Waterboy

4.5
2369 reviews
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$30 and under
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French American
Top Tags:
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Special Occasion
  • Neighborhood Gem

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About

Our Goal at The Waterboy is to provide you with a wonderful dining experience. Taking inspiration from the cuisines of southern France and northern Italy, we feature a new menu every month to take full advantage of our local, seasonal ingredients. Our menu features naturally raised meats, local organic produce and freshly baked breads. Along with great service and a terrific, reasonably priced wine list, we think you will be quite pleased with a visit to The Waterboy.

Dining Style
Fine Dining
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Cuisines
French American, Italian, Californian
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Hours of operation
Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 2:30pm; Dinner: Sunday - Monday: 5:00pm - 9:00pm, Tuesday - Wednesday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:30pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:30pm

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Phone number
(916) 498-9891
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Payment options
AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Smart Casual
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Executive chef
Rick Mahan
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
20th
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Parking details
There is a small parking lot behind the building, as well as ample street parking on block.
Additional
Bar Dining, Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 2369 People Are SayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
4.5based on all time ratings
4.6
food
4.6
service
4.2
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
97% of people would recommend it to a friend
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5.0Dined on October 7, 2017

Fresh seasonal ingredients. excellent seasoning and perfectly cooked items. Outstanding service. None better in Sacramento.

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5.0Dined on October 3, 2017

This is my favorite restaurant in Sacramento. You can count on the quality and service. They also have excellent wine. Great desserts too. Very consistent. This is a great place for a long lunch or dinner. You do not want to rush this experience. Sophisticated.

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5.0Dined on September 29, 2017

still a GEM among venues anywhere Blessed it is in Sacramento
Can always bring guests here & get rave reviews

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5.0Dined on September 28, 2017

One of my favorite places to dine lunch or dinner. Farm to Fork wonderful!

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5.0Dined on September 26, 2017

Three of us had the halibut and it was perfectly cooked; the accompanying corn and tomato butter were tasty. The fourth person in our group had the "picnic special" and enjoyed that as well.

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5.0Dined on September 25, 2017

In Sacramento on business for a few days and discovered this gem. If we lived here, this would become our place. Engaging menu and all around special spot. The potato gratin is not to be missed. One of the best wine lists I've seen in quite awhile - including a nice selection of half bottles.

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5.0Dined on September 24, 2017

Delightful

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3.0Dined on September 24, 2017

Everything was great except for the service that evening. Our server, Naomi was absent most of the time and rarely seen on the floor. Thankfully the manager delivered our meals and another server assist us with our bill.
We normally have exceptional service unfortunately on this particular evening we didn't have a memorable experience.
We will go back because we love the restaurant and its changing menu.

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4.0Dined on September 23, 2017

The food was delicious and service was good, it will definitely be on my list again!

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5.0Dined on September 23, 2017

Best meal out my husband and I have had in a long time. Food was superb and service was excellent!

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4.0Dined on September 23, 2017

two of us loved entire meals. two of us loved the salad and dessert but not impressed with the entree.

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4.0Dined on September 22, 2017

Elizabeth was an amazing server. We had a great time.

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5.0Dined on September 22, 2017

This was my second time coming here. The first experience was underwhelming. So it took a while to return. I'm glad I did as it was a lovely experience this time. It's not inexpensive but it's good. We had the cheese plate, Caesar salad, beer salad, Ahi tuna entree, and lamb and sausage entree. The cheese plate, Caesar, and lamb were the best dishes ordered. The beet salad was nice but had a slightly too sour dressing. So I didn't finish hat. The Ahi tuna pieces were very thick - a little difficult to cut and hence enjoy. The wine and beer options were very good. I'd have liked the Pinot noir to have been served in Pinot glasses. When these little things are the critiques, the place is good.

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5.0Dined on September 22, 2017

The food and service was excellent. The Chef came out and only greeted his regular customers. We would have loved to meet him and express our appreciation of the great flavors.

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5.0Dined on September 22, 2017

The food is excellent all the time. Use of fresh ingredients and creating wonderful flavors makes the Water Boy a top choice.

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5.0Dined on September 20, 2017

Waterboy is one of my favorite places. Menu & quality of food is always great. It was very loud making it very hard to have a business conversation.

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5.0Dined on September 16, 2017

Best restaurant in Sacramento...hands down.

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5.0Dined on September 16, 2017

It is always a pleasure dining at The Waterboy. The food, service were impeccable.

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4.0Dined on September 15, 2017

the food was good with the exception of my steak tartar. Instead of the usual and expected preparation it was served as three sliders. the "buns" of the sliders were the sort of pastry one might expect in a cream puff. The meat was not chopped finely enough and I had to ask for mustard since the preparation did not have any. I prefer grey pupon (spelling?) in it but the restaurant had only grainy French mustard. That was just OK. The fish was good and the caesar salad was good too. It was just the affectation with the steak tartar that turned me off.

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5.0Dined on September 14, 2017

Shared rabbit ravioli, skirt steak and profiteroles with a friend. An absolutely amazing lunch
enhanced by Marcella's always good cheer and advice and Rick actually delivering the
cappucino! Waterboy is my go-to place!

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5.0Dined on September 12, 2017

Outstanding service and excellent food prepared flawlessly.

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5.0Dined on September 12, 2017

Great reunion luncheon with girlfriends. Food and service were outstanding!

