Rusty Pelican Restaurant

4.5
3622 reviews
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$30 and under
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Seafood
For over 45 years, we've prided ourselves on consistently creating legendary experiences for all our guests. From our signature fresh fish to our spectacular waterfront views, we hope you savor each and every moment. For an enhanced experience, ask one of our experts to pair our handcrafted cocktails, craft beers and selections from our award-winning wine list.
What 3622 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.5
service
4.5
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
90% of people would recommend it to a friend
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BC
San Francisco
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I absolutely love everything about this place!! It smells so good when you walk in!! Has a romantic sea food dinner vibe too it. The best time to go is during sunset and get a table by the window so you can look out at the ocean. I can’t wait to go back. Everything was delicious. They cooked my steak just how I liked it. Had the best Pina Colada

E
Philadelphia
6 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Celebrating the last night in Newport Beach with my son who is stationed at 29 Palms

EP
Los Angeles
3 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was outstanding always go back never disappointed

L
San Diego
7 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great atmosphere for a meal on the bay.

DS
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great food amazing service! Never disappoints.

d
Baltimore
6 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

As a visitor from the east coast, I'd rate our dining experience as a classic California dining experience. Great food, service, and view.

JJ
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on August 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Consistently outstanding.

DM
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on August 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We went for our anniversary. It was a perfect location!

AK
Berlin
1 review
Dined on August 11, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 5

Food was great. The view outstanding.
Service was chaotic - had to wait for 25 min for a table despite having a reservation

J
Orange County
1 review
Dined on August 11, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

It was really nice and first time I have had brunch here.
Service was outstanding and we sat outside so had a great view of the harbor.
I ordered the simple grill swordfish, which was very good but just a bit over cooked.
We also ordered calamari and fried green beans as appetizers and both were excellent!

L
Orange County
27 reviews
Dined on August 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We enjoyed another delicious brunch at the Rusty Pelican!! It was a perfect day on the Bay. The salmon with shrimp was moist and tasty. Two of our party enjoyed the seafood penne vodka. The Ichiban skewers were tasty. The service was terrific. By the time we left, they had their deservedly large crowd waiting to be seated.

s
Denver
1 review
Dined on August 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Always a great experience. The brunch is so good and reasonably priced. I’ve never had a bad meal here.

MM
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on August 10, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 4

Always a pleasure to dine at Rusty Pelican... the staff is welcoming and friendly and the food is very good. I have a severe hearing loss and they are always accommodating as to selection of seating in a quiet, secluded area where the background noise is minimal. I especially like making reservations via OpenTable as they always get my special requests correct and send reminders!

LZ
Orange County
15 reviews
Dined on August 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were given lovely window seating with a wonderful view of the harbor. Our waiter, Jordan, was incredible. He was friendly, knowledgeable, and very attentive. The food was fantastic too! We had their famous garlic bread to start, which was the best we’ve ever had! Then each of us ordered the special of the evening - the halibut! We were not disappointed!! A meal to remember!

OT
Orange County
1 review
Dined on August 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

32 Anniversary

OT
Hawaii
22 reviews
Dined on August 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Extremely good food at very fair prices and when you factor in the waterfront location this is one of the best deals in Newport Beach

r
New York Area
6 reviews
Dined on August 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always our last stop on our family vacation in cali .
Great food great service great views of the marina

SA
1 review
Dined on August 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

I have not had the pleasure of dining at a rusty Pelican Restaurant in years. My swordfish was to die for! I would highly recommend this restaurant. I will be back in California in September and I have already made plans to have my entire family meet and have dinner there...… my taste buds cant wait!

OT
Bath
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 1

We arrived and had to wait 30 minutes for our booked table.

We were then escorted to a table with no set up. No cutlery, napkins, etc

Server arrived and was so casual with no interest in taking order.

Drinks order came incomplete and one of our party waited 20 minutes for her drink

Food was delayed by 40 minutes for appetisers and the appertizers were then brought one by one so our group ostensibly ate alone.

On complaining to the Manager he agreed the service was appalling and stated that he would take a personal interest in our table.

