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“Great bread bowl and clam chowder. ”

Old Fisherman's Grotto
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Ranked #21 of 312 Restaurants in Monterey
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $25 - $40
Cuisines: Seafood, Steakhouse
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Special occasions, Scenic view, Families with children
Dining options: Lunch, Late Night, Breakfast, Dinner, 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 March 20, 2014 via mobile

Love their clam chowder.... They had a very friendly staff and our server was amazing. I have been here only twice on trips thru Monterey and both times they have been great. Fun little pier to walk on with shops all around the Resturant.

Thank Forrest S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,201 - 1,205 of 1,991 reviews

Reviewed March 20, 2014 via mobile

Fried artichoke hearts great, macadamia halibut wonderful service outstanding.
Get seafood at a seafood restaurant, steak at a steak house.

Thank parrish1020
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 19, 2014

This restaurant was recommended by the concierge, who gave a self named card coupon for a free appetizer. This should have alerted us its a tourist trap based on referrals. The coupon entitles the bearer to a free appetizer but you cannot simply choose the most expensive one: you are entitled to the "chef's choice", which is not a principled approach.

The waiter was a charming and well spoken fellow who ignored us from the start, prompting us to ask the manager to reassign a new waiter. The manager failed to follow up on whether the new waiter was adequate (and she was); any high end restaurant would conduct a follow-up especially from the managerial level, as one would expect.

The food was adequate, however, they used corn syrup to sweeten the potatoes and side vegetables (corn syrup is a cheap substitute for honey or maple syrup, and also believed to be very very bad for you) . When confronted on this issue, the waitress claimed it was a mixture of honey and brown sugar glaze, which irritated me further because anyone knows the distinctive taste of corn syrup.

The deep fried calamari came out cold, and to the credit of the chef, it was replaced with a full hot portion. Also, the chowder was very good.

The crusted halibut was suspiciously nutty (not panko or anything I've had before)

The corkage fee was high, so best to bring your own "expensive bottle" in order to offset the fee.

Perhaps the biggest travesty of this restaurant: they fail to list the years (vintages) on all their wines!!! The wine list states the name:apellaton:price. (no year). I noted that a bottle listed at $162 has no year attached!! (further supporting my belief its a tourist trap). When I asked the waitress about this anomaly, she simply said they have all vintages available upon request, which anyone knows, that is just not true. I find it high-handed that a Californian restaurant so close to Napa/Sonoma would engage in this practice, as this opens the door to inconsistent billing, and does a disservice to the wineries' different brands.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
2  Thank Lisa C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 16, 2014 via mobile

The service was very attentive. The food and drinks were good. Not the best seafood I have ever had, but it was very good. Considering the scenery, it is worth the stop.

Thank Ativan1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 16, 2014 via mobile

The ny strip steak was tough and low quality. The sand dabs were heavy with breading and doused in a fatty sauce. The calamari was ok. All in all it was red lobstah quality

1  Thank Alzor S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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