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Bon Vivant - Palo Alto Reviews List

Bon Vivant - Palo Alto

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Bon Vivant is a French bistro located in downtown Palo Alto. Our menu combines hearty and unique French dishes with moderately-priced traditional bistro fare. Bon Vivant offers an extensive wine list, as well as a range of interesting cocktails and apéritifs, including several varieties of pastis (an anise flavored French apéritif). Diners can indulge in fresh breads and desserts cooked on site by our Pastry Chef.

Bon Vivant is open for dinner daily (except Monday), as well as for breakfast and brunch on the weekends.
We are also available to host your special events.
See more Bon Vivant - Palo Alto details
211 Current Reviews
Summary of Diner Ratings & Reviews
Overall 
4.1 / 5
(Outstanding) 4.1 / 5
(211 Reviews)
Open Ratings Snapshot
Rating Breakdown 211 reviews
5 stars
(103)
4 stars
(57)
3 stars
(31)
2 stars
(14)
1 star
(6)
Food 
4.1 / 5
(Outstanding) 4.1 / 5
Service 
4.2 / 5
(Outstanding) 4.2 / 5
Ambiance 
4.3 / 5
(Outstanding) 4.3 / 5
Noise Level
1.6 / 3
Moderate
Value 
4 / 5
(Outstanding) 4 / 5
Filter Reviews By:
Diners classify this restaurant as:
  • fit for foodies(99)
  • romantic(98)
  • special occasion(97)
  • neighborhood gem(58)
  • notable wine list(48)
  • good for groups(16)
Bon Vivant - Palo Alto Reviews List
Review 1 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Dined on 4/29/2016
 2009
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Review 2 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Wonderful Gem

OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 4/23/2016
 2008
Dined on 4/23/2016
 2008
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
"Quaint place that reminds me of the wonderful small restaurants in Paris with excellent French food. Even the foie gras was the actual liver and not just a pate. If you also love souffle, they make two kinds. These are pretty rare these days. The waiter even timed our souffle right so there wasn't a long wait after the meal."
Dined on 4/23/2016
 2008
Special Features: romantic, great for lunch, special occasion, fit for foodies
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Review 3 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Fun French

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 4/09/2016
 2016
Dined on 4/09/2016
 2016
Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
"Great meal at Bon Vivant. We liked everything: the food, setting & service. I met up with a few friends and found it easy to talk while dining - nice not to be sitting on top of each other like many PA restaurants. Between us we tried Sea Bass, Duck, Quail and a bunch of appetizers. Everything was great. We will be back."
Dined on 4/09/2016
 2016
Special Features: good for groups, neighborhood gem, hot spot, special occasion, fit for foodies
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Review 4 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Dined on 4/16/2016
 2009
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Review 5 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Dined on 4/12/2016
 2013
Special Features: romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
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Review 6 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Dined on 4/09/2016
 2009
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Review 7 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

First time's a charm...

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 3/27/2016
 2016
Dined on 3/27/2016
 2016
Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
"This was my first visit to Bon Vivant and I enjoyed it thoroughly.
The food & service were top-notch. I happen to love Osso Bucco (they had it listed using the French name for the dish "Jarret de Veau"), so it was a nice surprise
to find it on the menu. All in all, it was a great meal and I will be
coming back soon to explore their menu more fully.
"
Dined on 3/27/2016
 2016
Special Features: romantic, special occasion, notable wine list, fit for foodies
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Review 8 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 3/26/2016
 2013
Dined on 3/26/2016
 2013
Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Dined on 3/26/2016
 2013
Special Features: romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion
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Review 9 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Fantastic Dinner!

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 3/12/2016
 2016
Dined on 3/12/2016
 2016
Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
"We had a great dinner with friends - everything was perfect: the food, the setting and service. I treated myself to a lamb chop appetizer. For dinner, we had Jarret de Veau (a veal shank), as well as Rabbit and a tasty Coq au Vin. Afterwards we took the advice of our server and tried some wonderful wine & cheese pairings. The 2 cheeses I remembered (OK, I wrote down the names) were Abbaye de Belloc & Brillat-Savarin. Delicious. We will definitely be coming back!"
Dined on 3/12/2016
 2016
Special Features: neighborhood gem, fit for foodies
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Review 10 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 3/13/2016
 2009
Dined on 3/13/2016
 2009
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 3/13/2016
 2009
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Review 11 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
1 / 5
(Poor) 1 / 5

OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 3/12/2016
 2008
Dined on 3/12/2016
 2008
Food 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5
Service 
1 / 5
(Poor) 1 / 5
Ambiance 
1 / 5
(Poor) 1 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
Value 
1 / 5
(Poor) 1 / 5
Dined on 3/12/2016
 2008
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Review 12 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 3/12/2016
 2007
Dined on 3/12/2016
 2007
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Dined on 3/12/2016
 2007
Special Features: special occasion
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Review 13 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 3/12/2016
 2007
Dined on 3/12/2016
 2007
Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Dined on 3/12/2016
 2007
Special Features: fit for foodies
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Review 14 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Dined on 3/13/2016
 2005
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Review 15 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Bon Vivant Great Classic French in Palo Alto

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
"Bon Vivant is a great French restaurant in Palo Alto! The food was great, classic French cuisine, but the service was a little slow. I think they are understaffed in the service dept. I mean, they get to your table, but there was like a 20 minute wait after they handed us a dessert menu. But the food is excellent! Regarding the service, the place was packed, so maybe they didn't have enough servers to support the number of people. Prices are reasonable for the quality, typical of that type of restaurant. So for two people, it cost $175. Then a $20 tip is fair enough. They do a new thing there with paying. They give you an IPAD and a selection of tip amounts, 15%, 18%, 20%, or your own choice. They do have a piano in the center of the place. Overall, I would definitely go back. Great meal, cozy place and it was a fun dinner. The French onion soup was nice, the mussels excellent, the salad boring, but fresh, the veal shank was excellent, the sea bass was spectacular. And truffle French Fries were delicious, but I've never had bad French fries at at French restaurant. They always do French fries great."
Dined on 3/12/2016
 2007
Special Features: romantic, neighborhood gem, hot spot, special occasion, notable wine list, fit for foodies
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Review 16 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

Dined on 2/27/2016
 2004
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Review 17 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 2/26/2016
 2014
Dined on 2/26/2016
 2014
Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Dined on 2/26/2016
 2014
Special Features: romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion, notable wine list, fit for foodies
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Review 18 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Dined on 2/25/2016
 2003
Special Features: romantic, special occasion, fit for foodies
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Review 19 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 2/25/2016
 2006
Dined on 2/25/2016
 2006
Food 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 2/25/2016
 2006
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Review 20 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Dined on 2/19/2016
 2002
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Review 21 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Post V-day Romance...

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
"We didn't get out this Valentine's Day, so I offered to take my wife for the next best thing: a romantic dinner at Bon Vivant. :) We love coming here, as it is beautiful and elegant and makes a perfect setting for a date night. Tonight I tried something new: "Jarret de Veau" - a wonderful veal dish. As much as I love duck, etc., the veal was a great change. And not something we cook often at home, so quite the treat. My wife had the Tournedos Rossini (Filet Mignon & Foie Gras). It was just a lovely evening - food/wine/service/setting: all combined for a great night out."
Dined on 2/21/2016
 2014
Special Features: romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion, notable wine list, fit for foodies
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Review 22 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Dined on 2/19/2016
 2005
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Review 23 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Valentines day all the time

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
"My husband & I went out for Valentines day two days late to avoid the crowded rush. We saw Bon Vivant on Open Table, were able to get a same day reservation, and found exactly what we wanted: a quiet, romantic, classic French restaurant with a lovely atmosphere and excellent food. The atmosphere reminded me of the "something lovely in the air", feeling of art nouveau Paris. The absinthe fountain on the bar a special touch. First they brought us beautiful brioches, the butter flavored with truffles! We started with wine and the cheese plate, which was fantastic. The onion soup reminded us of our honeymoon in Paris, the best! I had the beet salad which was a delicious work of art. My husband ordered the filet mignon with cognac pepper sauce, which was the tenderest steak I ever tasted. The service was excellent and friendly. We will return!"
Dined on 2/16/2016
 2005
Special Features: romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
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Review 24 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Food 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
Value 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Dined on 2/14/2016
 2013
Special Features: special occasion
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Review 25 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Prix Fixe surprise

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 2/14/2016
 2003
Dined on 2/14/2016
 2003
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5
"Booked for Valentine's Day dinner about 2 weeks ahead, no mention of special menu.
Around 2/10, I decided to look at the menu and the website says special Valentine's Day menu to be posted later and patrons cannot order from regular menu. On Sunday afternoon, prix fixe menu was not posted.
We went there. Front desk person asked us to look at menu before sitting down. OK. Menu was $98, not a problem but marked up by about $25 considering what they served. At 7pm, the place was a quarter full. I assume people looked at menu, surprised by it and left. The reason I knew it should be full because another couple wanted to join us, but I could not add people as the restaurant was fully booked.
My seabass was excellent with a fantastic sauce, but my wife's lamb shank was dry. Appetizer, salad and dessert were all excellent. Service was great as wait staff does not have much to do and we left happy. I was disappointed that they took this Valentine's Day to have a hefty markup on price.
"
Dined on 2/14/2016
 2003
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Review 26 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 2/11/2016
 2016
Dined on 2/11/2016
 2016
Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
4 / 3
Energetic
Value 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Dined on 2/11/2016
 2016
Special Features: romantic, hot spot, special occasion, late-night find
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Review 27 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Delicious steak...

