Salt Wood Kitchen and Oysterette

4.3
257 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Seafood
Welcome to Salt Wood Kitchen and Oysterette– the culinary destination in the Monterey area. Salt Wood features three distinct dining environments - a full-service dining room, lively bar and lounge and al fresco dining patio - its experiential oyster bar and central live-fire kitchen act as the heart and hearth of the restaurant. From cocktails on the patio to large group parties held in our multi-functional meeting space and private dining rooms, Salt Wood offers an experience like no other.
Inspired by unique natural surroundings, Salt Wood's menu and aesthetic celebrates the Salinas Valley and its rich, agricultural bounty.
With an emphasis on raw, cured and wood-fired cooking styles, award-winning chef David Baron's shareable dishes highlight locally-sourced seafood and produce.
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Private dining
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Cuisines
Seafood, Oyster Bar, Californian
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Hours of operation
Brunch
Sat, Sun 10:30 am–2:30 pm
Sunset Sessions
Sat, Sun 3:00 pm–5:00 pm
Sunset Session
Mon–Fri 3:00 pm–6:00 pm
Dinner
Daily 5:00 pm–10:00 pm
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Phone number
(831) 883-5535
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Smart Casual
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Executive chef
David Baron
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Catering
Our catering menu features locally-sourced seafood and produce that is refined yet approachable. Our expert culinary team will create a custom menu, certain to make your next meeting or event deliciously memorable.
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
Reservation Road
Additional
Banquet, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Fireplace, Full Bar, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Private Dining

With the natural beauty of the California coastline, Salt Wood Kitchen and Oysterette at The Sanctuary Beach Resort is the destination to host your next special event. Our team of talented event specialists provide natural inspiration by creating unique indoor and outdoor events year-round.

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What 257 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.4
service
4.5
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
88% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
2
1
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N
San Francisco
16 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

we love, love, love Saltwood. That being said, the Market Salad is not a meal. You get a small, admittedly very artful, and two small scallops for $24. That is a ripoff. My husband's shrimp and Grits was delicious and good value. The other meals we've had there (been there 4 times) have been more fulfilling with more value. Perhaps they need to re-evaluate some of the other dishes.
Otherwise, fantastic bartender, Bryan. Great ambiance, good music and great vibe.

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EH
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent service, local, fresh seafood, and great experience overall.

I wanted to take my wife somewhere special for her birthday and surprised her with Salt Wood Kitchen. The ambiance is pleasant: the floor-plan is open, bright, and diners can have an easy view of the central grilling area where much of the cooking is done. We opted for the fresh-catch for two (rockfish) and Monterey sardines as an appetizer, both were grilled perfectly and tasted delicious. The sides of polenta and carrots were similarly well-prepared.

The nicest part of the experience were the little extras: the waiter (Dominic) was very friendly in wishing my wife a happy birthday and even arranged for a small desert at the end of our meal. This was one of the best dining experiences I have had and would absolutely recommend as a great date spot, especially if you want to taste local seafood.

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BS
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 4

We made a 6:30 pm reservation for a Tuesday but arrived earlier, figuring we would sit at the bar if our table wasn't available. The hostess stand took a few minutes; they seemed to be figuring out seating for a larger group. After a few minutes they sat us near the window, but at a very small table. We then opted to instead sit at the bar, as it seemed like a better option.

Although we were not in a hurry, it took quite a while for the bartender, Brandy, to acknowledge us. It seemed as though there was some confusing regarding another table and drinks... it seemed like she was in a funk after that. She did her job but was definitely not overly friendly. Seemed she needed help making drinks, as she was referring to some papers quite frequently.

She finally took our drink order, made our drinks, and took our food order. We ordered the sardines, the JC appetizer, the strawberry salad, and the seafood boil to share. The sardines and the JC came out rather quickly; the sardines were so incredibly flavorful. The JC was supposed to have brie in it but if it did, they fooled me! Tasty, just not quite what I felt was advertised. The salad took a while to arrive, and when it did, it was... weak. Maybe 2 strawberries in the entire salad. It was lacking flavor and salt and pepper are not on the tables (or it was not offered to us at the bar).

