Waterboy
Waterboy

Waterboy

  • Dining Style: Fine Dining
  • Website: http://www.waterboyrestaurant.com/
  • Phone: (916) 498-9891
  • Hours of Operation:
    Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 2:30pm; Dinner: Sunday - Monday: 5:00pm - 9:00pm, Tuesday - Wednesday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:30pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:30pm

  • Payment Options: AMEX,Diners Club,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Italian, Californian, French American
  • Executive Chef: Rick Mahan
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Beer, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Getting there

  • Cross Street: 20th
  • Parking: Street Parking
  • Parking Details: There is a small parking lot behind the building, as well as ample street parking on block.
A word from Waterboy
Our Goal at The Waterboy is to provide you with a wonderful dining experience. Taking inspiration from the cuisines of southern France and northern Italy, we feature a new menu every month to take full advantage of our local, seasonal ingredients. Our menu features naturally raised meats, local organic produce and freshly baked breads. Along with great service and a terrific, reasonably priced wine list, we think you will be quite pleased with a visit to The Waterboy.

Continued
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Overall
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Food
  • Diners' Choice WinnerFit for Foodies
Waterboy reviews from OpenTable diners
179 reviews since August 1, 2014
Overall Rating4.6
  • Food4.7
    Service4.6
  • Ambiance4.2
    Noise LevelModerate
96% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (140)special occasion (103)neighborhood gem (95)notable wine list (59)romantic (56)great for lunch (37)great for outdoor dining (34)good for groups (21)hot spot (17)late-night find (6)vibrant bar scene (3)scenic view (3)great for brunch (1)kid-friendly (1)Show More
  • Disappointing
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 11/22/2014
    Entrees were way over-salted. Salad dressing was all vinegar. All in all, very disappointing meal. We probably won't be back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Always Consistent, Always Surprising
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 11/21/2014
    Chef Rick Mahan has again worked his magic with a savory galette filled with coq au vin he calls a chicken pot pie. When we first read the dish's title each of us envisioned a different look for its presentation and we both surprised that neither had guess correctly, and happily so. This buttery gift disguised as pastry enveloped a first rate braise of chicken, wine, baby carrots, mushrooms and a perfect glance of bacon. Great for lunch, great period. As always, Marcela, one of Waterboy's veteran servers was her charming ( and efficient) self. Always a pleasure at Waterboy.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Disappointing dinner
    Robert
    Dined on 11/20/2014
    Waterboy is one of our long-time favorite restaurants; however, the recent Jacques Pepin prixe fixe dinner left much to be desired. Some of the dishes were simply superb - others (notably the soup and the bouef bourguignon were not representative of the usually fine food at Waterboy). The soup was a bit mushy, while the bouef dish was mediocre, although flavorful. The dessert, a chocolate cake, was on the dry side. We will eat there again, but we're puzzled as to why we did not have our usual fully pleasing experience the other night.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Wonderful, as always!
    GreenlawnGal
    Dined on 11/20/2014
    Chef Rick Mahan has done it again!! For his November "Third Thursday Dinner" he honored his hero, Jacques Pepin, with a wonderful 4 course dinner featuring local farms and produce. In addition, the amuse-bouche was also outstanding, creative and delicious. The chocolate dessert was unbelievable. Service, as always, was outstanding and it was fun to chat with Andrew and Chef Rick about the different courses. Our favorite Sacramento restaurant - and for very good reasons!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • REDBMPS
    Dined on 11/20/2014
    This is an outstanding restaurant with efficient and friendly service. The most notable entees are Passamore ranch Trout Almondine, The day boat Scallops and the Mushroom risotto. Chef/ Owner Rick Mahan turns out truly tasty seasonal favorites too numerous to mention and were always delicious. The staff take pride in their Restaurant and the enthusiasm shoes.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A Favorite Place
    saradoodles
    Dined on 11/20/2014
    I love this restaurant and always have a hard time deciding what to order because there are so many delicious options. We enjoyed the seared scallops with butternut squash risotto and spinach. Wonderful! New Fall menu has great new additions, but the favorites are still there too.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • great food, but noisy
    Jellyfish
    Dined on 11/18/2014
    We enjoyed our dinner at Waterboy, Delicious food, relaxed atmosphere, reminded us of France. the restaurant is kind of small so it get very noisy.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Foodie1
    Dined on 11/15/2014
    This restaurant is excellent. The food in particular was fabulous. My only comment is that the tables were set up so close together that we felt we were eating with our neighbors, and our waiter could hardly squeeze between the tables to speak to us. When he was waiting on the table next to us I had his backside ... well .... There were some large parties with tables set up together, so perhaps that was the reason all the tables were nearly on top of one another. We would certainly go back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • One of my favorites!
    AddictedToFood
    Dined on 11/12/2014
    I save 5 stars for over the top restaurants. Food is creative, service well timed, wish the wine selection was better
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • robinettaVIP
    Dined on 11/10/2014
