Amazon Links

Friday, July 31, 2009

Tao Tao, eeehh, s'okay

Murhpy Ave in Sunnyvale is a great spot to visit when you live on the north side of the south bay, its kind of like the original Santana Row. The City does have plans to give the place a makeover (and it does need it), but with their other downtown redevelopment budgetary problems, I don't think its going to be anytime soon. In the mean time, there still many cool places to visit along this stretch of narrow, walkable street. A few weeks ago, I visited Dish-Dash, and it renewed my interest in Murphy Ave. After all, I did have my wedding reception at the Historic Del Monte Building, but never really went back, not sure why. Anyhow, my dining partner and I were in the mood for Chinese food, and there are several places on Murphy that would have sufficed, so we picked the first one we saw. Tao Tao looks new, and was very busy, so we went in a got a table immediately.

We were seated quickly, that is a plus for me, since I HATE waiting for food ever since that day. The interior is sparsely decorated, but clean. There were still hooks on the walls, as if the decorations were either just taken down or not put up yet, not sure which. The stylish interior architecture made up for lack of decor. Since the place was teeming with activity, it took me a while to notice that it was about 20 minutes before someone actually took our order. The manager actually came by to see to us, "Okay, are you ready?," was how we were greeted. It was in a hurried, rude tone, that I thought was strange coming from a manager who should be all about customer service? Since we had already thoroughly studied the menus, I quickly rattled off our order, and he snatched the menus out of my hands without hestitation and rushed off without even a "Thank You" or "Very good sir..." nothing.

The food came out one plate a a time (we got 4 total) and was not the best I have ever had. Since the place was new to us, we decided to play it safe with veggie fried rice, honey-walunt prawns, lemon chicken, and some eggrolls to start. They were all satisfactory, good but not great. The water was refilled several times very promptly, another plus.

Overall, the pluses (quick seating, ample water, neat interior) came out even with the minuses (rude staff, spread out food, so-so flavor) to make this place hard to recommend. I like to refer my readers to places I would enjoy eating at, and this place is not one of them. Our bill came to around $40, and we took some home for lunch the next day, which was just as average after a microwave blast. Not sure what Tao Tao means, but it certainly does not have any resemblance to Tao in Vegas!

-Tom W Tell


  1. Tao Tao cafe has been around for at least 30 maybe 40 years. It used to be a little hole in the wall and the best chinese food around. Not that you'll go back but they are known for the Tao Tao beef and Chinese Chicken Salad which is pretty much the only things I ever order from them these days. The quality of the food in general has definately slipped from what it once was but it's the go to place for my mom on her birthday who started going there when it opened.

  2. Felling Good to read so historical detail and specialty in food about Tao Tao Cafe couple of time i was with my clients there i liked there arrangements.My client was Businessman he was in meeting and after that he asked me to join then at Lunch table in Tao Tao cafe i love it.


Please leave your comments here, let me know if you enjoyed the food!