Our first time. Great service, good food. Fun for a grown up birthday.
This top notch historical restaurant, with its famous red awning, is owned by the best culinary team on the Peninsula! The ahi tuna could not have been more tender! The service is always attentive, and the rotunda at twilight offers a unique ambience.
The Sardine Factory was recommended to me by a friend. He spoke very highly of the restaurant and told me we would love it. We were not disappointed, this place is a
real gem. This restaurant is not for the budget conscious, but if you feel the need to
indulge, the Sardine Factory will fill that need. The Food, Service and Ambiance were wonderful! Steven the sommelier was able to keep his 100% satisfaction rating with the wine he recommended for our dinner, it was a perfect match. If your looking for something
special, to be treated special and to eat a wonderful meal.. This is the place for you!
If available ask to be seated in the conservatory, it was booked for a private event the
night we were there... So we will just have to go back so we can have an evening in that
It is a beautiful setting in the glass dome shaped room. The people that work there are seriously so nice. It was my boyfriends birthday and they brought out a cute piece of cake with a candle in it at the end of our meal. The only complaint i had was the prime rib they brought out was over cooked and they said it comes out rare to medium rare. It was well done. I had the seafood and pasta which was delicious. Overall it was a very fun experience with very friendly and welcoming staff and i would come again!
Fabulous anniversary dinner! We were so glad we went. Everyone was so attentive and the food was excellent!
The service was outstanding and the food was absolutely wonderful. We each had the wedge salad, my husband had the prime rib with twice baked potato and I had the medallions of filet with a mushroom sauce. It was truly the best dinner we’ve had in a long time here on the Peninsula!! What a special evening.
From complementary valet parking to excellent wait staff this restaurant has it all. We were seated in an all glass atrium that set the mood for a lovely intimate dinner for two. The martini was superb. I was so pleased to taste abalone once again. The ice cream pops with caramel, floating over dry ice, were amazing. I can see why this restaurant has been around. Expensive, yes, but sometimes you just have to splurge!
We thoroughly enjoyed our evening. The appetizers were mostly excellent, the entree's were good, and the service was outstanding.
The atmosphere is very unique and romantic. We were seated in the atrium portion. We had hoped for the area near the fireplace, but this was nice, too, especially since it was still daylight and the birds could be seen flying overhead (in fact at one point a seagull "skied" down the slanted pieces of glass. Very entertaining. However, the atrium quickly becomes too loud because of the acoustics. And we were unlucky enough to have a screaming toddler with selfish parents who didn't bother to deal with the outbursts outside. Not a restaurant anyone should bring small children to - very rude. Another table had young children and they were the most well-behaved children I've ever seen. Clearly responsible parents!
They serve an appetizer with abalone and lobster that was incredibly delicious. The lobster was the perfect size. Their clam chowder was excellent with a lot of wonderful flavors frequently not found in clam chowder. The prime rib and filet mignon were very tender with good flavor. Our dessert of chocolate cake was scrumptious - very unexpected since I don't usually like cake, but it had a truffle-like top layer that made it incredibly rich and yummy.
On the minus side - the place smelled musty when you first walk in - a price you pay for the antique decor. The artichoke soup was boring. A filet mignon was requested as medium, but arrived rare... very rare. We arrived shortly after opening, but my prime rib was almost medium. I'd asked for it to be closer to rare if available, but if mine was medium that early in the evening, I can only imagine what others received.
All in all, the experience was still very special. The level of service made all the difference!
We have been coming here for years and it never disappoints. The veal cardinale was wonderful. And they have the best crème brulee.
Everything was fine, except there was a VERY long wait for the main course to arrive.
Such an elegant and delicious restaurant. A must see if your first time in Monterey
The Sardine Factory has been one of my favorites in Monterey for decades but I had not been there for some time. It is as I remember it - traditional in appearance, with exquisite service, and with a variety of delicious food and wine choices. The halibut special was wonderful; the fish literally melted in my mouth. Our captain made a great show of his hospitality and tried to get us off to a romantic evening even though I was with a business associate and not my spouse. I had not been seated in the atrium before. The ambiance at sunset is terrific even though the glass roof makes it a little loud. It was much cozier and quieter in the main entry room by the fireplace where we had a glass of wine before being seated. It is not inexpensive, but worth every penny. I highly recommend the Sardine Factory.