We enjoyed the entrée - about that time my friend finished his beer and was offered another by a gentleman - perhaps a barback? - and politely declined. Shortly thereafter I finished my dirty martini - which needed to be made dirty after I received it - and I was not offered another drink during the rest of my time at the establishment. So I decided to save my money and did not request another.

Overall we enjoyed the food and it has the potential to be awesome. Next time we won't sit at the bar. I would suggest they have more than one bartender for a place that size. I'll give them a little time to work out the kinks before I go back.

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AB
1 review
Dined on September 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Was very lovely! We sat outside and watched the whales go on by while the sun was setting. The food was so delicious! Overall, it was the perfect intimate setting to celebrate my fiancé’s birthday!

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L
Los Angeles
10 reviews
Dined on September 17, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Outstanding service by management and 60% of the staff. That is pretty obvious right off the bat. Food is aMazing, TRY the oysters...I don't even like them but, my waiter talked me into trying one and it was BBQ and wonderful topping flavors. Drinks are $$ and regular well drinks not strong or even adequate. Thierry fu-fu drinks are nice. You just need the right bartender to pour a decent drink. Outdoor ambience and firepits and heaters are great.

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TS
New Mexico
2 reviews
Dined on September 13, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

Loved the first two nights (stayed at the Santuary next door so only option if you don’t want to drive). Had a crappy crowded table for the first night despite requesting special occasion. Second night ate at bar which was much more comfortable and fun. Good food but overpriced for what you get. Ask for bread if you want to feel full. Final night had an awesome table and waitress but the whole fish special was bland and we were screwed on the strawberry torte after having it for two nights—guess they were running out because kitchen skimped on every ingredient in this otherwise tasty “deconstructed” torte. Lovely place tho. Would go back while staying at resort again.

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L
Los Angeles
11 reviews
Dined on September 12, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My friends and I each ordered the halibut that was delicious. Also, tried an oyster and was pleasantly surprised at its wonderful flavor with the additional seasoning. The ambience is too-notch. Staff friendly and attentive.

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TS
New Mexico
2 reviews
Dined on September 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent!

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DR
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

Four of us enjoyed Sunset sessions. We had reservations for dinner. The king salmon was a disappointment. It did not taste like king salmon I have had other restaurants.
The roasted veggies were flame black on one side. Halibut was fine. Fish for two okay. The dinning experience was not what we had anticipated.

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D
Central Coast
21 reviews
Dined on September 4, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great time pet friendly calm fun outdoor ambience

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LR
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on September 2, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great date night
Wonderful wood fired oysters.
Fantastic Halibut

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AS
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on September 1, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

It was our first time staying at the Sanctuary, so we had to try the restaurant. The food was excellent! The atmosphere was nice, though a little crowded and loud. The staff was very friendly, and the wait service was quick and knowledgeable. Overall a lovely experience. PS: The short ribs were fantastic!!

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MC
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on August 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Enjoyed both lunch and dinner at this modern food emporium. The chef is not afraid to try new and delicious ways to present his well balanced menu. The food was very will prepared, presented and thoroughly enjoyable. This restaurant is a true "find" for the Monterey Bay area.

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MC
1 review
Dined on August 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We have been to this location throughout its history as different dining establishments, but this is the most attractive and tasty iteration. We tried it for early Saturday brunch to celebrate a birthday and it was a lovely treat. We will return to try other menu items. Everything we ordered was well done and our drinks were generous and properly prepared. The decor was bright and fresh and reminded us of our favorite Seattle restaurants. There were a few tables filled, so we cannot address noise level if filled, but it was pleasant and service was perfect and accommodating. There are several other options I would check on this review, but for some reason, not all check boxes work. Again, lovely addition to our dining options and nice that it is closer to us than Monterey/Carmel. Will definitely be returning!

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GR
1 review
Dined on August 24, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

My scallops were cooked perfectly and the service was exceptional. The pasta dishes were average. Overall the food selections were somewhat over priced but the wine selection was reasonable. The great service bumped up my experience to 4 stars.

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J
Central Coast
19 reviews
Dined on August 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

great food and service. The ambiance is super. Well-stocked bar.

