19 East Carmel Valley Rd
Carmel Valley, CA 93924-9703Neighborhood:
SteakhousePrice: $30 and under
- Dining Style: Casual Dining
- Website: http://www.bernardus.com/
- Phone: 8316592774
- Hours of Operation:
Dinner: Monday - Tuesday, Thursday - Sunday: 4:30PM - 10:00PM.
- Payment Options: AMEX,Diners Club,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
- Cuisine: Seafood, Steakhouse, Vegetarian
- Executive Chef: Cal Stamenov
- Dress Code: Casual Dress
- Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
- Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Entertainment, Farm to Table, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Smoking Area (patio only), Takeout, Wine, Wine Bar
- Catering: Please call for details.
- Private Party Facilities: Three private rooms are available. One ranging from 6 to 10 guests, Second private room seating up 20 and a full buy-out of the restaurant is available and can accommodate up to 100 people.
- Private Party Contact: Jerome Viel 8316592774
- Entertainment: Every first Monday of the month.
A word from Wills Fargo
A Peninsula favorite for over 50 years! Will's Fargo Dining House & Saloon has been a legendary Carmel Valley steakhouse since 1959. Wishing to preserve this landmark, Bernardus founder Ben Pon purchased the restaurant in 2002. Will's comfortable, old-fashioned flavor has been maintained and its reputation for excellent dining and service has been renewed. Award-winning Executive Chef, Cal Stamenov has a passion for high quality, local ingredients: naturally raised meats, freshly caught fish and organic vegetables. Using new and traditional recipes, he has created outstanding menu selections including aged-to-perfection steaks, tasty seafood, lamb, pasta and more. Our wine list features an excellent representation of local, Monterey County wines.Continued
Foodspotting photosSee all photos
Awards voted by OpenTable diners
- Diners' Choice WinnerNeigborhood Gem
- Diners' Choice WinnerOutdoor Dining
- Diners' Choice WinnerSteak
Wills Fargo - Best Restaurants in Carmel Valley ›
Wills Fargo reviews from OpenTable diners
24 reviews since June 22, 2014
- Ambiance3.8Noise LevelModerate
great for outdoor dining (13)neighborhood gem (13)special occasion (8)romantic (7)fit for foodies (6)notable wine list (5)good for groups (5)kid-friendly (2)late-night find (2)great for lunch (1)scenic view (1)vibrant bar scene (1)Show More
- Great steakNonnaDined on 10/15/2014We know we can count on a great steak here. We try to visit every time we happen to be in the area.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Great Food, slow serviceOpenTable Diner Since 2007Dined on 9/13/2014This was my 2nd time dining here. Each time my steak was excellent, no one in my party had any complaints on the food either time, it was pretty delish, actually. The filet is the way to go for sure. The only issue I had (each time) was that the service was painfully slow. The waitresses were friendly, but it took FOREVER to get our food, F-O-R-E-V-E-R, like I lived my life and died FOREVER. As far as the taste and quality of the food, I will return.Special Features:
- Food was so-so, place was dirtyCoffeebuzzVIPDined on 9/13/2014There were maybe 10-15 people in the restaurant for Saturday lunch. It took thirty minutes from the time of placing the order for a Cobb salad and an egg salad sandwich until it was delivered to our table. The patio was run-down and several cigarette butts were on the floor. The Cobb salad was interestingly presented with the traditional ingredients in stripes in the bowl. But everything had been finely chopped into almost exactly the same size. It was boring to eat. I know Saturday lunch is not a big time for a restaurant, but these things represented a major management problem. Inside the bar looked attractive, but we will not go back.
