About Rio Grill

101 Crossroads Boulevard
Carmel, CA 93923
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Rio Grill, located in the Crossroads in Carmel, has been the place to meet friends, enjoy tasty, flavorful food and relax with a refreshing cocktail or glass of wine for over 28 Years.
Chef Yontz’ creative American dishes are some of the most flavorful, colorful and vibrant on the Monterey Peninsula and celebrate flavor in every mouthwatering bite!
In addition to the main dining room, Rio Grill has a comfortable lounge and full bar serving refreshing libations including the restaurant’s famous "Rio Rita.” The bar is lined with colorful caricatures of local faces and celebrities. Rio Grill's award-winning wine list features more than 160 labels featuring a ton of local wineries and an extensive selection available by the glass.
For more information on Rio Grill, please visit our website at www.riogrill.com. The restaurant opens for lunch every day at 11:30 and serves straight through until 10:00 PM. Rio also serves a great brunch on Sundays from 11:30 – 4:00PM.

Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Californian, Southwest

Hours of Operation:
Lunch: Monday - Saturday: 11:30am - 4:00pm; Dinner: Sunday - Thursday: 4:00pm - 10:00pm, Friday - Saturday: 4:00pm - 11:00pm; Brunch: Sunday: 11:30am - 3:00pm

Cross Street:
Rio Road

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(831) 625-5436

Website:
http://www.riogrill.com/

Parking Details:
The Rio Grill offers plenty of convenient parking.

Public Transit:
Public Transit is just a few yards from the restaurant.

Executive Chef:
Cy Yontz

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Fireplace, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Special Events & Promotions:
At Rio Grill, we will provide an unforgettable experience and take care of all the details for your next event. With the newly refurbished Santa Fe Room and Chef Yontz’s fantastic food, we will accommodate all your personal and corporate event needs.

Restaurant Photos

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smoked pork belly - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Blistered Chiles - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Buffalo Carpaccio - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Duck Breast w/ Duck Confit Tamale - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
empanadas - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Blood Orange Margarita - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Grilled Flatbread - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Empanadaditas De Carne - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Fire roasted artichoke with aioli sauce - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Olallieberry Pie - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Chinese Chicken Salad - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Dr. Pepper Braised Beef Short Ribs - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Caramelized Banana Sundae - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Smoked Pork Tenderloin - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Bread Pudding - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Braised Short Ribs - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Beef Empanadas - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Artichoke - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Stuffed Poblano Pepper - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Crispy Pork Shank With Red Pepper Mashed Potatoes - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Papa Hemingway's Daquiri - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Cream Of Broccoli Soup - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Castroville Artichoke - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Ice Cream - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Red Chili Beer Braised Short Ribs - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Smoked Chicken - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Grilled Prawns On Penne Pasta - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Russet Potato Skins - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Onion Strings - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA
Veal Liver and Onions - Rio Grill, Carmel, CA

Private Dining

At Rio Grill, we will provide a memorable experience and take care of all the details for your next event. From the rehearsal dinner, to the wedding reception, Rio Grill is Carmel’s best restaurant for a special occasion.

Rio Grill Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.4

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.3

service

4.3

ambience

4.1

value

4.0

noise

Moderate

91% would recommend it to a friend

Casual (25)
Creative Cuisine (24)
Special Occasion (21)
See All
Good for a Date (20)
Good for Groups (17)
Neighborhood Gem (16)
Bar Seating (15)
Great for Lunch (13)
Notable Wine List (12)
Modern Decor (12)
Good for Birthdays (12)
Fun (12)
Happy Hour (11)
Good for Anniversaries (11)
Fit for Foodies (11)
Comfort Food (11)
Vibrant Bar Scene (11)
Business Meals (10)
Hot Spot (10)
Worth the Drive (10)
Cozy (9)
Local Ingredients (9)
Authentic (8)
Sunday Lunch (7)
Handcrafted Cocktails (7)
Family Style (7)
Healthy (6)
People Watching (6)
Outstanding Value (5)
Fireplace (5)
Kid-friendly (5)
Late-night Find (5)
Seasonal (5)
Great for Brunch (4)
Romantic (4)
Quiet Conversation (4)
Disabled Access (4)
Pre/post Theatre (3)
Good Vegetarian Options (3)
Spicy (3)
Quick Bite (3)
Private Room (2)
Tapas (2)
Wood Oven (2)
Organic (1)
Waterfront (1)
Open Kitchen (1)
Gluten Free Options (1)
Dining Occasion:
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915 reviews
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If you order the artichoke and the ribs, ...

