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Rocco's Restaurant
Rocco's Restaurant

Rocco's Restaurant Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://roccos-restaurant.com/
  • Phone: (949) 388-7766
  • Cuisine: Italian, European
  • Dress Code: Business Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Beer, Chef's Table, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Getting there

  • Parking: No
A word from Rocco's Restaurant
Locally owned and operated by local Master Chef Rocco Cobonara, we provide diners with a diverse menu, amazing cooking and extremely affordable prices.
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerItalian
  • Diners' Choice WinnerNeighborhood Gem
Diner Reviews
  • "The sea bass was amazing...melt in your mouth good. The salad was excellent. No so sure about the empanadas...but then I'm not sure about empanadas in general. My husband had the risotto and I was lucky enough to get a bite. It was delicious. We will be back. Our server was warm and friendly which added to our positive experience."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "Our group was four total. When seated and commenting on how warm it was, our waitress told us "this is the hotest table in the restuarant. After serveral requests to cool things down, we accepted the fact that we would sweat through dinner. Food was good (escargot was excellent), but the experience was misserable, highlighted by our non-resonsive waitress, who we had to ask for things several times before getting a response. Didn't seem like she wanted to be there that night!!"
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "Our neighbors in San Clemente introduced us to this restaurant and we love it. It's very small so reservations are a good idea. It has a Casual but sophisticated atmosphere. The pumpkin ravioli was great. There is a nice private dining area for a group of 6-8."
    Dined on 6/25/2014
  • "Rocco's has a great feel, quaint and special. Rocco and Bella do a wonderful job of making you feel welcomed. Food is spectacular. Flavors, quantity, colorful. Definitely coming back to this local place again!"
    Dined on 6/21/2014
  • "The food is just delicious. Every time we go, all four of us are very pleased. Last visit we had to wait a while for our reservation and they comped a round of drinks...great service"
    Dined on 6/13/2014
  • "We have been coming here since they opened. Their food is was good and consistent. When we want to have a nice meal experience we think of them. Booked on Open Table at the last minute on a Saturday night and got in!"
    Dined on 6/14/2014
  • "So glad we looked on Yelp bc others wrote what a fantastic place this is and they were right! From everything to the appetizers to dessert! Phenomenal find! Thanks, Yelp!!"
    Dined on 6/14/2014
  • "The food & service is excellent! The restaurant is extremely noisy it was difficult to have a conversation with our friends."
    Dined on 6/7/2014
  • "Our first time at Rocco's and it was excellent. Food was crazy good and the service on par. The Chef owner Rocco seemed to handle and touch every plate that goes out and it shows. That is how all chef owners should conduct business when their name is on the door. Great job Rocco!"
    Dined on 6/6/2014
  • "Smaller than I expected so pretty loud inside and they only served beer (very limited) and wine. Appetizers and service were good, though. "
    Dined on 6/6/2014
  • "It's a small place and was pretty noisy. We were on-time for our reservations and our table wasn't ready. We had to stand in the doorway waiting for the hostess to set up the table, wasn't real crazy about this aspect of our dinner. The food made up for that as it was outstanding. Would definitely go back to this restaurant."
    Dined on 6/2/2014
  • "Love this place. Yummy Escargot! Miss the Bone Marrow. Lots of interesting as well as "near" traditional food. Great variety and always interesting specials. The reason for only 4 stars, my shrimp was sadly overcooked even though I asked my server to tell the chef to cook it very little. They would have gladly replaced but we had ordered too much other stuff and decided to let it go. They were very nice about the whole thing. Doubt it will happen again."
    Dined on 5/30/2014
  • "This place is small but all-around great! The portions are a perfect size and the ambiance is inviting. The food is absolutely delicious and our service was outstanding."
    Dined on 5/25/2014
  • "People at Rocco's want to please and do a nice job of it. Food is traditional and nicely prepared. The location is in the heart of small shops and restaurants but easily accessed by freeway if you are traveling north or south on I5 and dinner in San Clemente fits your travels!"