- We keep returning. . .NonnaDined on 8/20/2014Our daughter-in-law found this on her smart phone and we were surprised at how much we enjoyed our meal. If you like a great steak, this is the place for you!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Takes you back to the good old daysBobJVIPDined on 8/18/2014The setting takes you back… A good old-fashioned steak joint… A iceberg salad with ranch dressing… Oversized and tasty. The steak was average… I tried the ribeye and it was a little tough and didn't have a lot of flavor. We celebrated my wife's birthday and we were treated to a large hot fudge sundae… Delicious!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Perfect Family DinnerJlyneisDined on 8/16/2014My husband and I split the Porter House steak, it was by far one of the best restaurant steaks I have ever had. My Sister and husband had the Carbonara, and for a "steak house" the pasta was very good. Our salads were good, the appetizers were good, the wine list was wonderful, although a little expensive. The most outstanding part of our dinner was the service! We had been dragging around our one year old for days! She was very fussy when we got to the restaurant. We sat down and she immediately started crying. My husband took her outside and she calmed right down. The hostess and waitress moved our table outside, and all our stuff, worked around our tight schedule and really made the dinner enjoyable! By far the best of the week!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Worth the driveTastetestVIPDined on 8/1/2014We like to come here each time we come to the Monterey Peninsula. The food is always good (my husband loves the sweetbreads), nice steaks, delicious appetizers, portions are generous. Ambience is casual and friendly, lots of locals. Nice spacing between the tables so it's easy to carry on a conversation. Service is consistently great, friendly staff makes you feel at home.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- OpenTable Diner Since 2013Dined on 7/26/2014I believe in my initial reservation I had indicated his was a special occasion. Unfortunately they did not acknowledge it. Everything else was great. Service was excellent.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Definitely NOT Bernardus!InGoodTasteDined on 7/18/2014On first approach the restaurant looks nostalgic. We had dinner reservations for 3 and we were seated promptly. The dining room (past the bar) feels dark and dank; not romantic at all. The drapery looks dusty, some of the display lights above paintings were out, as well as some of the ceiling's can lights; maybe to hide the dirt and dust. Appetizers, Beef Carpaccio was delicious, shrimp cocktail (I've had better), french onion soup needs attention (it was too sweet). 2 in our party had the steak: porterhouse was tough, the other had Kansas City strip also too tough; both grilled at a temp of med rare. I had the Classic Steak Tare Tare and was it was delicious!! Our server, was excellent!! This is not a place for foodies.Special Features:
- Incredible Food & ServiceSuMoDined on 7/6/2014We have just dined at Wills Fargo, for the first time. All I can say is, Wow! The food is terrific!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- The following 84 reviews are from the Wills Fargo reviews archive.
- Great for a groupScuba2meDined on 6/20/2014Had a bday dinner. Service was good and food was excellent. Already recommending to everyoneSpecial Features:
- Lunch - bummerscooter77Dined on 6/15/2014Lunch menu very, very limited ~ disappointed. Sandwiches and salads only - limited in appetizers as well. Service was very, very slow - despite the place was pretty empty on a Sunday. Overall disappointing. Serve water without asking - a no-no in a drought!Special Features:
- Very AverageOpenTable Diner Since 2006VIPDined on 5/19/2014Our steaks were overcooked, Soup was cold and cream spinach was more like "overly salted" fresh steamed spinach no cream in sight and not edible. Server was not very knowledgable about the menu options. Maybe the Monday night crew were the rookies, but we were still customers that know the difference between average and good service and food.
- Fun local steak houseLocallassieDined on 5/11/2014very fun atmosphere, old time steak house with a French chef and delicious food. My husband had the sashimi appetizer, my only complaint there was although it was very fresh, it wasn't top grade sushi, it was too flaky. Salads were fresh, and crispy, and generous. I had filet and baked potato. My filet was perfectly cooked, and the potato was better than usual, but there was only half! Which was ok, since I had 2 pieces of thier yummy garlic bread. Hubby had Quail which should not be missed, very nice dish. Insider secret: if you can, and you are lucky enough to get Connie, she is the best!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Best meal in yearsBk2walterDined on 5/10/2014Great food... Thanks to the person in San Fran for the recommendation... WonderfulSpecial Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- RichUDined on 5/3/2014Food and service is always excellent! Never had a bad experience at this restaraunt.Special Features:
