Persephone Restaurant

4.5
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364 Reviews
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$31 to $50
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American
Persephone Restaurant is a fine dining establishment focused on bringing the best and freshest ingredients Santa Cruz County has to offer directly to you. We are a Seasonal Kitchen meaning that we change our menu based upon whatever ingredients are locally seasonably available.
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Private Dining

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Specials

New Year's Eve Special Menus & Offers

Special fixed tasting menu from Chef Cori complete with optional wine pairings, and Champagne specials. Come celebrate your New Year's Eve in Style at Persephone! Please Inform us of any allergies, dietary restrictions, or strong dislikes on your reservation so we may plan ahead to accommodate you!

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

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B
San Francisco
24 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We love the seasonal menu, the creativity and changes , and the ambiance, the fantastic wait staff, yummy wines and desserts.
It's our favorite local spot for casual and fancy dining.

K
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This is the BEST restaurant in Aptos by far. Not to mention our waiter was beyond amazing and had really cool earrings. Highly Highly recommend!!

KG
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Great little place with delicious food and sweet ambience. Was our first time here and we plan to come back.

N
San Francisco
18 reviews
Dined on November 10, 2019
Overall3food4service4ambience3

Overall the food was good, although the sides with my steak were not very complimentary. Wine list has too many local wines. Lighting is a little too bright for a romantic dining experience.

LS
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on November 9, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Persephone is a small but homey restaurant. Brittnii, the hostess, was outstanding -- exceptionally friendly and helpful. The food — quince-glazed chicken for me and risotto with pork belly for my wife -- was impeccable. I wanted to eat slower to savor the flavors, but it was just too good; I nearly ordered a second serving to go. The wine selection is unlike anything I've ever seen, and the wine-pairing knowledge of the kitchen crew is just as impressive. My only criticism is the brightness and volume of the small space, but I will absolutely be back for more.

LF
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on November 8, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Favorite restaurant in the area. The Potter family

CJ
Central Coast
23 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2019
Overall4food5service2ambience5

The food is excellent - one of the best in the area! However, it is unfortunate that the service doesn't live up to the status of the restaurant. When you are paying for fine dining, you expect a fine dining experience and unfortunately, this just doesn't have it. The waiter never checked in on us, didn't offer us a 2nd of anything, didn't ask if we wanted anything else... but handily dropped our bill off before we asked. How did he know we didn't want coffee or another glass of wine? Seriously missed opportunity.

The fish of the day was truly outstanding. The chicken pasta dish and the risotto with pork belly, all very delicious. The salad had a rich dressing that really surprised us - light but rich in flavors. Both the soups we tried were excellent. The dessert, meh... nothing special. Notable, but small wine list.

We will be back but hope to get a more experienced, professional waiter next time.

OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 25, 2019
Overall2food2service3ambience4

The salad was great. I ordered the vegetarian entree. What I got looked like it should have been an appetizer. My wife’s pasta was overcooked.

I usually like Persephone but this was extremely disappointing.

MP
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience5

We were pleasantly surprised by their beer dinner with Fruition Brewery. Food was spot on. Each course well paired with beer offering. Service was great! Hope they do this again.

PA
Central Coast
7 reviews
Dined on October 19, 2019
Overall4food5service4ambience4

Great, original recipes/food presentations. Good service, very enjoyable meal. Definitely will come back to this small, family-run restaurant. A neighborhood gem.

DC
1 review
Dined on October 12, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Loved the restaurant. Service was good, food was so flavorful and cooked to perfection. The restaurant was in an old house, and was a bit cooler than I would’ve liked. I was hoping for “cozy” since it was a brisk fall evening. But ambiance was nice. We loved it.

EN
1 review
Dined on October 12, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Nice place overall. The food was good, nothing that I would consider special or memorable.

BR
San Francisco
17 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Best dinner we've had recently. A surprise in Aptos.

OT
1 review
Dined on September 29, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Lovely restaurant. A cozy, romantic dinner experience with delicious locally sourced dishes. Extensive wine selection, something for everyone. Perfect date spot. Highly recommend it, will do again.