We have been going to the Sardine Factory for years to celebrate special occasions. The service is consistently excellent, the food delicious, and old world restaurant decor.
Food was fantastic.service was even better. We had a wonderful time.
Words cannot express how disappointed we were in this restaurant. While the servers were certainly attentive and friendly, no amount of good service can make up for the incredibly poor quality of the food.
First things first: the bread. I kid you not, they served the SAME Pepperidge Farm bread rolls you can buy at the supermarket. Because I suspected these were store bought rolls, I asked the waiter if they were made in-house, and he confessed they did not, and did not know where the rolls came from.
Our appetizers: We had the calamari and the artichoke soup. The soup was probably the best thing they served us and I can only describe it as mediocre. There was nothing special about it. The calamari was rubbery, under-seasoned, lukewarm, and the presentation reminded me of something you'd be served at a place called the Beach Shack.
My main course: the lobster ravioli again tasted exactly like something you'd get out of the freezer case of the supermarket. The flavor was bland. The pasta was NOT fresh. And the sauce was entirely forgettable.
My husband's main course: the "special" that night, halibut on a bed of crab risotto. Sounds wonderful, right? Nope, yet another disappointment. The halibut tasted like prepackaged fish you'd get... wait for it... at the grocery store. Sensing a theme here? Then the risotto was mushy and also bland.
...And then to add insult to injury, they have the audacity to charge "fine dining" prices for that swill. We will NEVER be returning.
We went here during our honeymoon and I must say, I expected more. From the hype, I was so excited to go with my new husband!
Unfortunately the calamari appetizer was chewy and cold, we got our entree side very late after our pricey steaks and lobster came out, one other entree side was completely forgotten, and the food just didn't wow us. For a 400$ tab on just food (no drinks) the food should be out of this world and service impecable.
To be honest, our server made us feel uncomfortable and the chef who walked around and greeted all the guests and chatted at the tables, practically ignored us. I am assuming because we are in our 20s, and not flaunting our wealth to the world, that is why we were ignored and given subpar service. I am actually a pretty accredited Pastry Chef, and really did want to chat with the chef. Also, since I work in the industry, and have for 7 years, I have a great understanding of how upscale service should be, and this place did not make the cut.
On another note, the ambiance was beautiful and dessert was really great. We did appreciate the manager sending us out a special treat for our honeymoon. He was very hospitable and welcoming.
Overall the food was underwhelming and service a real let down. You pay for quality and experience at a place like this and I feel on both ends it was very average.
Excellent cuisine with fresh ingredients! Service is exceptional and so affordable....my favorite in Monterey.
The restaurant was not crowded ianr our service was extremely slow. We waited for everything literally. Water we had to ask for. We had to ask for refills on water. We had to ask for more butter instead of being noticed. No one ever asked is how our meal was. We came here because it was supposed to be a high-end restaurant with great food and everyones meal was mediocre at best.
An unusual menu, if you go early ask for the early menu. It is less expensive with fewer options but still elegant and delicious. Also ask if you can have a tour of the wine cellar. So very special.
The Factory is our go-to restaurant for special occasions. They go out of their way to make the meal special. Their on staff sommelier knows everything about each of their HUGE wine selections. He has never been wrong. The wine always great, and the pairing spot on. You cannot find better food, atmosphere and staff anywhere.
My family celebrated my 70th Birthday at your fine restaurant. Everyone enjoyed not only your great dishes but the special treatment of all your Staff. They made us feel like family.. Your wines were superb! We never felt rushed. We would recommend your restaurant to our friends! Thank you!
We recently dined at the Sardine Factory for our 25th wedding anniversary. Everything was perfect, from the minute we walked in. The staff congratulated us, sat us at a lovely table in the beautiful Conservatory, and our server Orlando took excellent care of us. The abalone soup, scallops and veal were delicious, and we were treated to a very special chocolate cake dessert that was beyond good! The evening was worth every penny, just for how special they made us feel and for the beautiful ambiance. And of course the food was outstanding! We highly recommend this restaurant.
Food was adequate. Rooms have various ambiance -- Cozy (w fireplace) to open, (conservatory w plants/glass panes). Didn't think two single women should have been seated in smaller room. Provide options. Service was spot on.
