Gardens of Avila Restaurant

4.4
381 reviews
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$30 and under
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Californian
The Gardens Restaurant at Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort, a favorite spot for locals as well as travelers, is situated in a beautiful garden setting in the Avila Valley. Savor the flavors of the award-winning contemporary coastal cuisine inspired by the surrounding local wine country.
What 381 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.2
food
4.4
service
4.4
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Quiet
91% of people would recommend it to a friend
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MW
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on February 13, 2019
Overall 5food 3service 5ambience 5

Service was great. But my breakfast was over cooked.

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PB
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on February 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

What a treasure! Beautiful, elegant restaurant in a garden setting, cozy fireplace, delicious food, simple memu. Will definitely return!

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MT
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

The Gardens has been hit and miss for us. On this visit I ordered the Filet Mignon medium rare and it came very rare. For a $55 dish that is simply a nice cut of meat and potatoes it should be perfection or close to it. My husband had a seafood pasta dish that was good, but unremarkable. They no longer offer complimentary bread. We continue to patron the Gardens as a matter of convenience, but next time I think we will just have an appetizer at The Lounge...comes out of the same kitchen, but casual atmosphere and menu additions.

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OT
1 review
Dined on February 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

42nd wedding anniversary

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P
Central Coast
5 reviews
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

The only issue was that we had to wait a while for the table along with 2-3 other parties and the dining room was empty! We all had reservations

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OT
Las Vegas
3 reviews
Dined on January 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We went for restaurant month! We hadn’t been here and we are local and wanted to check it out. Food was delicious and beautiful and the service was great! Ambiance was nice. I’d go back for sure

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P
1 review
Dined on January 21, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 2ambience 5

Our waiter was not so good & we had to ask the bus boy many times for services. The food was good but not great and my husbands portion of noodles was about three bites or $.30 worth. The ambiance is lovely

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E
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

The food was delicious; we chose from the Restaurant Month menu--Scallop appetizer was delicious, done perfectly, the duck was also perfectly done, good dessert.

The waiter, though pleasant, seemed to really not know what he was doing; one of our party asked for bread or crackers--he looked at her uncomprehending. "Crackers? he asked" He did bring our some kind of crackers that looked like a flat bread, which was fine;. There were bread plates on the table; Don't know why this wasn't offered initially, or why he was so uncomprehending of the request.

When he was serving the dessert I said that we all wanted some coffee. He then asked "would anyone like coffee?" It was a bit wierd.

He did come around during each course to see if we were pleased with the food.

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OT
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on January 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

What an amazing dinner! I wanted to have a great night out and ordered quite the spread of food. Andrew is a great server and hit the perfect balance of being attentive while giving us our space. Even the other server on duty Jesse(?) stopped by to offer wine pairing ideas. The local bread appetizer was amazing with the artisan butter that came with it. We followed that with Al Pastor tacos and then our entrees consisting of the Sycamore burger and the smoked chicken tortellini. Everything tasted amazing. We did have a couple drinks to try out as well. My girlfriend had the watermelon martini which she loved and I had to get the garden margarita because nothing beats a good margarita made with jalapeño. All in all this was a great place to have dinner and I know we will be coming back again! Would love to check out the hot tubs they offer at the hotel.

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OT
1 review
Dined on January 15, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

The online menu had great choices but when we arrived the menu was very limited. The verde passole was amazing but the burger was too average to charge that much for.

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DH
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was great and so was atmosphere for a romantic date night with the wife. Definitely will be going back.

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RN
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on January 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

I had a burger here a year ago and it was very good. My wife and I came back this year with a couple friends because it was quiet, elegant and the food was very good. I read reviews and most were on the very favorable side with a few gripes.
This time I got the $30 three course meal and it could not have been better. First class starting with scallops. I chose the duck as a main course and it was cooked just as I requested and was so good. Perfect sauces for the app and the entree. For dessert was blueberry cheesecake. My friends had a variety of the other options including the hamburger and a fish dish and all four of us were very impressed. The price was great also. $200 for four of us which included three glass of house wine and a couple cocktails. This is a bargain and with first class quality.

