Donovan's - La Jolla
Donovan's - La Jolla

Donovan's - La Jolla

  • Dining Style: Fine Dining
  • Website: http://www.donovanssteakhouse.com/
  • Phone: 8584506666x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Cocktail lounge opens at 4 pm Monday through Saturday.

    Happy Hour 4-6pm Monday though Saturday

    Complimentary steak sandwiches and $8.00 martinis during Happy Hour



    Dinner Service starts at 5 pm. Monday-Thursday: 5pm - 10pm. Friday 5pm - 11pm.

    Saturday 4:30pm-11pm



    Closed Sunday except in the month of December.
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Carte Blanche,Diners Club,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Steak, Seafood
  • Executive Chef: Sal Reynoso
  • Dress Code: Business Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Area, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Smoking Area, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Entertainment: Featuring classic American music, including Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Louis Armstrong, and Ella Fitzgerald.
  • Special Events: Slow-roasted Prime Rib with Yorkshire pudding every Friday.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: La Jolla Village Drive at Genesee
  • Parking: Valet
  • Parking Details: Complimentary valet or private lot for self-parking
A word from Donovan's - La Jolla
Donovan's rich and intimate ambience is enhanced by world-class unobtrusive service. The Chef serves 100% USDA Prime beef 100% of the time. Donovan's wine list of over 700 wines features the best the world has to offer. Wine tasting dinners available.