LR
San Francisco
15 reviews
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall4food5service4ambience4

The restaurant is lovely, food is well prepared and executes unusual flavor pairings, wine list is very good. The noise level is extremely high for a restaurant of this caliber. Some textiles are needed to absorb sound. My husband and I had a very hard time hearing each other.

B
San Francisco
25 reviews
Dined on September 28, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We love this local gem of a gourmet restaurant. The ambiance, service, food, wines, and staff make this a pleasurable experience each and every time, consistently.

DB
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on September 15, 2019
Overall4food5service3ambience5

Absolutely delicious food, creative, fresh, portion size suited us well. We’re vegetarians and would prefer à bit more choice but what we had was great. Fabulous wine selection. Waiter was very pleasant but not attentive or timely enough - we had to get up and ask for things a couple of times and drink refills came too slowly. Not up to the standards of the food and wine offerings. The atmosphere is adorable and it’s nice and quiet - great for good conversation with friends. We’ll be back!

F
1 review
Dined on September 14, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

My wife and I had a wonderful dinner there on Saturday night and we received EXCELLENT service from Brittany. We will definitely go back.

RG
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Thoroughly enjoyed our experience there--great for foodies, nice atmosphere, excellent service, highly recommended!

OT
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Phenomenal experience! 4 adults and 2 kids to celebrate a birthday! The kids tried new items last night! The food was outstanding! Service from Alan was Amazing! I had preorders a birthday cake and they surprised my mom with the most incredible Meyer lemon that puckered your cheeks in with strawberries! We will be back👏👏👏👏Bravo!

BG
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on September 1, 2019
Overall5food4service5ambience4

We enjoyed our experience at Persephone. Very nice restaurant - it was our first experience.

OT
San Diego
5 reviews
Dined on August 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Fabulous from start to finish.

MM
1 review
Dined on August 24, 2019
Overall4food3service5ambience5

Wonderful experience! Brittany was exceptional! The ambiance, decor, lighting, etc. was superb!
The food was very good to outstanding and love the local wine list. The salmon dish was excellent; the steak was served at less than optimal temperature. I am so happy that this restaurant is in business in Aptos!

HD
San Francisco
19 reviews
Dined on August 23, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great meal and service. Farm fresh locally sourced.

ME
San Francisco
12 reviews
Dined on August 22, 2019
Overall2food2service4ambience4

My wife & I had a wine tasting dinner at Persephone (Windy Oaks wines), and had high expectations of the food. Of the 5 courses, one was very good and 3 were disappointing, and the desert was awful. I believe that they can do better with individual dinner service (based on the reviews), but I would not go there for a wine tasting dinner.

CP
Central Coast
27 reviews
Dined on August 21, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Persephone is one of our best, most innovative little local spots. Their Wednesday night "Flights And Bites" is always fun. They do a great job with the food and wine pairings and I always discover something new in both. I love the decor and location...a very cosy spot.

B
San Francisco
25 reviews
Dined on August 18, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Alan did great in keeping things running smoothly.
We did notice that the service was a lil' off and we noticed that our portions of our entree were smaller than usual.
We are regulars and will be back.

c
Atlanta
74 reviews
Dined on August 17, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great Brunch

PA
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on August 16, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

What a gem! We chose this restaurant because of the family-run atmosphere, plus their commitment to using fresh, locally sourced foods. We had a wonderful time and enjoyed every morsel. We would be thrilled to return.

j
San Francisco
14 reviews
Dined on August 10, 2019
Overall4food4service3ambience5

We really enjoyed this lovely spot in Aptos on a recent trip to Santa Cruz. The food was locally and sustainably source, prepared very creatively, and served with a smile (though the staff was not always attentive to a raised hand). Not quite a 5, but we'll be back.

OT
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on August 9, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food. Will repeat again and again.

r
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall2food2service3ambience4

Persephone is a beautiful and charming restaurant with all the earmarks of a quaint fine dining establishment but falling short on the details required to achieve fine dining status and its corresponding cost.

