About Waterboy

2000 Capitol Avenue
Sacramento, CA 95814
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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

Cuisines:
French American, Italian, Californian

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

Cross Street:
20th

Dress Code:
Smart Casual

Price Range:
$30 and under

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

Phone Number:
(916) 498-9891

Website:
http://www.waterboyrestaurant.com/

Parking Details:
There is a small parking lot behind the building, as well as ample street parking on block.

Executive Chef:
Rick Mahan

Additional:
Bar Dining, Beer, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Restaurant Photos

Antipasto
Chicken Pot Pie "Coq Au Vin"
salted caramel pot de creme
Caesar Salad
Honey And Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta
Lamb Loin With Rosemary Noodles & Root Vegetable
steak tartare
Rick's Burger
Deviled Eggs
Mixed Grill (Lamb Chop, Chicken, House Made Pancetta)
Orange Blossom Honey Creme Brulee
Steak Frites
Vegetable Pot Pie
Risotto Verde
Cabernet Sauvignon
Bread and Butter
Rob Roy
Earl Grey Tea
Prosecco
Americano
coppa di testa
Wedge Of Iceburg Lettuce
Carrot Fennel Soup
Deviled Eggs With Shrimp
Blue Nose Sea Bass With Green Garlic Mashed Potatoes
frise salad
Waterboy Deluxe Burger
Lemonade
Bread Service
Beet Salad
Meyer Lemon Cake
Bittersweet Chocolate Torte
 Sausage  Bruschetta - Special
Risotto
Bollito Misto
Cassoulet
Green Garlic Soup
Raviolis
Fish and Chips
Ahi, Seared
Halibut, Daily Fish
Perfectly Mid Rare Ribeye
Strawberry Creme Cake
Kumamoto oysters
Ahi, Seared With Chard, Peas, And Yellow Carrots Finished With Salsa Verde
  Crème Brûlée
Scallops
Salted Cod
Sonoma Liberty Duck Two Ways: Grilled Breast & Crepinette Of Leg, Provencal Ratatouille, Crisp Potato Prune Gallette, Herb Jus

Waterboy Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.6

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.7

service

4.6

ambience

4.4

noise

Moderate

95% would recommend it to a friend

Loved For

Best Food
Sacramento / Sacramento Valley
Fit for Foodies
Sacramento / Sacramento Valley
Best Food
Sacramento
2 More
Best Value
Sacramento
Fit for Foodies
Sacramento
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fit for foodies (118)
special occasion (107)
neighborhood gem (71)
See All
romantic (53)
notable wine list (43)
great for lunch (36)
good for groups (24)
great for outdoor dining (18)
hot spot (11)
great for brunch (8)
scenic view (6)
late-night find (5)
kid-friendly (2)
vibrant bar scene (2)
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Newest
1765 reviews
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Was perfect in all respects, as expected ...

Dined 4 days ago

Was perfect in all respects, as expected and demonstrated in the past.

food5
ambience5
service5
value5

We went here for our 26th anniversary ce ...

Dined 5 days ago

We went here for our 26th anniversary celebration, and really enjoyed our meal and our server. They were both fantastic!

Tags: fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

Everything was perfect except the bar se ...

Dined 5 days ago

Everything was perfect except the bar seats and overall area is a little cramped. I would definitely recommend this place!!

Tags: fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

Excellent meal as always. Was kind of su ...

Dined 5 days ago

Excellent meal as always. Was kind of surprised that we didn't receive a glass of champagne to celebrate 29th anniversary. The couple next to us did receive champagne. Apparently they notified restaurant that they were celebrating a special occasion when they made their reservation. While we didn't do that we did tell our server and the hostess that we were celebrating our 29th. No champagne for me was not important but my wife would have appreciated it.

food4
ambience2
service3
value3

My husband and I went to the Waterboy on ...

Dined 5 days ago

My husband and I went to the Waterboy on a Saturday night just to try it out. There was great tasting food, I recommend he Caesar Salad as your First Course, it was amazing. The place is very small, also a little uncomfortable because you must sit so close to everyone and it feels as though the people at the next table can listen to your entire conversation. This was actually our experience. Both tables on each side of us were other couples (one couple in their 50's , the other in their 40's possibly) and as we were dining and leaving both couple made comments chiming into our conversation which was odd. It's a much older crowd and not much "color" (if you know what I mean). My husband and I are an interracial and young looking couple, so we felt almost like the elephant in the room in the crowd of grey and white hair. Dining was great, I suggest checking the menu before going to make your experience smoother. Drinks were also very great! The service at the Waterboy was very kind and catering to the guests needs and wants which is always great. For the younger crowds like mid 20's- late 30's, I would suggest Dinner as a date but not really a "meet with friends" kind of a place.