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OT
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on August 13, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 4

Somewhat limited menu, but food was good. Fish and vegetables were very fresh! I do not recommend the fried chicken - not much flavor, hard to eat. Stick with seafood - oysters & halibut were excellent.

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LH
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on August 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We ate at Salt Wood 3 times during our stay at The Sanctuary Beach Resort. We made reservations for all three visits. The first was dinner. We sat close to the bar and where they had an open air area where we could watch one person shuck oysters and the other grill the oysters, fish and other special items on the menu. Our kids loved it!!! The place was booked!! Our server Melissa was great and very friendly as well attentive to our needs. There was a word of mouth kids menu which was reasonably priced. We had cocktails which were super yummy too!! Loved the oysters and all the fixings they offer you. The next meal was Brunch on Saturday. Great variety of items and we all enjoyed the flavors. For dinner that night we had the most amazing meal. We ordered the Whole Snapper for 2. It was grilled to perfection and came with 2 sides. The kids had a blast eating it and were so entertained. No complaints!!!

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JJ
1 review
Dined on August 10, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

We were seated very quickly. The atmosphere was calm and relaxing. Upon being seated, the couple next to us recommended the fish for two. Our service was excellent and Nick was very friendly and quick. We both ordered short ribs. It was delicious and melt-in-your-mouth tender. The carrots that accompanied the short ribs were very tasty and tender. I would like, however, to see more dinner choices . All-in-all it was a very quaint and enjoyable anniversary dinner date with my husband.

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D
San Francisco
41 reviews
Dined on August 9, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 2

My husband is wheelchair bound. There was no w/c auto door opening, so as I struggled to open the doors, the two able bodied hostesses stood at their stand making absolutely no effort to help me at all. We were greeted, then told that they could put two tables together in the bar to accomodate our w/c needs or we could sit up in the dinning area. We chose the bar area as it was quieter. When we got there, they had put two tiny round cocktail tables together...not very accommodating, so we said lets try the dinning area space. We were taken to small banquet table jammed next to people on both sides with no room for me, let alone my husband and w/c. We ended up back in the bar area. It took 20 min for our waitress to acknowledge our presence. The service was horrendous. I had ordered a cocktail that was undrinkable and served sloppily in a small sugar rimed glass that was not even 1/2 full. My husbands main course and my salad were delivered quickly....too quickly...at the same time. I had ordered a fish side to go with the salad as my main course, my husband ordered other food to go with his main course. Neither was delivered. 10 min or so later our waitress comes by and says let me check on your food. We started eating so we could at least have warm food. After 1/2hr our waitress finally returned. I said to please cancel the rest of our food order. She said that she would notify to the manager. He came over about 20 min later and asked how was our meal etc. The waitress had said nothing to him. I told him what had happened and he asked that if the food was now ready, do we want it. I said no, Please cancel!!! What a shame that the chef in the Kitchen has no organizational skills to run what is supposed to be a 3 star restaurant. There was no excuse for what happened to us. I don't care how good the food Might be, if you cannot deliver good service, you are nothing. I will not be returning. BTW manager did comp part of our meal.

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RF
Central Coast
4 reviews
Dined on August 9, 2018
Overall 3food 5service 1ambience 4

The food was fabulous but the service was agonizingly slow.

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MR
Orlando
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The entire family loved it! The food, the environment and the services. We will definitely come back!

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DD
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on August 4, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Varied, fresh menu with great oyster selection. Upscale but casual and comfortable feel. Veggie sides are especially tasty - unique and perfectly prepared.

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CS
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 4

I got the fried chicken and was served with an embarrassingly huge plate with three pieces of fried chicken. It was so thick I couldn't bite through it so I cut it up instead. The chicken I side was terribly dry while the outside could have been good but it just didn't have any flavor. I didn't even eat the meal.
My husband got fish and while he said it was very good, it was also very small. Overall we spent $175 on a very overpriced meal and I went to the hotel hungry.

My husband did enjoy the oysters though.

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OT
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on July 31, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 5

Food was great, our server was fab but all other staff could do with some customer service training.