6 private dining rooms to choose from.
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Overall
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Food
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Service
Donovan's - La Jolla reviews from OpenTable diners
341 reviews since April 24, 2014
Overall Rating4.7
  • Food4.7
    Service4.7
  • Ambiance4.5
    Noise LevelModerate
97% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
special occasion (291)romantic (213)notable wine list (152)fit for foodies (106)good for groups (72)vibrant bar scene (51)neighborhood gem (50)hot spot (34)late-night find (28)kid-friendly (10)great for brunch (9)great for lunch (8)great for outdoor dining (2)scenic view (2)Show More
  • Superb
    StevoskiVIP
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    Donovan's never fails to exceed expectations and the food was so good as usual. Service was impeccable made more so by Jeb's story about the Gallo brothers! Thank you Donovan's for another awesome evening.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Wonderful
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    We wanted somewhere special to go to celebrate and I thought of trying Donovan's for the first time. The ambience was gorgeous, the staff could not have been nicer and the food was amazing. We have decided to make this a regular date.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A tradition
    CynHunt
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    We always celebrate my daughter's birthday at Donovan's. But sometimes when we feel like some very good beef, we will dine there. The meat is always cooked perfectly to order and it's the best steak in San Diego. Service has always been great. I recommend it highly.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • stuck in a corner
    outcast
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    Food was good not great we were stuck in a small room in the back felt like pesants i would never eat here again .Don't treat out of town guests like red headed step children.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Parents' Rare Night Out
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    My dad finally used a Donovan's gift card that he received as a retirement gift to have a nice dinner with my mom (they've been married for 42 years). It was dad's birthday and unfortunately my brother and I were unable to celebrate in the middle of the work week. Between the service and the quality of the food, my parents could do nothing but rave about their Donovan's experience. Thank you for making them feel welcomed.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Amazing food once again
    HappyCustomer
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    This place never gets it wrong. Love the food here. My wife and I went again this past weekend and the food was just great. I ordered the Cajun Rib Eye. 16 oz. Lightly Cajun seasoned which was just so rich in spices and taste. I ordered the My wife ordered the Prime Filet. 10 oz. and she loved it. Everyone gets the same vegetables with their entry but the side of potato options was great. My wife ordered the stuffed potato which was normal but good nonetheless, and I ordered the skillet potato which was great.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Reservation
    Irateyou
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    We had a 6:45 reservation and called them while on the road to say we were running about 10mins. late but we actually got there around 6:50. Definitely did NOT appreciate the long wait and people bumping into us left and right. For such a pricey restaurant, they did not offer a decent lobby space to wait at. We're amateur wine drinker so we expected our server to know what to reccommend based on our taste, but he did asks which was took a while for him to get back just as it took a while for our orders which was not cooked the way we liked. I wanted to experience the place for our anniversary, but for the $$$$ is not what was expected. The ambiance was nice, the outdoor surrounding was even better and our second server was attentive.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great service and food
    SDLocal
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    Awesome service and food, Bobby is fantastic!!! The steak is the best as are the lamb chops, ask for them to extra spicy!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Coconutgirl1
    Coconutgirl1
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    Absolutely fantabulous restaurant! Michael and I had such great service! The staff was so welcoming when we walked into the restaurant. Such a pleasure to have dine there!
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • always a treat to eat at Donovan's.
    girlluvsfood
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    This is our go-to place for special occasions. We were however disappointed that there was no acknowledgement that this was a birthday celebration as was noted on the reservation.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fabulous birthday celebration
    Luv2eat
    Dined on 8/8/2014
    My nephew and I had a wonderful experience at Donovan's. It was the first time I have eaten here and the service was remarkable. The food mouth watering. I can't say enough about the experience. I have already recommended it to a friend.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Service
    Gr8Service
    Dined on 8/8/2014
    Donovan's had wonderful service. We were greeted by two-three servers that worked as a team to make sure we received everything we could even need. They were very friendly and accommodating through out our meal.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • golfflop
    Dined on 8/7/2014
    My wife and I celebrated our 43rd wedding anniversary at Donovan's and had a great time. The staff knew of our celebration and greeted us with a "Happy Anniversary" as we entered the restaurant. The service was excellent and the food was delicious. It was my first time at Donovan's (not my wife's), and it was truly a treat.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • dlu25
    Dined on 8/5/2014
    My wife and I dine here at least 4-5 times a year, the service is always great and the food is always terrific. Coming in for 25 wedding anniversary the staff was energetic but rushed this night, usually not like that but its ok we enjoy the food and atmosphere. We were taken care to the fullest and given a special anniversary crème Brule, most enjoyable. Thanks always for great food, great service and atmosphere, always feel welcomed especially when our name is always at our table.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • OK
    dine81214
    Dined on 8/2/2014
    My daughter recommended us to check out Donovan for out 18th anniversary. I've been to several restaurants similar to Donovan and my final experience that it is nothing spectacular. The area we got seated was loud and waiter was talking too loud to other tables. The service was great and food was good.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Great food as usual
    Sue92024
    Dined on 8/2/2014
    The restaurant was busy. First they sat us at a table in a back room with about 6 tables. Very secluded from the rest of the restaurant. There was a light right above my head. It felt light a spotlight. So we were moved to another table in that room. The room just did not have a Donovan's vibe. So we found a table in the bar area and at there. Once there, all was good.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, late-night find, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • excellent food and service
    adsb512
    Dined on 8/2/2014
    It's pricey, but it is worth it. Delicious steaks, chops and seafood. Terrific service, especially if Jonathan is your server.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • 25 anniversary at D's
    Onlythebest
    Dined on 8/2/2014
    Incredible service and food. Perfect night. Happy hour is excellent.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Date Night w/Husband
    FunNight
    Dined on 8/2/2014
    LOVED it ! have been going here for Years and for the First time sat in the "Charger Room" it was Perfect and the our Service from "Thomas" was Spot On :) Great Food and Experience
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • The best steak you'll ever eat!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 7/31/2014
