El Torito - Monterey

3.9
586 Reviews
$31 to $50
Mexican
Founded in 1954, El Torito is the authority in great Mexican food. A festive & hospitable restaurant rich in heritage, we focus on offering a memorable experience to make each guest feel like family, as if we are welcoming them home. Using the freshest ingredients and boldest flavors, our menu offers a range of quintessential Mexican food, along with culinary innovations we know guests will love. We are known best for our tableside preparations, including our made-to-order guacamole and flame-grilled fajitas, which arrive sizzling to the table. Our standard is great, and we don’t do anything without passion. Over 60 years, we’ve learned a lot about Mexican food, like how not to mess it up.

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
Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
What 586 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
3.9based on recent ratings
3.9
food
3.8
service
3.9
ambience
3.8
value
Noise · Moderate
progress_bar_value foreground of progress bar
progress_bar_background background of progress bar
progress_bar_value foreground of progress bar
progress_bar_background background of progress bar
progress_bar_value foreground of progress bar
progress_bar_background background of progress bar
progress_bar_value foreground of progress bar
progress_bar_background background of progress bar
progress_bar_value foreground of progress bar
progress_bar_background background of progress bar
Sort by
Filters
JM
JanetM
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great experience. View was beautiful. Margaritas were strong and delicious. Good food and service! Overall great!

AP
AmyP
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience5

We had a fantastic server - Gaby - for our visit to El Torito. She was on top of everything, despite having a busy night and she was so friendly and helpful. She is a huge asset to this restaurant!

BG
vipBenG
San Francisco
19 reviews
Dined on September 16, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent service and great environment

OT
OpenTable Diner
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on September 14, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food, attentive staff, gorgeous view.

LE
LizE
1 review
Dined on September 13, 2021
Overall1food1service1ambience1

This was our second time, meat was like a shoe sad o tuff,

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 12, 2021
Overall3food1service5ambience5

I hate writing negative reviews but this is our 2nd time coming in the past couple of weeks where the food was not great. The guacamole is always amazing but we ordered the fajitas and the steak was so tough to even bite into, the shrimp had more of a fishy taste, it was missing condiments. Our waitress was amazing and on point with our drinks however, our meal took a really long time to get to our table. That’s no fault to our server, when food is delayed it’s usually the cooks who are backed up. Either way, They definitely need to upgrade on their food flavors.

C
Customer
1 review
Dined on September 11, 2021
Overall1food5service1ambience3

We have been three different times and only one time we actually had good service. The other two times we went the food was great but our server would take our order and go on break and not let us know. Nobody took care of us. We couldn’t get extra water extra napkins, anything! Extremely horrible service the past two times that we went.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Chicago
16 reviews
Dined on September 11, 2021
Overall3food2service5ambience4

The young lady that was to seating my party attempted to argue with me. The table that she was taking us to was wobbly and the staff were trying to figure out what they could put under one of the legs to make it stand correctly. Therefore, I asked if the two other empty booths where unoccupied and my party could sit there? She said no this is your table and those two are reserved. I informed her I have reservations and I am here so what would be the issue of going down there and just sitting there while the staff is trying to clean and figure out how to fix that table so it doesn’t tip over and wobble on customers. She rolled her eyes and sighed the. stated there’s no difference. I informed her the difference is that it matter to the customer and this has nothing to do with your feeling.

She was quite rude, but I was not going to engage and ruin my evening. Nonetheless, I had an incredible server and we noticed that your runner was running around very busy so we also tipped her as she thanked us. It is very unfortunate that we have individuals on opposite ends of the spectrum working within the same restaurant.

WM
WilliamM
1 review
Dined on September 11, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience3

May want to think about cleaning up the exterior property and getting the parking scanner fixed, we had 9 cars in our party and had a hard time with the validated tickets to scan.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Sacramento
7 reviews
Dined on September 9, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Just wanted snacks.

JE
JenE
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2021
Overall3food3service2ambience2

Overall, I was disappointed in El Torito. First, the hostesses and many of the waitstaff were not wearing masks (the bussers and some other staff were masked). If these folks don't care to take such an easy precaution, I worry they aren't taking the virus seriously. What other precautions are they scoffing? Hand washing? Sanitizing tables? It was very disheartening.