Tags: special occasion
food3
ambience4
service5
value2

Halibut was overcooked and dry, fish ste ...

vip
Dined 5 days ago

Halibut was overcooked and dry, fish stew was very good but skimpy on the fish/seafood for the price.

Tags: fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience5
service5

This is our favorite restaurant in town. ...

vip
Dined 6 days ago

This is our favorite restaurant in town. Always very special (and we have done the other 'elite' restaurants as well). We are always treated like we are just as special as anyone else, the food is outstanding, and the environment always takes us back to Paris without trying to be kitchy.

food5
ambience4
service5
value5

The food at Waterboy is always excellen ...

vip
Dined 6 days ago

The food at Waterboy is always excellent. They even put anchovies (optional) on their Caesar! Meats and seafood are always cooked to order perfectly and sauces are amazing. They have a good selection of wines by the glass as well as full and half-bottles. We have never had their desserts, but this time we were offered a chocolate suffle for dessert. Yum! The ambiance is quite nice--just not special enough to be termed "outstanding." We plan to return soon.

Tags: fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

If you are looking for a great dinning e ...

vip
Dined 7 days ago

If you are looking for a great dinning experience the water boy staff is,in my opinion, one of the best. I've been many places and this ranks in the top ten in the US.

food4
ambience4
service4
value4

The food, and the service were very nice ...

Dined on June 23, 2016

The food, and the service were very nice, more than adequate. My husband and I were celebrating our 35 wedding aniversary, but we didn't reveal that until close to the end of our meal. Everything was lovely. But, so was our dinner at another restaurant two days before when we celebrated my birthday. I didn't find Waterboy to be any better ( or worse) than the other elegant restaurant we went to. For my tastes in food and atmosphere, I will always choose ten22 in Old Sacramento everytime for our special occasions.

Tags: special occasion
food5
ambience4
service5

The Water Boy is a top notch restaurant. ...

Dined on June 22, 2016

The Water Boy is a top notch restaurant. The food was perfect. The service was spot on. My friend asked for a recommendation on red wine, we ordered the bottle and it was VERY GOOD wine.

food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Outstanding meal, excellent service, kno ...

vip
Dined on June 21, 2016

Outstanding meal, excellent service, knowledgeable staf!! We will be back. Thank you.

Tags: romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience5
service5
value3

Nice place with good food. Reserved for ...

Dined on June 19, 2016

Nice place with good food. Reserved for special occasions due to cost.

Tags: special occasion
food4
ambience3
service3
value3

Food was terrific, but would have prefer ...

Dined on June 19, 2016

Food was terrific, but would have preferred a little more attention from servers.

food5
ambience5
service5
value5

You can't go wrong with Waterboy . We sa ...

vip
Dined on June 17, 2016

You can't go wrong with Waterboy . We sat outside, and were the only people in the outdoor dining area. The food and service were well worth the price. Waterboy is the most consistently good restaurant in Sacramento. We've been going there for over 15 years, and Waterboy always delivers.

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

I always love coming to Waterboy, it nev ...

vip
Dined on June 15, 2016

I always love coming to Waterboy, it never disappoints. Many years ago I wouldn't have rated the service so high but the last few years I've been more than happy with the staff at Waterboy.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
food5
ambience4
service5
value3

It is so easy to overcook halibut but th ...

Dined on June 14, 2016

It is so easy to overcook halibut but the chef prepared it perfectly so that it fell apart with the touch of the fork and was delicious. The fish was on a bed of fresh vegetables, also perfectly cooked and I added a beet and green bean salad. At Waterboy you can always find a great meal for any food preference, light fare, vegetarian, savory steak, or pasta. The cafe style dining room is vibrant and the service excellent.

Tags: special occasion, neighborhood gem
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

We arrived and were immediately seated. ...

