Il Fornaio - Carmel

4.2
1755 Reviews
$30 and under
Italian
Il Fornaio means the Baker in Italian. Located in downtown Carmel, Il Fornaio offers an authentic and unique Italian dining experience and a Wine Spectator Award of Excellence wine list. Enjoy wood-fired rotisserie and grilled meats, poultry and game; house made and imported pastas; pizzas from an oak wood burning oven; fresh salads and house made soups; antipasti and a wide variety of desserts made daily from scratch.
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Private Dining

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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
  • Contactless payment available
  • Sealed or wrapped utensils used
Physical Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • 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 1755 people are saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.2based on recent ratings
4.2
food
4.0
service
4.2
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
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LR
LeeR
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall3food2service4ambience5

We love Il Fornaio but dinner was very disappointing… dirty water glasses served and we ordered the cannelloni special. There were several bites we had to spit out. Inedible gristle or we didn’t know what it was. Spit out in napkin and gave to waiter when leaving as to not make a scene. We will probably try it again someday. But bummed that our lovely dinner out in Carmel was such a 👎

L
Lisa916
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall2food2service1ambience4

The server was not caring and the food was bland. It was our anniversary and sadly we would not return.

M
Missy
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall3food2service4ambience4

The service was great but the pizza was dry and cold. I was somewhat disappointed.

Y
Yummy
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall3food2service3ambience4

Good mediocre, had to eight forever for food delivery, dishes weren’t very good

MH
ManuelH
1 review
Dined on October 19, 2021
Overall4food3service2ambience3

Ive been to Il Fornaio in the past. That is why I was a bit underwhelmed by my experience last night. Usually the atmosphere and food are top quality. Our drinks arrived very late. My pizza was delivered in a slap hazard manner. The woman who delivered my pizza was trying to help our server, she placed my pizza before me and knocked over the dish containing oil and vinegar, then she walked away without apologizing or bringing something to help clean the mess.

The food was good but the service was uneven.

A
lucaA
Central Coast
5 reviews
Dined on October 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Sous chef Juan and waiter Armando were exceptional
Bravo !!
Thanks also to mgr Kathy as she was overlooking everything to make sure all was running smooth
Really appreciate and we will see you soon again

G
Grace
1 review
Dined on October 17, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience3

The staff was a bit slow and my waiter forgot my bread order.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Sacramento
7 reviews
Dined on October 16, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were greeted right away by a lovely young women. We were a little early for our reservation so understandably they asked us to wait. They sent us to the bar area where we passed the short wait time drinking a lovely glass of wine. The hostess came and got us when it was our reservation time. We were taken into the front room. We got to choose the table we wanted out of the two available. The waiter immediately acknowledged us and came over to greet us and make sure we were good with the drinks we still had. (This is a huge plus for me. I seriously dislike going to a restaurant and sitting for 10-15 minutes before a server acknowledges you sitting in their section.) The waiter was super friendly and attentive. The ambiance was great, a little noisy but that’s how that restaurants acoustics are. Sound just bounces around the restaurant. The food very delectable, I’m so glad I went with the steak. Perfectly cooked, paired with vegetables and potatoes. My husband had one of the wood fired pizzas. It was perfectly cooked and hit the spot. Overall a great experience and would highly recommend this restaurant to anyone visiting Carmel by the Sea.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Los Angeles
4 reviews
Dined on October 16, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience3

I used to love this place, everything used to be perfect, but first the bread wasn’t hot and fresh- tasted like lunch leftovers. The iced tea was cloudy and old. My pasta was perfect, my husbands seafood al mare was not flavorful. We also got a margarita pizza and that was okay. The lead bus person was bossing everyone around yet not refilling our drinks or clearing our table, we had to ask.
Next day we tried a brand new restaurant and thought Il Forniao just is resting on its old reputation, not really trying

CC
vipChrisC
Orlando
215 reviews
Dined on October 14, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Il Fornaio has been one of our favorite places to eat for twenty years and we live in Florida. Always excellent food and service. Say Hi to Don the mgr.

