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Manhattan of La Jolla

4.6
1145 Reviews
$31 to $50
Italian
Manhattan of La Jolla transports you to the best of New York via the cozy, upscale village of La Jolla. Located in the Empress Hotel on Fay Avenue, it is an elegant, casual and classy place where you would expect to see Old Blue Eyes or Danny Ocean romancing a beautiful woman while she sips her Cosmo over dinner. With quality Italian charm, Manhattan offers classic cocktails that get you into that New York swing--and the entrees are as good as it gets. Liberal olive oil, garlic, lemon and pepper complement the Zagat Award winning veal chop, steaks and seafood. Signature scampi, classic cannelloni, pasta al dente, and other succulent dishes, plus professional service and decor make this a terrific spot for a romantic dinner or mixing business and pleasure. Manhattan in La Jolla gets you the best of both worlds. Manhattan is an award winning La Jolla favorite, celebrating its 25th year.

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
Physical Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
What 1145 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.6
service
4.7
ambience
4.5
value
Noise · Moderate
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GS
GilSD
San Diego
10 reviews
Dined a day ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

One of our favorite spots! Definitely recommend it highly!

MP
MikellaP
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

What a great first impression. Our server Brittney was super attentive, responsive and quick. Food was delicious and what you would expect for the price and value. Definitely will be back!

A
vipAliash
San Diego
35 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall5food4service5ambience5

We were their for a special occasion! Arrive a bit early so spent a bit of time at the bar! The drinks and entertainment were outstanding and we enjoyed ourselves until our table was ready right on time.
The dinner was good, we ordered stakes, which were not bad. But the ambiance and the entertainment more then made up for that.
Overall next time I go there, I will not likely order the stakes. But look forward to going back.

C
Claudiab
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Birthday celebrstion

RH
RobH
1 review
Dined on October 1, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It was a complete joy dining for 2 at Manhattan of La Jolla. My wife and I were celebrating an anniversary and chose MoLJ on a recommendation. This was our first time dining at the restaurant which is located within the Empress Hotel on Fay Avenue. Everything from the ambiance and upscale decor to the wonderful Italian dishes were a delight. We highly recommend this for a special night on the town! We tried the lobster bisque and found it made to perfection. I ordered the special halibut and found it exquisitely prepared, my wife had the lobster with angel hair pasta and loved it. Fresh bread was available from the start and the service was high-touch. We were surprised with a complimentary cheesecake desert which finished a perfect meal. It came with a song from our waiter Chuy. The only way to get a better experience would have to be a visit to Manhattan itself, but this was certainly up there for the experience.

L
vipLolita
Palm Springs
36 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always fabulous- Dawn our server was just great!

JH
vipJaimiH
San Diego
86 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Never disappointed at Manhattan’s! Food, service and of course the music!

N
vipNrsonthelake
San Diego
47 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We loved the food and the cozy atmosphere. It was great for date night. Wine was excellent also allowed me to taste before we purchased a bottle.

SL
SteveL
1 review
Dined on September 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Old school steak house; excellent food and service.

CS
ColletteS
Salt Lake City
3 reviews
Dined on September 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My family loves this place!
Great food amazing service.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Diego
1 review
Dined on September 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It was fabulous! So great that the table side services were back!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Orlando
1 review
Dined on September 24, 2021
Overall2food3service2ambience3

I have eaten here before and it was good, This time the service was not good, forgetting to bring side dishes, food was not prepared well, just not a good experience. We won’t be going back!

DZ
vipDavidZ
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on September 22, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

As always, a great experience.

TH
TaylorH
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on September 22, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had the best time! Service was impeccable and our server was training another server who did a fabulous job. We sat right by the fish tank and could still here the fabulous live music from the other room but could have conversation. We started with carpaccio which had wonderful flavors of caper and lemon. Then the penne with homemade Ragu! Delish!!! Then we had chicken picatta and crusted chicken ramano! Both packed with flavor and tender! To finish I had caffe latte and they surprised us with cake because we were celebrating my partner’s accomplishments! If I could give more stars I would! We had the best time.

J
vipJoseph
Philadelphia
69 reviews
Dined on September 19, 2021
Overall4food3service5ambience3

Positives the pasta was exceptional and the cherry nubiles was great.
Negatives Caesars salad prepared at table was very dry. Far from the best I have had in the past. The Shrimp Cocktail was not very good. Shrimp had no flavor and they were small. Expected more for the price. The place was not full but none of the staff wore masks. The was a birthday group of 10 people in the same room that were extremely loud and were using the "F" word. No one said anything to them.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall1food1service1ambience1

We had the most horrible experience here. We really wanted to give it a chance but it was a huge flop and disappointment. I took my husband here for his birthday. From the beginning our service was horrible. We were seated and waited 25 mins for menus. 25 mins for drinks after the menus and 45 mins for our food. The drinks were messed up and sent back, then they forgot about the other drink. Our food was extremely under seasoned. The bruschetta was so soggy and had no salt. The gnocchi was super acidic and not seasoned. Fettuccini was so bland. The only thing we actually liked was the baked potato. Cause how can you really mess that up? This place is a NO in our books. Just an over glorified karaoke bar. Never ever ever will come here again nor do I recommend this place to anyone.

SH
SharonH
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great evening out!!! Staff is wonderful!! Filet was very flavorful and white chocolate gelato was exceptional!!

HP
HeidiP
San Diego
1 review
Dined on September 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Manhattan has been revamped (and needed it...really) and is lovely, feels once again like eating in a restaurant in Manhattan.
From the Host Station, Servers (ours was professional and attentive), Waiters, Bartenders (the Cosmo of old, was once again perfection)..decor and seating, all has been addressed and improved. Even the food was better.
I had been missing the Manhattan and now I remember why. Nice to be back

MT
vipMonicaT
Orange County
1 review
Dined on September 16, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The absolute best meal and evening we have had in ages!

