Nearby points of interest
Nearby points of interest
About Cantinetta Luca
Cantinetta Luca offers an authentic menu inspired by the traditional recipes of various regions of Italy featuring hand-crafted dishes using the finest Italian goods and locally sourced ingredients in a lively atmosphere. Executive Chef / Partner Jason Balestrieri shares his Italian culinary heritage and travels through handcrafted dishes prepared traditionally with a simple and rustic presentation.
Starting with treasured family recipes passed down through generations the menu specialties include a hearty selection of source verified premium meats, first hand selected than hand-cut on site, a wide array of anitipasti including house cured artisan salume, wood-oven baked pizza offered at lunch, housemade pastas and sauces, and whole roasted fish.
Carmel, CA 93921
Italian, Steak, Pizzeria
Hours of Operation:
Sunday - Thursday, 5 - 9 pm
Friday - Saturday, 5 - 10 pm
Daily, 11:30 am - 2:30 pm
$30 and under
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
Please e-mail us with your inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org
In the heart of Carmel-by-the-Sea, all parking is street access.
Private Party Facilities:
Wine Room: Beautiful Brick Ceiling Dining Room that can accommodate up to 45 guests.
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Chef's Table, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
Special Events & Promotions:
Please e-mail us with your inquiries to email@example.com
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Cantinetta Luca Ratings and Reviews
The food was great! We had the steak special that just melted in our mouths. It was 35 oz. and feed the 4 of us. We ordered sides to go with it and did family style at our table. It worked perfectly. We had two folks (waiter and head host) trying to serve us and they stepped over each other as one did not know what they other did or didn't do. One took half the drink order and did not return and the other did not so we had to then get him involved to bring the original order to us and take the other half of the order. I think they may have been too busy hence a bit off their game but friendly as can be. That was the only issue. Again food was fabulous and recommended wine by the waiter was superb.
Our first time at this restaurant to celebrate our 18th wedding anniversary. We were a bit put off by reviews on Yelp, but decided to try it anyway. We were seated next to a large group. After seating, a group of 8 were seated next to us. We are wine lovers as well, but the patrons at both tables quickly became drunk and very loud. We were a family of four - with two daughters. Waitress was very nice - but service was SLOW. Received our meal almost 2 hours after being seated. The waitress clearly favored the large groups as their orders were consistently serviced and the table of 8 seated after us received their appetizers and meals before us. If we had not asked for our food - we would probably still be sitting their. The Flatbread appetizer was nothing more than a circle of baked pizza dough. White wine was room temp (warm). Entrees were good but could not make up for the overall bad experience.
What a gem! The grilled meatball appetizer had amazing flavor. Cacio e Pepe was cooked to perfection. Loved the homemade pepperoni on the pizza. Even the homemade pistachio gelato was some of the best we ever had. Service was great. We will definitely be back!
We started with a grilled shrimp appetizer with Fava type beans. It was good. For entrees we had the Short Ribs and thick spaghetti pasta in a white, peppery sauce (can't remember the name of it). The short ribs were good but the pasta was too peppery, but ate it anyway. For dessert we had the Pistachio Gelato - nothing special. Overall, the food was just ok - not something too unique or different. We both had a glass of Pinot Noir - ok, but quite pricey. The menu item descriptions on some of the dishes were hard to understand - had to have our server explain a lot of items on the menu. However, despite the mediocre food, we had very good service from the hostess (she moved us to a quiet, cozy window booth) and our servers and bussers were very attentive to our needs.
After receiving a call to confirm my reservation, I proactively stopped by the restaurant to confirm in person. I had asked for a window table and was assured I would get one.
When I arrived a few minutes early for my reservation, I was told the table wasn’t available and if I wanted a window then it would be 30-40 minutes or longer. Clearly the table had been given away just before I arrived for my reservation time as the guests were just starting on their wine.
I asked the server for a menu recommendation
and was told I should order the fish entree. I wish I’d asked more questions because it arrived with both head and tail still attached. It was tasty once you scraped away the charred skin, but was not in the least appealing to look at.
Service was slow..,very slow....and when my server disappeared, right after my initial
order, I had to flag down another sever when I wanted a second glass of wine. Solo diners apparently aren’t worth attending to.
It would have been a totally disappointing experience but was somewhat redeemed by the coffee and dessert.
