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Herb & Sea

4.7
508 Reviews
$31 to $50
Californian
Blending classic East Coast culinary traditions with a modern Californian sensibility, Herb & Sea is Chef Brian Malarkey’s venerable companion restaurant to the much-loved Herb & Wood in Little Italy. Quickly becoming one of the most sought-after tables in town, the concept shines with a menu that focuses on simple, clean, bright flavors. Located steps from Moonlight Beach in Encinitas, the vibrant space is housed in a 1920’s art deco building that has been restored to its original glory.

Daily operations are helmed by Executive Chef Sara Harris. The menu includes a mix of raw bar staples, fresh seafood, meat dishes, and roasted vegetables. A variety of pizzas and pastas round out the offerings, alongside dessert and a dedicated kids’ menu.

The spirits program is bright and playful, emphasizing citrus and floral notes that utilize the same ingredients found on the menu. The wine list offers a similar sense of whimsy, highlighting labels meant to complemen

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
  • Sealed or wrapped utensils used
Physical Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Extra space between tables
Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
What 508 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.7
service
4.6
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Moderate
93% of people would recommend it to a friend
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TH
TinaH
1 review
Dined on December 5, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Really enjoyed Herb & Sea! Passed it pre-covid and looked very nice. We arrived through the back, and there was a big outdoor patio, which was nice. Menu was impressive- we got veggie pizza + salmon app + cauliflower entree. Hope to try more fish dishes in future. Was very impressed, modern, stylish!

C
Cherbere
San Diego
4 reviews
Dined on December 5, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience4

The food was outstanding. It is a great place to order and share. The only down side was the steak. It was expensive and kind of blah. But the the appetizers were spectacular as well as the pizzas.

BM
BrianM
San Diego
10 reviews
Dined on December 4, 2020
Overall2food2service2ambience3

I don't write reviews but feel compelled on this one given the brand cache. Oysters were phenomenal so good selection. My linguine with crab was overpowered by too much fennel (so obvious). The half chickens my wife and son had were both dry/overdone. The half chicken was placed on a bed of kale that should have been properly sautéed. My daughter's salmon was a bit overdone as well. The side order of mushrooms and smashed potatoes were great. Service was just OK. The meal was overpriced for sure...$400 including tip. I could have gotten better for $300. If they're going to charge that, they should deliver. There are many better options. If you're in North County, Jeune et Jolie (a reasonable comparable) is a far better option. More sophisticated food, better prepared, and better service. I would go back to H&S for oysters, apps, and drinks. Never dinner. Disappointed.

B
vipBill
San Diego
1 review
Dined on December 4, 2020
Overall4food5service5ambience4

Great service
Great food
Prices a bit unreasonable

AM
vipAngieM
Las Vegas
4 reviews
Dined on December 2, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our outdoor dining experience here was fabulous! They were completely covid safe, staff was phenomenal and food + drink did not disappoint. They were attentive and the outdoor scene was beautiful and lively. Will definitely be back!

FH
FHauser
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on November 28, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food here was excellent! Every dish was delicious. Very attentive staff!

C
Carls
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on November 28, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Daughter in town. Always special to have her with us. Also celebrating moms birthday!

JP
JessicaP
1 review
Dined on November 27, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We bring everyone from out of town here. Fantastic food and service!

AM
AprilM
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on November 27, 2020
Overall4food5service5ambience4

My birthday dinner at Herb and Sea was great. The food was absolutely delicious - I highly recommend the Crudo and the Octopus for appetizers, and the Crab Linguine for the entree. They are making the best of the COVID situation with the tent adorned with lighting. We weren’t spaced quite 6 feet from the next table, but we felt comfortable and safe. Highly recommend.

y
yb69
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on November 26, 2020
Overall2food2service4ambience3

Best part was the coffee, with second best the pumpkin cheesecake. Everything else was mediocre, at best.