Excellent venue.....we were seated in the conservatory room, as requested, to celebrate my husband’s birthday. So romantic! My husband had the filet mignon with bone marrow. I had the daily surf and turf special.....petite filet mignon with a colossal shrimp and bone marrow. The shrimp was like a mini lobster tail! Everything was cooked to perfection! The conservatory room is absolutely beautiful! Waitress was very friendly, but a little forgetful. They gave my husband a free socher torte dessert for his birthday and we also were able to use our 20% off coupon, which he received for his birthday. Would highly recommend this place!
This is an amazing restaurant for special occasions. From the moment you walk in the door, they make you feel like you are the sole patron in the restaurant. The food is over the top.. Cannot wait to return
Very old school establishment with lots of old character for restaurant that has evolved over decades changing nothing. Very kitchy restaurant with several different rooms. The type of restaurant where nothing changes decade after decade weather good or bad. Heavier delivery of seafood items, and most frustrating to Monterey Bay very difficult do find seafood that actually comes from local waters. Service was very friendly - ate late at bar. Food was heavily salted and lacked the kind of Cal cuisine many customers expect today vs. fried sauced preparation of yesteryear. Good experience, high price point for quality of experience, just understand expectations.
Beautiful lounge with a glass dome but unfortunately quite cold in the evening. Good food on the pricey side. Best Abalone I’ve ever had. For people who do not like fish, the meat dishes are excellent. Service is very good.
Would definitely go back, but with warmer clothes in case the weather is still cool.
This was our first time and will definitely return when back in Monterey. The staff was very attentive , especially Nathan our waiter. I had the lobster ravioli , which was amazing and my husband had the filet medallions which was also yummy. The inside has so much character. We were in the garden room. I definitely recommend this place !
The food was out of this world. I have been to the Sardine Factory many times, but the group I was with had not been in many years. I knew that I wanted the sanddabs and they did not disappoint. Out of this world. Oysters on the half shell to start. Just an awesome experience if you are anywhere in the Monterey area.
The Sardine Factory needs a good overhaul. It is still expensive, but the quality has diminished. The waiter was awful; impatient, inattentive and slow. Disappointing for sure!
My wife and I spent our 6th Year Wedding Anniversary and it was satisfactory. My wife was very pleased with her food which was the Rib Eye Au Jus and lobster tail. On the other hand, I was very disappointed in my 16 oz rib eye and baked bone marrow, I asked for medium rare and they made it very well done and very salty! I wish I had better things to say about the Sardine Factory but my personal experience was a bad one. Thank you trying...
Excellent gem in Monterey!
My Wife's B Day
We were pleasantly surprised at how nice and bright this restaurant was because when we entered d door, d restaurant was really dark.
Ordered abolone Bisque (salty cream soup with a lot of tiny bits which may or may not be abolone cos you cannot tell! + more than a hint of alcohol in d soup) , Lobster Mac & Cheese (was ok), Prime Rib (VERY peppery, so if you cannot take spicy food, not a good idea) with Baked Potato & Seared Scallops on Corn Polenta (there’s some heat to this dish too, but ok overall). For dessert, we ordered d chocolate bonbons cos our son likes d novelty of d dry ice.
Service was much better than the food in general.
The greeting from the minute we walked through the door to the time we left was exceptionally welcoming. The host Don was great to meet as was all the staff. The food was fantastic with a great variety. The wine list has so many at such varying prices made it something for everyone.
We only visited it due to seeing the Rick Stein program about california and were not disappointed.
On our list to revisit next time we are in the area.
My wife and I have been to the Sardine Factory on several occasions, birthdays, anniversaries, etc. We especially love the Captains Room with a table in front of the fireplace. Our last time was May 16th for my birthday. We were the only ones in the Captains Room, a private dining experience. Excellent.
Felix’s attention to detail and service was wonderful! The food was beyond spectacular. I highly recommend the rack of lamb, but my sister-in-law would tell you to order the filet mignon medallions. Previous experiences there have been even more memorable, with a talented and informed sommelier and a great place for group business dinners. My only comment was that the assistant did not seem to know to clear the menus, when to top the water, or how to clear plates. We had to call him back to take them from all of us, not just one person.
Highly recommend...charming elegant formal dining. Lovely Atrium seating, service was perfectly attentive. But slightly disappointed in the food. It was good, but could be, and should be better. But overall evening was wonderful.