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on January 10, 2017

If you order the artichoke and the ribs, you'll go away happy. Everything else can be risky. We come here a couple of times a year, and when I don't order the tried and true, I'm disappointed. This time it was the duck breast that the staff talked up. Maybe I got a bad piece, but my portion was a dud-- just a few slices with a lot of fat and grizzle. Yuck.

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food3
ambience4
service4
value4

We come to Carmel a couple of times a ye ...

vip
 (Los Angeles)·Dined on January 7, 2017

We come to Carmel a couple of times a year. Rio is now one of our favorite dining spots. It is worth going across Hwy 1. The people are always friendly. I just had one of the bests pork chops with polenta that I have ever had.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Have eaten there twice. Calamari was goo ...

vip
 (Central Coast)·Dined on January 6, 2017

Have eaten there twice. Calamari was good as was the chicken salad. The service is decent. Our first occasion the waiter was attentive half the time and absent the second half of the the meal. The second time I ate there the waitress was ambivalent and not attentive. A little hit or miss so I'd like to see some improvement there.

I find that if you need a quick bite and you're looking for decent food that isn't egregiously overpriced, (which is not always easy to come by in Carmel,) this is a good choice.

Tags: Quick Bite, Family Style, Great for Lunch, Disabled Access, Casual
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food3
ambience3
service3
value4

Don't waste your time. Great 20 years ag ...

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on January 6, 2017

Don't waste your time. Great 20 years ago. Awful now.

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food1
ambience1
service1
value1

We always have a good time, the food is ...

vip
 (Central Coast)·Dined on January 1, 2017

We always have a good time, the food is very good, always consistent

Easy parking

Family friendly or great for "date night"

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Business Meals, Happy Hour, Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, People Watching, Bar Seating, Modern Decor, Fit for Foodies, Good for a Date, Neighborhood Gem, Cozy, Worth the Drive, Sunday Lunch, Great for Lunch, Hot Spot, Good for Birthdays, Kid-friendly, Notable Wine List, Fun, Good for Groups
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food5
ambience3
service3
value4

Restaurant prepared table for my wife's ...

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on January 1, 2017

Restaurant prepared table for my wife's birthday but waiter never once acknowledged her special occasion. He was pretty much out or just had no personality to be serving. Food was ok but not great. Steak was expensive and undercooked. Glass of wine and sparkling wine are expensive

Tags: Family Style, Local Ingredients, Modern Decor, Bar Seating, Good for Groups, Casual
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food3
ambience4
service2
value2

The food here delicious. We went early o ...

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on January 1, 2017

The food here delicious. We went early on New Years Eve, the place was packed and rather loud but the service was quite good and the food -- especially the fire roasted artichoke will bring us back next time we are in the area.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Casual, Notable Wine List, Family Style, Kid-friendly, Special Occasion, Fun, Comfort Food
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food5
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service4
value4

The Rio always is good food, great servi ...

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on December 31, 2016

The Rio always is good food, great service, and lots of fun! We are locals, and our family , extended family and friends have been eating there for 30+ years. Great management and long-time employees! PS...it is loud...but fun!

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food5
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Wonderful service! The skirt steak was ...

 
 (Tampa)·Dined on December 28, 2016

Wonderful service! The skirt steak was amazing.

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food4
ambience3
service5

Restaurant was really loud. Waiter came ...

 
 (Houston)·Dined on December 28, 2016

Restaurant was really loud. Waiter came by once every 30 minutes. We asked bussers for service. Food was room temperature. Pasta was gummy. Shrimp was undercooked and gooey. Ribs were crazy tough. Won't be back. Sad, because I've been going for 20 years.

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food2
ambience3
service1
value1

Always a joy to dine here :-)

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 27, 2016

Always a joy to dine here :-)

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food5
ambience5
service5

Always reliable quality food and service ...

 
 (San Joaquin)·Dined on December 24, 2016

Always reliable quality food and service. Probably 50% of diners are local. Wine list is ok, but overpriced even for Carmel,

Tags: Vibrant Bar Scene, Creative Cuisine
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food4
ambience4
service4
value3

This was our Anniversary and they went o ...

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 22, 2016

This was our Anniversary and they went out of their way to get us a semi private quiet table. They had a heart drawn on the table and rose petals surrounding it. Service was outstanding only issue was that the rib eye was not rare as requested.

