About Shadowbrook Restaurant Capitola

1750 Wharf Rd.
Capitola, CA 95010
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In Capitola-by-the-Sea, beside lush Soquel Creek just before it empties into the Monterey bay, Shadowbrook is best reached by its own quaint, hillside 'cable car' or the meandering garden path alongside waterfalls, ferns and flowers. For over 60 years, Shadowbrook has been famous its for fine food, wine and liqueurs served in an atmosphere of Old World charm and grace. Now, better then ever, Shadowbrook is perfect for any special occasion...or for no occasion at all.

Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
American, Steak, Seafood

Hours of Operation:
Winter Dining Hours: Mon-Fri 5:00pm-8:45pm Sat 4:30pm-9:30pm Sun 4:30pm-8:45pm Winter Rockroom Bar Menu Available: Mon-Sat 4:00pm-10:00pm Sunday 2:30pm-10:00pm

Cross Street:
Capitola Rd.

Dress Code:
Business Casual

Price Range:
$30 and under

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

Phone Number:
(831) 475-1511

Website:
http://www.shadowbrook-capitola.com/

Entertainment:
Live music in the Rock Room Lounge Friday and Saturday nights.

Catering:
The Shadowbrook has an in-house pastry department for banquet, wedding, or special occasion needs. For more information please call Allyson at 831-475-1222.

Parking Details:
Three private lots with complimentary parking for guests; disabled parking spaces available.

Executive Chef:
Roger Gowen

Private Party Facilities:
Shadowbrook's four private dining rooms are the perfect location for evening special events, receptions, and weddings for groups of 10 to 100.

Private Party Contact:
Stephanie: 8314751222x

Additional:
Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Entertainment, Fireplace, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Special Events & Promotions:
Mention to us that it is your birthday and receive a complimentary ice cream sundae.

Restaurant Photos

Shadowbrook Restaurant Capitola Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.7

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.5

service

4.7

ambience

4.8

noise

Moderate

97% would recommend it to a friend

Loved For

Best Ambiance
San Francisco Bay Area
Romantic
San Francisco Bay Area
Scenic View
San Francisco Bay Area
11 More
Special Occasion
San Francisco Bay Area
American
San Francisco Bay Area
Best Overall
Santa Cruz / Capitola / Aptos
Best Food
Santa Cruz / Capitola / Aptos
Best Service
Santa Cruz / Capitola / Aptos
Best Ambiance
Santa Cruz / Capitola / Aptos
Best Value
Santa Cruz / Capitola / Aptos
Neighborhood Gem
Santa Cruz / Capitola / Aptos
Romantic
Santa Cruz / Capitola / Aptos
Special Occasion
Santa Cruz / Capitola / Aptos
Most Booked
Santa Cruz / Capitola / Aptos
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fit for foodies (176)
neighborhood gem (158)
great for outdoor dining (144)
good for groups (124)
notable wine list (105)
vibrant bar scene (68)
kid-friendly (44)
great for brunch (44)
hot spot (41)
great for lunch (33)
late-night find (21)
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Newest
4508 reviews
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food3
ambience4
service4

Petrole sole overcooked.

Dined 3 days ago

Petrole sole overcooked.

food5
ambience5
service5

Food and atmosphere was great

Dined 5 days ago

Food and atmosphere was great

food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Worth the money!

Dined 7 days ago

Shadowbrook is the perfect place for a night to treat oneself. My husband and I took a two week road trip of California for our honeymoon and this was our FAVORITE spot! Both of us thoroughly enjoyed the filet mignon and had some fabulous red wine to accompany. Our server was polite and attentive as well. We had an amazing time and recommend this spot to any couple looking for a romantic night out!

Tags: romantic, special occasion, scenic view, notable wine list
food2
ambience5
service4
value3

So-so experience

Dined 7 days ago

We frequent Shadowbrook several times a year and our experiences are usually very positive. This last experience was awful! We usually start with the portabello fries and this time they were cut so wide it was laughable! They were still very good,but we had 3 in the basket, 3 HUGE slices! They each should have been cut in half! Nothing like a "fry" as they should have been. I ordered the teriyaki tofu. I didn't realize they have 2 different teriyaki tofu items on the menu. I specified I did NOT want the tofu teriyaki bowl. Unfortunately, that is what showed up. It was TERRIBLE! Way too much ginger and the noodles were floating in teriyaki sauce. I should have sent it back,but thought I would give it a try. I was barely able to choke down the tofu and some of the noodles. We should have stopped there,but we ordered dessert. I tried the bread pudding. Tasteless and mushy. Not sure where the regular chef was,but he wasn't in the kitchen. Not sure we will head back anytime soon. Too bad as we really like to drop in for a quick bite when we are in the area.

food2
ambience3
service5
value3

I was a little disappointed. The scallop ...

