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
350 reviews since April 30, 2014
Overall Rating4.7
  • Food4.7
    Service4.7
  • Ambiance4.5
    Noise LevelModerate
96% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
special occasion (299)romantic (223)notable wine list (157)fit for foodies (114)good for groups (73)vibrant bar scene (57)neighborhood gem (54)hot spot (39)late-night find (30)kid-friendly (11)great for brunch (9)great for lunch (8)scenic view (3)great for outdoor dining (2)Show More
  • Ribeye Night
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/25/2014
    Service was great. Both the Cajun Ribeye and the Ribeye steak was amazing, juicy and tender. Mac & Cheese lovers, so always have to order a side. Top off the evening with a slice of cheesecake, which is so light and delicious.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Dining Experience
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/25/2014
    This is a great place but prices aren't for the faint of heart. Well worth the money for the quality of everything from the ambiance to the food to the service. Great for a special occasion or romantic evening. Add the blue cheese to your steak it is to die for, unless you don't like blue cheese.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Overpriced and not worth the value
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010VIP
    Dined on 8/25/2014
    Eat in the lounge area, not the dining room. The lounge is good when they offer happy hour specials, otherwise cocktails and food are also extremely overpriced. Service in the lounge area was great. Service in the dining room was non-existent. The steak that I ordered was WAAAAY overpriced and everything else was ala carte and also not worth the price. For a restaurant that is supposedly known for their steaks, this was a huge disappointment. I had eaten at their location in the Gaslamp several months ago and had the same experience, so it does not vary by location. You receive the same overpriced product and poor service consistently at both locations. There are much better locations to pay for overpriced food and poor service.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2009
    Dined on 8/25/2014
    Excellent dining as always, Service trio were very attentive and informed. Always a highlight to visit Donovan's.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Suprior Restaurant and Service
    Bernie
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    It was nice to be able to go to a First Class restaurant and not have to pay for parking. Christopher and team were the best. Food was outstanding.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Superb Special Occasion
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    We dined at Donovans Steak House for the first time on Aug. 23rd to celebrate our 45th anniversary. In past years, we had always gone to nearby Flemings ... and always had excellent steaks and service. However, Flemings was always so loud we had to shout to hear each other at even a small table. Donovans provides a much quieter, more romantic atmosphere where you can talk in a normal voice ... plus comfortable plush booths and steaks and service equal to Donovans. We will return regularly.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Had Better Steaks
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    Went out for an anniversary dinner. It was our first visit to Donovan's - La Jolla. The restaurant was very nice. The decor and ambiance were both excellent. I heard many times of their amazing service and it was every bit as good as advertised. Truly impressive. We had an amazing crab cake appetizer and ordered New York Strip Steaks. I was anticipating a delicious steak and I was disappointed. It was cooked well (mine was medium rare, the wife's medium) but it seriously lacked flavor and ended up a bit chewy. I have had much better steaks for far less money. Although the overall experience was very good, the steaks just kind of took the edge off the whole experience.
    Special Features:
    notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great as always
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    We always pick Donovan's for our go to restaurant to celebrate a special occasion and it never disappoints. Great food and excellent service!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • ChrissieVIP
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    This is a great place to dine for special occasions simply because the food is very good, the service is top notch, but the prices are top dollar. On special occasions you don't mind paying the price.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great place
    MRreview
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    I went with my wife and a couple friends service was excellent food was awesome I ordered the filet mignon 16oz and it was cook perfectly it also came with mashed potatoes and vegetables also very good I didn't have dessert I was to full great place I would definitely go again in the near future.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Consistently good
    Jmak
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    We haven't been to Donovan's in a while and again they did not miss. The filet and ribeye was so good.
    Special Features:
    romantic, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Anniversary dinner
    Snuz
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    We celebrated our 40th anniversary here. Every person who waited on us wished us happy anniversary. The service was wonderful and we felt very special. We even used a Living Social voucher and we were still treated like royalty. Try the filet mignon, you won't be sorry. By the way they have wonderful bleu cheese stuffed olives and a great martini and we received creme brûlée as a complimentary dessert for our anniversary. We highly recommend and will go back for full price for sure. Thanks Donovan's!!!
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • The best.
    Frank
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    This restaurant is spectacular. The food is consistently remarkable. The service is wonderful. And the management pays great attention to detail. Seeing your name on a brass plaque at the head of the table reminds you that they think you're special. It will always be a place we will celebrate special occasions.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, late-night find, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • 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
    Oside760
    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