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4.0Dined on September 10, 2017

The food is great - the hot tomato soup without cream (!) was delicious. They give you a complimentary glass of champagne on celebrations. Love the ambiance with big plate glass windows and industrial pipes up above. We always try to guess what it was at one time. The service was excellent with a perfectly chosen glass of wine that paired well with dinner. The tables for two with banquette are a little small so you get a cramped feeling (and the possibility of knocking something over!), but not enough to detract from a great dining experience.

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4.0Dined on September 10, 2017

Waterboy is our favorite restaurant, hands down. Rick is a superb restauranteur, and we have always had a wonderful time and excellent food at Waterboy - and have been dining there for decades; however, on our most recent visit (9/10), we had (for us) a new server, and she was not all that engaged. It was hard to understand what she was saying, and even when we asked for clarification, it seemed as though she was not all that interested in providing a normally excellent serving experience at Waterboy. We will continue to dine there, and recommend it to friends, but we were frankly surprised at what several felt was a sort of disengaged server. It was puzzling.

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5.0Dined on September 9, 2017

The Waterboy never disappoints and this weekend's dinner was no exception! Great food and great staff! Thanks as always for a great night!

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5.0Dined on September 9, 2017

My husband and I celebrated his birthday with a weekend in Sacramento and had dinner Saturday night at Waterboy.
The food and service were both excellent. I had the pasta special (delicious) and my husband had the picnic plate, which he loved. We started with the yummy beet salad.
A great evening.

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3.0Dined on September 9, 2017

Went a few years ago and was very disappointed but keep seeing good reviews lately so thought we'd try it again. Sadly, should have trusted my gut and went somewhere else. Food was so so, even our server told us to avoid more than a few items on the menu. Duck, lamb and salmon were typical, good but definitely nothing special. Only item I'd order again would be oysters on the half shell. But then again they were nearly $20 for half dozen... so maybe not. Recommend you try Mulvaney or Locali for something worthy of $250 for 4 people.

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5.0Dined on September 8, 2017

One of the best restaurants in town when they opened 20 years ago. Owner Rick Mahan Is still hitting the mark of a casual dining experience, with the best and healthiest of ingredients, presented in a unique, creative and flavorful art form for the senses. Rick and his Chef Adam, continue to be consistent in their love of food preparation, unique ingredients, local and organic and presentation. These guys proved time and time again they love what they do and they want us to love it as well.…
From G mgr Kevin White to Marcella, best server in Midtown; and everyone else; everyone cares about your personalized dining experience from a to Z. Be good to yourself and don't miss out on this gem .

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4.0Dined on September 8, 2017

Came here for an anniversary dinner. Prices wasn’t too bad and the food was good.

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5.0Dined on September 7, 2017

Waterboy is by far our favorite Sacramento Restaurant. The service was really good--they pay attention but do not hover. Atmosphere sophisticated yet comfortable. Food outstanding seasonal ingredients. So very yummy!! Will go there again and again!!

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5.0Dined on September 3, 2017

Waterboy never fails to disappoint; the menu is seasonal and farm to fork. We love eating here during the week and weekend when visiting Sacramento. Wine list is interesting and includes local wineries.

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4.0Dined on September 2, 2017

Very loud but great food!

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4.0Dined on September 2, 2017

I am rating this an overall very good experience primarily due to the great work and attention of our server. She was very knowledgeable concerning the overall menu and specials and provided good suggestions to our party. Waterboy menu, in my opinion, is somewhat limited, portions are med/small and ingredients are simple (I assume farm to table approach). Food was nonetheless, attractively presented, hot and tasty. Cheesecake dessert was excellent.

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5.0Dined on September 1, 2017

The Waterboy has been our favorite since Rick Mahan opened years ago! He only gets better!! Staff is outstanding, helpful but not hovering! Food is luscious, seasonal and just the perfect portions! I recommend The Waterboy to everyone looking for a great restaurant even though I live in Reno, Nevada now. We still go for a perfect meal!!

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5.0Dined on September 1, 2017

Wonderful restaurant! One of my favorites. The chef keeps the menu fresh and cooked with love and care. This restaurant has style and character.

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5.0Dined on September 1, 2017

Unbelievable experience, supreme staff and the food was unique and delectable. Our family had a wonderful time!

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5.0Dined on September 1, 2017

Easily one of the top meals we've had in Sacramento. I highly recommend this place.

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5.0Dined on August 28, 2017

I wanted some place special for our anniversary, and we were not disappointed in any of the hype. Every staff member was kind and attentive (it was our anniversary, and they made just the right amount of fuss which was lovely but not overdone), the food was fantastic and plentiful, all the flavors were fresh and seasonal. It's definitely worth the splurge to come here to enjoy the experience! We had appetizer, main, and dessert, and I'd do that all again. Of course the glitch is that since they specialize in seasonal foods, we'll have to wait a year for this type of menu, but I'm excited to see what fall will bring for changes!

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5.0Dined on August 28, 2017

As expected, great drinks, service and food. We always enjoy our dinners at Waterboy whether it's special occasions or just a dinner out. Bartender Jordan and servers Courtney and Josh were wonderful!

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5.0Dined on August 28, 2017

It has been awhile since my last meal at Waterboy but it never disappoints! Fabulous meal- everything was wonderful, starting with the bruschetta to the hazelnut chocolate torte - not to mention the tuna, chicken and steak entrees! Awesome!

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