2107 Broadway, Redwood City, California 94063 (also in other US locations)
Good for: Business lunches, families, large groups
Price Range: Very reasonable
Features: Includes complete meal, has kids’ menu, private dining area available
Several years ago, my family and I were very sad The Old Spaghetti Factory at Jack London Square in Oakland, CA was closing down. This was one place we could go, order our ‘usual’, and enjoy our meal every time. After moving to the Peninsula we were happy to find there was a location in San Jose but it was just too far to drive for a casual dinner. Fast forward to October 2011 and The Old Spaghetti Factory has now opened a new restaurant in Redwood City!
The food is just the same as I remember it, which is a good thing. For less than $13 you can enjoy a complete meal with soup or salad, bread, and dessert. Milk, iced tea, and coffee are no longer included but for only $2 I don’t mind splurging to order a beverage. Order portions are a good-size, neither too small or gigantically huge. Their creamy pesto dressing is delicious and my favorite dish is the spinach tortellini with alfredo sauce (though I like that on the side). Sorry about the photo – we were so hungry I forgot to take a picture before we started to eat!
The Mizithra cheese that is offered is quite flavorful but some may not be impressed as it is goat cheese. This is the only place I like spumoni ice cream because it does not include nuts and the contrasting flavors work well. Allergic to gluten and/or wheat? No problem – they feature a special gluten-free menu so you can have all that pasta goodness without the adverse reaction.
The food has been consistent each time we have gone to this location so far. The service is still a ‘work in progress’ but has been acceptable overall. The decoration is a bit odd as the designers tried to create an antique feel but all modern furniture was used. Therefore, the charm of the old Victorian furniture finished with eye-popping suede upholstery and colorful stained glass lighting is lost. Even the train car was specifically built new for this location and is totally non-authentic. The simple paper menus are also missed…
I do like the fact that they have a completely separate room that can be reserved, at no charge, for larger groups or special gatherings. We were told they even have a special menu to save a bit on those big orders. The best time to visit Old Spaghetti Factory is for lunch or early evening, preferably during the week, to avoid long wait times.
Before this we never took the time to explore downtown Redwood City. This is a great location right off Broadway and there is free underground parking for up to 1-1/2 hours. The area is well-lit, has several other places to eat, and is near the movie theater. This, however, can be a negative aspect when some of the young people gather in the later evening in the center and sometimes get a bit rowdy. The entrance for the restaurant is on the corner, though, so you can easily steer clear of the movie-going crowd.
The Old Spaghetti Factory is a great place to unwind, get some tasty comfort food, and enjoy visiting with your friends and family. Who know, maybe we’ll see you there!