PortaBella Restaurant

4.6
369 reviews
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$31 to $50
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French
Our cuisine features beautiful specialties from France, Italy and Spain. The dishes are rich in color and flavor.
PortaBella is picturesque: awarded First Prize for Beautiful Flowerscaping from the Carmel Garden Club.

The ambience is stylish and romantic, the setting historic
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Cuisines
French, European
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Hours of operation
Sunday-Thursday: 11:30am to 9:00pm
Friday-Saturday: 11:30am to 9:30pm
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Phone number
(831) 624-4395
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Business Casual
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Neighborhood
Additional
Banquet, Beer, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Fireplace, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 369 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.7
service
4.7
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Moderate
91% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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CR
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food, drinks and service.

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SC
Charlotte
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My wife and I went to enjoy a nice meal on our honeymoon! To our misfortune my wife realized a diamond was missing in her wedding band as soon as we sat down to eat; which in most cases would’ve ruined the meal. Bashar (the owner) went absolutely above and beyond anything we could have expected to make our night/trip special again for us. Oh and btw, the food was amazing!! The best Bolognese and shortribs we’ve had!

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H
1 review
Dined on December 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My wife and I love coming to PortaBella. Great food, great service. Owners are very friendly, as they make it an effort to say hi and converse with the guests.

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M
1 review
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My husband and I celebrated our 17th wedding anniversary here this past weekend. Perfect spot! Great ambiance, food and outstanding, friendly service. Cozy and romantic.

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OT
Austin
8 reviews
Dined on November 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a lovely well prepared meal. We had the short ribs and lamb tenderloin. I would recommend either happily. We also enjoyed a well priced Lebanese wine on the owner’s advice. A nice place for a dinner!

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PF
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on November 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

It was Thanksgiving and as a vegetarian I was looking for a restaurant with options. The waiter failed to mention that there was a traditional dinner available as a special which my husband might have picked. Nonetheless he was very happy with his sand dabs and my pasta was delicious. The owner was very gracious and welcoming. We’ll return!

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HM
Orange County
40 reviews
Dined on November 22, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

We enjoyed our dinner. We had excellent service, we enjoyed the lobster bisque, beet salad and mussels. We then had sand dabs and mushroom risotto. It was all delicious but the sand dabs were not very flavorful and a little fishy.

We enjoyed our experience and would recommend it for a nice dinning experience.

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LH
Las Vegas
2 reviews
Dined on November 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I was enamored with PortaBella's menu on-line and it turned out to be just one of many qualities that the restaurant had to offer. The food was outstanding, the wine list impressive and the ambiance lovely but the service outshone them all. I was dining alone and my server made me feel like the most important person in the restaurant even though the tables were full. He was gracious, offered excellent recommendations and was well-timed in his attention. I couldn't have asked for a nicer evening.

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OT
1 review
Dined on November 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Very attentive good food

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SJ
1 review
Dined on November 18, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

Very friendly staff. Service was a little slow, but that is the true Italian experience! :) The food was so bland and underwhelming- my wife and I were both pretty disappointed with our meals, and they were not cheap. She got the lemon/caper chicken dish, which was hardly lemony, and only had a total of 5 capers on the whole dish- all around bland. My Bolognese dish (pasta with meat sauce) was like someone threw some meat in some basic tomato sauce as an after thought. Noodles were good.

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y
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on November 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Drive down to Carmel-by-the-Sea for my Bday weekend.
PortaBella was a perfect late afternoon spot.
The true Mediterranean feel of the decor translated into the perfect ambiance. Great blends of culture in the dishes and they even had gluten free pasta for me!
Will definitely return!

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B
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on November 16, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

We celebrated our 43rd wedding anniversary at PortaBella on Friday 11/15. The Restaurant on arrival welcomed us with a glass of Champagne to celebrate our anniversary. It was a warm welcome from the host, waiter, service staff and the Owner which made for wonderful dinner and evening. Will come back to the PortaBella on our next visit to the Carmel and Monterey area.
The meal was great (loved the braised short ribs) and enjoyed the caesar salad and the Tricolor baby beet salad.
Compliments to everyone at the PortaBella Restaurant on a great meal and experience.
Jon & Bonnie

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HL
1 review
Dined on November 12, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 4

Good but nothing special. Fresh ingredients, well cooked. Nothing amazing. Perhaps our expectations are higher than the average. But the waiter song very lovely “Besame”.

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b
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on November 11, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

All’s I can say is that the pea risotto IS TO DIE FOR! Super service!

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OT
Detroit
1 review
Dined on November 9, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Anniversary

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OT
1 review
Dined on November 5, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Amazing food, great, friendly and very attentive service. highly recommended. Try the pasta carbonara :-)

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r
New England
2 reviews
Dined on November 4, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing service, really caring and the food was a surprise too, great tasting and presentation!

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OT
San Francisco
11 reviews
Dined on November 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was delicious. Service was excellent. Nice atmosphere. Highly recommended.

Robert Benson

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d
Seattle
27 reviews
Dined on November 1, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

Very good food, especially the lobster ravioli and linguine aI frutti di mare, both of which were some of the best things we've eaten on the Monterey peninsula this week. Good wine list. The dining space is also charming.