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food4
ambience5
service5

Always a good experience eating at The R ...

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on December 21, 2016

Always a good experience eating at The Rio Grill. The service was good as well as the food.

Ribs were tasty ( more coleslaw would have been good) lemon tart was small but nice.

Tags: Good for a Date
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

We had a nice lunc, but it is a loud ven ...

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on December 19, 2016

We had a nice lunc, but it is a loud venue

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food4
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service5
value4

This place was amazing. The food was top ...

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on December 13, 2016

This place was amazing. The food was top notch and the service was great. Half off bottle of wine on mondays!!!!

Tags: Hot Spot, Comfort Food, Creative Cuisine
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

The location doesn't really fit the the ...

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 10, 2016

The location doesn't really fit the the great food they serve here. We were in a party of 4 and every dish we ordered was fantastic! First, we ordered empañadas. Yum!!!! The arugula salad was so tasty, I wanted to lick the dressing off the plate. Heehee. The chinese chicken salad is not your regular chicken salad. This one comes with dark noodles amd is very intimidating when you see it. But delicious!! The duck breast is served with chilaquilles and mole....WHAT?!! Again, YUM!!

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food5
ambience5
service5

Have been a long time fan, but a couple ...

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on December 6, 2016

Have been a long time fan, but a couple of new items I tried yestereday were delicious, and that included the fish stew which was superb. I will make a special trip back just to have that dish again. bravo

Tags: Fireplace, Bar Seating
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

small portions on the Soup and the Desse ...

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 4, 2016

small portions on the Soup and the Dessert - very irritating for the price - literally did not fill up the soup bowl even close to inner rim, and gave us a teeny tiny piece of pie for over $10 - and our dessert at a minimum should have been comp'd due to ridiculously noisy large party that the hostess took too long to control - ruined much of the meal

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food4
ambience3
service3
value3

It's simply too noisy to enjoy a convers ...

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 3, 2016

It's simply too noisy to enjoy a conversation. The food is good as well as the service. It continues to deliver on all aspects of casual dining except for the noise which has grown worse and worse over the years. We finally struggled enough and, after many years; we decided not to go back there again.

Tags: Bar Seating, Casual, Good for Groups
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food4
ambience2
service5
value3

Artichoke appetizer is great! I had the ...

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on December 3, 2016

Artichoke appetizer is great! I had the stuffed poblano and it was very flavorful. Great place!

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food5
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Rio Grill continues to be on our regular ...

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on November 26, 2016

Rio Grill continues to be on our regular go-to list in Carmel. The staff is always friendly and efficient. The menu offers many good choices. All of the food offers interesting combinations of tastes.

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food4
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Bar has great atmosphere! Appetizers in ...

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 23, 2016

Bar has great atmosphere! Appetizers including artichoke were excellent. One of my favorites was the green bean side. The stuffed pablano pepper was mediocre.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Business Meals, Healthy, Quick Bite, Late-night Find
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food3
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service4
value3

Can't get enough of the pumpkin seed sal ...

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 22, 2016

Can't get enough of the pumpkin seed salmon and mocha flan. Consistently great.

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food5
ambience4
service5

Our food was wonderful, but our server w ...

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 22, 2016

Our food was wonderful, but our server was quite slow and inattentive. We had to signal her when we needed service several times and the entire dinner took about 2 hours. I had also called ahead of time to find out about gluten free options for a child. There weren't quite as many options as I had been led to believe, although the child was perfectly happy with the artichoke and a bunless burger. And the fries were not flour coated, so that was good. Wine prices are quite high, although we were fortunate to be there on half price wine Mondays.

Tags: Spicy, People Watching, Notable Wine List
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food5
ambience4
service2
value3

Wonderful meal. Salmon covered in pumpk ...

 
 (Phoenix)·Dined on November 21, 2016

Wonderful meal. Salmon covered in pumpkin seeds was expertly cooked and presented. Service was excellent. A little noisy, but all in all worth the trip.

Tags: Family Style, Neighborhood Gem
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food5
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service4
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The owner was immediately welcoming us a ...

vip
 (Chicago)·Dined on November 20, 2016

The owner was immediately welcoming us and the waiter was superb. Terrific experience.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Corkage fee was a bit too high, otherwis ...

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 20, 2016

Corkage fee was a bit too high, otherwise very good.

Tags: Seasonal, Neighborhood Gem
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food5
ambience5
service4
value4

Enjoyed the food and atmosphere. Servi ...

