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“Good food in a spectacular setting”

The Restaurant at Ventana
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Ranked #5 of 22 Restaurants in Big Sur
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $35 - $75
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Scenic view, Special occasions, Local cuisine, Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, Breakfast, Late Night, Lunch, Delivery, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Description: The Restaurant at Ventana is situated 1200 feet above the rugged Big Sur coast with views of the Pacific Ocean. The culinary team is lead by Executive Chef Paul Corsentino, who uses only the freshest, organic ingredients to create simple cuisine with vibrant flavors. His menus are driven by his commitment to supporting the local farming community. Chef Corsentino's experience is brought to life in each daily menu he creates. Chef and his team are known for daring and diverse foods with inventive recipes both comforting and decadent, offering something for every palate. A locally inspired, sommelier selected wine list offers many options for food and wine pairings. Seasonal cocktails and California craft beers are available to enjoy in the cozy lounge area or outdoors next to the grand fireplace.
Falls Church, VA
Level 5 Contributor
59 reviews
42 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
“Good food in a spectacular setting”
Reviewed March 1, 2013

Ventana Inn enjoys a dramatic location overlooking the coastline of Big Sur, and the restaurant takes full advantage of the setting, with spectacular views from well laid-out tables both inside and out. The menu is limited but creative, and the food is very good (not fabulous), but the portions are quite precious for the prices charged: when we visited, the amuse-bouce was a few grains of tuna tartare covering barely a third of a small teaspoon; the risotto appetizer was excellent, but literally the size of one ice-cream scoop, and the filet was quite good and well-prepared, but not more than 6-7 ounces (for $35). The service was very good, and the wine list somewhat limited and overpriced.
Given the limited alternatives nearby and the spectacular location, the restaurant is certainly worth a stop, if not a detour.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank JerryM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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514 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Thai first
  • Any
English first
San Francisco, California, United States
Level 4 Contributor
38 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Never leave the property & have an excellent dinner”
Reviewed February 26, 2013

The food is fresh & wonderful with unique preparations of entrees, the service is excellent & there is a very good wine list.

Visited February 2013
2 Thank Miriam R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 4 Contributor
32 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“Mixed Grill”
Reviewed February 25, 2013

The food was good, inventive at times, but the service was spotty. Some tables face the bar, so ask to be relocated if you don't want to watch the bartender all night.

Visited January 2013
Thank finicky
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“What a view!”
Reviewed February 25, 2013

My husband and I spent our anniversary in Monterey and a friend suggested that we have lunch at the Ventana Inn in Big Sur. The drive along Highway 1 is spectacular, at least for the passanger! The views of the Pacific Ocean are breathtaking. The inn is tucked away from the highway and you really have to be looking for the sign so you don't miss the turn. We sat on the terrace enjoying the view and the hummingbirds who were entertaining us. The food was delicious and we enjoyed a bottle of local wine while we savored the atmosphere. This is definitely a place that we will visit again.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
3 Thank Traveler804
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wilmington, North Carolina
Level 6 Contributor
374 reviews
272 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 142 helpful votes
“Quality food”
Reviewed February 23, 2013

We recently went to Ventana for dinner while driving up the CA coast. My husband chose to go the prix fixe menu (4 courses for $70), while I chose to oder just an appetizer (all were $15) and entree (all were $35). Stand-out dishes were the braised short rib entree, asparagus risotto, and crab salad. The server was very attentive but we almost felt rushed - the food came out incredibly quickly. It was dark when we arrived, so we didn't get to enjoy the view, but it was very comfortable and casual inside. Overall, we enjoyed the dinner but wished it was a little slower-paced.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Stephanie F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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