JA
vipJAR71
San Diego
10 reviews
Dined on November 26, 2020
Overall3food3service4ambience4

Thanksgiving Dinner. Perhaps my expectations were too high reading the quality of the food but it did disappoint. That said good service from friendly staff and a nice place to celebrate.

JM
vipJudiM
San Diego
17 reviews
Dined on November 25, 2020
Overall3food5service5ambience1

The food was great. However, Brian has added a tent roof. The patio is no longer open. We felt unsafe and kept our masks on whenever possible. BIG MISTAKE! The roof needs to go.

LC
LadyCorcoran
San Diego
1 review
Dined on November 22, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

A real dining experience with delicious food and a professional waiter who made our evening special. Thank you for a taste of normal during these crazy times. Your patio is lovely and warm.

DG
vipDouglasG
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on November 20, 2020
Overall4food3service4ambience4

We’ve been to Herb and Sea many times. The food is good, but not always great and a bit inconsistent. Tonight we had the hamachi which was great. The carrots were way over cooked. They tasted like yesterday’s carrots and were cooked until they were no longer carrots. Most dishes are slightly over spiced or over sauced, making the food underneath mainly a textural item. The cauliflower was warm on the surface and cold in the middle. Clearly it had been parboiled and then reheated, but not reheated long enough. The sauce on the outside looked like gravy. It had a good flavor, but I would suggest a dry rub and then baking the entire cauliflower. The salmon was delicious. The broccolini was hidden under too much sauce, again hiding any flavors from the original vegetable.

LB
vipLorettaB
San Diego
4 reviews
Dined on November 20, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Excellent experience all around!

KH
KarenH
Orange County
1 review
Dined on November 20, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

All the staff were very helpful and pleasant. Zach was very personable, he made recommendations from the menu that made our dining experience and anniversary very enjoyable and memorable! Excellent! Thank you!
Karen and John

KM
vipKMoney
San Diego
5 reviews
Dined on November 20, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We LOVE Herb & Sea! Our first time there was pre-pandemic right after they had opened, and we sat at the bar. The food was honestly better than we expected, and such a refreshing change for North County which is seriously lacking in delicious dinner options that aren’t pizza and burritos. Since then we have been back half a dozen times at least. They are ON IT with every new government regulation thrown their way during COVID, and their customer service has never waned. The food is excellent every time. Some staples stay on the menu and then there are constantly new additions - so far we have tried almost everything, and the only thing I don’t like is the broccolini. The moonlight deck is fun and vibrant, the staff is friendly and excited to serve, and the food is out of this world. Herb & Sea is a MUST!

NG
NicoleG
1 review
Dined on November 20, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Adam was a wonderful, engaging and helpful server. Great experience:)

y
vipypdypd
Vancouver
15 reviews
Dined on November 18, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Went to taste of Encinitas and the food was sublime; my fish was perfectly cooked. Attentive service from Jason and another (sorry, didn’t get name). Loved the goody bags. We will definitely be back.

CM
CherylM
Palm Springs
5 reviews
Dined on November 18, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

They are doing an excellent job with their socially distanced patio setting. The food was wonderful. Drinks too.

GR
GraceR
San Diego
1 review
Dined on November 18, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

I attended an event to support Encinitas 101. While the food was good, we were expecting music. The food was good but rather pricey, especially the vegetarian option. I enjoy coffee with dessert but that was never offered. All in all, however, it was a good meal.

SD
vipSDGAL
San Diego
7 reviews
Dined on November 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Fantastic start to finish! We went here on Saturday night for a birthday dinner and really enjoyed ourselves. Everything we ordered was delicious - highly recommend the hamachi and the octopus appetizers. For dinner, we did a mix of pizza, pasta, and of course the branzino. Suggested wine pairings were spot-on and the pre-dinner cocktails were killer. They've transformed what used to be the valet parking lot into an outdoor patio for Covid and I hope it will stay. We'll definitely be coming back!

