Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.18mi
  2. Distance: 0.30mi
  3. Distance: 0.73mi
  4. Distance: 0.94mi
  1. Distance: 0.18mi
  2. Distance: 0.30mi
  3. Distance: 0.73mi
  4. Distance: 0.94mi

Nearby points of interest

  1. Distance: 0.18mi
  2. Distance: 0.30mi
  3. Distance: 0.73mi
  4. Distance: 0.94mi
  1. Distance: 0.18mi
  2. Distance: 0.30mi
  3. Distance: 0.73mi
  4. Distance: 0.94mi

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.

4210 Cabrillo Hwy
Half Moon Bay, CA 94019
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Dining Style:
Casual Dining

Cuisines:
Seafood, American

Hours of Operation:
PLEASE NOTE: Sam's will be TEMPORARILY CLOSED for routine maintenance TUES, JAN 16 - MON, JAN 22; reopening on Wed, Jan 23. Our apologies for any inconvenience.

REGULAR HOURS:
Monday - Thursday: 11:30am - 4:30pm Lunch ~ 4:30pm-9pm Dinner
Friday: 11:30am-4:30pm Lunch ~ 4:30pm-9:30pm Dinner
Saturday: 11:00am-4:30pm Lunch ~ 4:30pm-9:30pm Dinner
Sunday: 11:00am - 4:30pm Lunch ~ 4:30pm - 9:00pm Dinner

HOLIDAY HOURS:
Thanksgiving Day: CLOSED
Christmas Eve: 11:30am-3:00pm
Christmas Day: CLOSED

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(650) 712-0245

Website:
http://samschowderhouse.com/

Entertainment:
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.

Parking Details:
There are two lots available.

Executive Chef:
Lewis Rossman

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Entertainment, Fireplace, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, 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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Private Dining

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

5
4
3
2
1

4.4

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.3

service

4.4

ambience

4.4

value

4.0

Noise

Moderate

96% would recommend it to a friend

Waterfront (97)
Scenic View (85)
Great for Outdoor Dining (68)
See All
Great for Lunch (65)
Worth the Drive (61)
Casual (57)
Special Occasion (50)
Good for a Date (41)
Local Ingredients (41)
Sunday Lunch (41)
Good for Anniversaries (39)
Good for Birthdays (38)
Authentic (37)
Fun (36)
People Watching (34)
Comfort Food (32)
Kid-friendly (31)
Good for Groups (30)
Bar Seating (28)
Fit for Foodies (26)
Romantic (26)
Neighborhood Gem (26)
Great for Brunch (20)
Cozy (20)
Hot Spot (20)
Happy Hour (19)
Live Music (19)
Vibrant Bar Scene (19)
Creative Cuisine (16)
Seasonal (13)
Handcrafted Cocktails (12)
Quiet Conversation (12)
Healthy (11)
Business Meals (10)
Great Beer (10)
Disabled Access (7)
Paleo Friendly (6)
Quick Bite (6)
Late-night Find (5)
Pre/post Theatre (5)
Tapas (5)
Tasting Menu (5)
Notable Wine List (4)
Afternoon Coffee (3)
Gluten Free Options (3)
Live Sports (3)
Spicy (2)
Good Vegetarian Options (2)
Afternoon Tea (1)
Organic (1)
Vegan (1)
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3812 reviews
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vip
 (Sacramento)·Dined on November 1, 2017

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.

Tags: Waterfront, Scenic View
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Seattle)·Dined on November 1, 2017

Food and service were mediocre. You are by the ocean, but sit outside(usually cold) or by window. Otherwise it's like any other seafood restaurant, only much more expensive. Sadly, not what it used to be.

Tags: Quick Bite, Vibrant Bar Scene, Casual, Great for Outdoor Dining
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food2
ambience4
service2
value2

 
·Dined on October 31, 2017

We had the beer battered prawns, delicious. There cold slaw was superb. Our service person was outstanding. Would definitely recommend.

Tags: Seasonal, Worth the Drive, Great for Outdoor Dining, Local Ingredients, Fit for Foodies, Tasting Menu, Fun, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays, Casual, Great for Lunch, Kid-friendly
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 30, 2017

Sam's has well prepared fresh seafood and, of course, there's that beautiful oceanside location.

Tags: Fun, Sunday Lunch
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience5
service3
value3

 
·Dined on October 29, 2017

We chose to have our 29th Anniversary lunch at Sams because we love the food and atmosphere!!! We live in Los Gatos and always enjoy the drive to the beach and driving the coast highway after our awesome lunch!!