    The restaurant looks run down. Of the three lights over the bar one bulb was out. The decor needs a face lift. Our waiter was not helpful on the request of no clams in my friends entree, though when pressed said it was possible.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • The best way to kick off an evening
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 11/7/2014
    We've dined at Waterboy many times and are never disappointed. I appreciate the details in every dish, beverage and service. The butternut squash salad was delicious. We then had the evening special of pan-seared cod. Wow. I grew up eating fish a lot, and it is wonderful to have fish prepared perfectly. Nice seared outside, but not overdone. Along with a savory mix of vegetables. Very good. Thank you for another great dinner. See you soon
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • gnts9rs
    Dined on 11/3/2014
    We have always enjoyed a complete and wonderful dining experience at Waterboy. The atmosphere is great, the service is excellent and friendly and the food is exceptional.
    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.
  • Waterboy service wonderful
    AlanVIP
    Dined on 11/2/2014
    The food at Waterboy is good, maybe great. But the service is excellent. If you go, ask for Elizabeth...she's super! Very attentive and charming. Tell her you want some $1 bread...she'll get a kick out of it.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, late-night find, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Really good and worth it!
    BradVIP
    Dined on 11/2/2014
    Interesting menu and well executed. Clearly on par if not a bit better than their mid town competition. Each course has some interesting choices that demonstrate creativity and a flair for the unique. I have dined twice over the past 8 days, and each time was very impressed and along with my guests had good food and a great evening.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Dinner with freinds
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 11/1/2014
    Went with another couple who had never been before. Everyone enjoyed there food. Although I thought mine wasn't quite up to waterboy standards, it was still good. 2 of us had the ribeye. It was cooked as requested but was too fatty to eat. Ribeye is my favorite steak so I know they are one of the more fatty cuts of meat. This one however could have been trimmed. Nothing worse than taking a few bites and getting nothing but fat. Spent a lot if time trying to trim it my self but finally gave up. Everything else was very good. 3 others enjoyed there food a lot. Dinning area is small, is cramped and a bit noisy but the food is usually worth it.I will go back and give it another try as the last time I was there it was amazing!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always Good
    eatwell
    Dined on 11/1/2014
    Dined again at The Waterboy. 4 people variously had grilled ahi tuna, pork chop, butternut squash ravioli & seafood risotto, plus appetizers. My frito misto appetizer was OK, not great. Very generous portion, though & the spicy aioli was delicious. The ravioli was quite sweet, but I guess that was due to the sweet squash. The other dishes were very good. It was the restaurant's 18th anniversary, so we received complimentary prosecco and a bouche s'amuse, which was a rather stale puff pastry with a bland filling, but then, it was unexpected.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • very nice place.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 10/29/2014
    Only issue was timing of the dishes. But food was spot on in flavor and freshness. Pork chops and duck: pork July and done to perfection. ..the duck was perfect. Sometimes I've had duck that I couldn't finish...that was not a problem here at all. Sides are all awesome
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Waterboy still shines
    SaugatuckMi
    Dined on 10/29/2014
    Wonderful experience. Visited during game 7 of the World Series so it was a particularly quiet night. The butternut squash salad is to die for! Missed seeing rick but the restaurant is capably managed. So fun to be back!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Our go to place for special dinners
    Tonya
    Dined on 10/27/2014
    The night was special and as always Waterboy was the perfect place to celebrate.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great Experience
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 10/26/2014
    One of Sacramento's top three restaurants. As I am discreet I won't say who's where in the rankings. Always great flavor profiles in all the dishes, I have never had a meal there that was anything less than excellent.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Special occasion gem
    HandV
    Dined on 10/24/2014
    My husband and I choose a different fine dining restaurant every year to celebrate our anniversary. Our experience at the waterboy was in our top three. Everything about the evening was perfect. The service was excellent and the food phenomenal. We will definitely go back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Food
    MrsGovVIP
    Dined on 10/24/2014
    The Waterboy never disappoints on food quality and flavor. I love the openness of the all window venue and the staff is always so pleasant and provides the best service they possibly can.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Excellent food, great wine.
    Nlkoffie
    Dined on 10/22/2014
    Excellent food, great wine list. Very friendly staff. Nice ambiance
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • The best!
    Normani
    Dined on 10/22/2014
    Came in to Sacramento from Berkeley for the day, and just HAD to return to Waterboy. You did not disappoint! Hats off to Rick and the entire crew!! Food and service -- as always -- are tops! You folks are THE BEST! We had Duck-Frites, and the Trout. Both dishes were xcellent!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Ambiance and Great food
    SchiecklivitcusVIP
    Dined on 10/20/2014
    The physical openness of the restaurant with two walls of windows, the spacing of the tables, and the the decor serve as a perfect platform for the ambiance created by the staff and supported by excellent food makes this restaurant a destination to return to.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 10/18/2014
