Dining Guide

Restaurant listings are paid adver-tisements provided as a service to our readers. Listings are in alphabetical order. $ icon at end of each listing refers to average price per meal. $- under $7 $$- $7-$10 $$$- $10-$15 $$$$- over $15


Hawaiian style plate lunch featuring dishes made from the freshest ingredients for island feasting and fun. You’ll feel like you’ve been to Hawaii without the five-hour flight. Open Tue-Sat 11:30am-7pm, Sun 11:30am-5pm, closed Mondays. 1700 Portola Dr, Santa Cruz 479-3299 $-$$

Beckmann's Bakery has been the favorite of Westsiders since 1990. We offer fresh sandwiches, pastries, artisan breads and locally roasted coffees. Sit in the sunshine on our private patio and logon with our free WI FI while listening to live mellow jazz on a Sunday afternoon. Friendly faces will greet you at 6am every morning with your fresh brewed coffee and homemade pastry. 2341 Mission St, Santa Cruz 423-2566 $-$$

Locals’ favorite full-service breakfast and lunch cafe. Enjoy benedicts, fish tacos or calamari. Vegetarian and traditional meals, mesquite grilled meats, spectacular salads and fresh fish. Relax on our patio or at the festive tiki bar while enjoying your meal. Full bar and local wines. Private parties welcome. Rent the cafe for your next party. Thu-Mon 8am-2pm. 535 7th Ave, Santa Cruz 475-4948 $$

Visit our downtown store and you might think you’re in dessert heaven! Enjoy our old fashioned soda fountain where we serve up the finest ice cream creations, specialty cakes, and delicious espresso coffee drinks. You can also enjoy our large selection of homemade chocolates, salt water taffy, caramel and candy apples, and many other tempting treats. 1308 Pacific Avenue, Santa Cruz 831.423.3299 $

Scotty’s Cafe, where you can walk into comfort, friendly service and healthy, home-cooked food. Well prepared with generous portions and plenty of vegetarian options. Not only will you feel welcome in this friendly place, but dogs are allowed in the outdoor dining area. Saturday BBQ & beer coming soon. Open Sun. - Fri. 7 am-2 pm 303 Potrero St. Sp. 1, Santa Cruz 457-9222 $$

California Cuisine

The perfect blend of local art, music and organic seasonal cuisine with teas from around the world. From the golden beet and goat cheese tower, to free-range Montana buffalo burgers, it's the very best of what Santa Cruz has to offer in a magnificent space...931 Pacific Ave, Santa Cruz 460-1800 $$

"Most romantic restaurant" as quoted in Sunset Magazine and highly rated by the area's culinary media critics. This 4 star, Zagat rated establishment is a Santa Cruz gem. Located in a beautiful old mission building on a downtown side street. Chef is Jim Denevan with a nation-wide following for his farm dinner series. 910 Cedar St, Santa Cruz 457-1677 $$$

Great breakfasts & Weekend brunch featuring eggs benedict, fluffy omelettes, frittatas & pancakes. Lunch features sandwiches on house made bread, soups, salads, pasta and creative specials. Exceptional dinners featuring organic produce, natural meats & sustainable seafood. New local wine list. Live Jazz Fri, Sat, Sun night. Open 7 days. Mon-Fri 7am-9pm Sat. & Sun. 8am-9pm. 1102 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz 420-0135 $$

Chef Michael Clark invites you to enjoy his “cutting-edge comfort cuisine” in a friendly and casual atmosphere. Lunch and dinner served Tuesday–Sunday with brunch also on Saturday and Sunday. Experience the ambiance of our various rooms from the cozy Fireside Room to the outdoor Creekside Patio. Live music every weekend. Weddings, receptions and rehearsal dinners are our specialty! 2591 Main St, Soquel 831.479.9777 $$$

Best reached by its quaint hillside cable car, Shadowbrook offers award-winning food, wine and service in an old-world garden setting of charm and grace. A destination since 1947. Dinner nightly Mon-Fri from 5:30, Sat & Sun from 4:30; Sunday “Champagne” Brunch 10am-2:15pm. Children’s menu. 1750 Wharf Rd., Capitola 475-1511 $$$$


Clean relaxed dining environment. We specialize in Mandarin, Szechwan, Hunan and Cantonese style cuisine. Diverse menu offers over 175 dishes and everything is prepared fresh. Take out available. 415 Ocean St., Santa Cruz 429-5898 $$