Second, the restaurant was out of several types of food (avocado, salmon, corn), which meant their menu was significantly diminished.

P
vipPlanetcat
San Francisco
46 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience4

This El Torito hits the spot in Monterey when you're sick of eating high priced sea food or overpriced "specialty" restaurants. It's not as good as the other El Torito's, a bit on the greasy side, doesn't taste super fresh. Service was excellent, even on a busy holiday evening. Prices are very reasonable for the area.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2021
Overall4food5service3ambience5

Our servers switched on us mid dinner without any introduction which was a little off putting.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on September 5, 2021
Overall4food2service5ambience5

We where a party of 10. Everything was good but our food took to long. When we notice that our food was taking too long the manager come up to us. He explained the situation and let us feel we where his top priority going forward. He even offer us a discount. With in the next ten minutes out food was here. The discount was very genuineness and we didn’t expect that much. The manager, the waiter, and the staff saved our experience.

RJ
vipRJDB
San Francisco
25 reviews
Dined on September 5, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience3

Great server, Gabby. Food was very good. Very noisy but overall great and we will be back.

a
vipasin
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on September 5, 2021
Overall2food1service1ambience3

Very poor quality of food. Some of the wait staff and front desk staff is not wearing any masks despite the mandate!!

MT
MiriamT
Las Vegas
12 reviews
Dined on September 5, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience4

The Sunday brunch was okay. There wasn't too much of a variety of food. I got 1 mole cheese enchilada, 1 green chicken tamale, beans, and breakfast potatoes. Everything on my plate was not hot, it was barely warm. The waitress was great.

D
vipDanielle
Chicago
1 review
Dined on September 4, 2021
Overall1food1service1ambience1

This was one of the worst dining experiences i’ve ever had. i have never written a poor review to a resturaunt but this horrible experience prompted me to do so. We were appalled with the poor service, bland food, bad customer service and overall terrible experience for our one night in monterey. The food was completely bland and not even served hot-and that was after we waited 45 mins for it. Our server was probably the best part of the night but that doesn’t say much because she was very aloof with the needs of the tables around us as well as ours. We had to ask for water?? Honestly this restaurant needs to go out of business and i wouldn’t be surprised if it gets shut down. It should not be on open tables reservation list as i would never recommend someone coming here.

X
Xochitl
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on August 20, 2021
Overall3food4service4ambience4

Great view of ocean seals and otters! Great Cadallac Margarita. Very noisey especially if you sit by bar and get to hear the blender. Food tops last visit but is not consistent across visits. Fun ambiance but boy are they busy! Employees so stretched. Reserve online 4 hours in advance at least to reduce 45min to 1.5 hour wait.

SS
SteveS
1 review
Dined on August 18, 2021
Overall3food5service5ambience3

Did and service was great, restaurant needed to be updated, exterior is kind of rough.

r
viprobertm
New England
6 reviews
Dined on August 17, 2021
Overall1food1service1ambience1

Terrible service and disappointing food in a loud restaurant on a Tuesday night. We needed to find someone to give us silverware after our food was delivered. Our maskless waiter was unresponsive and seemed to not care at all. Food and drinks were delivered in a very disrespectful way. The food was very disappointing as well

OT
OpenTable Diner
Seattle
1 review
Dined on August 16, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Very pleasant- thank you for making it great

I
Izzy
1 review
Dined on August 10, 2021
Overall3food5service2ambience5

Food was delicious!! Service was not the best. Tried giving our server a tip in cash and instead of thank you, she pointed to our receipt and asked for the “suggested” amount. Even though she was not very attentive throughout our time there.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on August 9, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience3

The cheese on my tacos was a hardened layer, like it had been microwaved then cooled. The waitress forgot my salad.
The view is great — best part.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on August 9, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

First time trying El Torito! I’ve been here a year and this place reminded me of home. Amazing and now I have a Mexican cuisine restaurant that I’ll crave weekly.

