About Hoffman's Downtown
Hoffman's Downtown Santa Cruz serves breakfast, lunch and dinner from 8am daily. Famous for our DELICIOUS Eggs Benedict, and with our fabulous NEW full bar, Hoffman's is the perfect place for everything from Sunday brunch to an evening martini with the cool jazz humming in the background. Now open even later on Fridays and Saturdays, stop in for a cocktail and a snack off our UN-spendy $3 Bar Bites Menu served until 11pm!
Santa Cruz, CA 95060
Californian, European, American
Hours of Operation:
8:00 am to 9:00 pm weekdays;
8:00 am to 11:00 pm weekends
$30 and under
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Live Jazz 7 nights a week starting at 6:30!
Limited Parking available directly behind Hoffman's from Carthcart ave. Multi-level garages, public lots, and street parking available nearby.
Metro station located less than 1 block away.
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Cafe, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Entertainment, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
Hoffman's Downtown Ratings and Reviews
This place is better than a greasy spoon, but didn't appear upscale enough to be an Open Table Reservation kind of place, and the waiters seemed kind of surprised that such a thing existed. It's right downtown and seems to have had a steady supply of customers at all hours for a long time. While that's not a bad thing, it might stand with a day off to give it a good once-over. BUT don't turn away, the food was fairly decent for our busy Sunday Brunch.
I have mixed emotions, since I'd generally had good experiences at Hoffman's over the years, and the food (we split the burger with fries and a side salad with the lime-cilantro dressing) was still delicious. Our waitress was very good, but the front-of-house guy was pretty surly when he immediately informed us that the credit card reader was down and it would be cash or check only (and then seated us in a booth where the seat was repaired with tape). My mom's coffee cup wasn't clean, and the restroom was not up to par. Something is amiss, and I'm sad.
My husband and I have been coming to Hoffman's for years and have never been disappointed. First and foremost when choosing a restaurant, the food has to be "the thing." The food here is ALWAYS top notch and delicious. The portions are generous and a great value for the price. They are adept at picking out just the wine you would like best if you give your server just a few details of what your preferred taste is. I fear the decline of Hoffman's with the arrival of so many new downtown restaurants. I wish more people new about this place. Don't stand in line and wait for a table at a trendy new restaurant. Come to Hoffman's Downtown. Perhaps It could use a bit of updating but by and large this is our pick every time.
Horrible experience. I took my parents there while they were here visiting. I'm not even sure if we had a designated server. We had to ask for water 3 times, took about an hour to get our food. All of it was cold when we did. We sat on the patio, because it was nice out but I'm pretty sure we and everyone else on the patio was forgotten about. The server came by maybe twice. Other than that we had to get up and ask the hostess when we needed something and when we were ready to order and to get the bill.
We purchased a Groupon for this place and were a little anxious about the reviews... But if you like good quality, slow food, this is a wonderful place. Everything is reasonably priced. We had to order quite a bit of food to use up the $60 that we'd bought the Groupon for ($30 for $60 worth of dinner for 4). In the end, we still had some money left over and the waiter told us not to leave a tip but we insisted. They are flexible with substitutions and the food tasted amazing. Definitely visiting again the next time we're in Santa Cruz.
The restaurant was pretty empty yet the waiter sat us at a booth where the seat was duct taped and uncomfortable on one side. Ordered a "lavender spritzer" and it was super tiny, weak and bitter (usually I wouldn't complain for a drank but for $11, come on). When it was time to order food, they were somehow out of every vegetarian item on the menu besides a salad, sure I guess I'll take a salad...it was early on a Saturday, so this seemed kind of strange to me. The salad was definelty a salad. Lots of lettuce. There was a bit of brown, bland pear and shaved almonds and a chunk of baked bri which was pretty awkward (For $14 maybe try a little bit guys) As for the service, everyone seemed like they didn't want to be there (which I understand, I work customer service too but sometimes ya gotta drop the frown and be attentive when you're over changing people for things.) it was slow at that time and there seemed to be a full staff yet we weren't really checked on and I over heard the table by us ask for a single beer 3 times...overall very awkward $100 experience... I was excited to try this place but it just seems like another Santa Cruz joint that wants to rip off tourist, I guess not for the locals.left hungry and wanting a real cocktail.
The glaring issue was the New York (maybe ribeye?) steak that was supposed to be med rare was well done and less than 1/2" thick and the price of a New York at a higher end restaurant. I have never seen a new york this bad, ever. Service was fine, ambiance good, music great.
While visiting Santa Cruz, I was excited to find a place that feautures live jazz every night. That's basically the only good thing that I took from my experience at Hoffman's Downtown. The place seems so mixed-up. Is it a bar type of restaurant? Is it a bakery focused restaurant? Is it more of a brunch spot? I'm not sure.
