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Ocean Ave, Monte Verde St, Carmel, CA 93921
(831) 624-4395
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Ranked #10 of 152 restaurants in Carmel
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Price range: $20 - $35
Cuisines: Mediterranean
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Romance, Doing business, Outdoor seating
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Dining style: Casual Dining
Description: In Italian, PortaBella means beautiful door.In Carmel, it's a threshold well worth crossing.During the day, passerby on Ocean Avenue are lured in by the sight of diners happily engaged in food and conversation on the picturesque flagstone patio. At night, heady aromas and laughter waft innocuously out the famed front door each time it is opened.Once inside, you're instantly transported to the sun countries of the Mediterranean with "La Cuisine du Soleil."Inspired by regional dishes, the menu takes you on a gustatory tour of Italy, Southern France and Spain, complemented by a wine list offering an excellent selection of California wines.
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254 reviews from our community

81% Recommend
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Atlanta, Georgia
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 23, 2014

Summary: Quaint restaurant with multiple interior and exterior seating opportunities, great location on Ocean Ave. across from the Pine Street Inn. Moderately priced food, well intentioned and friendly but slightly forgetful staff, descent wine selections. Child and dog friendly. Manager very friendly and accommodating to our group. Stopped here for a quick afternoon lunch with other family members. Service was... More

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Morgan Hill, California
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2014

Called day before to make reservations. Once arrived we were greeted with the most gracious host. He couldn't have made us feel more welcomed, almost as if he were waiting upon our arrival. Although we were very early he sat us immediately. Our server was attentive and helpful with all our questions and assured our decisions with great delight. And... More

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Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2014

We had a wonderful meal in this restaurant last week. The paella was outstanding, with lots of lovely seafood morsels, chicken and sausage. Mmmm. Our waiter was perfectly attentive.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Paradise Valley, Arizona, United States
Top Contributor
95 reviews 95 reviews
63 restaurant reviews
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2014

Four of us had lunch and my friends and I were disappointed in our Caesar salads with shrimp. Dressing was tasteless and more if an oil rather than an anchovy taste. Owner is an attentive, friendly gentleman who has a great location in Ocean Ave with cobalt blue table linens and glassware that attracts passer-byes. Patio in the back is... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Santa Barbara, CA
Top Contributor
105 reviews 105 reviews
78 restaurant reviews
53 helpful votes 53 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 14, 2014 via mobile

We have strolled past this restaurant for years and always thought the tiny, lower level patio and small entry housed a very petite restaurant which would take forever to get a good table. I love corn chowder and crab chowder & when I checked the menu on TA & saw their special soup was crab and corn bisque, we had... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
4 reviews 4 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2014

Went with my wife for dinner at Portabella. Great location on Ocean Ave: nice cozy place, were greeted warmly by the manager. However the food lacks decorum. Completely bland. If they only seasoned with salt and pepper and delivered on recipes. The corn/crab bisque was bland. The scampi fra diavolo was tasteless and had no spice. The people next to... More

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Sydney, Australia
13 reviews 13 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2014 via mobile

Travelling with friends who dine here regularly. Was impressed by the service and attention given by staff. I had the seared scallops and prawns with citrus salad as a starter followed by the grilled salmon that was cooked to perfection. My wife had bruschetta followed by the chicken pita which she thoroughly enjoyed. Nice cosy feeling. Would recommend.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
El Dorado Hills, California
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2014

Indoor & outdoor seating. Customer service was the best we have experenced in years - anywhere. Had the corn & lobster bisque - their signature soup - not to be missed. Ceasar salad was fresh and tasty. My wife and I split the fillet & prawn special. She had the prawns and I had the fillet - it was cooked... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Tri Cities, TN
Top Contributor
55 reviews 55 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2014

We had lunch at Portabella. After having excellent meals in San Fran I suppose we were a little spoiled. Salads at Portabella were just Ok-- closer to bland. Soups were Ok, but the bowls are TINY for the price. Think one actual measuring cup size for $7-10. I am usually not picky if the food is good, but for average... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Beverly Hills, California
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 4, 2014

I really enjoyed the atmosphere here, very warm and inviting. Lovely little pool in the garden. The service was good. I had a simple green salad that was fresh and tasty. The crab bisque was to die for. The shrimp pasta was good, maybe not fantastic, but good. My husband had the halibut, and it was a bit dry. I... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1

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