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Steinbeck House

Certificate of Excellence
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132 Central Ave, Salinas, CA 93901-2651
(831) 424-2735
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
Closed now
All hours
Tue - Sat 11:30 am - 2:00 pm
More Info
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44 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Time of year
Showing 43: English reviews
Level Contributor
17 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 111 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Showcasing the produce that grows in the Salinas valley that John wrote about, this restaurant, serving cheap and delicious simple food, is staffed by cheerful volunteers. The food is only a small part of the attraction however - getting to look around, and eat in, the house where John Steinbeck grew up is the main draw. The upstairs part of... More 

Thank AJSardine
Conway, New Hampshire
Level Contributor
20 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2016

The group who runs the house and hosts the lunches and teas are knowledgable, welcoming, and full of fun Steinbeck trivia.

Thank FYoung06
Corona del Mar, California
Level Contributor
139 reviews
35 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 87 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2016

Fantastic volunteers, who are the servers, fantastic cook, lunch in Steinbeck's home. They close at 2:00, limited space for seating, so you should make reservations during busy lunch time, BUT, we got there at 1:20 and they were able to seat us, party of 3. Weekly food specials, but other items available. Desserts were great, too, we tried all 3... More 

1 Thank JeffBransford
Salinas, California, United States
Level Contributor
10 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 28, 2016

Enjoy a gourmet lunch served by gracious volunteers in a beautifully preserved historic setting. One of the best restaurants Salinas has to offer.

Thank Brigid M
San Francisco
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2016 via mobile

Stopped for lunch today and it was delicious. We had the tomato leek soup, caprese salad and manicotti. Home made rolls were very nice. The waitresses are volunteers and are sweethearts and the gratuities go toward the upkeep of the house which is beautiful!

Thank SanFranciscoJune-bug
San Jose, California
Level Contributor
311 reviews
184 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 89 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2016 via mobile

This is a must-see place when in Salinas. Run by warm and friendly volunteers, this birthplace of John Steinbeck is a wonderful backdrop for the lunches served here. The menus change weekly with just a few choices, but the food is always tasty and homespun. We had zucchini lasagne with tomato leek soup which were both good. We were the... More 

Thank 2butterfly
Level Contributor
32 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2016 via mobile

We drove through Salinas and just decided to stop in. We did not know the closing time was 2 pm, we came 1:55, and were ready to leave again, however, we were welcomed warmly inside in the beautiful rooms and had a table assigned. The food was very delicious and we had a wonderful Steinbeck ice tea combination to go... More 

Thank Jacob A
Salinas, California
Level Contributor
3 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2016

don't overlook this quaint dining experience. although limited hrs, they have lunch only, this is a charming experience: you're served by the House volunteers, your menu is perfect, it doesn't matter what you order, you'll like it, and for atmosphere, somehow the pace of life is set back to a relaxing one - I don't know whether it's the part... More 

Thank rbbruni
Manasquan, New Jersey
Level Contributor
281 reviews
162 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 107 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 11, 2016

Beautifully restored house where Steinbeck grew up and wrote some of his books, where they serve lunch in the drawing rooms. The choices are nice sandwiches and salads, served by volunteers, and it is a nice place to stop when you are in Salinas. Downstairs is a small gift shop where you can see the bed where Steinbeck was born.

Thank SeeTheWorld4Peace
Culpeper, Virginia
Level Contributor
176 reviews
80 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 12, 2016 via mobile

We dropped in for lunch knowing that their menu is limited and is run by volunteers. The house is beautifully maintained. After an enthusiastic greeting, we were seated and promptly brought bread and drinks. Our service and food were fabulous, a bit of a surprise given the nature of the place. We had a lovely time and I will come... More 

Thank Scriptspring

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Restaurant Details

Rating summary
  • Food
    5 of 5 stars
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
    5 of 5 stars
American, Soups
Restaurant features
Reservations, Seating, Waitstaff, Serves Alcohol
Good for
Open Hours
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
Location and Contact Information
  • Address: 132 Central Ave, Salinas, CA 93901-2651
  • Location: United States  >  California (CA)  >  Salinas
  • Phone Number: (831) 424-2735

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from Steinbeck House 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?