- Great SteakOpenTable Diner Since 2010Dined on 4/26/2014This is a classic old-school steakhouse located in a beautiful town. They carry a lot of the local wines that you may not find other places.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Always a great place to go!MRYfoodieDined on 4/20/2014I've been to Wills Fargo several times and they never disappoint. This time it was Easter Brunch and once again the food was outstanding and the desserts were just right.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- WonderfulMissKDDined on 4/18/2014Great food, great atmosphere, and great service. It is a dining icon in the Monterey Bay area.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Good steakstakformattenDined on 4/13/2014Our food was good, nothing to write home about, but had a decent steak, cooked the way I like it. Just under $30.00 The black and white bean soup was delicious, garlic bread very good. They were very accommodating for our party of 5. All in all it was very good. I guess I am not used to the elevated prices of the Carmel area, since we mostly cook at home here.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Trip complete!44aniversaryDined on 4/7/2014Second time here to end our trip once again did not disappoint . Meat melts great taste, bar drinks such as the Frago Manhattan was smooth and desert offerings of even a simple Sundae cannot be out done!! Very comfortable setting for great dinning outing.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Memories RelivedwindyDined on 3/31/2014The first time my husband and I patronized Wills Fargo was before our high school senior prom. Fast-forward a few decades (and spouses) later, and we found ourselves married at this lovely restaurant. Monday night we celebrated our anniversary with a glass of yummy Bernardus Pinot, rib eye steaks and full bellies while remembering other delightful meals we have shared over the years. I enjoy the drive out to Carmel Valley Village,and friendly staff, live music and calming atmosphere once we arrive at our destination. Our favorite waitress is Laurie. Ask for the table for 2 in front of the fireplace if you don't mind watching people walk by, otherwise, just about any table inside can begin a memory of its own.Special Features:
- Prime rib dinnerOpenTable Diner Since 2011Dined on 3/26/2014Went for the Thursday prime rib dinner. Service and side dishes were very good. Prime rib was ordered rare to med rare at most. Meat was medium well to well done. Waitress was nice but only said "that's a shame". Very disappointing for a meat restaurant.Special Features:
- bad experiencepatpDined on 3/22/2014the food and service very poor prime rib full of grizzle baked potato cold butter frozen $85 wine never came back and poured not up to Carmel standards actually not up to any standards
- The best steak in the Carmel area!OpenTable Diner Since 2012Dined on 3/7/2014Ok, so I do not eat steak very often anymore; but this place does it to perfection! The meat is cooked to order with wood smoke flavor that will please the most finicky meat lover. The salads, sides, and deserts are all done with attention to detail and every effort is made to please each and every customer. The service is very very good, and the bar tender makes excellent drinks including fancy desert drinks. I truly believe this is the best steak restaurant in Monterey County!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Loved It!SunSettersDined on 2/28/2014Ambiance was dark, warm and very comfortable. Server was outstanding, while food prep time was a bit extended. Meal was delicious and prepared exactly as ordered. First timers here, but we will be back many times in the future.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Really GREAT FoodOpenTable Diner Since 2010Dined on 2/15/2014Quite possibly, the best lobster on the Monterey Peninsula. Wine list is amazing and the service is unbeatable.Special Features:
- always reliablecasharitaDined on 2/14/2014Wills is our local go-to spot for a filet mignon. Never fails..consistant..not gourmet but as easy as eating at home only with the dark, western-y environment that can lend itself to either a passel of kids or a romantic dinner for two. We even had book club xmas parties here..staff is mostly delightful and tolerant. Nice little bar..a friendly place where folks know each other. The Village is lucky it has stuck around thru a number of reincarnations.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Old School Fun!kymoreDined on 1/31/2014We had a lot of fun at this rustic, "old school elegance" spot for dinner. The main course comes with your choice of soup or salad and for a slight up grade in price you can opt for the Cesar Salad ...which we thought was one of the best we've had. Cocktails, wine, main course, everything was superb! Seems like a real locals place. Our waitress was a doll. She knew everyone in the place and by the time we left we new why... she just makes you feel so comfortable. We can't wait to go back!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Wills Fargo Wagon keeps comin!XmanVIPDined on 1/29/2014It's been awhile since I dined here. The last few times, the service and bar are top notch but the meal was just..ok. This is surprising since there is a connection to the Wickets and Marinus Restaurants. I don't know what changed but, WOW! This was an amazingly delicious meal chock-full of wonderful flavors! The drinks and wine list remain at the top of the game. The staff are all friendly and on point and make sure that you are never wanting. If you are looking for a lively night, there are also options here for live music. The nice thing is it isn't every night so, you can have a quiet meal with friends or a lively evening if you desire.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- The steaks were excellent,OpenTable Diner Since 2004Dined on 1/25/2014The steaks were excellent, nicely prepared, but it took an hour to get served. Chairs are not cushioned.I would recommend this to a friend.
