Nearby points of interest
Nearby points of interest
About Sam's Chowder House
Enjoy amazing sunsets by the cozy fire, a panoramic view of the Pacific Ocean, and fresh, award-winning New England style seafood in a casual, coastside setting. Watch the crashing surf, dine outside under a cozy heat lamp, or settle into an Adirondack chair near a toasty fire pit on Sam's dog-friendly patio, complete with wind protection and heat lamps. Featured on NBC’s The Today Show, and “Best of the Bay TV”, and named “Best Outdoor Dining in the Bay Area” by San Francisco Magazine, and “Best Seafood Restaurant in San Mateo County” by San Jose Magazine readers.
Half Moon Bay, CA 94019
Hours of Operation:
Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 5:00pm, Saturday - Sunday: 11:00am - 5:00pm; Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:30pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm, Sunday: 5:00pm - 9:30pm; Seafood Market open Saturday and Sunday 12-8pm
$30 and under
AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Live music Friday and Saturday nights in the fall/winter from 7-10pm inside, and also on Sunday outside from 4-8 during the summer months.
There are two lots available.
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Entertainment, Fireplace, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Takeout, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
Special Events & Promotions:
Five oceanfront spaces are available for corporate events, weddings, and other special events. Offering appetizer, lunch and dinner selections and special lobster clambakes. All rooms have ocean views from every seat.
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Amazing sunsets, award-winning seafood and spectacular oceanfront dining. Perfect for family gatherings, business events and team off-sites from 10-300. Six indoor and outdoor spaces for lunch or dinner with sweeping views of the Pacific Ocean. Beach access. Lobster Clambakes. Full buyout avail.
Sam's Chowder House Ratings and Reviews
A must stop in Half Moon Bay is Sam's Chowder House. Always crowded, always delicious and fun. Love the grilled shrimp salad with toasted pumpkin seeds. The Blue Crab Sandwiches are outstanding and their clam chowder is like home made. Don't miss a chance to dine here.
Four friends taking out a recent widow for her birthday. Used Open Table for the first time- easy way to set up our reservation and loved the fact that we got to sit by the window.
Staff couldn’t have been nicer and all four of us had a fabulous time. MaryAnne loved her birthday dessert which restaurant gave her.❤️ All the food was delicious and the wine and beer good too. This was an excellent choice to celebrate our friend’s 69th birthday.
I have been to Sam’s before and this time I only found the food fair.. One person in my party had the beer battered prawns. They were greasy and not crisp. A few others
had the hamburger which had no flavor and very dry. We started with the popcorn shrimp which were delicious. This was also a birthday, which I wrote in under special
requirements. I asked that the restaurant please bring a scoop of vanilla ice cream w chocolate sauce to the birthday person. They did not bring the dessert which they
have always done in the past. The restaurant was very busy but this is no excuse for sub par food. Our waiter, Ricky, was excellent and made our time at Sam’s very pleasant. Overall our food was only fair and maybe you should eat at Sam’s during the week and not on weekends when they are so busy. We did have a nice time w family celebrating the birthday which was the most important part of the day.
Great outdoor cliff side dining. Reminded me of all the great little New England shore restaurants. They are known for their chowder and lobster rolls that did not disappoint. Chowder was something my Rhode Island father-in-law would have loved. Creamy but not thick. Lobster roll was stuffed with meat and not overdressed. And the beer and vodka battered fish and chips were light and perfection. Parking was difficult but not impossible so be creative.
The food was terrible. I had the recommended prawns wrapped in bacon with mashed potatoes. The prawns were dry with little flavor .. it tasted like they were frozen for far to long. The bacon was limp and soggy ... the clam chowder was bland and the clams far to chewy. We have been to Sams on several occasions but each time they seem to be going downhill. This last one was the worst by far. Sorry Sams - I know your popular but you keep serving meals like I had you will not be in business for long. - Nothing was said to the manager and nothing was done to make this terrible meal right -
My wife and I had dinner Tuesday 11/7/2017. We ordered the "Lobster and Clambake for 2" for $74.95. At that price, our expectations were obviously very high. Sadly, we were very disappointed. Even if the price were say below $40, I would still grade it “D”.
The 1.5 lb boiled lobster was NOT fresh and just lukewarm when it came to our table. The claws were dirty covered with white residue. The lobster did not taste like a live lobster. And meat texture was like cooked (and overcooked) ahead of order and was let sit. Lobster meat was bland, "soggy" and tasteless. If the lobster was live and cooked right before serving, it would have come hot with steam when the tail was pulled. The meat would be firm, crisp, "bouncing" and have that sea salty taste. And even the legs should have meat inside, but they didn't. It was just plain BAD with a failing grade.
I asked the waitress if lobster was live before cooking, she believed so. And I asked if it was cooked some time ago and she said it may have been cooked ahead of time. With Sam's reputation of being one of the best seafood restaurants, they should know that there is absolutely no reason to cook it ahead of time. The only reason to do that is the lobster is already dead. We were not offered a replacement or any compensation.