Tags: Great for Lunch, Sunday Lunch, Casual, Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Cozy, Authentic, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 29, 2017

Lobster roll “OK” but very expensive...clam chowdervery good!

Tags: Good for Groups, Good for a Date, Fun, Great for Outdoor Dining
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food4
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 29, 2017

Always meets the need - always meets expectations - but, another "always" is that parking is difficult and, if parking on the highway, can be dangerous for families with kids walking along the highway or trying to cross the highway

Tags: Vibrant Bar Scene, Hot Spot, Casual
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
·Dined on October 29, 2017

Super place ! We sat at the bar ( just the 2 of us ) the kitchen staff do not stop ! Great great staff and we truly recommend this place as a local food hot spot

Tags: Local Ingredients, Casual, Hot Spot
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on October 28, 2017

It was our first trip! We tried a few months ago and we couldn’t get reservations. I booked this reservation a month in advance & I was very pleased! I WILL BE BACK REAL SOON!! 😋

Tags: Vibrant Bar Scene, Great for Outdoor Dining, Fit for Foodies, Special Occasion, Notable Wine List, Casual, Worth the Drive, Kid-friendly
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
·Dined on October 28, 2017

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

Tags: Happy Hour, Kid-friendly, Casual, Live Sports, Scenic View, Great for Outdoor Dining
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience4
service2
value3

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 25, 2017

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.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, People Watching, Casual, Happy Hour, Great for Outdoor Dining, Quiet Conversation, Local Ingredients, Scenic View, Good for a Date
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 25, 2017

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.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem
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food2
ambience2
service2
value2

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 24, 2017

Best Lobster Rolls ever!! Great view of the ocean while you’re dining.

Tags: Great for Lunch
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on October 24, 2017

Went there with family for a few days on vacation. Food was very tasty and prices reasonable. So much nicer than a chain restaurant. Make reservations or expect long wait times!

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining, Scenic View, Waterfront, Casual, Fun, Authentic
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 23, 2017

Always has good food and the ocean views are great. Besides their lobster roll, they have a softserve ice cream with olive oil and sea salt. Sounds really strange, but it tastes great. I also would highly recommend their Fish and Chips.

Tags: Waterfront, Great for Outdoor Dining
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food4
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 21, 2017

Great response to special dietary requests. Immaculate service despite a nearly full house in a Friday night. Outstanding jazz trio!

Tags: Authentic, Fit for Foodies, Good for Anniversaries, Healthy, Bar Seating, Paleo Friendly, Creative Cuisine, Vibrant Bar Scene, Good for a Date, People Watching, Scenic View, Waterfront, Gluten Free Options, Worth the Drive, Romantic, Live Music
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on October 20, 2017

This was our first time visiting the restaurant. I enjoyed it so much. Our waitress was the best ever. Thank you for such a wonderful experience

Tags: Special Occasion, Waterfront
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on October 17, 2017

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.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Good for Birthdays, Waterfront, Local Ingredients
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 16, 2017

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.

Tags: Scenic View, Authentic, Local Ingredients, Great for Lunch
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food2
ambience4
service4
value2

 
 (St. Louis)·Dined on October 16, 2017

Great food and scenery. The service was quick but I recommend reservations. Plan some time for parking just in case the lot is full.

Tags: Spicy, Fit for Foodies, Worth the Drive, Good for Birthdays, Scenic View, Casual, Happy Hour
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 15, 2017

Love this place

Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 15, 2017

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.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Casual, Waterfront, Good for a Date, Great for Outdoor Dining, Worth the Drive
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 11, 2017

Great place for lunch with the wife. Great Clam chowder and salmon as well as the fish and chips. Service and atmosphere met expectations

Tags: Great for Lunch, Romantic
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food1
ambience1
service1
value1

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 11, 2017

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.

Tags: Scenic View, Waterfront
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food1
ambience4
service3
value3

 
 (New England)·Dined on October 10, 2017

We had never heard about this restaurant. We were very surprised by how outstanding the food and service were. A fantastic all around great restaurant.

Tags: Comfort Food, Creative Cuisine, Local Ingredients, Good for Anniversaries, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 10, 2017

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.

Tags: Sunday Lunch, Great for Lunch, Fun, Special Occasion, Authentic, Kid-friendly
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 6, 2017

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.

Tags: Kid-friendly, Happy Hour, Seasonal, Great for Brunch, Scenic View, Good for a Date, Disabled Access
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food3
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (Greensboro)·Dined on October 5, 2017

This was our 4th time back to Sam's and it is always one of the highlights of my trip to the west coast. Love the food and the location is fantastic!! Well worth the wait - especially for the chowder and lobster roll!