- Seems like a local favoriteOpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 1/25/2014The menu has special occasion meals like steak and lobster but the waitresses are like diner waitresses. The food tasted like it was cooked by a short order cook and there were cobwebs on the wall next to our table. The rustic ambiance was nice and it lots of locals who were enjoying themselves. However, we can't recommend this place based on the service and food. It was essentially a Sizzler with higher prices. The lobster was very dry and chewy and the baked potato was still a little raw.Special Features:
- An excellent steak house.steak4everDined on 1/19/2014An excellent steak house. The food is typical for a steak house but done well. The service was very friendly and treated us like family. The room is rustic and reminiscent of an old road house. We always look forward to eating at Wills Fargo when we visit Carmel Valley.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Best place for steaks in MontereyRichUDined on 1/11/2014Best place for steaks in Monterey County! Nothing else compares!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Fish FrenemiesOpenTable Diner Since 2011Dined on 11/3/2013Except for the fish, the food was very good, the service friendly and attentive. The room was rather dark for those over "50" reading & the fish, we could smell & wasn't fresh. So either the fish was too long in the fridge or the supplier sold the chef a fish that was on the "edge". We should have sent it back so it's our fault for not doing anything at the time. We all are in the culinary field & understand the work & effort that goes into running a restaurant. We will return as we have over the past 30 yrs & have enjoyed dining there in the past with good memories.Special Features:
- Loved it!GidgetGarciaDined on 11/1/2013This place was great! I love to try new foods or fancy foods , but I hate the stipulation of the stuffy attitude that comes with it. Will's was not stuffy. You should make a reservation, we did & it was a good thing we did. As far as price, one should expect about $30.00/plate. Portions are on the smaller side but because you get really good bread, anti pasta and large delicious salads before the entree, you won't leave hungry. My husband and I were worried that the dress code might be super dressy and we were wrong. Both of us wore dark jeans, button up shirts and dress cowboy boots. We were both comfortable and fit right in with the crowd. I wouldn't recommend anything more casual than that however.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Once great and uniqueTimmerDined on 10/27/2013Once a very unique steak house. Building is still there and pretty much the same. Food is ok. Unfortunately feels like they are going through the motions. Wife's fish was very over cooked. Meat market where you selected your steak is gone.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Just OkayCarmelaDined on 10/27/2013I actually expected much higher quality food for the price! The room was way too dark which had me wondering what it was that I was actually eating. There are a few things that I think would greatly improve the quality of your food and ambiance. First, the short ribs which were not cheap, had way too much fat and way too little edible meat. Also, the sauce was too thick. My husband ordered the lobster tail and although he appreciated that it was not cooked to death, it really was on the verge of being a bit raw in the thickest part of the tail. I would also suggest that you lighten the room, it was so dark, we literally could not see what we were eating. We spent 150.00 and did not feel like we had a dinner worthy of the bill.Special Features:
- DisappointedCloieDined on 10/19/2013Wills Fargo had been recommended by the concierge at our hotel. When we arrived, they had seated us for dinner at a table by the door in the bar. When we told them we had not made a reservation in the bar, they said we would have to wait, while they seated other guests. We saw two tables available in the dining room, so asked again to be seated at one of them. The hostess said she would rearrange things so she could seat us. The food was very like 1950's food, not objectionable, but average. The presentation of the food was poor. It featured huge portions stuffed together on a plate. Obviously, we would not return.
- What happened??TLB007CADined on 10/6/2013Part 1 of 3.This has ALWAYS been one of the BEST places for amazing steaks on the Peninsula! That WAS....not any longer. We had not been for several months and were taking our friends to dinner...we had raved ON and ON about how amazing everything is, sorry, WAS is more like it. We had a 6:30pm reservation and when we arrived there was only 1 other table in the main dining room, which, I thought..great, we can order wine right away! Wrong, it took over 10 minutes for anyone to even come over to the table, and then she said she would send someone to take our drink orders.