Our gin and tonics were not good: watery, weak, and using something other than the claimed Fevertree tonic. Definitely expected better considering how great everything else was.

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h
Atlanta
1 review
Dined on October 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great Host, great food, cozy comfortable restaurant, awesome soup and only suggestion is a better quality and more options for Wine

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GR
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on October 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

very attentive, and courteous, food very well prepared, comfortable environment

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MM
Central Coast
11 reviews
Dined on October 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We split a salad and each had sandals which were cooked to perfection. They make you feel very welcomed and the service is excellent.

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HS
1 review
Dined on October 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome service staff. Equally good and satisfying food. Large portions. Wine is AWESOME and the atmosphere is fun, light, cozy and comfortable. My new Carmel favorite.

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j
Miami
1 review
Dined on October 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was one of the most enjoyable restaurant experiences in my many years of travelling. The food is delicious and the chef accommodates any special dietary requests. The staff are gracious, cheerful, helpful in every way. The décor in the restaurant is charming as are the owners of the restaurant. I will go there every time I visit Carmel. There are not enough superlatives to describe an evening or late lunch at Porta Bella.

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OT
1 review
Dined on October 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great place

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PC
1 review
Dined on October 11, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Veronica was outstanding, great service.. Maitre D also very attentive, food attractively served, excellent crab bisque, lamb shank, slow roast ribs great. Bolognese sauce tasty but way too much served on the pasta, otherwise no complaints.
Very nice decor, cozy and tasteful.
Recommend for adult family, couples or date.

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OT
Los Angeles
11 reviews
Dined on October 11, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

Big portions on their two Pasta dishes . They were tasty but not spectacular. We got Sand Dabs dinner which tasted good. Did not like Mussel appetizer some were fishy and broth not as good as I have had, have had way better as the broth is everything . The place has a nice atmosphere , management is attentive but would not go there again. For Italian I would call the food above average bit not outstanding.

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V
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on October 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

was a great place for our 56th anniversary. Staff was friendly and the food was great.

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MH
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I've wanted to try this place, nut with so many options in Carmel we just hadn't done so as of yet. I'm so glad we decided to check this one off of our list. Excellent!
Excellent food, excellent atmosphere and excellent service. We'll definitely be going back...

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c
Washington DC
51 reviews
Dined on October 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious carpaccio! I had the flambé shrimp salad which was wonderful and my husband had the smoked salmon salad which he thoroughly enjoyed! In fact, the food was so good, we went back the following day for an encore. We most definitely will visit next time we are in Carmel!

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s
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on October 8, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

Loved the octopus appetizer. Also the crab soup. The lamb osso buco was just so-so. I have never seen that many dogs in a restaurant, and especially that many full size poodles. I know it's a Carmel thing but, honestly, I just don't like dogs in restaurants.

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LS
New England
121 reviews
Dined on October 8, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

visiting Carmel while renting a house nearby...went to PortaBella before attending local performance at PacRep. Food was very good, portions generous. Owner stopped by to say hello. Sat on little vine-covered patio at the front of the restaurant, watching people walk by...Carmel has lots of nice restaurants, and we'd include this one in the group...

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RL
1 review
Dined on October 7, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great Italian food with outstanding customer service. My wife and I were each compt a glass of champagne because we had to wait 5 minutes for a table to be cleared. A nearby table of about 8 people were celebrating a birthday, and while one of the waiters played an Italian song of celebration, he was joined by a kitchen helper singing the song with a beautiful baritone voice. People ended up dancing in the aisles. It was a fantastic experience we’ll remember for a lifetime.

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h
Central Coast
6 reviews
Dined on October 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We've come here for late lunch, late afternoon wine and appetizers, 3 times with our standard poodle for a Poodle Day dinner and once for Thanksgiving. All our meals have been excellent and the servce is spot on. We've ordered both the soups, two or more of the salads, fresh local sand dabs, the griled scallops, traditional Thanksgiving dinner, a few other aooetizers, entrees and a variety of desserts -- too many choices and selections to go into detail individually but all excellent and we are foodies. Our servers helped suggest an appropriate local wine to complement all of our meals when we were deciding between a local Chardonnay or a local Pinot Noir. We have never been disappointed.

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ET
Hawaii
6 reviews
Dined on October 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Really a wonderful romantic place. I felt like I was in France.

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GZ
Portland
70 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

Lively restaurant with good menu selections. Salad I ordered was quite large so happily shared it. Sand dabs delicately prepared. Two dining companions emjoyed their entrees also, especially the lamb.
Sat in back "garden" room filled with sunlight... extra nice addition to the experience.

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JW
San Francisco
6 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love this restaurant!, food, service, treat us like family. Best dog friendly dining room.

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JV
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 5

Food was good. But not great. Lamb was a bit cold. I would rate it definitely 4/5

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KN
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

The service was excellent! The owner came over to wish us a happy anniversary and we even received complementary champagne! The food was delicious with good portion sizes. Would definitely return and recommend to others!

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OT
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had such a great time dining at PortaBella. The staff was so friendly and the service was exceptional. My wife and I are vegetarian and we enjoyed our meals so much. They even accommodated a request to make one dish without meat. Our doggies were treated like guests. They brought a water bowl for them while we dined. PortaBella is also close to the beach so we checked in after spending some time at the most dog friendly beach in California.

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