My date and I went for dinner. Artwork on walls is a nice conversational piece, parking was easy in lot next door. Server was nice but seemed very inexperienced as he didn't bring bread until we asked (half way through our meal), and he didn't clear plates when they were empty. The atmosphere feels like a bar, but booths (that are super dated and torn/falling apart) are a bright lively patterned color that is honestly distracting. My date said the fried chicken was good, my butternut squash ravioli was lacking flavor and cleary out of a freezer bag. The blue cheese cream sauce tasted nothing like blue cheese.
We ordered the apple pie dessert specifically because I did not want chocolate, and it was described on the menu as warm pie and ice cream. It came with chocolate all over it and the pie was not good - at all.
This review may seem harsh, but if you compare it to my other reviews, you can see I am not hard to please and love giving credit when it is due. I do not reccomend eating here.
Never Again. Ordered salmon...15 minutes later told you are out. So, ordered the trout...15 minutes later told you were out.
So, ordered the Veggie burger...10 minutes later told you were out.
so, at least a half hour later I finally ordered a salad.
Also told you have no non-alcoholic beer.
Waiter had nothing else to offer...no suggestions or alternatives to a meat offering.
I love the music but there is no need for it to be so loud.
I've been to Hoffman's many times in the past...but...never again.
Had dinner before a show. Saturday evening, 6:15PM. Out of three entrees: Steak, Salmon and Trout. poor planning, these were not difficult items to procure. We only discovered the salmon was out after we received a seafood salad missing the Salmon. After asking specifically for the salmon...
Service was OK, considering the server was unaware of what was available.
Appetizer was Crab and Artichoke dip, which was pretty tasty. I ordered Jagerschitzel, Which was OK, nothing special. Seafood salad was standard with only shrimp, the other seafood was not to be seen.
Overall, Meh. There are better choices in SC.
I have not had dinner here before so thought we'd try it out before the SC Warriors Game. We did get asked for a drink order immediately which was great. After looking at the menu we tried to order the steak and were told that they ran out (it was 5pm on a Friday)...so then my boyfriend asked about the friend chicken and what type of chicken...they shared that it is only breasts - he passed and settling on the french dip. I had the meatloaf and it was delicious. We also ordered a bottle of wine...and were told that they didn't have any of what we wanted in stock. It was a decent meal, but disappointing to order many items which they did not have available.
We miss the great selection of Ed's bakery desserts (e.g. marzipan) that used to be on the menu, but we realize that time marches on and even restaurants need to re-invent themselves to stay in business, as Hoffman's did when they replaced the bakery counter with the wine bar. The food was all delicious. I had the onion soup and the trout and my wife had the ravioli.
Food & service was just okay. If you like bland food, then this is your place. The restaurant looks nice from the outside, but looks like a Fancy Denny's on the inside. The music is WAY too loud & obnoxious. The food texture was cooked right, but the taste was SO bland. I even tried taking half of my food home& adding a ton of spices to it, but still, meh. I'd rather go somewhere else.
We were very disappointed. First of all, it was crowded due to restaurant week. A lady was talking to people at the next table & was encroaching on our table, leaning all over us.
We were interested in the salmon and for the last 3 visits it was unavailable.
The waiter completely ignored us and actually went to help others who came in far after we did.
There were few choices for us as we don't eat chicken or meat, only fish & pasta so it was very limited.
We don't plan to return here again in the near future as it was such a disappointing experience.
The food here was very good. My wife had the fried chicken dinner and enjoyed it. All white meat, cooked just right - nice and moist, tender. The chicken was more like chicken tenders than what I would consider to be called 'fried chicken', it was boneless, but whatev's it was chicken and it was fried. The breading was also very good, not heavy.
I had the special that evening - sirloin steak skewer. It was also very good. The meat was tender, did not need a knife. It was a delicious grilled steak, very tasty and filling.
The only down side to the dinner - the service was not great. Took a bit longer than I would have expected for entrees to arrive (28 minutes). Also, there was no check back from our waiter to see if our meals were alright. No biggie since we were both happy.
Finally, we were going to order a dessert, but after waiting about 25 minutes after our dinner plates were removed for our waiter to check back, we decided to just get the bill and head somewhere else for dessert.
Still, overall, this was a good dining experience and we'll probably be back again.
We have tried this place for breakfast brunch and dinner over the years. As a local restaurant want to keep trying but everytime it is just really bad. Even after Restaurant impossibl make over. Disgusting egg benedicts. This last trip for a dinner prior to a concert... dirty walls, dead rose in the "vaase" 20 mins to get our wine. Inedible food. Never going back. We have had it.
We went with a group of 10 which isn't easy. They fit us in. They didn't seem overly busy but the service was just ok. Maybe the waiter was having an off night. Some really liked their food, others did not. The fried chicken sandwich was not good. My daughter didn't like her burger and the kids meals(mini corn dogs ) weren't good either. The regular chicken sandwiches seem to be the best order option. Pricey for what it was and the service we received.
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