Excellent italian food (and a burrata appetizer that's one of the best I've ever had), plus their own homemade cured meats. Their bucatini cacio e pepe is wonderful (maybe a little under-salted), and the wine list is predictably wonderful. It's a little loud when it gets busy, and a little pricey, as well - then again, it IS Carmel.
I had the Branzino which was wonderful and my husband had the bolognese which was also terrific. We started with the olives and tomatoes and burrata. The sommelier was very approachable and I loved his approach of listening to what we liked and then just bringing us a bottle to try (which we loved). My only complaint was that the food came out way too fast. We were there for what we hoped would be a leisurely Saturday evening meal but it was way too hurried.
My crab & pasta in a tomato sauce was superb. My husband had roast pork with stone fruit. All of the flavors melded beautifully. The only thing that surprised us was the price of the non-alcoholic drink, almost the same price on my alcoholic drink.
Cannot wait to return!
Dinner was excellent and service was attentive, if not super professional. The not so good, $35 corkage is excessive, and some noisy tourists in tee shirts, gym shorts and flip flops ruin the ambiance. I think some sort of reasonable attire requirements are needed. Hate to see this spot become a tourist spot with no regard for locals.
I'm not sure if it was maybe just our waiter, but the appetizer came long before the wine or water. My husband knew what he wanted to eat, but asked the waiter to come back to me in a few minutes so I could decide. I had to wave him down to ask him to take my order. It was obvious that he had ordered
my husband's meal, but forgot about me. When we finally got our food, my husband's pasta was cold and mine steaming hot. The short ribs I ordered tasted my pot roast. The appetizer, tomato caprese, was delicious though. Hostess came over to try to repair the experience. She was very nice.
I have eaten here a few times and it was always very good. However this time it was very poor food. The menu items were limited and they were out of two of the items. The short ribs were average and a small portion. The tomato burrata salad had terrible tomatoes. I will not eat here again.
I had high hopes for Cantinetta Luca. Six weeks before my reservation I had a wonderful dining experience at Aubergine, another restaurant in the Mirabel Hotel and Restaurant Group. I expected the level of service and experience to dip slightly due to the price bracket difference between the two restaurants, but I was not prepared for it to be a stark difference.
The menu is in line with the price. It has intriguing and varying items to choose from within each category. I began with the house selection of salume, unfortunately I cannot tell you which cured meats were included on the board that was slapped down on the table before the server dashed away. The service continued like this throughout the evening. The house salume on the other hand was wonderful. The richness in flavor was readily apparent due to the salume being served at an appropriate temperature.
When my partner and I ordered for the main course he was advised to order an antipasti with the Filleto (8oz filet mignon) since our server said, "it's basically just a garnish," about the arugula that accompanied the filet. Now, traditionally in french cooking watercress is presented as a garnish just peeking from underneath the meat, so I thought this being an Italian restaurant it would be logical that an Italian cook might poke fun at traditional french cooking by using arugula. In reality it was a mound of arugula the size of my open hand. My partner was up-sold. Instead of an attentive server, a negligent used-car salesman waited upon us.
Service aside, we enjoyed the quality of our meals but it saddens me that I must iterate the the phrase I tell all novice cooks and those looking to improve upon their skills.
Always remember to season your dishes while youre cooking and adjust it as necessary. Never send out an unseasoned dish!
The caprese salad was unseasoned.
If you appreciate salume go to Cantinetta Luca, sit at the bar, order the house salume, and have a drink, you might need it.
First seated at a table next to a large and noisy party celebrating birthdays. Then fortunately moved – but the noise level in the restaurant in general is higher then it's conducive to good conversation, and the tables are much too close together. The portionsare adequate and the food tasty but to serve a menu items such as the roast chicken with no vegetables accompaniment available at the price is ridiculous. Very disappointing.
It took over 30 minutes after we were finished with our salad before we got our main course. We were sitting at the bar eating and the bartender said it was taking way too long. She took the cost of our wine off the price of our dinner as she felt bad about the wait. She was really. Ice.
We come to Carmel frequently and we always eat at the restaurant and have referred it to a lot of our friends. We have not had this problem in the past so hopefully it was just a bad night in the kitchen.
Seems ridiculous that on Concours weekend they would run out of so many dishes, but yes they did. Also, 72 hour cancellation policy with $50 pp penalty is quite outrageous. I have been to so many finer restaurants in the area that have no such policies. Get over yourself Cantinetta. Will not be going back after so many years. A total disappointment.
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