JB
JanetB
1 review
Dined on October 10, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Il fornaio is an excellent place to dine with outstanding food, ambiance, and service. Highly recommended

B
vipBsel
Philadelphia
64 reviews
Dined on October 9, 2021
Overall3food4service2ambience3

We were eventually seated (after one worker brought us to the front desk to be seated and notified the “manager that we were there - as we had come in a door that was not in the front although it was the door off Ocean Ave) by the “manager”. We sat without anyone coming to the table for well over 15 minutes. Then, finally, a waitress said she would be right with us. We didn’t see her again for another 5-10 minutes, until the original woman, that had helped us get seated, noticed we had no drinks or food and asked if she could help us (she was not a waitress). That is when the waitress finally showed up. She was nice enough but either overworked or negligent. Hard to determine which. The food was fine. We saw a lot of workers around so I am not sure why someone didn’t offer to help sooner, including the manager. It was not a busy time, there were many open seats at 4 pm on a Saturday. we had reservations so we were not a surprise. There are many restaurants in the area, this one is okay..

JB
JackB
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Rose was great!

DB
DanB
San Joaquin
3 reviews
Dined on October 6, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience3

Overall experience was what I remember about this Restaurant. It had been a few years since I had eaten here and I wasn’t disappointed. Service was excellent and food was outstanding.

A
Allen
Los Angeles
3 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The setting, the food and the service were all first rate. We enjoyed our dinner very much.

CC
vipChrisC
Orlando
216 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Il Fornaio is the best Italian in Carmel.

n
napabob
Central Coast
29 reviews
Dined on October 3, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We stay at the Pine Inn in Carmel and Il Fornaio is on premises. Not only did we have dinner but also breakfast the next day. This is our favorite Carmel eatery because it is consistently excellent.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Dallas
1 review
Dined on October 3, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was great and the wine recommendations.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on October 3, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great experience

FN
FranN
1 review
Dined on October 3, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

We had the braised short ribs for dinner with the salmon bruschetta for an appetizer. Both were delicious!

F
Foodie
San Francisco
64 reviews
Dined on October 2, 2021
Overall4food4service2ambience5

Pleasant outdoor balcony. Reliably good food. Quite poor service.

NH
NathanH
Hawaii
9 reviews
Dined on September 30, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Good, not great

OT
OpenTable Diner
Atlanta
2 reviews
Dined on September 26, 2021
Overall2food2service3ambience3

I’ve been coming to Il Fornaio for over 20 years and the food used to be reliably delicious, but the last two years disappointing. They have just lost their edge, their flair. The Branzino was pasty and mucky, even something as simple as my pasta bolognese was not flavorful, just blah. They used to serve the most delicious bread basket with rosemary bread and olive bread. Now you pay for a bread basket and it was very ordinary.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Las Vegas
1 review
Dined on September 25, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Seabass. Amazing!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Sacramento
5 reviews
Dined on September 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Anniversary great dinner great service we had a real good time

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on September 23, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience5

It honestly turned out what I expected. A pleasant atmosphere, not noisy, the tables with a good distance, the food what I expected, the excellent service, always attentive to our table. Reservation as requested by line, all at the established time. Thank you for your service, I loved it, I am very satisfied with it. Definitely if there will be a second time.🙏🤩

PA
PaloAlto53
San Francisco
18 reviews
Dined on September 23, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience5

I hadn’t been to Il Fornaio in many years and was pleasantly surprised. There were plenty of choices on the menu. The calamari arrived just a few minutes after ordering and was not very warm leading me to think it was not freshly made. Other than that, the Salmon was very good which was served with potatoes and brussel sprouts. The portions were generous. The atmosphere in the Carmel location is very nice…great ambiance and quiet. Service was excellent. I will return.