X
Xochitl
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on August 8, 2021
Overall3food3service1ambience3

Been there 3 times. Each time food and drink quality and experience varies. So far, we like eating and drinking at the bar the best. In our last visit, our waitress was so stressed out. Also had one of those horrible situations where the table of 10 arrives 20 minutes after your table of 2 and they get their drinks before you do! Had to chase the waitress down for food order. A fellow waiter took our order instead. Props to a bar tender named Omar. He was on duty during our first visit when we ate and drank at the bar. He was fast, aware, respectful, efficient and personable. The young man was working hard.

MR
MoniqueR
1 review
Dined on August 8, 2021
Overall3food4service3ambience4

While the food was good, our server was terribly unfriendly, inattentive and rude. The whole table felt as if she barely wanted to help us. We had to ask for every refill, and flag her down to get her attention every time. I would not recommend her. We were there for a birthday and she did not even wish the person a happy birthday or go out of her way to make them feel any type of special. On the other hand, we had a very nice busser go out of his way to wish our table a happy birthday.

LZ
LindaZ
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on August 7, 2021
Overall2food3service2ambience2

We made a reservation and they had us wait. Our food took a very long time to arrive, over an hour to get to our table. We weren’t impressed.

SJ
StephanieJ
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on August 7, 2021
Overall3food2service2ambience3

Two members of our party were served significantly after the others.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on August 7, 2021
Overall1food1service1ambience1

We specifically booked here because it said they have outdoor seating. We reserved an outdoor table. There is no outdoor seating, and when I mentioned it, the hostess shrugged and said it just that on the Internet. Trash all over the parking lot. When we were seated the server told us it would take at least 40 minutes for us to get our food because they are so understaffed.

OT
OpenTable Diner
New York Area
12 reviews
Dined on August 6, 2021
Overall3food4service1ambience3

too much waiting (about one hour) from after sitting the table

TS
TugrulS
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on August 5, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Chicken tostado was excellent. Steak fajita tasted like it was not cooked to order. No salsa too. Views and ambiance are magnificent, so was the margarita.

G
Gigi
Central Coast
2 reviews
Dined on August 4, 2021
Overall2food1service2ambience5

I'm local and I've been here before. Things haven't changed. Food was cold. Ordered a Baja Combo and they substituted a salmon taco for the Mai Mai taco and didn't tell me. When I asked about that's when I was told the Mai Mai wasn't ready. When we left is when I finally got my taco "to go". Wouldn't recommend this except for the exceptional view.

CJ
CraigJ
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on August 2, 2021
Overall4food5service3ambience4

The food was very good; tacos, carnitas, shrimp enchiladas and chicken enchiladas. We did have a larger party of 10 but the wait time for our food was a little ridiculous. We were there for a little over 2 hours. At first it was nice to catch up with family but when an hour went by and we still didn’t have our food it got old.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on August 1, 2021
Overall2food2service1ambience4

They took really long to bring out our food that one of the workers asked if we needed a Togo box for our appetizer. A table that got there after us with 4 kids got their food before we did (2 people) and we had ordered the same thing as them.

WH
vipWilliamH
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on August 1, 2021
Overall2food4service2ambience3

Seating by the window was great. Food was okay. They never delivered our salad, it took 45 mins to get our food, the server was extremely busy, and it took 20mins to get our check.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Mexico City
3 reviews
Dined on August 1, 2021
Overall2food3service2ambience2

Servicio extremadamente lento. La comida de sabor razonable. Música muy alta y el lugar no luce limpio

Report
A
Andrea
1 review
Dined on July 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Love the view, the food, the parking and especially the VIEW!!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2021
Overall5food4service5ambience5

I brought my kids to Monterey for their first time and searched for weeks for great restaurants that are by or on the water. This place was PERFECT and looked exactly like the pics I saw online.
One of my boys has severe food allergies and Autism and eating out can be very difficult. Our server, Eric, was AMAZING and patient and really went the extra mile to ensure my son’s food was “safe” and I am just so incredibly thankful for his kindness.
We will definitely be back and had a wonderful time.
The food was very reasonably priced and was delicious.

JP
JatinP
1 review
Dined on July 25, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Good food and great service!!! Loved the overall look of the restaurant!!

FAQs

El Torito - Monterey does offer delivery in partnership with Uber Eats. El Torito - Monterey also offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (831) 373-0611.

El Torito - Monterey is rated 3.9 stars by 586 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.