Tags: Waterfront, Great for Lunch, Fun, Sunday Lunch, Neighborhood Gem, Worth the Drive, Scenic View, Great for Outdoor Dining
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food5
ambience5
service4
value5

vip
 (Sacramento)·Dined on October 4, 2017

This is our go to spot whenever we need some beach time. Outside dining is usually fine, except it was Yellow Jacket season and we had to move inside.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 3, 2017

Excellent!

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food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on October 1, 2017

This is an awesome restaurant. The food is great. the service is very friendly and the view is amazing

Tags: Live Music, Casual, Great for Lunch, Worth the Drive, Scenic View, Vibrant Bar Scene, People Watching, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays, Waterfront, Neighborhood Gem, Local Ingredients, Sunday Lunch, Good for a Date, Romantic, Great for Outdoor Dining
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
·Dined on September 30, 2017

Sam’s is great!! I always love coming here. I have never had a crab cake like the one I had here! It was amazing!!!

Tags: Romantic, Good for Groups, Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion, People Watching, Casual
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 29, 2017

Sat outside on a gorgeous day. The view can't be beat. As a New England native, I'd rate the lobster rolls highly (although naturally, being imported to California, they're $10 more than back east). Being at Sam's is a "mini-vacation !

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Casual, Great for Lunch, Scenic View, Special Occasion, Quiet Conversation, Good for Anniversaries, Sunday Lunch, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for a Date, Good for Birthdays, Fun, Romantic, Waterfront, Worth the Drive
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food4
ambience5
service5
value3

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 28, 2017

I met a former colleaguue/friend for lunch. I ordered the fish and chips. The fish was fresh and flaky. The beer batter was nice and light. French fries were generous (still can't believe I ate it all). The staff was friendly and our server was personable and attentive. I drove from The City and, it was worth the drive.

Tags: Great for Brunch, Late-night Find, Scenic View, People Watching, Waterfront, Kid-friendly, Good for Anniversaries, Great for Lunch, Good for Birthdays, Vibrant Bar Scene, Special Occasion, Authentic, Romantic, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for Groups, Business Meals, Fit for Foodies, Local Ingredients, Neighborhood Gem, Hot Spot, Sunday Lunch, Casual, Happy Hour, Good for a Date, Quiet Conversation, Great Beer, Tapas, Comfort Food, Worth the Drive, Fun, Quick Bite, Bar Seating
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 27, 2017

The ambiance was great as always and the service was good. The food was second rate.

Tags: Authentic
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food3
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 24, 2017

We were stuck in traffic on hwy 92. Called in to let them know we were running late. They still had our table of 4 ready when we arrived 20 minute later. Outstanding!

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Good for Birthdays, Hot Spot, People Watching, Bar Seating, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service3
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 24, 2017

Recommend making a reservation in advance or you will have a long wait. Food was very good, fresh fish, great chowder, and nice ambiance on a beautiful day! A bit pricey, but for a special occasion worth treating yourself

Tags: Great for Lunch
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 23, 2017

Made reservations for three 90 years young Elders and myself for our monthly outing. Requested a window seat - wa-la, DONE. The Elders marveled at the outstanding view, the energy and good vibes of Sam's, and the DELICIOUS food. Our waitress could not have been more perfect - delightful, thoughtful, attentive, and kind - she added to an already perfect day. Thank you, thank you, thank you! Sam's team totally gets how to treat its guest.

Tags: Scenic View, Sunday Lunch, Special Occasion, Live Music, Casual, Fun, Paleo Friendly, Waterfront, Handcrafted Cocktails, Worth the Drive, People Watching, Authentic, Great for Outdoor Dining, Creative Cuisine, Fit for Foodies
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Sacramento)·Dined on September 23, 2017

Really excellent in every regard. My seafood paella was first rate. My wife gave a 10 for the first time in her life for the sole. View was fantastic. Service quick and friendly. Atmosphere active.Can not wait to return.

Tags: Scenic View, Fit for Foodies, Bar Seating
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on September 23, 2017

We visited Sam's for the first time last Friday night with our kids. We ordered everything quickly knowing getting food fast was a priority. While the kids' meals came at a relatively fast pace, nothing else did, our appetizers arrived 50 minutes later, our kids were melting down because they had already finished dinner and dessert and we didn't still have our mains, so we decided to leave. The manager comped us a large gift certificate to come back (which was nice), but all-in-all it was pretty disappointing not to have been fed since we were heading to a campsite in Santa Cruz and didn't have a meal packed for that night. We tried to then visit coming back and the wait list was 1.5 long. It's a busy place, but clearly not capable of keeping up with the demand it has.

Tags: Scenic View
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food3
ambience4
service3
value2

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