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E
1 review
Dined on January 8, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

I loved the seating in the back of the restaurant. It was peaceful and quiet. Our server was able to correct a mistake. I had ordered a package deal with dinner included. However, we didn't know that we could ONLY pick from the month menu. She was able to swap it with a food credit, so that we could order what we wanted. It was very nice, since we were celebrating our wedding anniversary.

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OT
Central Coast
2 reviews
Dined on January 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

It was wonderful. I would totally eat here again!

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S
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 4

Overall- it was good,except waitress brought a bread combo plate with a charge without explanation. I felt like tourist who was charged an extra without explanation. We’ve been there about twenty years. We always love atmosphere and have a dinner when we stay at resort. In next time, just explain....probably other guests want to hear the same.

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BR
Orange County
1 review
Dined on December 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Top quality food in a beautiful setting.

Jesse, our waiter and nothing short of the best waiter I've experienced anywhere.
He was just phenomenal. Extremely efficient, courteous and very professional.

I have no hesitation recommending this restaurant to anyone visiting the area.

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OT
1 review
Dined on December 19, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was an absolutely amazing experience and we will definitely be back our waitress Brooke was amazing!!!!

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S
Hawaii
4 reviews
Dined on December 8, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Gardens of Avila is an intimate setting for a birthday lunch with friends. Menu is limited but the food was delicious.

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HD
Los Angeles
10 reviews
Dined on December 7, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We've had a lovely dinner here for the second time. The first was a few years back. Everyone at the hotel is so friendly, from the doormen on. Really nice atmosphere. Very creative, tasty options. The service is really outstanding.

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c
San Francisco
27 reviews
Dined on December 2, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Manager on duty showed good training as we had an exchange of servers due to their illness, and we had an extended wait time as a result.
Then my salmon was extremely salted and although it was addressed immediately, the table had finished eating by the time it was replaced.
What would have garnered a higher rating was an in-kind offering. A libation, dessert or a no charge for my entree that was oversalted and had to be redone.
The table had completed their meal long before my replacement entree was reserved.
Since these were our guests I didn't push for an optional gesture of apology as in comped meal, dessert or libation, but it certainly was a flaw worth noting.
I'm hoping the restaurant will consider a comp as we are local and may wish to return again.

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JA
1 review
Dined on December 2, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 3

Enjoyed the vegan meal.we are vegans. Would of liked more options, but we like what we ordered.

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a
1 review
Dined on November 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Took my daughter for her birthday. The staff was very friendly and atmosphere was nice with the fireplace on. I was hoping they had heaters on the outside patio so we could sit our there but the night was too cold anyway. I chose grilled salmon, fingerling potatoes and broccolini. All very fresh and delicious! My daughter had the tomales entree and chose forbidden rice for an extra side. She thought it was going to be a regular Mexican tamale, but it was still good. Her favorite was the rice. It was very quiet in there and was nice but felt like the people at the next table could hear our every word. They were nice though and struck up a conversation with us, turned out it was his wife's birthday also. The staff gave my daughter a complimentary slice of strawberry shortcake for her birthday. I had actually requested it for her when I made the online reservation, but was pleasantly surprised that I ended up not having to pay for it. The service was good and we felt taken care of. My card wouldn't work for payment and I had to use another, then that didn't work. Ended up being their machine and they used a different one. Wished they used my first debit card though, didn't like having to use my credit card lol. We went to the hot tubs afterwards and it was a mellow, fun , relaxing birthday celebration.

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HC
Central Coast
2 reviews
Dined on November 20, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 3ambience 4

Food was bland with little seasoning and not prepared correctly. Steak was burned on the outside while under cooked internally. Side items were left off the plate. We ordered a salad that the server confirmed while taking our order then never brought the salad. Drinks from the bar were very weak to the point we questioned whether any alcohol was used. Overall a very disappointing experience and we will never return.

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RC
1 review
Dined on November 17, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Quiet, pleasant, good menu and cery nice service.
Overall, a vwry good experience.
It is way too dark kutside in the parking lot and the walk up to the restaurant

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CB
1 review
Dined on November 12, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had the best experience. The food is to die for, it was so delicious, fresh & very tasty. Our server is very knowledgable about the menu & he also provide great customer service. He always checked on us but not to the point of not rushing us.