As it is billed as an eastern style chowder house I was pleasantly surprised to find that the menu is not limited to this type of food. As I am from the east coast so items like cioppino, halibut, and sea bass interested me more. I had the halibut and was pleased that it was not over done.
The only negative was parking - there weren't enough parking spaces and we had to wait until someone left which made us late for our reservation. The gumbo was good not great. The New England clam chowder was very good and had too much stuff (carrots, celery) other than clams, potatoes, and onions in it. But it wasn't thickened. Yay! The lobster rolls were excellent, as good as we've ever had. And I'm from Maine and so I know a good lobster roll when I taste it. And there was the meat of one whole lobster in each roll. The key lime pie was made with regular limes and not key limes and so wasn't as limey as it might have been. The vanilla soft serve ice cream with sea salt and olive oil was amazing in that it really did taste like caramel, just like the menu says. We will go back. Over-all we thought it was a good value for the money.
It was terrible. Our table was by the door which was open flies came in and were in our faces and mouths. It was very very noisy. I could not hear my companion speak I will never go back
Too many tourist. No parking it was a nightmare and a very expensive one at that
Wonderful views of the sunset over Half Moon Bay certainly enhanced the dining experience. Service was great and waiter was free with advice about most popular dishes. The stuffed prawns wrapped in bacon was delicious. The clam chowder is definitely worth a try. Friends enjoyed their ciopino.
We had a reservation for 7:30, arrived at 7:10 and was told they were on time. At 7:50 i went to the front desk and asked when we would be seated & was told a table just opened up.... that table was open for the entire 15 minutes I saw the 3 hostess chatting at the front desk with the 2 cute wait staff!
I will remember never to come here again on a Friday night
We were seated on time as per our reservation in a quiet, scenic room off the main area. Our server, Salwa, greeted us with a beautiful smile and was efficient, informative and checked on us throughout the meal without being obtrusive. Our friend had the seafood salad in which the bay scallops, shrimp and calamari were perfectly accented with the peppery arugula and light lemony dressing. My husband had the fish and chips which were light with the fish perfectly battered. I satisfied my craving for a seafood stew with a well seasoned generous bowl of steaming hot cioppino with a side of polenta fries which I immediately dunked into the savory broth to absorb all the yumminess. The cioppino consisted of generous portions of mussels, clams, dungeness crab and fish swimming in a well seasoned broth of wine, herbs and spices. Needless to say, we will all return to Sam's Chowder House and try to experience all the other luscious goodies on their menu. This was a perfect venue for our anniversary celebration.
Petrale Sole was expensise and dry... looked good on plate. Veggies overcooked and the apple listed was non-existent. Friend loved the Clams/Spaghatti.... no brainer dish. MaiTai cocktail was cheap liquor... flat. What a madhouse this place is. Hot outside and broiling inside... where was our usual fog.
My husband & I arrived at Sam's at the end of a beautiful drive up Hwy one from Santa Cruz.
We had reservations for 6:00 PM and scored the best view corner table
outside on the lower deck. Our service was great , dinner was delicious and the sunset was gorgeous. A perfect birthday for me.
Service was generally very good. Clam chowder and bread were excellent but the lobster roll was lacking in flavor although the portion of lobster was generous. I took half of it home and made a lobster salad for the next day by adding a couple of ingredients and it was excellent.
Sam's Clam Chowder is yummy! We've come here a number of times, and haven't had a bad meal. This visit, I had made reservations (highly recommended). We were stuck in traffic, and wouldn't be able to make it there on time. I called and let them know. They were quite understanding, but couldn't promise we'd have a table when we arrived. When we finally got there and checked in, I settled down for a wait as it was pretty crowded. Much to my surprise we were seated within 10 minutes and had a wonderful view of the sunset. Many thanks to the hostesses for the great service.
I've been to Sam's once before and really enjoyed it, although it is quite pricey I think.
This time I was totally disappointed in the lobster roll. It didn't even look appealing, having an unnatural color to it. There were big chunks on top and had little flavor and were dry, and small chewy pieces underneath. I had to order some melted butter to give it some flavor. I hope that my dinner was an exception. For $25 it should have been much better.
Our server was new and wasn't familiar with the drink I ordered.
Not sure I'll go back.
On this visit, the seafood was very salty. We had the steamed clam appetizer which had a lot of pepper flakes and the broth was way too salty. My husband had the seafood risotto which was flavorful but again it was heavy on the salt. The only saving grace was the beet salad which was flavorful and fresh.
A special shout out to our server Eric, who was very accommodating and personable.
We came for lunch to celebrate our friend's birthday. We had a table by the window that had a nice view of the water. The lobster roll was great. I ordered crab louie and was a bit disappointed that it used blue crab meat instead of Dungeoness crab. The bay shrimps had very little taste. The petralie sole was very good. Overall the food is quite good but not excellent.
The service was very good considering how busy they are. The check-in hostess is very efficient.
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