Dined on June 13, 2016

We arrived and were immediately seated. The restaurant was quiet and the staff energy was upbeat. From hostess to server to table service, everyone was attentive and not intrusive. Our server was familiar with the menu and helped us make selections that turned out to taste great. Dinner opened with a butter lettuce salad that was crisp, refreshing, and served with just the right amount of dressing. We both had seafood entrees, scallops and Halibut. The scallops and Halibut were cooked perfect, tender, and tasty. The service was wonderful. We look forward to dining at the Waterboy again soon.

Tags: fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience5
service5
value3

Waterboy has never let me down. It is my ...

Dined on June 12, 2016

Waterboy has never let me down. It is my go to restaurant when visitors come. The food is consistently high in quality and the servers are always professional yet affable. Will admit that it is their sweetbreads that keep me coming. They are divine.

Tags: fit for foodies, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Wonderful place!

Dined on June 9, 2016

Each and every time I dine at The Waterboy, I'm so pleased with the entire experience. Rick Mahan is a true gem: a superb chef and a gracious host who trains his staff well. The care that he takes to put delicious food on the table is only matched by the relaxed yet elegant ambiance and the attentive but not fussy (or hovering) staff. It is my favorite Sacramento restaurant and I would recommend it to anyone at any time.

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

Consistently outstanding

Dined on June 8, 2016

To me the mark of a great restauranr is to be able to consistently provide excellent food and service every dish, every night. Waterboy achieves that level. My wife have been coming here for a number of years. It is our favorite special occasion restaurant. We measure it against the top Sacramento restaurants, both the established restaurants and the newcomers. the Waterboy remains at the top of our list. The quality of the food, the service and knowledge of the servers, and the attention to detail are all there. Most importantly you are made to feel welcome. In addition we are partial to their style of cooking, which sets them apart. You know it is Waterboy. I seldom add comments but after our last meal there I was compelled to do so.

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion
food5
ambience4
service5

Meal, service, professionalism, all up a ...

Dined on June 5, 2016

Meal, service, professionalism, all up at the top. They make it look easy! After taking a haitus, Waterboy reappears at the top of my Best of Sacramento list

food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Excellent Meal

vip
Dined on June 5, 2016

My wife and I enjoyed an excellent meal. The salads and main courses tasted great and were well presented. The service was top notch as well as was the wine. We will be back.

Tags: fit for foodies, special occasion, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

A real find

Dined on June 4, 2016

Waterboy is hip, casual, bright, cheerful, the service is great and the food outstanding.

Tags: great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, hot spot
food4
ambience4
service3
value4

Good Food/Iffy Service

Dined on June 3, 2016

We have eaten at The Waterboy many times and always enjoyed it. The menu this time felt limited, like it hasn't changed in a while. Also the service was sloooow. What should have been a 2 hour get-together with friends stretched into 3 hours because of our inattentive server.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Mmmmm.

Dined on June 1, 2016

I tried to get reservations at Taylor's Kitchen but they are closed on Tuesdays. I told the lady at Taylors that I needed a recommendation for a place she admired. "Oh, hands down... Waterboy." I said, "Of Course." I have always enjoyed Waterboy and agree with the general consensus that it is Sacramento's best restaurant. In this case, it had simply fallen off my radar. My server said, "Oh, would you like your usual... on rocks?" My dinner partner and I felt at home again.

Tags: great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
food3
ambience4
service4
value3

Mixed experience

Dined on June 1, 2016

My wife and I both ordered the lamb, hers was excellent mine tasted like rubber. Everything else was good, well prepared and well presented

food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Maiali tonnato

vip
Dined on May 31, 2016

I had this dish for lunch last week and it was beyond wonderful. I will now eat ANYTHING that includes Ric's tonnato sauce!

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch
food5
ambience5
service5
value4

My favorite restaurant!