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EM
Central Coast
4 reviews
Dined on November 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

So good. Fabulous salad. The chicken with chimichuri sauce and the wild rice, with the amazing bread.... omg.

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KR
1 review
Dined on November 4, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Spent the weekend at the resort with my wife on our anniversary. Dinner at the Gardens of Avila was one of the high points of the weekend. Great service, great food and nice atmosphere. The staff at the restaurant was polite and provided good service, but did not rush us through dinner or bother us too often. The food was well prepared and presented. Great choices on the menu and the servers were helpful with details about the menu and preparation. We were seated on the back patio, where only a few tables are situated giving us a quiet dinner with a view of the stars above. We would definitely recommend to our friends for a nice evening.

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JD
Tahoe
7 reviews
Dined on October 28, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

We sat in the bar by the cozy fireplace for dinner and breakfast. Great service. They made sure what I selected was gluten free and there were delicious choices. Very pleased. We look forward to returning.

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F
Charlotte
11 reviews
Dined on October 24, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Eating at the Gardens of Avila is always a good experience. On business trips I usually eat there several times per year. Recommended.

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L
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on October 22, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

We were there with two other couples celebrating a birthday. They put us in a private room which was nice. The food was amazing and we loved that there was no corkage charge for our own central coast local wine. We had cocktails, bread, appetizers, soup, and all of us ordered from their chef entree specials that night. Everything was delicious! I gave four stars because the speaker in our dining room was too loud and were told it could not be turned down. Though our waitress was very polite, we could not understand or hear her trying to read us the specials. She had us pour our own wine and brought a few of our meals out to us one plate at a time. When bringing out our appetizers and entres, one of us was left sitting there waiting for our food while everyone elses food was getting cold. Maybe she was new. Besides this, we would give it five stars and will definitely go back.

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JK
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on October 7, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

It was a lovely little evening at the Gardens. Despite there being a wedding reception happening upstairs, we were still able to enjoy ourselves and have a romantic evening.

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m
Orange County
1 review
Dined on October 7, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 4

Rent the hot tubs for the day. Bring your own picnic basket. The cauliflower fondue wasn’t a fondue but a hummus, the dessert they served us, I swear, was something you could buy from the store! Nothing special. Save your money, it isn’t worth it.

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JD
1 review
Dined on October 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Good food, good bartender, except they make him wear a bow tie. I would eat here again.

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EM
Central Coast
4 reviews
Dined on September 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Server Jesse = very good service. Food was fabulous.

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Y
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a group a women for a birthday and were given a private dining room with great service, a beautiful table and excellent food with gorgeous presentation.

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TH
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

Felt it was over priced for the quality, the rugs were dirty, grounds on patio looked tired, my mashed potatoes watery. For the price you pay the rest didn’t add up!

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AE
1 review
Dined on September 9, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 2

While the setting was quiet (due to the lack of customers), the venue was not as clean as one would expect of a restaurant of this supposed caliber. The patio bricks and walls were stained and dirty and we were seated at a table covered with bug wings. The black napkins were faded and showed wear. The overall feeling was of a facsade of class, of trying too hard to be something it is not. In truth it seemed more like a hotel bar and patio than a gourmet restaurant. Small, trite and worn. The food attempted at gourmet but fell short, especially for the price. Though served in small, artistic portions, the quality was lacking. I have had more honest food served in a styrofoam container! It was quite disappointing and certainly not worth the price. There are a number of truly delicious, high-quality, sofisticated, gourmet restaurants in SLO county. This is sadly not one of them.

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I
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Very nice menu with unique selections. Food was very tasty and I immediately went home to try to duplicate the carrot purée which was the base of my vegetables with my filet. Pricy but good for a special occasion.

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LL
Central Coast
2 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 4

Very slow service. There were only a few people in the restaurant and several wait staff. I had to ask my waitress three times to bring me sweetener for my tea. It took her over 20 minutes to take out order, we had to ask for our check as we waited almost 30 minutes after we we were done eating. The food was okay. I had the scallops which were good and my husband had the elk meatloaf, which, he enjoyed but admitted was nothing special.
The ambiance however was very nice.

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SR
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on August 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was imaginative, well prepared and tasty. So were the cocktails.

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