We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

The Branding Iron Restaurant

640 W. 16th St, Merced, CA 95340
Improve this listing
Ranked #5 of 142 restaurants in Merced
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Price range: $9 - $30
Cuisines: American, Seafood, Steakhouse
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Romance, Bar scene, Large groups, Doing business, Local cuisine, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Dessert
Description: Our neon sign has been designated an Historical Landmark.
Write a Review

157 reviews from our community

75% Recommend
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Merced, California
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2014

Again, my wife and I had a very good lunch at The Branding Iron. It's always quiet with great background music and nicely relaxing. As usual, the food was overall great [and enough to take some home for dinner]. The waitress, Sarah, was so nice and delightful, she made it all the better.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Top Contributor
300 reviews 300 reviews
195 restaurant reviews
186 helpful votes 186 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 4, 2014

This restaurant is like an oasis on a hot day. It is cool and comfortable inside. In the winter, the luxurious wood paneling makes the restaurant warm and cozy. If you eat here (rather than lounge in the classic bar), order the 10 ounce filet mignon steak for $28.95. This may be the best item on the menu. Some items... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Oceanside, California
15 reviews 15 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2014

We weren't very impressed with this restaurant. Service was very slow and there was a screaming baby in the dining room which the parents were completely ignoring - i know thats not the restaurants fault but it was very annoying and put a damper on our meal. This seemed to be the only steak house in town so maybe thats... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Merced, California
3 reviews 3 reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2014

I went to the branding iron for dinner one evening, my co-workers and I wanted a good juicy steak..we walked in and it was very nice. Cloth napkins & wine glasses all ready for you. We were in shorts & T-shirts and I told the waitress I felt like we were under dressed..she said we were fine & seated us.... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Chicago, Illinois
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2014

This was a good place for a steak although I've had better prime rib this was a good one. I had the standard fare of salad and house dressing - quite good, then the prime rib cooked just as i like although the seasoning was a little under for me. Again, good solid meal for the business traveler and the... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Oslo, Norway
Top Contributor
179 reviews 179 reviews
55 restaurant reviews
117 helpful votes 117 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 26, 2014

Our meal at the Branding Iron was generous, filling and served by very friendly and charming staff. The food in itself was average, but the dining room and the atmosphere something many travellers consider very american. Many locals seem to eat there, and there is nothing fake or theatrelike a out the place. The stars are therefore for the service... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Champaign, Illinois
Top Contributor
199 reviews 199 reviews
141 restaurant reviews
84 helpful votes 84 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2014

Stopped through Merced on the way back from Yosemite and came here based on the high reviews received on Trip Advisor and was not disappointed...Service was friendly and professional...Glasses of water was promptly filled when empty...Bread replenished. The steaks we received were tender..gazpacho appetizer extremely good...the tortilla chips a nice touch. Saw some who ordered the coconut shrimp and it... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Salinas, California
3 reviews 3 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 4, 2014

This is an old time steak house. The food was very good and the complete meal is a LOT of food, too much for the average person. Service is attentive, prices are kind of high for complete meals, but most people would be very well satisfied with the entree and one first course.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Eden, Texas
Top Contributor
92 reviews 92 reviews
38 restaurant reviews
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2014

Loved the feel of the place - rustic and homey! We both had steaks, of course, which were good sized portions and very filling. My husband had the prime rib and stated that it was a bit under seasoned which could be simply personal preference. I had the filet which was very tender. The service was great - always there... More

Was this review helpful? Yes
Merced, California
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 28, 2014

Before I moved to Merced in the 70s I remember going to The Branding Iron on the way to Yosemite. In those days there was also a coffee shop with stools at a counter. That section is now a nicely furnished banquet room. If I wanted a nice steak dinner or a piece of fish in pleasant surroundings, The Branding... More

Was this review helpful? Yes

Travelers who viewed The Branding Iron Restaurant also viewed

Been to The Branding Iron Restaurant? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage The Branding Iron Restaurant, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.

Manage your listing