Sichuan and Provincial Chinese Our chefs prepare a menu of classic and contemporary dishes emphasizing freshness and unique flavors... served in a casual, yet quietly classy setting. We offer local vintages, beers, shoju cocktails and most of our menu is available for “take out.” Winner of Good Times readers poll awards every year! www.omeifood.com. Check out our “little sister”: Xin! New Asia Bistro. 2316 Mission St, Santa Cruz 425-8458 $$ Lunch $$$ Dinner


Come and enjoy a multicultural experience for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Ambrosia Cafe offers sweet and savory crepes, unique and delicious bubble teas, along with gelato and sorbet. Relax in our ultra modern dining room with wireless internet and plasma TV, or simply get our order to go! Open Mon-Thu 10am-10pm, Friday 10-midnight, Saturday 8am-midnight and Sunday 8am-10pm. 1319 Pacific Ave, Santa Cruz 420-1700 $

Step into the French Countryside in this charming Aptos Village Restaurant. Café Sparrow is the perfect place for a romantic dinner, a family get together, or a special party. Serving lunch from 11:30am daily and dinner from 5:30pm nightly, complimented by an award winning wine list. Sunday brunch is a favorite of locals since 1989. 8042 Soquel Dr., Aptos 688-6238 $$$ Lunch $$$$ Dinner

Authentic British-style pub serving home-style cooking from the British and Emerald Isles, as well as all the popular American dishes. Full bar, satellite TV, and live music. Reservations accepted. 8017 Soquel Dr., Aptos 688-1233 $$$

Organic Southeast Asian noodle and rice bowls, soups, salads, Vietnamese sandwiches prepared to order fast with a unique California Fresh style. All bowls are vegan-based. Antibiotic and hormone-free meat, fish and organic tofu toppings can be added for extra protein. Open 11am to 11pm everyday. 1141 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz 426-5664 $

Great food and house-made everything from soups, steaks, and seafood to the traditional Irish pub food we all love. Rosie’s offers everything that one could desire. Full bar, 24 beers on draft and a great after-hours scene. Dancing Thursday-Saturday. Come on up to Rosie’s for a pint and a great meal. 1220 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz 426-9930 $$

Authentic Sri Lankan food prepared by Sri Lankan cooks. Our menu is 90% vegan with two chicken items for variety. Sri is the only known restaurant in the area to cook with roasted curry powder. We use a wide variety of spices. Offering delicious appetizers and entrees. It’s not just food, it’s a passion. Tue-Sun: lunch 11:30-2:30, dinner 5:30-9:00. Fri-Sat: dinner 5:30-9:30. Closed Mondays. 736 Water St., Santa Cruz

Freshly cooked, tasty, healthy, quick, casual, affordable and FUN are our watchwords. We serve wok-sautees, souped and sauced noodles, chow mein, chow fun, salads and appetizers from 11:30 to 9:30 Tue-Sun. Wine, beer, sake bombs, shoju cocktails and unique small dishes too! www.xinasiabistro.com. Check out our “big sister”: O’Mei Chinese Cuisine. 841 Almar Ave, Santa Cruz $ Lunch $$ Dinner

The only German restaurant and beer garden in the county, the Tyrolean serves classic Bavarian and continental cuisine in a cozy rustic chalet nestled in the redwoods. Eight German beers on tap, fine regional and local wines and full bar. Fine dining, patio dining and kid friendly. 9600 Hwy 9, Ben Lomond 336-5188 $$$-$$$$

Nestled on the busy Mission Street, Vasili’s is an adventure in itself! Homemade soups, best picks of meats and a wonderful choice of vegetarian entrees can be found among a lively, authentic Greek atmosphere. Enough food for a village and taste for a lifetime! Credit cards now accepted. 1501-A Mission St., Santa Cruz 458-9808 $$


Featuring authentic Italian cuisine. Chef/owner Gaetano. Great pasta and seafood. Gorgeous atmosphere fit for Caesar himself. Perfect for banquets and special occassions. Dinner Tue-Sun 5-9pm, closed Mon. 316 Capitola Ave., Capitola Village 464-2608 $$$$

All organic. Exclusive Italian wine, homemade gnocchi, ravioli and pasta dishes, as well as soups, salads, antipasti and real Italian pizza made in a wood burning oven. Personal chef available for private parties. Nightly specials. Open Tue-Sun 5pm-9pm. All credit cards accepted. 115 San Jose Ave., Capitola 465-9040 $$$-$$$$

Come enjoy the liveliest downtown restaurant. Serving appetizers, oven baked pizza, pasta, calzones, sandwiches, salads, soups, beer and wine, this hot spot has something for everyone. Choose your pasta or pizza with the sauce and toppings of your choice and a taste to remember. This popular restaurant is fun with an Italian dance from the servers and a pizza spinning performance on Friday and Saturday nights. Find your perfect combination of food and drink and see why this corner restaurant is the local favorite. 1100 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz 469-4400 $-$$

Serving homemade organic, authentic Sicilian cuisine. Nestled in the redwoods outside of Felton, near Henry Cowell Park entrance. Beautiful, sunny outdoor patio garden. Great for parties, weddings or a romantic dinner for two. Take-out also available. Open daily. Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. Call for hours or reservations. 5447 Hwy 9, Felton 335-3337 $$$

Serving the community since 1987 celebrating local and seasonal foods while advancing sustainability as longtime members of Chefs Collaborative, California Alliance with Family Farms and the newly formed Culinary Alliance of Santa Cruz. Through natural and organic foods, composting and recycling we are making a difference. For a reservation call 427-0135. 1711 Mission St, Santa Cruz 427-0135 $$ Lunch $$$ Dinner

Breakfast, lunch and dinner. As close as you can get to Italy without a passport. Exciting new and traditional Italian cuisine. Extensive Italian wine list. Full bar; special home-made and Italy imported desserts. Located in the Bayview Hotel. 8041 Soquel Dr., Aptos 688-8654 $$

Serving traditional and innovative Italian dishes and pasta specialties since 1980, Ristorante Italiano has been voted the BEST Italian Restaurant for the last thirteen years. Enjoy the lively dining room featuring a traditional Italian decor or the beautiful outdoor patio with a spectacular three-story mural. 555 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz 458-2321 $$ Lunch $$$ Dinner

Rustic cooking blends old-world elegance, Santa Cruz local seafood, vegetables and imaginative Italian flavors. Signature dishes include wine-steamed mussels with smoked tomatoes, Ligurian seafood stew and wood-oven baked halibut Inspired Italian cooking served in an atmosphere reminiscent of the Italian Riviera. Memorable dining and full bar at a neighborhood-restaurant price. 655 Capitola Rd, Santa Cruz 479-0200 $$$


Serving lunch and dinner for 20 years with its cozy atmosphere and breathtaking traditional Japanese garden. Fresh fish served daily, try our large selection of sake, sushi, sashimi, teriyaki and tempura. Open 7 days for dinner, closed for lunch Saturday and Sunday only. Lunch: 11:30am-2:30pm. Dinner: 5-10pm. 820 Bay Ave #148, Capitola 464-9192 $$$

Cozy ambiance and intimate booths at both locations of this popular restaurant. Tempura and delicious fresh sushi and a full bar. Winner of Good Times Reader’s poll for 9 years. 3775 Capitola Rd., Capitola 464-1818;1800 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz 457-8466 $$$

A new popular restaurant in Scotts Valley, serving sushi (fresh as it can be) and full menu of other popular Japanese food including tempura and teriyaki (check out their generous portions). A huge fleet of sushi boats floating around at the sushi counter enhances your dining experience. Prices are reasonable for any budget and the quality is outstanding. Open 7 days. Lunch 11:30-2:30, dinner 5:00-9:30. In Scotts Valley Junction Shopping Center right off highway 17. 5600-C Scotts Valley Dr, Scotts Valley 438-9262(GET-YAMA) $$-$$$$


Excellent variety of great dishes like Chicken Mole, Chile Verde, Sizzling Fajitas, Skirt Steak Asada, Crab & Shrimp Enchiladas, Portabello Fajitas, Grilled Chicken Fettuccini with Artichoke Hearts, or our Glazed Chicken Teriyaki. Great Prices, Full Bar. Happy Hour 4-6:30pm Mon.-Fri., 1/2 Price Nachos, Dillas, Wings. Independently owned. 1116 Pacific Ave. Downtown Santa Cruz, parking in rear 426-7588 $$-$$$

Best tequila margaritas in Santa Cruz. Daily lunch special $6.95. Happy hour Mon-Thu 3-6pm with free small appetizers. 20 tequilas to choose from. You will leave with a smile on your face and sand on your toes. Sun-Thu 7am-9pm. Fri-Sat 7am-10pm. 2222 Eastcliff Dr., Ste 100, Santa Cruz 477-0371 $$-$$$

