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Diners' Choice: Best Ambience restaurants in California Central Coast

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OpenTable
Updated April 05, 2024

Looking for restaurants with the best ambience in California Central Coast? You’re in the right place. Each month, OpenTable analyzes nearly 2 million global diner reviews from the past four months. We sort the results by location and category to help you discover new favourite restaurants. It's a great partnership: you reserve, eat, and review. We listen...and deliver the results for all to benefit. Enjoy!


A photo of Stonehouse at San Ysidro Ranch restaurant
4.9
4.9 (2262)
$50 and over
Contemporary American
Santa Barbara
About the restaurant
Located in a 19th-century citrus packing house, the Stonehouse Restaurant features a relaxing lounge with full bar service and a separate dining room with a crackling fireplace and creek side views. Chef Matthew Johnson evocative regional cuisine is prepared with a palate of herbs and vegetables harvested from the Ranch’s organic chef’s garden.
Top review
BrookeKonzelmannvip
Dined 4 days ago
Amazing dining experience! Fantastic service, food was delicious and the setting was fabulous.
A photo of La Mia Cucina restaurant
5.0
5 (940)
$31 to $50
Italian
Pacific Grove
About the restaurant
Stroll along 17th St., between Lighthouse and Laurel and you will find one of the Peninsula’s favorite spots, La Mia Cucina. This little jewel, with its fresh ambiance and tantalizing menu, is popular with everyone. The colorful European advertising posters that enliven the walls, are “originals, not reproductions.” That phrase is accurate in describing La Mia Cucina itself. From the comfortable linen white decor, accented beautifully by those turn-of-the-century posters, to the hand-crafted entrees and desserts, everything about La Mia Cucina says fresh and original. Owner Michael’s specialty, his ravioli dishes, are a renowned local favorite, and for good reason. They are hand made, with all the care that only a lifetime of creative food combining can bring. In addition to pasta, La Mia Cucina is known for it's fresh fish and meat specials. The desserts are made in-house by his wife Paula and daughter Michaela, and the service is personal and inviting.
Top review
ChrisH
Dined on Apr 6, 2024
Our favorite restaurant for any occasion! Michael and Paula are the most amazing owners. Their whole staff are professional and always looking to better your night. The wine list is top notch and thr menu has home runs. The Lobster Raviolis are a must and save some room for dessert because their Creme Brulee is worth sharing. You can tell how much care goes into every ounce of the food and service.
A photo of AronHill Vineyards Bistro & Tasting Room restaurant
4.8
4.8 (282)
$30 and under
Contemporary American
Templeton
About the restaurant
We are a Paso Robles area winery that offers a wonderful dining experience. At the AronHill Bistro you will enjoy fresh dishes made from seasonal and local ingredients, all paired with stunning hilltop views and even better wines.

The AronHill Bistro & Tasting Room is the Paso Robles wine country’s dining discovery, where you will enjoy fresh dishes made from seasonal and local sources, all paired with estate wines and stunning hilltop views.



Top review
RickB
Dined on Mar 27, 2024
One of our favorite places to visit in Paso. Food great, wonderful wines, and it was so great to see Gail again. She is the best! Belated happy birthday to Judy. Sorry we didn’t get to see her this trip, but we shall return!
A photo of Petros Restaurant at Petros Winery restaurant
4.8
4.8 (855)
$30 and under
Mediterranean
Los Olivos
About the restaurant
Our menu is a combination of the best ingredients that Greece and California cuisine have to offer. We import olive oil, feta, honey, oregano and wines from Greece, the freshest organic vegetables from our farms in Los Olivos and wineries of our great state. Quality, simplicity, healthy and tasty food is the creation of that combination. Enjoy.
Top review
WANDAJvip
Dined 3 days ago
Perros is always a great place to have lunch. I love their lam chops!
A photo of Oliver's restaurant
4.7
4.7 (1690)
$31 to $50
Vegan
Montecito
About the restaurant
Through creativity, innovation, and an abundance of care, we prepare minimally processed plant-based cuisine that is delicious, vibrant, and nutritious.