    Very good over-all. Great service and the food was delicious. Only issue was, we had a 7:15 PM seating and by the time we ordered at about 7:45 they were out of one of the featured specials.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • sactotom
    Dined on 10/16/2014
    Our favorite fine dining restaurant in Sacramento. Professional, friendly service, outstanding food and wine, always a wonderful evening.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Special occasion dinner spot
    SacOccasion
    Dined on 10/12/2014
    My wife and I got married in Sacramento and we spent the weekend and a wonderful Inn and Spa (always a great spot), who made reservations at Waterboy. They recommended it and it was open on a Sunday night. We arrived early to have some drinks beforehand, but they already had our table ready. The food was fantastic! It's not a huge menu (which I appreciated), but there are definitely great options. Our server was great. She was very authentic and just the right amount of checking in and leaving alone. We asked about where our oysters were from and we ended up having a great conversation with her about California coast oysters. For the quality of food, friendly service, and feel of the place, the price was very reasonable. I recommend it!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, late-night find, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • A wonderful dining experience
    Josh
    Dined on 10/12/2014
    Dinner at the Waterboy was simply great. Great food, attentive staff, and they even were able to cook up something which was not on the menu! I look forward to dining there again in the very near future :)
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food
    jtfdez5VIP
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    Never disappoints. Food is always very good. From small plates, to salads, down to the desserts, Waterboy is a great place to dine at
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 10/5/2014
    The food was outstanding...the restaurant was full and noise level high...probably because of old building and acoustics. I think maybe next time we will go earlier in the evening.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2009
    Dined on 10/5/2014
    They need someone at the bar who knows how to open older bottles of wine. Servers using the usual cheap wine opener break corks with inappropriate openers and bar has nothing better.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Met the Hype
    OpenTable Diner Since 2003VIP
    Dined on 10/5/2014
    It's so nice to look forward to dining at this restaurant and it met our expectations. All I can say it was "just good! "
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, hot spot, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Still my Favorite
    eatwell
    Dined on 10/1/2014
    As usual, we had a very good dinner. Were served a complimentary glass of Prosecco for my birthday, then both of us enjoyed the trout for the main course. I don't remember the sides it came with, but they were very good, as was the sauce. My husband likes the sweetbreads for the first course - says they are the best of any place. I enjoyed a salad of green beans, sweet peppers and goat cheese. I have always liked the atmosphere at The Waterboy- it's informal, but not too casual. With the large windows and the French cafe chairs, it's a very pleasant setting. The restaurant was busy which lent a festive air. Service excellent, but not pretentious.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Love Waterboy
    saradoodles
    Dined on 9/28/2014
    I have never been disappointed by this restaurant. Shared the heirloom tomatoes with mozarella with my friend. They were fantastic-sweet, juicy and full-flavored like tomatoes are supposed to be, but too often are not. Everything on the menu was fresh and seasonal. I chose the fish stew, but I would have loved to have a bite of everything I saw. Our server Elizabeth was knowledgeable and attentive Although I didn't order them this time, I love the sweetbreads and Caesar Salad which I think are always on the menu. Rick Mahan has a wonderful team of chefs and servers. His enthusiasm for his business and love of cooking are infectious. It's a treat to eat here!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Exceptional dining experience
    Jc916
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    We love coming to waterboy, its our 2nd time coming here and has been great both times. The appetizers are always unique and foodie oriented along with some well executed classics like caesar salad.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • GeorgiaJW
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    Consistently outstanding. Our favorite restaurant.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Disappointed
    Dined on 9/25/2014
    My business partner and I decided to visit THE WATERBOY restaurant in Sacramento. It’s a good thing that we made reservations as it was quite crowded. (That’s a hint!) The last time we ate there was about a year and a half ago. This time my business partner ordered the Oysters on the Half Shell with Mignonette Sauce. His entrée was the Salmon special. I took a gamble on the Antipasto Plate (Parma Prosciutto, Cured Meats & Salami, Marinated Vegetables, Olives, Sheepsmilk Cheese & Bruschetta) and the Pasta Special of the evening. Add in some wonderful service by Marcella and the results were a double dose of excellent, start to finish. This place is due for a third visit the next time we are in Sacramento.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • A special place to dine.
    linda42
    Dined on 9/21/2014
    The wait staff always makes us feel special. The menu always features locally-sourced, seasonal dishes.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent food
    Rachelyaya
    Dined on 9/18/2014
    The food here is delicious. Perfect for a fancier meal for adults, but still a relaxed atmosphere. Love this restaurant. I wouldn't bring my kids, the food takes awhile to come. Only thing I would suggest- update the restrooms.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.