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
"Another great meal at Bon Vivant. This time I started with the smoked duck salad. I'm not a big salad eater, but the smoked duck was hard to resist. For my main course, I had a steak. It was a perfect medium rare and the sauce was perfectly wedded to the meat. Exactly what I was looking for! And of course, I couldn't leave without a few bites of a Napoleon (OK, OK.. I ate it all!). I'll be back soon."
Dined on 2/16/2016
 2014
Special Features: romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion, notable wine list, fit for foodies
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Review 28 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Dined on 1/30/2016
 2014
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Review 29 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

The Chef was missing?

Food 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
"This was the second time at the Bon Vivant, but sometimes the execution was lacking, in particular the Peppercorn Filet Mignon. While the filet was cooked to perfection, the sauce came "broken" and lacked all finesse. The other times were OK but not outstanding. So the count is 1 to 1.
Hoper for a better next time."
Dined on 2/12/2016
 2014
Special Features: neighborhood gem, fit for foodies
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Review 30 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 2/12/2016
 2007
Dined on 2/12/2016
 2007
Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
4 / 3
Energetic
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Dined on 2/12/2016
 2007
Special Features: romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion, fit for foodies
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Review 31 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 2/06/2016
 2000
Dined on 2/06/2016
 2000
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 2/06/2016
 2000
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Review 32 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 10/28/2015
 2012
Dined on 10/28/2015
 2012
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Dined on 10/28/2015
 2012
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Review 33 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

A wonderful experience

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
"The restaurant wasn't actually open for the time we made the reservation, but they welcomed us graciously and opened the kitchen. The service was impeccable, the food delicious, and we were so appreciative of their commitment to service, even though they were in no way at fault. We can't wait to go back!"
Dined on 1/31/2016
 2003
Special Features: romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion
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Review 34 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 1/30/2016
 2005
Dined on 1/30/2016
 2005
Food 
1 / 5
(Poor) 1 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Dined on 1/30/2016
 2005
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Review 35 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 1/29/2016
 2001
Dined on 1/29/2016
 2001
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Dined on 1/29/2016
 2001
Special Features: romantic, special occasion, fit for foodies
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Review 36 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Food 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Dined on 1/24/2016
 2013
Special Features: special occasion
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Review 37 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Good Food

OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 1/22/2016
 2015
Dined on 1/22/2016
 2015
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
"This is our 2nd time there and the food is very good. Never salty so you can taste the fresh ingredients. Great Service."
Dined on 1/22/2016
 2015
Special Features: romantic, special occasion, fit for foodies
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Review 38 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 1/22/2016
 2013
Dined on 1/22/2016
 2013
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Dined on 1/22/2016
 2013
Special Features: romantic, special occasion
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Review 39 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Dined on 1/21/2016
 2011
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Review 40 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Wonderful dinner and experience ...

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 1/15/2016
 2016
Dined on 1/15/2016
 2016
Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
"All our experience was delightful : very good cocktails to start. Freshly baked bread - excellent !
We had lobster and foiegras, just what it should be. Very good . Special note is rabbit: it's simply delicious.
Wine pairing recommended by server was a important component to our meal and completed the experience.
Overall very very good restaurant. Clearly they got it right and this shows . Thank you
"
Dined on 1/15/2016
 2016
Special Features: romantic, neighborhood gem, good for groups, special occasion, notable wine list, fit for foodies, late-night find
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Review 41 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Wow! Just Wow!

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
"Another great meal at Bon Vivant! We started with an assortment of appetizers: Escargot, Mussels, Lobster and a Beet salad. Everything was delicious, fresh and served beautifully. Next we had the Rabbit and a Pork chop. We shared and sometimes competed for the best morsels, but in the end, we were both very happy and very well fed. After so much good food and wine, we thought it prudent to skip dessert... kidding! So we split an order of the "ice cream landscape" just for a bit of sweetness to end the meal.
We will definitely be back soon!
"
Dined on 1/20/2016
 2016
Special Features: romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion, notable wine list, fit for foodies
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Review 42 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Unpretentious Sophistication

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
"The cuisine was excellent. The service was very good. The atmosphere was elegant, yet casual. The restaurant space was well utilized as tables were spaced to provide sufficient 'privacy' for a romantic evening. The menu was well-rounded which included filet mignon, rabbit, duck, salmon, and more for the main entrees, with a very nice list of hors d'oeuvres. I liked everything that was on the menu, making returning to this establishment a must-do. To end the evening, we had the best chocolate soufflè, ever. It was light, fluffy, and with a rich chocolate sauce poured into the centre. This topped off with a couple of robust cappuccinos and you have an evening to remember."
Dined on 1/16/2016
 2014
Special Features: romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion, notable wine list
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Review 43 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5

Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Dined on 1/16/2016
 2011
Special Features: neighborhood gem, notable wine list
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Review 44 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

Overall good experience with some caveats...