Dined on May 30, 2016

We've dined here several times, never a disappointing bite, and never a disappointing moment. We sat on the patio; the restaurant is situated on a quiet street within a very easy walk from mid-town. The seating is comfortable and the tables are well-spaced and not at all crowded. Our meals were wonderful. The flavors are subtle, rich, and intriguing. We ordered three appetizers to share: deviled eggs with shrimp, bruschetta with goat cheese, walnuts, and squash, and crostini. It was hard to pick a favorite--they were all excellent and piqued our appetites instead of quelling them (which is often what restaurant appetizers seem to do). Three of us ordered the same entree, filet that was marinated in some delectable concoction--I have no idea what it was, but it was delicious and tender. We all loved it. My daughter had scallops--one of my favorites from a previous visit. They were plump, juicy and cooked perfectly. We each ordered a different dessert and passed the plates for samples. We all agreed that the cheesecake was excellent and different, with a sesame seed cookie crust. We also loved the creme brulee, even our guest who usually doesn't like coconut. I asked the waitress to surprise me and bring her favorite dessert, it was a fruit dumpling with ice cream. It was everyone's favorite. We also shared sorbet, another winner. Sorry, I can't think of one negative comment to add. It was a spectacular meal.

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, neighborhood gem
food5
ambience5
service5

Consistently great food and service. Won ...

Dined on May 30, 2016

Consistently great food and service. Wonderful atmosphere!

food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Birthday gathering

Dined on May 28, 2016

My wife and I hosted four longtime friends for two birthday celebrations. Cocktails were very fine. We ordered multiple orders of three different appetizers and they were excellent in taste and presentation. We were forewarned on the menu that there would be a charge for bread on the table. The charge was reasonable and the bread was raved about by two guests. The lamb, scallops, skirt steak, and duck were very nice in quality and presentation. We had a bottle of cab that was good. If you want a really fine wine, you would be advised to bring your own. The $20.00 corkage fee was reasonable and next time I will bring my own wine. We declined the deserts, although they sounded fine, for we all elected to polish off our dinner with a visit to Vic's Ice Cream Parlor. The table service was exceptional...attentive and cordial without being overbearing. A fine experience and I would endorse a visit.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion
food5
ambience5
service5

Really great service and the food was de ...

Dined on May 26, 2016

Really great service and the food was delicious not to mention they had an excellent rose wine.

food5
ambience5
service5

Great menu, world class mixed drinks, am ...

vip
Dined on May 26, 2016

Great menu, world class mixed drinks, amazing ambiance, and a perfect wait staff.

food5
ambience5
service5
value5

This was the first time dining here and ...

Dined on May 25, 2016

This was the first time dining here and it was very good as I had been told.

Tags: good for groups, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

Fantastic! Salmon tartar was like a bit ...

Dined on May 22, 2016

Fantastic! Salmon tartar was like a bit of heaven.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

Great food and ambiance. I love that th ...

Dined on May 21, 2016

Great food and ambiance. I love that the chef uses almost all locally sourced products. It is always a wonderful dining experience.

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

One of Sacramento's finest!

Dined on May 16, 2016

One of Sacramento's finest!

food5
ambience4
service5
value4

The food and service was excellent. The ...

Dined on May 16, 2016

The food and service was excellent. The Sweetbreads were the highlight, but everything was delicious.

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
food5
ambience5
service4
value4

We have wanted to try Waterboy for quite ...

Dined on May 16, 2016

We have wanted to try Waterboy for quite awhile. We made reservations for a Sunday evening dinner and it did not disappoint. The food was wonderful. We ordered a pasta dish and broasted chicken...both dishes were excellent. For dessert we ordered pineapple cream brûlée which was also delicious. There were some interesting mixed drinks on the menu so we ordered a couple and liked them enough to get a second round. The atmosphere and service combined with great food and drinks is more than enough reason to go back again soon. Great spot!

Tags: fit for foodies, special occasion
food2
ambience4
service2
value2

The Waterboy is normally so perfect and ...

Dined on May 15, 2016

The Waterboy is normally so perfect and this time, not so. To start, our server was grumpy. In addition, the food was just meh and normally it is so on-point. I have been several times before so maybe this was just an off-day. We had the fritto misto, which did not have much flavor. The aioli it came with was almost gelatinous. We also had the Cesar salad, which had an overpowering taste of anchovies. I love anchovies and they are key in Cesar dressing, though this was off. I commented on this to the waitress, who said "It's been the same dressing for the past 20 years." They did take this off the bill later though which was appreciated. We had the scallops on a bed of mashed cannelini beans, pancceta, watercress, and mint. The presentation was basic (what a home cook would do) and so was the taste. Again, this was anomalous for The Waterboy so I will go again and hope this was an off night.

Tags: special occasion, notable wine list

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