Top review
AshleyB
Dined on Mar 29, 2024
The best vegan food we have ever had! The service was also excellent!
A photo of Mattei's Tavern restaurant
4.8
4.8 (280)
$50 and over
American
Los Olivos
About the restaurant
Recently opened on November 16, 2022, The Tavern continues her legacy as Santa Ynez Valley's beloved social hub. This California ranch-inspired restaurant highlights flavorful dishes and honest ingredients, many of which are harvested from Mattei’s on-site garden and surrounding local farms. Paying homage to its century old roots, the menu is elevated yet unfussy, offering grilled dishes and vegetables alongside seasonal specialties. The exceptional wine program is a singular and definitive draw of The Tavern. The comprehensive list features a California focused glass list which is complimented by an extensive cellar of Old World favorites.


For informal fare join us at The Bar, Mattei’s Tavern’s most authentic hangout. With a roaring fireplace and fixtures dating back to its 1886 origins, the historic bar and lounge space offers local craft beer and wine, amber hued cocktails and a snacks menu that ranges from bite sized to burger dinners.

Top review
charlesb
Dined on Apr 5, 2024
Room, service, drinks and food were very good. Trout and Rockfish excellent. Starters and appetizers ( cauliflower and sugar bean salad) very good. Food was a bit Ling coming out of the kitchen but we will be back.
A photo of Ellie's Tap & Vine restaurant
4.8
4.8 (596)
$31 to $50
Farm-to-table
Santa Ynez Valley
About the restaurant
Welcome to Ellie's Tap & Vine... Join us for seasonal cuisine, elegant ranch ambiance and great wine! We are Valley to Table dining, working with many local farms and purveyors; We look forward to seeing you soon! Our menu changes regularly, so please feel free to visit our website: www.elliestapandvine.com or follow us on IG and/or FB.

Our restaurant is located in the heart of Santa Ynez. We boast amazing outdoor seating with great views and because it is often a little chilly in the evening, we have heaters. We are also dog and cat friendly.

We know re-adjusting to dining out is a strange experience for everyone and we are all slowly returning. For now, we will be suspending lunch service.


Top review
Jefndi
Dined 5 days ago
The food never disappoints. The crab cake and the halibut were superb! Thankful that menu items can be slightly adjusted to our preference! (No bacon) We love the out door booths and we always request to sit there as it provides some privacy and not too loud for conversation. The service is always friendly and food delivery timing is always just right. Thank you for an enjoyable evening. We look forward to coming again soon! :)
A photo of Stokes Adobe Restaurant restaurant
4.8
4.8 (583)
$31 to $50
Californian
Monterey
About the restaurant
Stokes Adobe is a new restaurant located in one of Old Monterey’s historic adobe homes. The menu offers chef driven seasonally inspired California cuisine. The bar and cozy outdoor fire pits offer classic cocktails, wines by the glass and local beers.
Top review
Cyna922vip
Dined 4 days ago
Stokes Adobe never disappoints!!! Highly recommend the Duck Patè Toast, all the salads, the Cacio de Pepè and the Affogato. Salvatore is an exemplary server!
A photo of Fandango restaurant
4.7
4.7 (3696)
$31 to $50
European
Pacific Grove
About the restaurant
A favorite among Fandango regulars is the succulent Rack of Lamb; other menu items include Fresh Seafood, a variety of pastas, delicious and exotic Mediterranean dishes such as paella and Couscous, and a tempting selection of excellent steaks. Several daily specialties are also available.

Desserts we offer, Souffle, Profiteroles, Chocolate Mousse

Top review
VictoriaR
Dined 3 days ago
Had a wonderful meal and the service was excellent, Cost was on the high end.
A photo of Stella Mare's restaurant
4.7
4.7 (2121)
$31 to $50
French
Santa Barbara
About the restaurant
French country bistro...Between Montecito and Santa Barbara, Stella Mare's Bistro is located in a historic Victorian home overlooking the Bird Refuge. French country cuisine rules the menu, with dishes like coq au vin, cassoulet, and moules frites. Sip seasonal cocktails amid cozy décor -- all the right ingredients for a great dining experience. Bon appétit!

When requesting the greenhouse please note that is considered indoor dining.

Top review
Marshavip
Dined on Apr 6, 2024
Always a pleasure here! The atmosphere is charming, service terrific, food great and wonderful French menu. Cannot beat that combination!
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