    Dined on 5/18/2014
  • "We have been there several times and have always had a good experience. We have recommended Rocco's to others who have since gone there. They also have given good reports, especially on the food."
    Dined on 5/12/2014
  • "One of my favorite places! Make sure you have a reservation as a small number of tables."
    Dined on 4/12/2014
  • "Chef-owned restaurant, so you know who is making and serving the food. Good food that pleased even my 81-year old mother and her 95-year old husband, who don't like anything too fancy or spicy. Also pleased the more adventurous eaters in the group. Definitely something for everyone; good portions, not overpriced."
    Dined on 3/30/2014
  • "Friendly little dining spot. Food was very good and affordable. Wine prices are reasonable."
    Dined on 3/28/2014
  • "A wonderful place for a quiet dinner - noise at a minimum, soft background music. The escargot was fantastic! Service was outstanding."
    Dined on 3/22/2014
  • "Rocco's is a great local spot that has great food and enthusiastic service. It gets a little on the loud side, but it isn't unbearable by any means. Enjoy!"
    Dined on 3/21/2014
  • "Make sure you make a reservation because Rocco's seems to be always filled. Ambience has a cozy feel. Not a big restaurant but warm and comfortable. Food was great. The Pork chop was to die for. Also the Paella was very good. Service was quick and very friendly. Try Roccos, i am sure you will love it"
    Dined on 2/21/2014
  • "always a great dinner....great service....delicious food!"
    Dined on 2/20/2014
  • "Very attentive waiter, risottos were tasty, but salty, empanadas yummy. Wine only. We're taken as soon As we walked in."
    Dined on 2/22/2014
  • "The food is really good, the service is excellent. The wine is notable. But you won't hear a single thing that is said to you by the server or by any of your dinner companions. You will not enjoy your experience here because of the noise level. The era when this was trendy, or cute, or acceptable is over. The restaurant needs to rethink its niche."
    Dined on 2/21/2014
  • "we sat by the bar and it was so hard to hear each other talk. acoustic are not good. The positive is that the food is great. Plan on going there on a less busy time and it should be fine."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "We always enjoy an excuse to dine in this gem of a restaurant. Valentine's Day was just such an excuse. We could only get in at 5 o'clock which speaks to the popularity of the establishment. The food was great; excellent special ravioli with duck. Perfectly prepared bass. We always love the caprice salad. Wine recommendation was good. We finished with a creme brûlée. All in all a great evening."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "We had a great experience. Rocco cooks amazing food. We highly recommend this little san clemente gem."
    Dined on 2/7/2014
  • "Great menu selections. Best risotto I have probably ever had. Although I have only been there once, this is probably the best Italian food I have had in Orange County for a long time."
    Dined on 2/1/2014
  • "I almost didn't leave a review, as I don't want others to discover this little gem in San Clemente, but Rocco deserves all the success he has had, and will continue to have. It's not a terribly romantic place, as it is rather small, and loud, but it's a really fun neighborhood gathering place, and everybody walks around and talks to one another, and Rocco always comes by the tables and meets people, saying good bye to them by name when they leave. Food is overwhelming, as I look at the menu and picked so many dishes I wanted to try that I just gave up and told Rocco to make me whatever he wants, off-menu. It was a veal/eggplant/cheese/prociutto layered treat. Love this place."
    Dined on 1/24/2014
  • "THIS WAS OUR FIRST TIME AT ROCCO'S AND WE WERE VERY PLEASED WITH OUR EXPERIENCE. WE ARE LOOKING FORWARD TO TRYING OTHER ITEMS ON THE MENU."
    Dined on 1/10/2014
  • "Great little place. Atmosphere is excellent! Bella and Rocco do an excellent job and making you feel welcomed, as if you were at home. Food, what else can be said but to use the over-used phrase "to die for". Seafood Risotto, Paella, excellent European and South American flare, you won't be disappointed."
