Set on the coast of California, Carmel has a plethora of great dining. These 20 best restaurants in Carmel range from elevated cuisine to casual cafes perfect for a weekend afternoon. Carmel, California has quickly become one of my favorite weekend escapes with incredible food.
There are a few things I love about dining in Carmel. It has a unique location near to where most food in California is grown. So the restaurants that source locally, has amazing produce, making the food fresh. This combined with access to fresh seafood, it’s really hard to go wrong here. Whether you’re in for the day or a long weekend, you can’t go wrong with these restaurants in Carmel.
Find the full Carmel travel guide here.
20 Best Restaurants in Carmel, California
1. La Bicyclette
Whether you come in for the pizzas or French-inspired cuisine, there’s something about the atmosphere and great food that wins me over each time.
2. Cultura Comida y Bebida
Elevated Oaxacan cuisine, their use of sourced ingredients and homemade sauces brings out incredible flavor.
3. Restaurant at Folktale Winery
Out in Carmel Valley on a vineyard, their fresh charcuterie and cheese boards with seasonal entrees is delicious.
4. La Balena
A simple space but incredible food, their crispy fried chicken is one to remember.
5. Seventh & Dolores
A modern steakhouse with a bright room, their staples like West Coast Oysters and porterhouse steak is done incredibly.
6. Cantinetta Lucca
This is one of our tried and trues for pizza and pasta. I love sitting by the pizza oven and watching everything come out fresh. Their deli is also a hit.
7. Brophy’s Tavern
Imagine a hipster take on an English pub and you have the wonderful Brophy’s that uses fresh ingredients for tasty plates.
8. Mission Ranch Restaurant
Whether it’s the setting or the incredible food, this famous restaurant owned by Clint Eastwood is the perfect spot to catch sunset.
New to Carmel, this brunch spot has homy dishes and great coffee.
Fine dining taken to the next level, their 8-course meal is one to impress.
A cheerful French and Italian restaurant with all of the classics.
A fun and bright space, Pescadero serves great Mexican cuisine.
13. Il Tegamino
Often noted as off the beaten path, this romantic restaurant has a great patio for Italian cuisine.
For fresh sushi and complimentary tea service, head here for some Japanese cuisine.
A go-to for Spanish tapas and live music.
16. Village Corner
With a patio and classic American hits like burgers and a Cobb Salada, Village Corner is a lovely place for an afternoon bite.
Located in Carmel Valley, Roux has a seasonal menu and most famed for their beignets and coffee in the morning.
Though it may be a wine bar, they also serve yummy bites if you’re looking for a lighter meal.
19. Carmel Belle
Tucked away, I love coming here for farm to table style cuisine with fresh juices and sandwiches.
20. Anton & Michel Restaurant
A classic in Carmel where table-side cooking serves up continental fare.