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“Great Salad” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of California Dreaming Restaurant & Bar

California Dreaming Restaurant & Bar
Ranked #8 of 962 Restaurants in Columbia
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $5 - $25
Cuisines: American, Bar
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups, Bar scene, Kids, Special occasions, Families with children, Local cuisine, Business meetings
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Lunch, Accepts American Express, Accepts Discover, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Full Bar, Highchairs Available, Outdoor Seating, Parking Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Television, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Description: Voted “Best Salad” 12 years running, by Free Times and Columbia Metropolitan, “Best Date Spot, Best Overall Restaurant and Best Place to Take your Parents” by USC’s The Daily Gamecock. Enjoy giant-sized fare from the California Dreaming kitchen; start with the Barbecue Chicken Nachos, then slow-cooked Prime Rib or a hearty pasta dish. The restaurant also features late night bar bites; large party carry-out and catering; live music and seasonal patio dining. The historic landmark building, Union Station, is located steps away from USC.
Columbia, South Carolina
Level Contributor
88 reviews
43 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Great Salad”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 5, 2012

I love going to California Dreaming for there CD salad,it is outstanding.My husband orders the old timers burger or there chicken tenders.Ben ,thanks for you super service on November 29th 2012.

  • Visited November 2012
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
Thank Rhonda C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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717 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Columbia, South Carolina, United States
Level Contributor
19 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Food was OK”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 20, 2012

Food was OK last time I visited California Dreaming. I wasn't impressed by the wait staff either, for a place that is quite costly, I expected both food and service to be outstanding.

Thank Brenda W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lexington, South Carolina
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Just fabulous”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 20, 2012

This is one of the best places to eat in Columbia. The bartenders make the best drinks around and the food is great too. Go try it!!

Visited November 2012
Thank jdj2055
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reston, Virginia
Level Contributor
51 reviews
30 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“Great Service!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 16, 2012

We went to California Dreaming at the recommendation of our hotel. It was 2 blocks from our hotel, so not moving the car was one of our objectives.

Because we arrived early (and it is huge) we did not have to wait for a table, despite the fact that it was USC Homecoming. There were just two of us, which also made it easier to seat us promptly.

Our Server was incredibly helpful and attentive. The restaurant was obviously concerned with prompt table turnover, so our food came out very, very quickly. I felt a little rushed at how quickly it came out, but when our Server realized we were not looking to be in and out that fast, he backed off a bit and it felt more leisurely.

I ordered Salmon and creamed spinach and my son got the Ribs. Both were very good, although my Salmon was slightly overcooked.

I would recommend this restaurant for a nice meal. The location and variety of food makes it a good choice if you are visiting the University of South Carolina.

Visited November 2012
Thank Holly W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Birmingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
186 reviews
91 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
“Gone Down”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 15, 2012

I have visited this restaurant for the last 5 years on trips to Columbia and always enjoyed the place.

I did not enjoy my visit this year, I had a burger at the bar.

Saturday night and it was nearly empty, no atmosphere, the food was bland and uninspiring in fact I left half of the burger.

I wont be in a rush to go back.

  • Visited October 2012
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
Thank Roger186402
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CA_Centraarchy, Public Relations Manager at California Dreaming Restaurant & Bar, responded to this review, December 10, 2012
I am very sorry that your meal did not live up to the level of quality that you have previously experienced from our restaurant. Providing our guests with high quality, delicious food is our highest priorities. Thank you for your feedback. Happy Holidays.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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