JB
vipJudyB
San Diego
12 reviews
Dined on November 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This Restaurant is a gem. They have figured out a way to make COVID work with their outdoor dining and their heat lamps. The food and service are outstanding even on a packed Saturday night.
It is becoming one of our favorites!

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 14, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Absolutely amazing!! The staff was so knowledgeable. Can’t wait to go back!!

TF
vipTaniaF
San Diego
3 reviews
Dined on November 13, 2020
Overall1food2service1ambience3

A couple more heaters would be nice to have outside. The server that helped us seemed to be extremely busy. Our food and appetizer came out quickly once ordering but it was difficult to order more drinks while trying to enjoy our meal. I don’t mind waiting for my food as long as I have something to drink while waiting. We tried to catch our servers attention without being rude but she didn’t seem to notice. I feel like she had too many tables and her time was taken up by the big parties she was serving. I think management needs to do better about staffing servers or allow the many servers assistance to take drink orders. It was a shame because it was my husbands birthday and we did not enjoy the experience.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on November 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Awesome place and great food - highly recommend.

E
vipElizabeth
San Diego
34 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Nice outdoor patio space with heaters. Good food/drinks, professional service, but pricey

ZR
ZR2573
Phoenix
1 review
Dined on November 12, 2020
Overall3food3service3ambience3

The fish we had was good, but the broccoli was not good. Our waiter was a bit of a close talker, which during COVID was not ok.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Diego
1 review
Dined on November 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Best food in encinitas by far

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Diego
1 review
Dined on November 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food and atmosphere was fantastic!

e
edneli
San Diego
1 review
Dined on November 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Start with the Fire and Ice. It complements the platter of oysters and Hamachi Crudo. Then switch to a bold red to share with the spicy Burrata and finish with a plate of smoked octopus and artichoke. End the night with the Lava Cake and a nice tawny port ! That's all you need to know........

CD
vipCanuckDC
Washington DC
130 reviews
Dined on November 4, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Great dinner, hamachi app, pork entree + potatoes & broccolini. Delicious bottle of wine (Nebbiollo). Elevated patio had a better than expected ambiance. Service on point. We will be back!

ER
vipEmilyR
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on November 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Chef Sarah is incredible. Food and beverage choices were delicious and felt very safe with their outdoor dining set up.

SN
SunNight
San Diego
12 reviews
Dined on November 1, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Service was great. Very friendly and attentive staff. The wine list was great and the cocktails were spectacular. I mean really well done! The seafood options on the menu are incredible. We sat inside and had a wonderful first-time experience. We'll be back.

S
vipSue92024
San Diego
38 reviews
Dined on October 31, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Herb and Sea created a great space outdoors. Great service. The only disappointing thing was the cocktails (too sweet) and the steak. It was good, but not for a price. Go for the pork chop.

t
viptenspeed
San Diego
23 reviews
Dined on October 31, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Outstanding service, menu creativity, and preparation

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Diego
6 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The staff & food are outstanding. Will always go back for special occasions because this place delivers & is just absolutely delicious and transparently fresh. A true favorite of ours!

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Los Angeles
16 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Always tasty and excellent. Portions can be small for price, but food quality is outstanding. Outdoor seating was terrific.

j
vipjhlsd
San Diego
40 reviews
Dined on October 29, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a great dinner at Herb and Sea. The food was delicious. The Hamachi Crudo and Shrimp Cocktail is where we started and both were awesome. After that we went to the Branzino and the Zucchini noodles. Both were great as well. The wine list has a lot of nice choices. The outdoor patio is a great experience and is set up to be socially distanced. The service was attentive. We cannot wait for our next visit to this wonderful restaurant.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Diego
2 reviews
Dined on October 28, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

First time in this restaurant! Enjoyed our evening!

FAQs

Herb & Sea offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (760) 704-8300.

Herb & Sea is rated 4.7 stars by 508 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.