Food 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
"Overall, service was friendly and courteous, but a bit slow and not particularly attentive at times. The restaurant is nicely decorated and looks inviting from the outside.
Overall, food presentation was good, but food didn't wow considering the overall pricing of dishes. French Onion soup solid, but nothing spectacular. Beet salad was very pretty and overall a decent starter. Steak Roussane was solid (hard to go wrong with filet mignon topped with seared foie gras). Skin on "Crispy Skin Salmon" wasn't all that crispy or seasoned well. Souffle was good, not overly sweet.
I'd give this place another try sometime, but pricing places this more along the lines of a special occasion restaurant, but you don't quite feel that "special" dining here."
Dined on 1/14/2016
 2010
Special Features: romantic, special occasion
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Review 45 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 1/16/2016
 2013
Dined on 1/16/2016
 2013
Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
"Great wine list, nice cocktails, good service, and a wonderful menu.
The first time we came here we were delighted to find a modern / traditional French place with a little bit of a poi t of view. So e place that did not feel generic and nothing but standards, but also not aggressively experimental. However our second visit was not as smooth.
The wait time for dishes was quite long. This did not impact most dishes (gave us time to savor the wine), however the caramelized fois gras was allowed to get cold, which really puts a damper on our satisfaction at this price point.
Would try it again, however if this kind of thing becomes typical there's just too many other good options."
Dined on 1/16/2016
 2013
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Review 46 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

We will come back

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
"We leave in PA but this was our first visit. We enjoyed Friday night dinner - everything well prepared and plated. A special comment about my husband's rabbit - delicate and delicious, mustard sauce with wine cured fruits could of been a separate dish. Our felicitations to the Chef! Service matched the food. Dinning room is elegant but warm. We will come back."
Dined on 1/08/2016
 2016
Special Features: romantic, neighborhood gem, good for groups, special occasion, notable wine list, fit for foodies
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Review 47 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

A lovely gem in Palo Alto

Food 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
"We were so pleasantly surprised to find Bon Vivant...a quiet, sophisticated, French bistro in the heart of Palo Alto. Our server couldn't have been more knowledgeable or attentive. Finding a white table cloth in any restaurant in PA is a challenge these days, so our romantice dinner for two felt even more special. We're going back this week!"
Dined on 1/03/2016
 2009
Special Features: romantic, special occasion, fit for foodies
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Review 48 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5

Four Feasting Friends

Food 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Noise Level
Moderate
Moderate
Value 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
"Happy to report that our dinner out with friends at Bon Vivant was a great hit.
We all came hungry and we had no trouble picking out dishes that sounded tasty.
Between us, we had lobster tail, scallops, mussels, rabbit and a rack of lamb - and
of course, some foie gras.
Like I said - we were hungry! Everything was fantastic - our waiter was helpful
and attentive, but not intrusive. Each of the dishes was beautifully presented,
but not just pretty - the flavors were delicate on right on the mark.
At this point, we weren't holding anything back, so we moved boldly into
dessert and ordered the "Marie Antoinnette", a creme brulee and a
chocolate souffle. Amazing. The four of us devoured it all and left Bon Vivant
happy and satiated. Of course we will back... and I'm pretty sure our friends
are now hooked as well.
"
Dined on 1/06/2016
 2014
Special Features: romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion, notable wine list, fit for foodies
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Review 49 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
2 / 5
(Fair) 2 / 5

Pass on this restaurant

Food 
1 / 5
(Poor) 1 / 5
Service 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Ambiance 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
1 / 5
(Poor) 1 / 5
"While the restaurant is beautiful and the staff very friendly, my starter and entree were cold. In addition, our check was incorrect and we were charged for what another table ordered. We had to point this out to the waiter. I would not come again as the price point is high and not worth what was provided."
Dined on 1/02/2016
 2006
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Review 50 for Bon Vivant - Palo Alto
Overall rating 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5

Great service, better food

Customer Avatar
OpenTable Diner Since
Dined on 1/02/2016
 2016
Dined on 1/02/2016
 2016
Food 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
Service 
5 / 5
(Outstanding) 5 / 5
Ambiance 
4 / 5
(Very Good) 4 / 5
Noise Level
Quiet
Quiet
Value 
3 / 5
(Good) 3 / 5
"Service was wonderful but food lacked flavor and seasoning. The appetizers were luke warm."
Dined on 1/02/2016
 2016
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