DW
vipDineWell
San Diego
48 reviews
Dined on September 16, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Always a pleasure to eat here. Lovely setting in dining room and lively bar with good piano music which is very sophisticated. All dishes were excellent and their pasta dishes are the best in town (both lobster ravioli and cannelloni are favorites).

C
vipCaroline
London
40 reviews
Dined on September 10, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

We love Manhattan’s . It has such a fun atmosphere and the food is delicious. Everyone has fun at Manhattan of La Jolla!

p
vippeterm
San Diego
9 reviews
Dined on September 5, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food. Service was impeccable. Nice wine list. Had a great italian Barolo

BA
BruceA
1 review
Dined on September 4, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience5

My wife had the scallops and loved it! I ordered the filet minion and bearnaise sauce. The meat was cooked correctly but it was very salty! The sauce was completely bland! No tarragon no tartness just tasted like thick butter.
I asked the waitress she stated they have a new chef and are working through the problems. She stated she has had a lot of complaints.
She took the gravy boat back fir a second try and it was the same! I didn’t even eat half. The wine was great!

DZ
vipDavidZ
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on September 4, 2021
Overall3food5service3ambience4

My girlfriend and I have dined at the Manhattan of La Jolla many times. The food and service is wonderful. To sum it up a great Restaurant.
However, the last time we were there, we were disappointed. We waited nearly two hours for our meal. The food was great as always and the waitstaff was apologetic, but the kitchen clearly could not handle the volume.
I am hoping this was a fluke. We will give it another try. I sincerely hope the manager corrects the problem, because we enjoy dinning there.

B
vipBobandjeannie
Las Vegas
115 reviews
Dined on September 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Best steak I have had in years. Service was excellent. Atmosphere was fun and lively. Reminded me of "old school" cocktail lounges and restaurants. Super place. Will be back.

HR
vipHillRunners
San Diego
13 reviews
Dined on September 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food, great service, great ambiance!!

C
Calliope
San Diego
15 reviews
Dined on September 3, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a wonderful dinner here. The food: the carpaccio was sliced and peppered perfectly, the bread was crusty and soft, the Manhattan trio had pleasant variety and quality, the veal parmesan had a breading that maintained its bite while dressed in a tomato sauce that was herby and savory and good, the cheesecake was light and creamy. The service: communication from the front was great and they accommodated our preferred seating; waitstaff were attentive and though one drink was initially forgotten they were so present that it was easy to request again. Overall it was a very pleasant experience!

M
Mark
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on September 2, 2021
Overall4food5service4ambience5

Manhattans restaurant in La Jolla is one of my top 3 restaurants to go to for a special occasion.
I have been going for 30 years now .
I think Covid has them coming back slowly to a level that they used to always have .

DJ
DouglassJ
1 review
Dined on August 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful anniversary dinner. We have been coming to Manhattan's for 40 years! Thank you to Dawn and Andres for making our evening special. We even sat in the very same booth when we first dated 40 years ago!

Loved it!

DW
DennisW
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on August 29, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The Manhattan of La Jolla is a quiet, classy, distinguished and elegant venue reminiscent of the finest New York restaurants. Every aspect of the food and service was excellent. Look forward to returning.
Sincerely,
Dennis G. Wills
D.G.Wills Books
La Jolla Cultural Society

LM
LauraM
Phoenix
1 review
Dined on August 26, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and atmosphere - consistently excellent.

RB
vipRachelB
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on August 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Best restaurant in LaJolla!!!

Report
G
raymondG
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on August 21, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Good as always

TP
TraceyP
1 review
Dined on August 20, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience3

Food was okay. We had quite the view of the piano player and the older gentleman with his “ escorts’l

J
vipJill
San Francisco
47 reviews
Dined on August 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

When I lived in La Jolla, I ate here every Friday night for almost 5 years ( when I was home) I haven’t been back since 2006 and was so pleased to see the food, ambiance and staff are all still top notch! Delicious meal, great service. My wait person happened to be the son of the man who waited on me back then so I felt right at home. You will love the experience if you enjoy the “good old days” of fine dining, live music and friendly staff.

VC
vipViCat
Seattle
16 reviews
Dined on July 31, 2021
Overall3food4service2ambience4

Food was good but not exceptional and our server was slow and lazy. The male waiters were hustling around the restaurant getting food out and making sure customers had everything. Our female server seemed to just walk up and down her section making small talk while everyone around her was working their backsides off. We asked a couple of questions about a few menu items and she had to check because she didn't know and she isn't a new employee. You can tell they are short staffed as are a lot of restaurants these days so you have to be patient and understanding about this as a consumer. We would go back and give it another try as the food was good but our server really put a damper on the experience.

JA
JAMESH
Chicago
1 review
Dined on July 31, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience3

Piano is way too loud. Conversation is impossible.

E
vipEdsiesgems
San Diego
52 reviews
Dined on July 29, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Consistent go to local upscale Italian. Good cocktails and reasonable wines. Sat in more quiet dining room with larger dining area having active piano bar on Thursday night. Never disappointed with our experience.

PP
PeteP
San Diego
1 review
Dined on July 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and great "old world" Italian atmosphere. Reminds me of two great restaurants in San Francisco and New York.

D
vipDebbie
San Diego
5 reviews
Dined on July 23, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience5

Rude bus boy. Well done steak and my husband didn’t eat.

FAQs

Manhattan of La Jolla does offer delivery in partnership with Postmates. Manhattan of La Jolla also offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (858) 459-0700.

Manhattan of La Jolla is rated 4.6 stars by 1145 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.

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