Entrees arrived but were incorrect. manager did not pay personal attention to the problem and the meal degenerated to finish with a high bill for below par food and service.

Definitely would not recommend.

1 star very poor

D
San Francisco
4 reviews
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a great server - young guy, but with an old spirit and great work ethic! The food and the outer deck were amazing as always!

TB
Denver
6 reviews
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

One of my favorite places in the OC. Because of the tight quarters if one table if exuberant and had plenty of wine it can get quite loud. Otherwise the view and food make up for it.

OT
Palm Springs
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Holiday celebrations

OT
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The salmon was cooked to perfection as well as the almond crusted trout. Ryan the server did a awesome job.

OT
Orange County
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Birthday but he forgot no biggee

OT
New Orleans
2 reviews
Dined on August 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I made a reservation and checked in. Was told 10-15min. After 40 I asked and the front desk person, who was probably doing her best, she told me, "Well everyone has a reservation and is waiting." So I asked for a manager. She quickly placed us at a table, and also brought us one of their signature appetizers for no charge. Our server was very nice and prompt! After the rough start to our celebration night, I greatly appreciate how they took care of things and made our night a great one!

OT
Cincinnati
3 reviews
Dined on August 2, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 5ambience 5

Food was not good..over priced and very small portions

GM
Orange County
17 reviews
Dined on August 2, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Nice view of the water. Three fish lunch menu selections were all good. Not crowded on a Friday lunch hour, so service was excellent.

OT
London
3 reviews
Dined on August 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful meal in a very special place . We use to come to Rusty Pelican each time we visit south California and Newport Beach . We ate this time an amazing Mahi Mahi . Thanks to the team . See you next time .

M
Phoenix
12 reviews
Dined on July 31, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our family ate dinner here the last night of our vacation. Everything was exceptional: service, food, ambiance. Was a beautiful restaurant experience with amazing wait staff. Keep up the great work.

PP
London
1 review
Dined on July 31, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love this restaurant. First visited in 1981, when I had the pleasure of spending 3 months in Newport Beach as an 11 year old. Came back on my honeymoon in 1995 and then again in 1997 and now back with my own family in 2019. Great spot next to harbour, food and service is great. Recommend to anybody visiting Newport Beach.

DJ
Las Vegas
4 reviews
Dined on July 30, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 4

The location is great with nice view on Newport Harbor and yachts. Food was average at best and Halibut special at $39 was not special - taste or presentation.

If you want great seafood and great service go to 230 Forest restaurant in Laguna.

b
Los Angeles
17 reviews
Dined on July 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful experience.... No complaints Amanda's service was excellent

JM
Phoenix
2 reviews
Dined on July 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful location, looking over the water. Fresh fish prepared to order. Excellent, friendly staff from the manager on down. A definite yes.

AP
Orange County
1 review
Dined on July 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our server Ryan was very personable and took care of our food special needs requests
with kindness. Also, allison the manager was very kind and helpful as well.

MP
1 review
Dined on July 28, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 2ambience 5

For the up scale dining I expected better service. Waiter kepted disappearing for extends amounts of time. We had to ask for bread and drinks refills. Food and views were great, just wish the services was better.

OT
Phoenix
43 reviews
Dined on July 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious brunch with good service and relaxing ambience.

c
Orange County
7 reviews
Dined on July 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service and view of ocean

LZ
Philadelphia
7 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Great food, great service. Beautiful water views.

S
Central Coast
29 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Rusty Pelican seems to have slipped a little. Our server was wonderful and helpful, but when we asked for a larger table to accommodate additional guests the on-site manager was unhelpful and rude. The food was just ok, not exceptional. The cocktails were enjoyed by my group, although I didn't have one.
When my sister-in-law called to make a reservation she was told the restaurant was booked until 8:30 pm, when I checked open table - all time slots were available, and I was able to book a table. I noticed upon leaving a "notice of change of ownership" on the window showing "bubba Gump" so I guess the changes make sense if they are switching to a bubba gump level restaurant. Don't plan on returning.

JJ
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on July 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Amazing food, excellent views/location and great service.

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