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FC
1 review
Dined on July 31, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 5

Food and ambiance is very good. First evening was great until the server gave away our brownie deserts to another table. It took another half hour to get ours. Then they ran out of vanilla ice cream. We got sherbet instead. Second evening, the waitress was at another table. We had sat for 15 min with to greeting or waiter. When she finished the taking orders at the other table she fled by, not a glance or comment, like: I'll be with you in a minute, We had to go the the entrance and tell the hostess we would like a waiter. Question; why would you run out of vanilla ice cream on your special desert offering? Another question is who is monitoring the servers? It takes over 10 minutes to get a glass of wine.

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OT
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on July 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delious food
beautiful place
friendly service

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VA
1 review
Dined on July 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A group went for brunch, it was perfect!
The bloody Mary’s were very good. There were 4 different meals ordered and all were delicious! My personal favorite for brunch is chicken and waffles. My favorite dinner entree their short rib, outstanding!

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m
San Francisco
22 reviews
Dined on July 29, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 4

I am local and have dined at most of the restaurants in the Monterey Bay Area. I have also traveled extensively all over the world and have eaten seafood at many restaurants.

This was our second try at this restaurant. The first time we Tried the whole fish for 2. It was not fresh and very “fishy”. It was not edible.

This time we had a waiter who knew nothing about the wines or the food and repeatedly blaimed the kitchen for slow service.

The halibut was listed as Alaskan, but the waiter told us it was central coast. Wherever it came from it was previously frozen and not edible. The first piece was undercooked and awful. The replacement was cooked, just awful.

I would not return to this restaurant, nor would I recommend it to anyone.

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OT
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on July 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Interesting menu - good variety. Enjoyed!

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BW
1 review
Dined on July 29, 2018
Overall 2food 4service 4ambience 4

The Table seating for a couple is very small our plate would not even completely fit on the table. Yes, hung over the edge. The staff just laugh at the small table tops. So I would request seating for 4. The chicken was amazing. The seating was beyond horrible very small table tops for couples. Oh, Also I had reservations and they would not re-accommodate us?

Food is good but I would not recommend taking a date. Ok! I would not recommend at all continue into Monterey and eat in comfort.

Very disappointed!!

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OT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on July 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

We showed up for an 8:30 for dinner at its busiest time. The server was a bit busy and although oysters arrived prior to the meal, other apps arrived at the same time as the entrees. The server apologized but the table was packed full. The food is exceptional. Not one bad dish served. The fried chicken, whole fish, and corn pudding dessert alone are worth the trip.

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CH
San Joaquin
1 review
Dined on July 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My cousin who owns a catering company in the valley recommended this restaurant. Boy we’re we glad we ate there! This place is phenomenal. We went for Sunday brunch. The breakfast sandwich was massive and oh so filling. The regular breakfast was also tastey. My only complaint is that I wish they did bottomless mimosas ($11 each). The orange juice was so good and I wish I could’ve drank 5 more. I’ll definately be back!

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GT
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on July 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food, ice cold beer, wonderful service, interior design straight out of a magazine...even the restroom was flawless! Had I known that 1/2 the patrons would order the special fried chicken dinner...I would have ordered the same thing! Plate after plate of fried chicken was served! Our dishes were still awesome! Looking forward to trying it the next time we visit! Thank you for the experience!

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JF
1 review
Dined on July 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We went to celebrate our 8th wedding anniversary. This place is awesome. Every dish we ordered was spectacular!

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OT
Central Coast
5 reviews
Dined on July 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Ate at Brunch. Will return soon for dinner. Will also dine outdoors and bring our puppies.

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CA
San Francisco
5 reviews
Dined on July 15, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Love the rustic elegance and the indoor fireplace. Excellent service. Enjoyed an wonderful dinner. Came back for drinks the next night since we were staying at the Sanctuary Beach Resort. You will enjoy.

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M
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on July 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing service! Our server Nick was great. Very professional and great customer service. Food was delicious. I ordered the burger and my partner for the fried chicken. Dessert was awesome. Will go back tomorrow! Highly recommend.

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I
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on July 14, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

I have eaten at Salt Wood before and always enjoyed it. Though the food was good this time, items seemed somewhat underseasoned.
The oysters are always great but a little pricey - kim chi butter and apple gelee are particularly good.

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OT
Central Coast
1 review
Dined on July 14, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

Great place for a very nice meal!

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