Dined on May 22, 2016

I was a little disappointed. The scallops were flavorless and we didn't like the sweet source on the lamb. Clam chowder was good but is never go back to shadowbrook. It's also seemed like some of the staff was trying to get us to leave. We were only there until about 10... It wasn't a high-class restaurant feel. It should have been for the price of the food.

Tags: good for groups
food5
ambience5
service4
value5

I loved this place. The shuttle pick-up ...

Dined on May 22, 2016

I loved this place. The shuttle pick-up service started the whole evening off with a unique and very personable touch. Walking down the garden path was super romantic. The live music in the lounge was great. Reception made sure to get the best table in the Garden Room for us. The food was outstanding, from wine to appetizers to entrees to dessert. And then the tram ride back up to the lot and to our waiting car capped off the whole fairy tale evening.

Tags: great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Always a wonderful time!

Dined on May 22, 2016

Most beautiful and memorable higher end dinning experience in Santa Cruz. The food is really wonderful, quality, fresh ingredients, and nicely thought out menu. It can get a little lively at dinner time but so worth it!

Tags: great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view
food5
ambience5
service4
value4

We have been to Shadowbrook many times, ...

Dined on May 22, 2016

We have been to Shadowbrook many times, this was our best experience. Nice when a location continue to improve! Our waiter, Cassidy has been there 22 yrs and was truly excellent. He made the evening even more special than it already was!

Tags: great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Server and service was great. The Shadow ...

Dined on May 21, 2016

Server and service was great. The Shadowbrook shuttle picked us up, which was great and the driver was awesome!

Tags: great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view, vibrant bar scene
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Standout Restaurant

Dined on May 20, 2016

I eat out quite a bit, but this restaurant is a standout! This restaurant is uniquely positioned with it's ambiance and vibe. There's none like it. This was my 5th or 6th visit and the service and food are always exceptional. I recommend making a reservation as it can get very busy. The perfect place for a special occasion or just a beautiful experience. I'll be back.

Tags: great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem
food3
ambience4
service2
value2

$1.50 extra for a martini straight up?

Dined on May 20, 2016

Food was good, but I was surprised that I was charged an extra $1.50 for a martini straight up. The waitress never mentioned the extra charge when I ordered.

food5
ambience4
service5
value5

We loved the scenery on our way to the e ...

Dined on May 19, 2016

We loved the scenery on our way to the entrance. Our view during our dinner was green & gorgeous! The food was so delicious & can't wait to go back to try the rest of the food

Tags: good for groups, romantic, special occasion, scenic view, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

WONDERFUL EXPERIENCE!!!! Everything was ...

Dined on May 19, 2016

WONDERFUL EXPERIENCE!!!! Everything was great - food, service, ambience, location. I would and have always recommended "Shadowbrook" to all my friends and family members and I truly find it an unforgettable experience. This is one of the most unique restaurants I have been to throughout the country.

Tags: kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, scenic view, neighborhood gem, hot spot
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Meal was outstanding but with the elevat ...

Dined on May 17, 2016

Meal was outstanding but with the elevator broken, the walk up and down the stairs was extremely difficult.

Tags: romantic, special occasion, scenic view, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Everything was great !

Dined on May 17, 2016

The only thing that wasn't good was walking my wife's 87 year old grandmother up 67 stairs. Keep that in mind if the Gondola breaks down . Food was awesome , service was even better. Great scenic views for photos . Definitely will go back, maybe without grandma .

Tags: kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, scenic view, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

I came Shadowbrook for my birthday with ...

Dined on May 16, 2016

I came Shadowbrook for my birthday with my son. We had a wonderful time. The food was delicious! Dessert was amazing!! Service Was great!

Tags: special occasion, scenic view
food2
ambience4
service4
value2

This was my third time here. First time ...

Dined on May 16, 2016

This was my third time here. First time the prime rib was amazing. Second time ordered prime rib MR don't think it was cooked come out gray and raw sent it back. Third visit ordered the ribeye MR came out MW and cut into strips. Who cuts a rib eye into strips? Didn't bother sending it back just wanted to leave. Very disappointed the last two times. Had better prime rib and rib eye at the Outback and cheaper. Don't think I will try a fourth time.

food5
ambience5
service5
value4

I travel around the country quite often ...

