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“Good food, mildly expensive.”

Old Fisherman's Grotto
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Ranked #19 of 313 Restaurants in Monterey
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $25 - $40
Cuisines: Seafood, Steakhouse
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Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Special occasions, Local cuisine, Scenic view
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch, Late Night, Reservations, Takeout
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Scott Street
Description: Located on historic Fisherman's Wharf with stunning views of the Monterey Harbor, Old Fisherman's Grotto is a "must visit" restaurant. The "Grotto" has rightfully earned its worldwide reputation for only the finest cuisine in a superb atmosphere and service. Featuring fresh seafood from sustainable sources including Macadamia Crusted Halibut, Hawaiian Swordfish, Ultimate Seafood Pasta, live Crab and Lobster, the Grotto also offers a variety of the finest "Certified Angus Beef". Start with our award-winning clam chowder and finish by indulging in one of our fresh house-made desserts. Enjoy a bottle of wine from our 2014, 2015 Wine Spectator Award Wine list with over 200 selections specializing in local vineyards. AAA 3 Diamond Rating, Monterey Peninsula Chamber "Business Excellence" Award Winner. 2010 1St Place "West Coast Chowder Competition", "Best Chowder" Monterey County for 12 consecutive years , Winner "Best Calamari" three consecutive years in the Monterey County's Weekly Magazine "People's Choice Award". No high chairs. No strollers. No booster chairs. Children crying or making loud noises are a distraction to other diners and as such not permitted in the dining room.
Reviewed July 29, 2013

We went here because it was one of the only places on the pier that had something I could eat (vegetarian) but my boyfriend could also enjoy (seafood). Our server, Hugo, was very polite and attentive, but he seemed a little nervous. He was talking really quickly and had a thick accent, but otherwise he was really pleasant and efficient. The bus boy cleaned off our empty plates in a timely fashion and refilled the glasses without us asking (big deal to me). We got the grilled artichoke, which my boyfriend loved, as an appetizer. It had a really nice sauce on it, but I had a cold so the balsamic was hurting my throat, obviously not their fault. I got the fettuccine, which was amazing. It was really rich and delicious and the portion was actually not too intense, but i was full from eating too much bread. My boyfriend got the black linguine with seafood and he totally loved it (almost licked the plate). I would come back here again for another romantic dinner. The ambiance is nice, not too loud, but its a little bit dark at night. I guess during the day they get more natural sunlight; at night the dark wood of the building combined with the candlelight mood is a bit much, but I could still read the menu just fine so oh well. I recommend this restaurant.

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Thank KATHRYN S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,320 - 1,324 of 1,996 reviews

Reviewed July 28, 2013

Our meal at this restaurant last year was one of the best parts of our vacation. I couldn't forget the clam chowder and was constantly telling friends about it. When we decided to go back to San Francisco on vacation this summer, I had to make a chowder stop for a couple of days in Monterey. On our first day I ordered scallops and caramelized onion risotto and don't forget the worlds best chowder. I was in heaven. The next day I returned for an awesome Abalone steak with spinach risotto and don't forget the worlds best chowder and some crispy calamari cooked to perfection. This place is so cool, reminds me of an old fifties Vegas restaurant where the Rat Pack would hang out. The wait staff are there for your every need, so respectful and attentive. Thank you Roberto S. and Julio G. for making our meals so special. I can't wait to return, even thinking of a quick flight and overnight stay in Monterey just to avoid the six hour drive to get some of the worlds best clam chowder.

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Thank ragsdad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 25, 2013

This restaurant was recommended so we gave it try. When we called reservations were starting several hours later and much later then we wanted to be seated, they graciously suggested we try to walk in for the next available table. We did so, and were greeted by a gentleman with a pager in hand and told about 20 min and we could go anywhere on the wharf. We were summoned back within 15 mins, great! We were seated by a window up-stairs in a corner for two, very nice. Our waiter Iman was very pleasant, but he kept trying to up sale to a bottle of wine, or two bowls of chowder or a more expensive choice, I get the concept, but after our first no thank you he should take the hint. The clam chowder was okay, too thick for my taste. We shared the crab cakes which were nicely prepared and had good flavor. I had the swordfish, which was good and my husband had the stuffed sole. There was way too much food after having soup and crab cakes, but it had good flavors and well prepared! There was a birthday at another table and with the upstairs being close quarters when the staff and table began to sing, the entire upstairs joined in! It was a fun experience, and then everyone returned to their own dinning! I would like to go again and try other dishes! The service was really great!

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Thank Pamela P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 25, 2013 via mobile

We came here for lunch and had a hit and miss experience. The clam chowder tastes like all the other places on the wharf. I don't like calamari in general, but the table ordered some and it came out with little fried octopuses intact along with the normal fried pieces.

I loved the jambalaya, it was a perfect blend of spicy. The seafood combo that came with lobster was just okay.

I will say that it is the best service we have had in Monterey.

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Thank Candiejo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 22, 2013

Had a very good lunch. Quiet atmosphere, but can watch the crowds walk by on wharf. Had very good grilled shrimp. Fast service. A little pricey and a little crowded, but would go again. Not setup for strollers or high chairs.

Thank CassidyBayou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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