    What an incredible experience! We want to go back already, though we've made it a special occasion spot. If you are looking for a great steak, you will NOT be disappointed! We have celebrated a birthday two years in a row and the steak was exactly the same each time. The steak is cooked to perfection and the flavor is to die for. The sides and salads are also delicious but nothing matches the steak. This year, we added the chilled seafood tower and what a treat! So fresh, and incredibly delicious! And the presentation is impressive. If you love seafood, try it out!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Frastin
    Dined on 7/30/2014
    We always enjoy completely, our dining experience and both of us, (Gerrie and Dave) have the same great feeling, which we call ("floaty" and wonderful), that continues even after we have left. Thanks for another great evening!....Dave
    Special Features:
    romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Much better!!!!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008VIP
    Dined on 7/30/2014
    We have not been to this location in a few years. I can say one thing.....the food was very much better than before. I the chop salad was very good. They could do a little more to shape it on the plate. My wife had the filet and I had the NY strip. I like it when the plates are hot so you can under order the temperature of the steak and cook it on the plate. To us that spells success! I just plum loved the flavor of the NY strip! It was fricking awesome! The filet was very, very...very good!
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Donovan's was a delight! *****
    Mspersnickety1
    Dined on 7/30/2014
    The staff was personable and generously attentive. Scott was on top of our every need... and a thank you to the graceful owner for stopping by to check on us and say hello, what a wonderful touch!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion, late-night find, neighborhood gem, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • a great birthday dinner for my lady
    jwintosh
    Dined on 7/28/2014
    thoroughly enjoyed our evening. we brought our own bottle of wine, a very nicely aged Napa Valley Zin (well worth the $20 corkage fee). I did not think to ask the waiter to aerate it. and he did not. oh well, still tasted great! we have enjoyed Donovan's and will continue to!
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Incredible!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    We dined here Saturday Night to celebrate our son's 17th Birthday, his restaurant of choice! We dined here last year and they remembered he was lactose intolerate! Food never disappoints! Our family had the following and all were excellent: Filet, Bone-in Ribeye, Filet w/ Bacon wrapped Scallops.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • jschoice
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    We love Donavan's in La Jolla. Get there early to enjoy a nice quiet glass of wine or your favorite beverage in their friendly lounge. The potaotes au gratin are a must.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Disappointed
    MSTONEVIP
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    Have been to Donovans in the past and its not what it used to be, The waiter Chris was excellent, Food average. Dressed nicely and found people in the restaurant on a Saturday night in shorts, cut ff jeans and looked like they were eating at in and out burger. Does not have the class it used to.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Classic Dining
    Csalen
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    My husband and I loved the ambience of the restaurant. It has a classic feel to it. This is the kind of restaurant we prefer to go to for special occasions. Not to mention, both the food and the service was wonderful!!
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Really good but not superb
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    Service was great, the filet wasn't the best I've ever had for sure, the scallops were excellent as was the lobster. Just missed a touch on the steak - seasoning, sear, not sure, just not perfect.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • BMain22
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    We are always well taken care of and treated like family. The manager makes it a point to spend time chatting with us and makes sure we are comfortable!
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, late-night find, neighborhood gem, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Delicious
    Dwsquared
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    We went for my boyfriends birthday. The service was exceptional and food just as good! Our steak was cooked to order and we appreciated being left to relax after dinner and not rushed to leave.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Wonderful evening
    SharonS
    Dined on 7/23/2014
    We had a great evening out with amazing steaks. Was pleased to see that side dishes (veg/choice of potato) are included with the entrée. Many other steak houses charge extra for these. Our filets were perfectly cooked and the recommended wine complemented the food precisely. Would definitely go back here again.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent service/food is par
    JNOX1
    Dined on 7/23/2014
    I ordered the 16oz rib eye and my dinner date had the bone in ny strip steak special. We both ordered medium well. Mine came out perfect...medium well. The NY steak didn't get the same result. We also ordered the sautéed mushrooms which was tasty n so was their cheesecake. What's nice about Donovon's is they also give you vegetables medley and a choice of potatoes with the entree. The Bill came out to be about $170 including a $20 corkage fee. We gave them $200 since their service was spectacular. =)
    Special Features:
    good for groups, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Amazing birthday dinner celebration
    YumyumD
    Dined on 7/22/2014
    Went to dinner for mom's birthday dinner. Everything was great. When we walked in the hostess told my mom happy birthday before we sat down. The wine list had a good selection. It is nice to go to eat somewhere it feels like the waiters really want you there and genuinely care about how you feel. The food was so awesome. Had a steak, it was cooked to perfection. You could cut the steak with a butter knife, it was so tender. The money spent here is always well worth it, the people, the food, the ambiance was all perfect. Got a great desert with a birthday candle. Everything was perfect, I can't think of anything I would change there.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Fantastic food!
    Mrdimn
    Dined on 7/22/2014
    Donovan's is a fantastic restaurant when it comes to steaks. I don't know about the fish, but the steaks are amazing. The steaks melt in your mouth.... Staff is friendly and helpful! Expect to drop a bit of cash. It's not cheap but it's a great place for business write-offs, and special occasions.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Bobby
    Dined on 7/22/2014
    as always, the dining experience at Donovan's is superb......no wonder people buy so many living socials......
    Special Features:
    special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Head waiter not friendly
    oceansaver
    Dined on 7/22/2014
    The head waiter wasn't friendly - this may be because we were using one of the local coupons. The food is alway top notch at Donavan's but this waiter made this outing a bad experience for my wife and I. Not sure if we will return to Donavan's again - there are plenty of quality restaurants in the area. Its not always the food that make the experience your waiter always sets the tone of the meal.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food, great staff
    DDub
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    Donovan's is an excellent restaurant with fantastic steak and seafood dishes. The staff is attentive yet unobtrusive, and they do whatever they can to ensure everyone enjoys not just their meal, but their entire experience.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Ok
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    For the prices . It was ok . Food was excellent ! Service when you have three staff members staffing your table should be a little more attentive. A disgusting piece of old moldy bread was between the seat and wall where our booth was . ( lost my appetite after this )several items my brother attempted to order we're no longer available and one of the meals of the 5 did not come with the others. This meal was top dollar, in addition to excellent food -I also expect service , ambiance , cleanliness to come with the experience .
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Outstanding
    hjermoian
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    Best restaurant in North County. Excellent food and Service.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate