Il Fornaio - Carmel
Il Fornaio - Carmel

Il Fornaio - Carmel

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.ilfornaio.com/
  • Phone: 8316225100x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Breakfast: Monday - Friday: 8:00am - 10:00am; Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 4:00pm, Saturday - Sunday: 11:00am - 4:00pm; Dinner: Sunday - Thursday: 4:00pm - 9:00pm, Friday - Saturday: 4:00pm - 10:00pm; Brunch: Saturday - Sunday: 9:00am - 2:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Diners Club,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Executive Chef: Gabriel Rodriguez
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Beer, Cafe, Counter Seating, Fireplace, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking Area, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Smoking Area, Takeout, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Catering: Catering services through our take-out retail area are available and include: • Boxed Lunch – sandwich, salad, Italian cookie and drink packaged individually. • Platters – pastries, sandwiches, salads or cookies. Perfect for any social or business meeting held at your location.
    Larger off-site full service catering is also available by request. Please contact our on-site Event Coordinator for more details.

Getting there

  • Parking: Street Parking
A word from Il Fornaio - Carmel
Il Fornaio means "the Baker" in Italian. Located in downtown Carmel, Il Fornaio offers an authentic and unique Italian dining experience and a Wine Spectator Award of Excellence 2007 wine list. Enjoy wood-fired rotisserie and grilled meats, poultry and game; house made and imported pastas; pizzas from an oak wood burning oven; fresh salads and house made soups; antipasti and a wide variety of desserts made daily from scratch.
Reservation Confirmation Message: Thank you for choosing Il Fornaio - Carmel. Should your plans change, please let us know. We look forward to serving you Grazie e Ciao
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Il Fornaio - Carmel reviews from OpenTable diners
105 reviews since May 25, 2014
Overall Rating4.1
  • Food4
    Service4.1
  • Ambiance4.1
    Noise LevelModerate
86% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
neighborhood gem (41)special occasion (32)romantic (25)good for groups (25)kid-friendly (24)great for lunch (24)fit for foodies (23)vibrant bar scene (21)notable wine list (17)great for brunch (15)great for outdoor dining (10)scenic view (9)late-night find (7)hot spot (7)Show More
  • Always A Good Choice
    GlennVIP
    Dined on 9/20/2014
    I've dined here several times now and know what to expect. It's a very busy restaurant but always consistent. Excellent service, good food and good prices. If you like gnocchi you have to try the Gnocchi Bolognese. It's the very best in town. Little pillows of heaven.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Never gave a negative review before
    Idine911VIP
    Dined on 9/16/2014
    From out of town, read Open Table, which I have used many, many times. The restaurant reviews and menu were to our liking. Upon entering, we were immediately shown to our table, water was poured, bread serves and drink orders taken. A short time later the waiter came by took our order. 45 minutes later the food arrived. My dish was ice cold, no exaggeration. I called waiter over. He took my plate without an apology and said that he would replace it. 15 minutes later when the rest of my party had finished their meals, my dish had still not been replaced. I had to get up and find the waiter to tell him to cancel the order and bring the check. No apology. The bill came followed by the manager who was apologetic and comped our party of 4.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Excellent restaurant
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    Great food and atmosphere! My wife and I had a great date night.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Party of 9
    Abuelo
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    We were 6 adults 3 kids. Service was friendly but not immediate. Some in party did not like their entrees. But, overall a nice dining experience.
    Special Features:
    hot spot, kid-friendly, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Bland food
    Traveler
    Dined on 9/11/2014
    Great location in Carmel. Nice ambience. Both pasta dishes we had were bland. No depth of flavor. Initially the waiter was very attentive but when trying to get second glass of wine, he was nowhere to be found. Very disappointing.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Always spot on.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 9/4/2014
    I am a local regular here. Always good. Service with a smile and helpful. The bar is fun on a Friday afternoon because their HH is one of the best in Carmel. Wood fired pizza, carpaccio, calamari, etc.....and drinks for $5.00. Matt the manager is very kind, and gracious and knows how to please this crowd. The food is pretty consistent. The wine dinners are fabulous. I do recommend.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Excellent Spot
    JDranVIP
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    Food was really good. Service was exceptional. Our waiter suggested a dish that I would not ordinarily choose, and it was terrific. We will go back and we will recommend.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Below Expectations
    Jeff
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    We've eaten at this restaurant several times and had much better experiences. The waiter seemed unexperienced and the attention to detail was not good. I'd had to practically beg for them to refill my water glass. The entre came out very late.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Fair at best
    Foodie
    Dined on 8/29/2014
    Went with my husband and son. We had the calamari as an appetizer, and the sea bass, roasted chicken, and bolognese as main courses. All were average. We have enjoyed this restaurant in the past, but wouldn't recommend it now. Service was slow, and the waiter inattentive. Definitely not worth the prices. Also, there was a very strong, sweet fragrance throughout the restaurant that was unpleasant. This may have been coming from the Pine Inn, which is adjacent. Given that many venues and companies in CA are embracing fragrance-free policies, it made the place seem dated.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Amazing food
    C6corvette
    Dined on 8/25/2014
    Very reasonable and service was spot on. I have been going to this restaurant for many years and the quality of food has not changed. They also have a great happy hour. I will continue to return
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, special occasion, late-night find, scenic view, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Try the Cannelloni al Forno!
    MRYfoodie
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    While attending an evening concert in Carmel, on the spur of the moment my husband and I decided to go out for a late night dinner. From the concert venue, using my iPhone, I made reservations through OpenTable at Il Fornaio, Carmel. When we arrived at the restaurant, our table was waiting, we were immediately seated and a beautiful basket of fresh baked rolls and bread was placed on our table. Our server was friendly, very helpful with our menu selections, and nonintrusive -- we don't enjoy having a server who "hovers" over our table, constantly interrupting our conversation! Our food was absolutely delicious. We have been to Il Fornaio many times, but this evening's experience was the best ever. Well done, Il Fornaio!!
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, special occasion, great for lunch, late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Dependably good
    FrancoPhil
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    Il Forniao is a chain, but we've never been disappointed, no matter what city. Excellent Italian, friendly service, good cocktail and wine.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Glad we came back
    FoodieForLife
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    This was our second time at this Il Fornaio site and enjoyed the experience and food once again. There's lots to choose from and our dinners were very good, while our server was excellent. Prices are good for Carmel. Nothing negative. Just good food and drink in a comfortable, casual setting.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Always consistent food and service
    DebbieVIP
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    Il Fornaio was a last minute dinner choice after attending the Pebble Beach Concours. We knew the food would be excellent and comforting and the service dependable and it was! I ordered a small portion of butternut squash ravioli with brown butter and tomato sauce. It was perfectly balanced and the crispy sage leaves made the dish. The tomatoes in the caprese salad were lacking in taste but the mozzarella was nice. I would recommend Il Fornaio to others visiting Carmel. We have had similar experience in San Francisco.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great food, bad service
    DandyandyVIP
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    As always, the food was excellent. However our server, despite very friendly, was most incompetent. Every request, from water to follow up on the meal to cream for coffee, was met with an assured smile, only to never arrive or arrive by a 2nd request to a very efficient staff member.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Disappointing Festa Regionale
    Laina
    Dined on 8/16/2014
    We have attended most of the monthly regional meals for several years with mostly great pleasure. But we attended the last two, Veneto and Sardegna, near the end of their presentation dates and in both cases, several dishes and wines were "no longer available." They are obviously under-ordering food for these Festas, and are not even offering comparable substitutes from the regular menu. We had to order them at a la carte cost. Not good.
    Special Features:
    romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Precticable restaurant
    touristdiners
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    No surprises. Good food and service. acceptable wine list.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great food
    Luv2eat
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    Always great food and service eve during the concours deElegance
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Perfect restaurant -
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 8/12/2014
    charming and good food. It is our go to place for breakfast, coffee, lunch and dinner. We love it
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Great location and pasta to match
    RickzVIP
    Dined on 8/11/2014
    One of the best views (peak of the ocean) in Carmel by the Sea if you sit either outside on the deck or in the glass enclosed room next to the deck. The pasta (fresh or from Italy) is always excellent. They complement it with fresh vegetables, seafood, etc. And they have some very nice appetizers and wines. Conveniently open all day.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, scenic view, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Pleasantly Surprising
    LSeghi
    Dined on 8/1/2014
    On our first visit to Carmel, We chose a quaint little Italian bistro for lunch. It wasn't busy, so the host & the wait staff were extremely attentive. The food was delicious & we left extremely satisfied.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food, would go again
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 7/29/2014
    We found this restaurant for dinner and was very pleased. The waiter was excellent, the food was very good. We would definitely go back again.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Return to wonderful food
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 7/28/2014
    Brought our two teenager daughters to celebrate our 17th wedding anniversary and they had a wonderful time, as did my wife and me. Would return again in a minute.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Lovely Lunch in a great setting
    RecessionistaVIP
    Dined on 7/27/2014
    Il Forniao is a chain, but it consistently delivers good fresh food. And it you love bread, well this is the place.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • great lunch
    SSPaVIP
    Dined on 7/27/2014
    6 of us. could order from lunch or brunch menu. Everyone happy with what they ordered & service was great
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, good for groups, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Great downtown location
    MichaelC2014VIP
    Dined on 7/26/2014
    We attended the Carmel Bach Festival and needed a great, centrally located restaurant and Il Fornaio was perfect. The food was exceptional and the ambiance was energetic, yet not too noisy.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2006VIP
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    As OT regulars we rarely complain about anything. One good thing: matre'd was very nice. After that, it was the worst experience we have had at Carmel Il Fornaio. Been there many times. I ordered a special ravioli dish w/pear, and the kitchen waited 20 minutes from placing the order to have the waiter tell me they were out of it. Not excusable. When he handed in the chit to kitchen they should have known immediately it was sold out, not 20 minutes later. That and the dish I ordered ---awfully bad for an Il Fornaio experience (see private note). We are locals to this particular restaurant now, after having experienced the Walnut Creek location since it was opened (and others throughout the US). We will not re-visit here in Carmel.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • consistent and delicious
    emilyjbc
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    Great place and great experience every time. Love that they have some healthier options for kids (side of veggies, minestrone soup) and realistic portions. Clean, simple and pretty inside. Love the salads... I know I will always be pleased when I go there.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • It's all about cannelloni
    Outatowner
    Dined on 7/24/2014
    For me, the quality of the cannelloni is the benchmark to measure Italian food. The cannelloni at Il Fornaio had an excellent flavor with a wonderful sauce combination. The pasta should be more like a crepe, however, rather than the same tube that is used for manicotti. This was my only minor criticism of an otherwise flawless meal. Service was great; menu and wine choices were well above average. Highly recommended for Carmel visitors, who obviously have multiple choices for dining!
    Special Features:
    special occasion, late-night find, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Festa Regionale
    Laina
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    We attend these monthly with great anticipation. However, this time we had the most recent feast near the end of its run and the kitchen was out of many things. Even the wine flights were no longer available. The restaurant tried to fill in from their regular fare, which we appreciated. But we will try not to come at the end of a regional dinner run.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good spot that let us down a bit
    Insearchof
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    We love the atmosphere here. The food just wasn't where it needed to be to make the evening as enjoyable as it has been in the past.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Very reliable
    Jim120253
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    4th visit, look forward to returning. Fresh ingredients, nice plating, spectacular scenery.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, fit for foodies, romantic, great for lunch, scenic view, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great pasta
    RickzVIP
    Dined on 7/11/2014
    The pasta are all great, whether you choose one of that is fresh made or imported from Italy. Only minor issue is that if you sit near the open kitchen and the pizza oven, it can get a little warm. Also, the bar can make it a little loud. Ask for a table by the windows and it will be cooler and quieter and you get a better view. The salmon on flat bread is a great way to start the meal. The desserts are very tasty but the plating could be improved.
    Special Features:
    scenic view, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always pleased.
    ChowHoundVIP
    Dined on 7/9/2014
    We always have great service there, thanks to Carlito. He's a great waiter and always makes sure you are well taken care of. The food is good, the regional menus are fun and different.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Carmel by the sea
    AswNson
    Dined on 7/6/2014
    We enjoyed our dining experience the food was good the homemade pasta was really good. Their house wine was surprisingly very good. The service could of been better for the restaurant. Don't know if he was new because they other waitstaff was noticeably better. Overall good food but not the best Italian food I've ever had.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Overall very good restaurant
    MikeinMonterey
    Dined on 7/5/2014
    I would have given 5 stars were it not for the fact we make a special request to be somewhere relatively private (as private as an Italian restaurant can be) since it was date night for my wife and I. I was disappointed when the hostess casually placed us in the table right next to the main entrance and hostess stand where there were no less than 10-12 people, kids etc. standing where they could while they waited for their table. It was distracting and anything but romantic. I suggest calling if you have a special request. Once seated, we enjoyed the food and the wait staff was very friendly. We even received a visit from the manager asking about our meal. Only one small hiccup in service. I would still highly recommend.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent food-but noisy
    MacbestVIP
    Dined on 7/4/2014
    This spis the second time we have been here and the food continues to excel. Wine list is limited but good. Special heirloom salad was imaginative (even though they forgot the olives which they later confessed to). Although my wife's pasta dish was lukewarm when received it was quickly picked up and remade-hot. The veal scallopine with artichokes and lemon was exceptionally well prepared and very memorable. The noise level can be deafening but we got the little side room that was a bit more muted. Will definitely be coming back.
    Special Features:
    special occasion, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • great dinner
    Todd
    Dined on 7/2/2014
    Good food, good service, good location. My daughter said it was her best meal on vacation.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Luvgoodfood
    Dined on 6/24/2014
    Great dinner here as usual. It is one of our favorites when we go to Carmel. We always have great food that is very tasty and the bread is wonderful. Service is always attentive.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Amazing
    FoureyesVIP
    Dined on 6/21/2014
    Outside of NYC and Healdsburg, Ca., one of the finest dining experiences we have ever had. Attention to detail was outstanding and the freshness of the food was marvelous. Can't wait to return. Thank you !!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet