The Sardine Factory
My family and I had a lovely day trip to Big Sur and Monterey, California early June. Just like me, my foodie Dad is always on the hunt for good food and beautiful travel spots. This restaurant is actually his recommendation.
Before walking into the restaurant, I was actually expecting something different based on the touristy exterior (it was a bit off-putting). Inside, the restaurant consisted of different rooms. We were seated inside the beautiful glass atrium/conservatory room that has a very victorian style. The decor was so beautiful that my eyes were so large they could have fallen right out of those sockets. Definitely did not expect this solely based off of what we saw outside.
The Sardine Factory offers fresh seafood dishes, superior cuts of beef, and creative desserts. They also have an extensive wine list.
We had a super late lunch that day so we decided to order just 2 entrees with some small appetizers. The oysters on the half shell were amazingly fresh and juicy. And of course, we had to order the sardines! I mean, after all, it's the name of the restaurant! For entree #1, we ordered the chef's pick Monterey wild salmon & dungeness crab with asparagus and artichoke ring on the side drizzled with hollandaise sauce. The presentation was beautiful, the fish was a bit dry but it was overall delicious. Our favorite was entree #2, parmesan crusted calamari, scallop and prawns served with chive risotto and lemon-caper sauce. We loved everything about the dish, from the seafood itself to the creamy risotto.
One last thing, their bread basket, with fresh-out-of-oven bread and tasty bread sticks, is one of the best I've had. They had the regular butter but also served a garlic bean spread that was very interesting. There were also some sauteed green olives (which we all thought were too salty). It was an overall fantastic experience! Great ambiance and decent food, and it's perfect for celebration!