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“I wish all restaurants had their values!”

Willows Black Bear Diner
Ranked #1 of 21 Restaurants in Willows
Cuisines: American
Dining options: Breakfast, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Reservations
San Jose, California
Level 6 Contributor
176 reviews
93 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 97 helpful votes
“I wish all restaurants had their values!”
Reviewed February 18, 2013

We were headed south on Highway 5 on a Sunday evening, planning to eat late and drive into the night. We found the Willows Black Bear Diner on Google Maps, and checked the closing time of 10 PM. So we got there around 8:40 PM. We were greeted and seated, and only then did we see that the restaurant closed at 9 PM. Apparently 10 PM is the summer hours, and no one had changed the website for the winter. Nevertheless, our waiter, Jeff, assured us that we could have dinner and that we would not be a bother at all. So when we arrived, there were perhaps 10 cars in the parking lot. When we left around 9:30 PM, ours was the last car. So we kind of had the place to ourselves for most of our meal.

I don’t know when we have had such friendly service! Of course, we were the only table Jeff was waiting on for perhaps 2/3 of our meal. Not only did we get high quality food service, but also we learned a bit more about Jeff — a psychology student with aspirations to open a home for troubled teens. He was a breath of fresh air in a world that often seems cold and callous.

Black Bear Diner food is excellent! Portions are generous, the taste is great, and the appearance is nice. We have probably eaten at various Black Bear Diners 6 different times, and always been happy we did. I really like the mission and values statement printed on the menus — it’s too bad that more companies in America don’t adopt these kinds of values: they greatly benefit the customers, the employees, and the owners all at the same time.

I will definitely be back the next time I am through this area, and hope that I can get Jeff again as a server. He really made a good meal into an excellent experience.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Steve H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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185 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Northern California
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Great food”
Reviewed January 23, 2013

This is super easy access to I-5 travelers. Great chain restaurant!! They serve BIG portions and you def get your monies worth. The food is really good too...All of it!!!But I recommend the burger basket, if looking for that old fashioned burger/fries/milkshake!! Menu has a lil bit of everything. Great family restaurant.

Visited January 2013
Thank rlbglenn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Albany, Oregon
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Great food and welcome ambiance”
Reviewed January 20, 2013

very good food, and pleasant, homey atmosphere. Their gift assortment is very nice. We came home with some of their delicious coffee.

Visited December 2012
Thank Larry B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Willows, California
Level 4 Contributor
26 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Dining at Black Bear Diners”
Reviewed December 11, 2012

We have dined at several Black Bear Diners and have always had good food and plenty of it. Also the personnel has always been friendly. The Black Bear honors the Veterans on Veterans day with a free meal which we appreciate and if you sign up with there web site they also give you a coupon for a free dessert on your birthday. We dine at the Willows Black Bear frequently but have also dined at the Reno, NV Black Bear and the Gridley, CA Black Bear. We had a large group at both Reno and Gridley and the food and service was very good.

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank frog09
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 6 Contributor
183 reviews
88 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 138 helpful votes
“Down Home Diner”
Reviewed November 7, 2012

I like stopping at the Black Bear Diner! Ok, it is a diner... So you gotta go in knowing that... But the burgers are juicy with a nice slice of tomato and a crispy hunk of lettuce, the soup and salads are fresh, and the menu is diverse! When I am not in the mood for a burger, I can always find something else interesting that calls out to me from the menu! I have been known to order breakfast in the evening, and they don't even bat an eye at my request. When we are traveling with the kids, and they see the fast food places along the way and start clammering for a burger, the Black Bear Diner fits the bill... Crayons for the kids, and s good selection of diner food for us. I recommend this place.

If my review was helpful, please click and say so. Happy eats!

Visited August 2012
Thank Jodie D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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