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on November 19, 2016

Enjoyed the food and atmosphere.

Service is too slow for families.

Tags: Happy Hour, Creative Cuisine
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food4
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service3
value3

longstanding favorite; many spicy and or ...

 
 (Denver)·Dined on November 18, 2016

longstanding favorite; many spicy and original dishes

Tags: Hot Spot, Good for a Date, Casual, Authentic, Creative Cuisine
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food4
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service5
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Haven't been to Rio Grill in many many y ...

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 13, 2016

Haven't been to Rio Grill in many many years but was told by a friend that the menu was greatly improved. Very true, and we enjoyed all of our selections: good crab cakes, lovely calamari (with tentacles which is what we like) with a terrific tangy dipping sauce, good but slightly chewy skirt steak, very nice scallops, and shrimp linguini. All mains had good portions of well prepared tasty sides. We only had room enough to share one chocolate pudding, rich enough to be satisfied with a little bite.

Smoked salmon bruscetta was not a good idea (smoked salmon overcooked).

Tags: Casual, Special Occasion, Good for Groups, Notable Wine List, Fit for Foodies, Creative Cuisine, Good Vegetarian Options, Good for Birthdays
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food4
ambience3
service4
value3

Pork chop was excellent, hamburger was d ...

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 12, 2016

Pork chop was excellent, hamburger was dry and cold; pumpkin cheesecake a big disappointment; service friendly and good.

Tags: Casual, Modern Decor, Vibrant Bar Scene
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food3
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service4
value3

We have dined here many times over the y ...

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on November 8, 2016

We have dined here many times over the years, and we always have a delicious meal, and a nice dining experience. They have a great menu, with something for everyone.

Tip: come on Monday night and all bottles of wine are 50% off.....really a great deal.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Great for Brunch, Good for Groups, Worth the Drive, Good for Birthdays
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Our waiter Randy and our busboy Christia ...

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on October 31, 2016

Our waiter Randy and our busboy Christian were both the best! Great recommendations and delicious food !

Tags: Good for Groups, Good for Anniversaries, Seasonal, Cozy
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Service was incredibly slow. Never offer ...

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on October 31, 2016

Service was incredibly slow. Never offered water until I nearly finished my beer (end of meal). It seemed like every table had a bread (complimentary) plate. We never received one. When the waiter finally came by we ordered drinks, app and meals all together.

Food and drinks were exceptional.

Likely won't come back.

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food5
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service1
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Old fashioned, heavy food, reasonably we ...

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 30, 2016

Old fashioned, heavy food, reasonably well prepared. Certainly nothing special. Restaurant is quiet and service friendly and efficient. Food is not terrible.

Tags: Quiet Conversation
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food2
ambience3
service3
value3

Rio Grill has been our favorite Monterey ...

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 29, 2016

Rio Grill has been our favorite Monterey Peninsula restaurant for many years. Parking is plentiful in the shopping center. Menu is Southwestern focused with California fresh sourced ingredients. Not to be missed is the grilled artichoke with an herbed basalmic olive oil and side aioli dip, Meat empanadas were tasty. Garden salad with curry vinaigrette was yummy. The duck entree had a unique southwestern influence with squash tamal and mole sauce. The skin was reminiscent of Chinese roast duck. The duck was ordered medium rare and was. But the meat was on the chewy side and not easy to cut with the steak knife. Decor is modern SW and noise level was moderate. Service was spot on, friendly and professional.

Tags: Modern Decor, , Good for a Date, Good for Birthdays, Creative Cuisine, Authentic, Worth the Drive, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

Every time we visit Carmel from the east ...

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 26, 2016

Every time we visit Carmel from the east bay, we plan on lunch or dinner at Rio Grill. Their menu is ALWAYS a treat and the service is excellent. Expand your horizons.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Hot Spot, Casual
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Great service by waiter and waitstaff. O ...

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 26, 2016

Great service by waiter and waitstaff. Our party of 7 included two boys 8 and 5 and they were happy with the kids menu. We hadn't been here for a while--found food much improved.

Tags: Happy Hour, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

I really wanted to like Rip Grill, but i ...

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 25, 2016

I really wanted to like Rip Grill, but it simply isn't that great. The food ranges from pretty good to mediocre. Service was very good and Monday half-price wine nights are great. Go on Monday.

Tags: Vibrant Bar Scene
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food2
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service4
value2

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