We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Improve this listing
Map
Satellite
Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
Your filters are still active.
There are no pins in your viewport. Try moving the map or changing your filters.
Get directions
740 Front St Ste 100, Santa Cruz, CA 95060-4536 (Cooper street)
Metro bus station 1 block away.
(831) 458-1212
Website
Today
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Closed now
See all hours
Hours:
Sun - Sat 11:30 am - 2:30 pm
5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, Reservations
Description: Old world charm in the heart of Santa Cruz, authentic Italian cuisine with...
Old world charm in the heart of Santa Cruz, authentic Italian cuisine with an extensive wine list and a full bar. Open for lunch and dinner as well as brunch on weekends. Ample public parking.
read more

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 63 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 37
    Excellent
  • 18
    Very good
  • 4
    Average
  • 1
    Poor
  • 3
    Terrible
Rating summary
  • Food
    4.5 of 5 stars
    Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
    Atmosphere
    4.5 of 5 stars
Best Restaurant in Santa Cruz!

My wife and I have been going to Cafe Mare with our friends and family for years and every time it just gets better. We live about 2.5 hours away from Santa Cruz and sometimes we make the trip just to eat there. Their food is outstanding and the portions are perfect- not too much and not too... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed May 26, 2015
College C
Add Photo Write a Review

63 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 26, 2015

My wife and I have been going to Cafe Mare with our friends and family for years and every time it just gets better. We live about 2.5 hours away from Santa Cruz and sometimes we make the trip just to eat there. Their food is outstanding and the portions are perfect- not too much and not too little. The... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
Santa Clara, California
Top Contributor
252 reviews 252 reviews
170 restaurant reviews
95 helpful votes 95 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 14, 2015

The salad was average, but looks good. The Keoke coffee was disappointing, and the Walnut Ravioli was good, but too much of that rich sauce...Not in a hurry to get back. The regular coffee was not warm enough either. Not in a hurry to go back.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Santa Cruz, California
Top Contributor
66 reviews 66 reviews
31 restaurant reviews
60 helpful votes 60 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2015

If Cafe Mare were in a upscale neighborhood it would be the hottest place in town. Their food is seasonal, fresh, and inventive. The chef is really quite good. The wine list has a lot of Italian and local gems on it, fairly priced. The service really excels here, all the wait staff are professionals, knowledgable and attentive. The downtown... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
Chicago, Illinois
Top Contributor
105 reviews 105 reviews
61 restaurant reviews
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2015

Do not go if you are starving, but relax and have a nice meal. I had the seafood ravioli in their butter sage sauce. You have to ask for this sauce, because it is not on the menu. A friend told me about it. Loved it, but I would want far less sauce. If I have it again, I would... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
Santa Cruz
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
32 restaurant reviews
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 7, 2015

I wasn’t going to say anything about our bad experience at Cafe Mare, but then we had such a fantastic experience at Ristorante Avanti on Valentine’s Day, that I now think it would be good to let others know. We were suddenly unexpectedly home in Santa Cruz on either Christmas eve or Christmas day evening, and wanted to go out... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Top Contributor
111 reviews 111 reviews
79 restaurant reviews
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 15, 2015

Cafe Mare (pronounced MAH-ray) is located at the intersection of Front Street and Cooper Street in downtown Santa Cruz. White linen tablecloths, votive candles and fresh flowers make this a romantic dining spot. A fringe of icicle twinkle lights decorates a bank of windows that looks out onto Pacific Avenue. An Italian dictionary will help you figure out how to... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
Top Contributor
62 reviews 62 reviews
57 restaurant reviews
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 22, 2015

I got a very good carpaccio, delicious lamb, very good wine! Everything was very good, including a very friendly service!

Was this review helpful? Yes
Capitola, California
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 26, 2014

Great Italian food! My favorite in Santa Cruz. I love that it is great food and great service every time. There is never a wait and time is everything these days. The best part is the Gelato, the best around!!

Was this review helpful? Yes
Lafayette, Ca
Top Contributor
82 reviews 82 reviews
45 restaurant reviews
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 26, 2014

the food was sorta OK. The service was good. The special filet mignon pasta was not worth the price. The noodles had been microwaved, I guess, as completely dried out and the sauce was not really present. I felt ripped off for a bad meal.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Stroud, United Kingdom
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 15, 2014 via mobile

Upon arrival to the restaurant on Thursday evening, we were welcomed by Adrian ( the tall gentleman) who in my opinion is the best waiter in California. He is very charismatic and with a passion to offer a great customer service. He looked after us very well and made our last evening in Santa Cruz very special. The spaguetty with... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Travelers who viewed Cafe Mare also viewed

 

Been to Cafe Mare? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Register now for free — and start getting automatic notification of new reviews, responding to traveler feedback, adding new photos to your listing and much more.

Manage your listing
Improve this listing

Restaurant Details

Location and Contact Information

  • Address: 740 Front St Ste 100, Santa Cruz, CA 95060-4536
    (Cooper street)
  • Public Transportation: Metro bus station 1 block away.
  • Location: United States  >  California (CA)  >  Santa Cruz
  • Phone Number: (831) 458-1212

Price and Cuisine

  • Average Prices: USD 31 - 50
  • Cuisine: Italian

Restaurant Characteristics

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant

Description

Old world charm in the heart of Santa Cruz, authentic Italian cuisine with an extensive wine list and a full bar. Open for lunch and dinner as well as brunch on weekends. Ample public parking.
Open Hours
Sunday
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Monday
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Tuesday
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Wednesday
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Thursday
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Friday
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Saturday
11:30 am - 2:30 pm
5:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from Cafe Mare staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?