Monta Loma Neighborhood and the Mid-Penisula

The Monta Loma (MLN) neighborhood was constructed in the 1950s as affordable housing in a “California Modern” style by three different developers. It’s on the northern end of Mountain View, adjacent to Palo Alto, and Los Altos. The neighborhood is bordered by the roads San Antonio, Middlefield, Rengstorff, and Central Expressway.

Monta Loma is a great location. It’s in the center of the many high tech employers like google, Facebook, and apple. MLN is near Stanford, Foothill College, Stanford Hospital, Camino Hospital. Caltrain provides easy / carless access to San Francisco, and driving to San Jose is mostly a reverse commute.


Monta Loma well location for getting around the mid-penisula, or a place to explore the greater San Francisco Bay Area.

  • Walk to San Antonio CenterThe Village at San Antonio, and Monta Loma Plaza with a good selection of stores, restaurants, fitness facilities, and even a nice Icon movie theater
  • CalTrain San Antonio Station provides transportation up and down the peninsula with connections to other public transportation include BART, the Santa Clara Light Rail system, and a variety of bus lines.
  • Bikeways routes to many local companies including Google, Stanford, LinkedIn, and Facebook. Lime has rental bikes stationed on the corner of Mayfield and Central Expressway.
  • Cars have fairly easy access to 101, 280, and 85. There are a few cars in the neighborhood listed on Turo. Enterprise, Hertz, and Avis have small rental car offices within a couple of miles.

Groceries & Supplies

Within a 1-2 miles of Monta Loma:

  • The Milk Pail: A European style market with a great selection of fresh (often locally sourced) fruits and vegatables, imported cheese, and a variety of other tasty items at very reasonable prices.
  • Trader Joes: Quirky grocery store beloved by it’s patrons. Reasonably priced, with good selection of prepared and frozen foods.
  • Safeway: Small store located in San Antonio Plaza, larger in The Village at San Antonio.
  • Walmart, Target, Costco: classic big box storages with just about everything you might need
  • Dittmers: Classic German butcher shop with excellent sausage, meats, and interesting collection of imported european food.
  • Sprouts & Whole Foods: Sometimes pricy organic / “high end” groceries.


Within a mile of Monta Loma I would recommend

  • Hobee’s: longtime local favorite spot for breakfast / lunch. Decore is a tired, but the food is tasty as ever. People love their coffee cake.
  • Saaj: reasonably price fast/casual Mediterranean
  • Paul Martins America Grill: upscale bar / grill with comfortable atmosphere.
  • Armadillo Willie’s: BBQ
  • Taqueria La Bamba: Informal mexican & salvadoran 
  • Estrellita: Mexican, with traditional dishes from Chiapas and Oaxaca
  • Chef Chu’s has long been a popular chinese restaurant. I think there are better Chinese restaurants in the area, but none are closer.

Also within approximately a mile there are a number of other restaurants including: Veggie Grill, Krung Thai, Lulu Noodle House, Sushi 88, Pearl Cafe, The Counter, Pacific Catch, Esther’s German Bakery, Teaspoon Los Altos, Pasta Mart, Noodle Talk, Sushiko, A Good Morning, Chilis.

There are more options a short drive to Castro Street in Downtown Mountain View, California Avenue in Palo Alto, and near University Avenue in Palo Alto. For the best food you will want to head up to San Francisco or to the Napa Valley, but there are a number of restaurants in the mid-peninsula / South Bay I enjoy:

  • Vive Sol (Mountain View, Mexican). The guajillo chicken is excellent. The extended family also owns Fiesta Del Mar. 
  • Amber (Mountain View and other locations, Indian)
  • Kappo Nami Nami (Mountain View, traditional sushi)
  • Gochi Fusion Tapas  (Mountain View, Japanese Fusion)
  • Dish Dash (Sunnyvale, Mediterranean)
  • Vaso Azzurro (Mountain View, Italian)
  • Evvia (Palo Alto, Greek)
  • St Michael’s Alley (Palo Alto, Californian)
  • Joya (Palo Alto, Tapas)
  • Flea Street Cafe (Menlo Park, Farm to Table)
  • Sundance (Palo Alto, Steak)
  • Rosewood (Menlo Park, Bar) food is tasty, jazz Saturday nights, interesting people watching, especially Thursday night.
  • Bistro Vida (Menlo Park, French)… feels and tastes like small bistros and Paris I visited.

A bit south but worth the drive

  • Orchard City Kitchen (Campbell, Farm to Table)… tasty, nice combination of sweet and spicy, though maybe a bit too much sweet. Small bites.
  • Manresa (Los Gatos, Farm to Table, Michelin 3Star). Amazing food with a fixed tasting menu for a high price.

Fast food that is within a couple of miles includes: In-and-Out Burgers, Five Guys, Krispy Cream Donuts, Subway, McDonalds, Panera Bread, Peet’s Coffee, StarBucks, Jersey Mike’s Subs, Little Caesar’s Pizza, Panda Express, Chipotle

Interesting Sites

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