As an Aptos native, I was excited to see that a high level restaurant had entered our space.

However, there were a number of "misses" that prevent me from considering the restaurant a good value for money or worth returning:

1. Anemic and uninspiring wine by the glass list. After working at Soif Wine Merchants, I know there are better / more interesting wines from Italy and Santa Cruz that could be offered by glass.
2. The Pea Budino was good but unremarkable and not sure why it was considered a specialty of the house. It wasn't very "parmesany" nor "lemony". It was creamy however.
3. The melon and proscuitto salad was great. Nice balance of acidity and sweetness.
4. The papardelle was good but could've used more pasta and less meat sauce in the tradition of Italian pasta.
5. The strip loin was cooked well but could have used a sprinkle of fleur de sel, and the overcooked end pieces should not have been served. Also, I love lobster mushrooms but they lose their flavor when sliced that thinly. The ribeye steak at Slanted Door is bigger and better and costs only 32 bucks.
6. The salmon was completely overcooked and dry. In hindsight I should have returned it to the kitchen.
7. The panna cotta was very good. The bright flavor of the cherries came through in the juice/sauce and the candied kumquats was a delicious flavor bomb - however they should have been finely diced in order to incorporate with each bite. As they were served, the few slices were a bit tough to chew on although they were tasty.

Please note that I really want to love this place and come back for special occasions or to bring out of town guests but I cannot justify returning until I feel that the food lives up to the ambience and the price.

Thank you,

B
San Francisco
25 reviews
Dined on July 28, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We absolutely love this family owned and run restaurant in Aptos. They have gone above and beyond in quality of service, gourmet meals, creative and seasonal options, and recently re-did their menus describing perfectly their offerings.
We have consistently dined and recommend this restaurant and will continue to sing their praises.
We can't say enough wonder-filled things about it.

F
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I have to admit the noise level was contributed to by one in our party.

OT
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on July 26, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Fantastic!

DV
1 review
Dined on July 19, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The perfect place for a quite amazing meal. I appreciate everyone there for the quality service they provided.

BR
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on July 12, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This is such a nice find. It's a quiet oasis near a busy highway. Service is great, and food choices are interesting. Try it... It's very nice.

RB
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on July 7, 2019
Overall3food3service4ambience2

The only course I enjoyed was the salmon entree. The appetizers were unappealing, so I had the salad. It was bland, not special in any way. My husband said the steak was good. I was looking forward to the dessert, the panna cotta, which I had never had. Again, I found it ordinary, nothing special. The wines by the glass did not include a Sauvignon Blanc. We ordered a bottle ( unusual for us). Overall I would say the food was good, not great. For a tab of $200.00(including tip) I expect excellence.
The seating in the corner was cramped-we had to move the table in order to sit in the chairs. Being able to see all the condiments used in the kitchen stacked on a shelf, from the dining area, is not something I would expect in a fine dining restaurant. We will not return.

l
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on July 7, 2019
Overall5food4service5ambience5

We had a wonderfully comfortable evening at Persephone. The staff was friendly and service was prompt. The beet soup and the summer squash budino were both excellent appetizers, and the stuffed chicken and catch of the day were both delicious as well. The desserts were good, but didn’t achieve the same level as the main meal in our opinion. The wine list was comprehensive and reasonably priced. Will return often. Our new favorite in the area.

SF
London
176 reviews
Dined on July 5, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience5

My husband and I shared the beet and chicken soup which was fabulous. He enjoyed the meat and pasta, and I enjoyed the salmon, fish of the day special, with an apricot glaze. The strawberry-rhubarb shortcake was good but not as outstanding as the other parts of our meal. The decaf coffee tasted much better than average but they left us with a timer and a coffee press machine with no instructions. We had trouble getting the attention of anyone on the wait staff to find out what we were supposed to do. They shouldn't assume that everyone knows how to use the coffee press. Other than that, we totally enjoyed the evening and will return. It is nice to find a place that is quiet enough you can have a conversation with your companion without shouting.