Come and see why El Palomar has been voted the best by Good Times readers for eleven consecutive years. Our restaurant serves a full range of delicious Mexican dishes or you can enjoy a great margarita in our bar. For a totally unique atmosphere, beautiful setting and great food you really can’t beat El Palomar. Catering and private parties also available. 1336 Pacific Ave, Santa Cruz 425-7575 $$-$$$

Best tequila margaritas on Westside Santa Cruz. Daily lunch special $5.95. Happy hour Mon-Thu 3-6pm with free small appetizers. 20 tequilas to choose from. From breakfast to dinner you will leave with a smile on your face. Sun-Thu 7am-9pm. Fri-Sat 7am-10am. 1719 Mission St, Santa Cruz 426-3564 $-$$

Come and enjoy our flavor filled menu of traditional Mexican favorites like fajitas, carne asada and crab enchiladas. We also feature a wide assortment of seafood dishes, salads and local specials. The fun atmosphere, delicious food, friendly staff and amazing ocean views are sure to keep you coming back. 231 Esplanade, Capitola 476-2263 $$$

What used to be the Sea Cloud is now Olitas. Same spectacular view, with Lou and Steve still in charge. Now serving fine Mexican cuisine every day starting at noon. Wide range of appetizers and entrees (try the lobster quesadilla). Full menu. Cool bar specials Tuesdays and Thursdays. On the Santa Cruz Municipal Wharf 458-9393 $$

Steaks & Seafood

Situated over the Montery Bay Sanctuary, Carniglia's offers a great dining experience with a gorgeous view. Fresh seafood with an Italian influence. Excellent wine list. Wine spectators' Award of Excellence. 49A Santa Cruz Wharf, Santa Cruz 458-3600 $$$-$$$$

On the beach at the Santa Cruz Harbor with magnificent views of the Monterey Bay. Fresh seafood, aged midwestern beef, salads, pasta specialties. Children’s menu. Live music, comedy, dancing. Casual dining in the upstairs grill from 11:30am Handicap access. 2218 E. Cliff Dr., Santa Cruz 476-4560 $$$

The Hindquarter is where you will find great contemporary American dining. Including perfectly grilled sirloins, huge roasted prime rib, hickory-smoked Chicago baby back ribs, half pound burgers, and other meaty delights. We use Rocky the Range free range birds, and our fresh seafood is artfully prepared. Dine indoors or on our new patio. With a full bar and a surprising wine list, The Hindquarter is “where the elite meat!” 303 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz 426-7770 $$$

Ideal Bar & Grill offers a variety of entrees from fresh local fish to a variety of steaks and pastas. They can be enjoyed on our large outdoor deck overlooking Monterey Bay. 106 Beach St., Santa Cruz 423-5271 $$$

Come to the beach in Capitola and find breathtaking views. Laugh and enjoy cocktails around our outdoor/indoor bar. Lunch and dinner served on the patio or in the mural painted dining room. Later, “cozy-up” and sip fine wines by the outside fireplace. Casual, but upscale. Choose from exceptional appetizers, aged filets and fresh fish daily. Breakfast now served on the weekends. Lunch 11:30 Dinner 5pm 7 Days a Week, Happy Hour Weekdays 4-6pm. Reservations recommended. 215 Esplanade, Capitola 476-4900 $$$ Lunch $$$$ Dinner

Severino’s Grill is acclaimed for it’s appealing atmosphere and delicious food, a favorite with the locals and travelers alike. The refined yet comfortable setting compliments the award-winning menu featuring seafood, pastas, and a variety of meat dishes. Severino’s Grill is open for breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner and Happy Hour. 7500 Old Dominion Court, Aptos 688-8987 $$$

Located at the outer end of the Santa Cruz Wharf, Stagnaro Bros. offers the largest selection of fresh seafood, along with pastas, salads, steaks and a children's menu. Our Upper Deck lounge offers a stunning panoramic view of Monterey Bay, Steamer's Lane and the Boardwalk. Casual, family style dining every day from 11am. Take out available. Family owned and operated since 1936. "Caught today, cooked today, your home or ours." 59 Municipal Wharf, Santa Cruz 423-2180 $$$

Steaks and nostalgia—a 60 years old bar and restaurant in beautiful San Lorenzo Valley! The restaurant overlooks the historic Trout Pond and Zayante Creek. A great spot for parties and holiday banquets. Enjoy aged angus beef and fresh seasonal dishes. Reasonable prices. 7701 E. Zayante Rd, Felton 335-4317 $$$