Dined on May 15, 2016

I travel around the country quite often for business. I am treated to some very nice restaurants by clients and business partners. Shadowbrook exceeded my expectations in every way. My wife and I celebrated our birthdays at the Shadowbrook because we had always admired the grounds from across the creek in Capitola. Excellent service, food and ambiance. Maybe the best romantic restaurant we have ever had the pleasure of visiting. We will be back.

Tags: great for brunch, fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, scenic view
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Lovely's birthday

Dined on May 15, 2016

Shadowbrook is one of those special restaurants that never fails to deliver wonderful ambiance and food every time. How can you not like a restaurant that has gardens along the pathway down and a cable car for the ride back up? Our table and view, along with our service was great. I'd highly recommend this restaurant.

Tags: romantic, special occasion, scenic view, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Always a Great Choice

Dined on May 14, 2016

My husband and I have been coming here for years..while dating, as newlyweds and now on our 29 th anniversary. We also come with family to celebrate. Every time we have come the staff have been great and the food delicious. The restaurant is charming and the grounds beautiful. Because the cost is a bit pricey it is not a restaurant to visit often.

Tags: romantic, special occasion, scenic view
food3
ambience2
service3
value2

Stuck in the 70's

Dined on May 14, 2016

Parking is a challenge, I'm sure the locals who go there use UBER or a cab, it looked like the restaurant might even have their own? The funicular is kind of fun, but riding down we were squeezed in pretty tight and you are on your own, no restaurant employee was present - kind of strange and a little dangerous. I am a wine rep and have been for over 10 years, so I deal with restaurants and dine in them all the time. I thought the wine list was way over priced end to end and uninspired. It looks like the kind of list somebody put together five years ago and then time forgot. Which leads to the décor, everything was dated and faded, this place badly needs a makeover. The food was OK, I had Wellington and the filet was tough, but the sauce and vegetables were good. My wife had a pork chop, it was very tender and had good flavor, but her rice was kind of weird. The cheese cake was probably the best thing we ate. Service was OK, we were not in a hurry, so that everything being a little slow was fine. There were a bunch of large groups around us and they were pretty loud, adding to the din coming out of the bar from some old hippy guy literally howling like a dog. Dinner for two, with two glasses of wine, and a shared desert and tip came in right around $150. I thought it was a value of closer to $110.

Tags: good for groups, great for outdoor dining, vibrant bar scene
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

Wait Time for Food

Dined on May 14, 2016

Would have rated "SERVICE" outstanding if it were not for the excessive time from ordering to being served! (45 minutes plus). Chicken entree was too well done---very dry! Advised "Chris", our waiter, and meal was dedu cted from bill.

Tags: special occasion, scenic view
food2
ambience4
service4
value1

Not as impressed as I was years ago. To ...

Dined on May 14, 2016

Not as impressed as I was years ago. Too expensive for the quality of the food. It's historic and that is cool, maybe I would try the bar instead.

food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Been coming here for years. Always great ...

Dined on May 14, 2016

Been coming here for years. Always great service and great food. You won't be disappointed.

Tags: great for brunch, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
food2
ambience4
service4
value2

We ordered the Prime Rib special. The me ...

Dined on May 14, 2016

We ordered the Prime Rib special. The meat was tough. Lots of membrane. We ordered medium rare to rare. The meat was medium. The service was very good, I have eaten at the Shadow brook since the fifties I think they need a new Cook.

Tags: romantic, scenic view, vibrant bar scene
food4
ambience5
service4
value4

Excellent except for the bar

Dined on May 13, 2016

The only slight drawback to an otherwise wonderful dining experience was an understaffed bar. It was not crowded but the poor waitress was overwhelmed. The waiter at dinner was great and everything else was smooth and enjoyable. We'll be back

Tags: great for brunch, romantic, special occasion, scenic view
food4
ambience5
service4
value4

It is very hard to beat the atmosphere s ...

vip
Dined on May 12, 2016

It is very hard to beat the atmosphere starting with the tram down the hill. My wife and I were here about 16 years ago on our honeymoon and were looking forward to our dinner here. But, we were a bit disappointed in that sauces seem to be the thing. My wife had the salmon with a very thick cream sauce and the string beans were not cooked. I had the lamb with again a very thick sauce that overpowered the meat. We just wish that the food would have been as good as the ambiance.