JK
JohnK
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on September 21, 2021
Overall4food5service3ambience4

Birthday - but restaurant did nothing to acknowledge. Server seemed quite rushed and made us feel
Like we needed to hurry

DV
DennisV
Central Coast
10 reviews
Dined on September 21, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Il Fornaio is consistently amazing, from the wonderful table in the corner by the windows to to patio, to the incredible service from Jamazia, and all the staff, to the outstanding, delicious menu. It was a rejuvenating experience having lunch at Il Fornaio in the Village of Carmel. We'll be back soon!

RS
RonS
1 review
Dined on September 20, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was incredibly delicious. My husband and I shared the Insalata Regina salad, that our server, Salvore A. recommended. Very delicious. The entree we had, Paccheri Alla Vodka and their dessert, tiramisu were also both extremely tasty and fresh. Nothing was overwhelming, but quite exquisite! Our server, Salvatore A. was so kind, friendly and helpful in our choices. Also, loved the ambiance of this Carmel location. It reminded us of being in a beautiful restaurant in London. We would definitely return, and highly recommend Il Fornaio. Thank you very much to Salvatore A., and the entire staff of Il Fornaio!!

P
Pato
London
4 reviews
Dined on September 19, 2021
Overall1food2service1ambience2

Really terrible. We arrived at 8pm, as did our reservation. The receptionist did not ask us for proof of vaccination. I walked us to a table and we waited 15 minutes, until I had to get up to request that someone take our order. A woman of oriental origin came who several times had asked several waiters to attend us and they did not pay attention to her. He literally lay down on our table (there were 2 tables and one was empty) and wrote our order. Really quite a disaster. The waiter who continued serving did not know how to remove the cork from the bottle. We leave the plates of the food away from us, and we had to bring them closer ... to say ... a real hell. If that place is luxury and good service, they really do not know anything. 19/09/2021

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 18, 2021
Overall1food1service1ambience3

Service sucked and our server abandoned us for quite some
time. The food was very cold and we ordered pasta. overall disappointing!

M
Margo
1 review
Dined on September 17, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful atmosphere and friendly staff. Delicious food and portions are a great size too.

PF
PamF
Yosemite
1 review
Dined on September 12, 2021
Overall2food2service2ambience4

Noise level was due to a very loud table near us. Server tried hard but struggled to open a wine bottle, served pizza at room temperature even after we asked to reheat…..
Aside from service, ‘special’ wine in menu was unavailable…….

TS
TimS
Atlanta
1 review
Dined on September 10, 2021
Overall3food2service3ambience4

Found the food specials - especially the Branzino to be nothing special. Covered in a thick red pasted of tomatoes and olives that completely overpowered the fish. Veggies were mush or dry-(potatoes). While it seemed like a good spot, I wouldn’t send people there on purpose.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on September 9, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience3

Birthday dinner was just ok

B
Busy
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2021
Overall4food4service3ambience4

It’s a nice restaurant, but the staff was short handed over the Labor Day weekend. Our server was doing her best, but it was taking longer for the service due to the overall shorthandednes.

DA
vipDABM
San Francisco
29 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2021
Overall2food4service1ambience2

Service was ABOMINABLE. A simple pizza for my husband and pasta for me took 95 minutes. I understand staffing is a problem but when, after the wait, the food arrives lukewarm??? That’s ridiculous. Will stuck to door dash from now on

W
Winner
San Francisco
16 reviews
Dined on September 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We often go here! Great food and ambience!

FR
FrankR
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 4, 2021
Overall3food3service4ambience3

It was good but not great. The branzino was covered in a tomato paste sauce that really took away from the quality of the fish. The steak was tough and over-cooked. The chicken was awesome so that was a plus. The waiter, while somewhat new, was excellent.

Frank

FAQs

Il Fornaio - Carmel offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (831) 622-5100.

Il Fornaio - Carmel is rated 4.2 stars by 1755 OpenTable diners.

Il Fornaio - Carmel does offer gift cards which you can purchase here https://www.ilfornaio.com/gift-cards/.

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.