobiko caviar and dotted with a lemon beurre blanc.

Red Berry Coffee Bar

Coffee geeks know they're in good hands at Red Berry Coffee Bar. Afficionadors can choose from a range of local beans such as Linea CaffeRitual and De La Paz as well as up-and-comers like L.A.-based Take Flight. For those seeking a special treat, try the Italian shakerato (a shaken espresso ice drink) for your morning buzz. 

Esther’s German Bakery

Esther’s German Bakery is hands down one of the best German bakeries in the country. In fact, if you've ever ordered a delicious pretzel, German bread or pastry in San Francisco, it's likely the restaurant got them from Esther's. Try superb, dense breads like the schwarzbrot (black bread) and if they have poppyseed cherry strudel, make sure to snag it before it sells out! 

Japanese curry at Sumika
Photograph: Virginia Miller


The wait is always worth it at Sumika, where you can gorge on yakitori and Japanese specialties like oyakodon (chicken, egg, rice) and other donburi (rice bowls). The Japanese curry or udon veggie tempura bowls are our favorites, especially paired with a custom saké flight or Sapporo on draft.


Discreetly marked by a wood sign engraved with three different drinks, Honcho is a sleek, wine bar pouring small production California wines, international sparkling wines, an array of hard ciders and craft beer. If you're seeking a cocktail, they also offer low proof drinks featuring sherry, vermouth, wine or beer. 

Enchante Hotel

For those who want to stay the night in this cozy town, book a room at Enchante, a boutique retreat of 19 rooms, each decorated with antiques and lush fabrics. With indoor and outdoor seating, the hotel’s casual bistro turns out quality steak frites and crepes set to live jazz music on Friday nights. The best part? Hotels guests get two glasses of wine (including Champagne) plus charcuterie and cheese plates for free every night! 

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