Tags: great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion
food2
ambience4
service3
value1

Shadowbrook

Dined on May 12, 2016

The use of herbs masks the savory taste that is inherent in the food rather than complementing the flavor. This has been a gradual trend over the past few years which makes one wonder if it is the result of a chef change or simply a decision to go in that direction. For example -trout is a delicate entrée that doesn't need the flavor masked by herbs or spices. If I go there again it would be for the setting not the food considering the pricey menu. The half price wine of local wineries is a good option that should be continued but bring back the good food flavor.

Tags: romantic, scenic view
food5
ambience5
service5

We went to Shadowbrook with two other co ...

Dined on May 12, 2016

We went to Shadowbrook with two other couples as a reunion of long time friends. We had delicious cocktails in the bar and our bartender happily took pictures of us to document our get together. We were shown to a very nice table with creek views though it was a bit dark in the corner. The meals were delicious- prime rib, blackened lamb, beef Wellington, campanelle pasta with seafood, and fillet mignon. The oysters Rockefeller were delicious. Service was excellent. Our wine - a Bargetto Zinfandel- was perfectly delicious! We shared desserts: mud pie, bread pudding and molten chocolate. I liked the chocolate one the best. It was warm and soft and so 'chocolatey'! We will return for any special occasion or just to have a lovely dinner.

food5
ambience5
service5
value5

An amazing fine dining restaurant! The s ...

Dined on May 11, 2016

An amazing fine dining restaurant! The service was outstanding from the get-go, the food was amazing through and through, the cable car down to the restaurant was such a cute perk! Definitely a place to visit while in the area!

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, scenic view, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

30th anniversary dinner

Dined on May 11, 2016

We were so pleasantly surprised by how wonderful this dining experience was. It was our 30th wedding anniversary. We are looking forward to coming back next time we are in the area. It is a 10 out of 10.

Tags: good for groups, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem
food4
ambience5
service5

There is no lovelier setting

vip
Dined on May 11, 2016

There is no lovelier setting

food4
ambience5
service5

Great time - took college kids who don't ...

Dined on May 10, 2016

Great time - took college kids who don't get out much, but they all pulled together business casual to get in! Tram ride down set one for a great night!

food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Excellent overall Excellent overall Exce ...

Dined on May 10, 2016

Excellent overall Excellent overall Excellent overall Excellent overall

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, scenic view
food4
ambience5
service4
value4

Finally got there

Dined on May 8, 2016

This is one of the restaurants that has been on my bucket list forever. My wife suggested we go there for Mother's day and I made reservations. Great place, easy parking and the funicular that takes you down to the restaurant is unique. Place was very busy and somewhat noisy but it was Mother's day. That said, our table was great and my wife loved her salmon dish. We now live on the Peninsula so it is a bit of drive, if I lived closer we would be going back this weekend.

Tags: romantic, special occasion, scenic view
food2
ambience5
service4
value2

Delightful ambiance

Dined on May 8, 2016

Been here many times over the years. Worth a trip, especially for special occasions. Unfortunately, food not as good as the setting. 6 of us, and only meal that got a thumbs up was the Oso Bucco. Filets had to be sent back as rare request came out well done. Gnocchi were hard pellets. Scallops were served in a thick sauce that could have been made for biscuits and gravy. Brussel sprouts were swimming in oil. Cocktails were GREAT as were crepes for dessert. Service with Matthew was excellent. Go for the setting. Stick to the simplest things on menu. Heartbroken that the lemon rolls are no longer on the Sunday brunch menu.

Tags: romantic, special occasion, scenic view, vibrant bar scene
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

fantastic experience

Dined on May 7, 2016

Great Experience. Beautiful setting, attentive and friendly staff, amazing wine list and incredible food. A memorable evening.

Tags: romantic, special occasion, scenic view, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
food4
ambience5
service5
value3

Picturesque.

Dined on May 7, 2016

Beautiful setting and charming dining rooms. Good music also provided on Friday nights. Excellent service in both bar and restaurant.

Tags: romantic, special occasion, scenic view, vibrant bar scene
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

It was lovely and the food was superb.

Dined on May 7, 2016

The view and ambiance were wonderful, the food was delectable. I highly recommend the deep fried artichoke appetizer!

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view
food5
ambience5
service4
value4

Great food & wine venue for a special occasion

Dined on May 6, 2016

Food has improved significantly over the last couple of years. Now the food rivals the amazing views & ambiance. Nice wine list featuring the excellent local wines & a beer list that's also using local brews

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list

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