    Dined on 12/28/2013
  • "We arrived without a reservation at 6:30p and told they were fully booked the rest of the night, turned away. Subsequently went on Open Table, and to our surprise, there were plenty of openings from 7:30 pm on. When seated we peruse the weak wine list. The server had no idea what he was talking about with regards to our questions on the list. Perhaps the owner should do a better job at educating his staff on the wine list. Hint: then you might sell more wine...After we ordered our appetizer, we waited 10 min. The server returned, took our dinner order and asked if we'd like to start with an appetizer. Huh? During our wine and water glasses went empty without attention from staff. Food, just ok, uninspiring."
    Dined on 11/30/2013
  • "Rocco's is definitely worth a visit. Dined with friends (group of 6) and had a private room - restaurant is small so this room is only space that can accommodate our party. This was my second visit - and it surpassed the first one. Everyone commented on how great the food was, how reasonable the prices, and excellent service. Hubby and I split the lamb (excellent) and the shrimp (I subbed pasta for the mashed potatoes so it was like eating shrimp scampi - yum). Also shared a cesear salad. brought our own wine ($10 corkage). Friends had stuffed pork chop and loved it). Rocco's knows how to season food - unlike many restaurants where the food tastes bland. All said they would definitely come back and thanked me for introducing them to Roccos."
    Dined on 10/26/2013
  • "This was my first visit to Rocco's. I had read in Orange Coast magazine, a few months ago, about the top chefs in Orange County & Rocco Carbonaro (?) was one of them so I already knew that I was in for something special. I had the spaghetti with the fish in a tomato sauce (light) and it was so good. It was served in an unusual bowl with a saucer. My friend had the baked chicken with mashed potatoes and brown gravy. He raved about it. Before this dish, he had salad with the raspberry viniagrette with blue cheese. (The menu says feta cheese). For dessert, we had chocolate flan which was superb. It was creamy, almost chocolate pudding like. Rocco's opens at 4:30PM nightly and on 2 nights a week they have entertainment there. Check it out!"
    Dined on 9/22/2013
  • "Ya gotta love Rocco and this place---- the salmon special was over the top yummy!"
    Dined on 9/15/2013
  • "Dined here once before mid-week in the early evening and it was quiet and charming, though the meat entrees were not tender, so disappointing. Came back on a Saturday evening, hoping again for a quiet conversation spot but found, instead, a robust crowd. However, the risotto and arugula salad were very good and this small restaurant has a nice neighborhood ambiance. Right off the I-5, it's midway between Los Angeles and San Diego, so a convenient meeting place for me and friends."
    Dined on 9/14/2013
  • "Tasty food, friendly server, sort of a New York ambiance. Extensive menu, we look forward to returning to try some other dishes. There are a lot of gluten free choices on the menu."
    Dined on 9/14/2013
  • "Food is always amazing. Featured wine was delicious. I love this place."
    Dined on 9/6/2013
  • "My wife and I celebrated my 50th birthday there and were completely pleased. We are returning with friends on our next visit to San Clemente. Go and be fulfilled."
    Dined on 8/19/2013
  • "My boyfriend and I ate at Rocco's last night. First time there but I had read great reviews. Small restaurant but close to the downtown area with a fun, vibrant vibe. We started with the polenta and sausage special-cooked to perfection. Followed by the Caesar salad. Authentic, flavorable dish. We both had the Filetto Maxwell, wrapped in prosciutto. Came with mashed potatoes and spinach. Amazing flavors, seasoned just right and good portions. For dessert, the chef ran out of the regular creme brulee but offered to make us a special chocolate one. Tasty and not too rich! Our waitress, Katherine, was knowledgeable and engaging. Prices were reasonable as well. We had a wonderful evening and will be back again soon. Would recommend to anyone!"
    Dined on 8/16/2013