Nearby points of interest
Nearby points of interest
About Spenger's Fresh Fish Grotto
A historic landmark since opening our doors in 1890, Spenger's Fresh Fish Grotto features antique stained glass and porthole windows to give you the nautical dining experience. Enjoy your lunch, dinner or happy hour while browsing century old salvaged maritime artifacts that adorn the reconstituted teak walls. Delight in viewing the "Star of Denmark" Canary Diamond and 6 foot Ming Vase in our main dining room.
Conveniently located in the trendy 4th Street shopping district in Berkeley, CA. Spenger's is famous in the San Francisco Bay Area for impeccable cuisine, an inviting atmosphere and superior service.
Planning a Private Event or Corporate Meeting? Spenger's offers unique Event Rooms for 15 to 200 guests. Our Event Manager will work with you to create a unique menu, perfect for your group. Make your next event a one of a kind, stress free experience.
Berkeley, CA 94710
Seafood, Steak, American
Hours of Operation:
BRUNCH: Sunday 11:00am-3:00pm
LUNCH: Monday-Saturday 11:30am-3:00pm
DINNER: Monday-Thursday: 3:00pm-9:30pm | Friday & Saturday: 3:00pm-10:00pm | Sunday 3:00pm-9:00pm
$30 and under
AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
We validate for parking in the lot located across the street from the restaurant. 1 1/2 hours free before 5pm, 3 hours free after 5pm.
We are located a few blocks from many AC Transit Bus lines. The closest Bart stations is about 1 mile away.
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access
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An historic landmark since opening our doors in 1890, Spenger's Fresh Fish Grotto features antique stained glass and porthole windows. Enjoy your Private Event while browsing century old salvaged maritime artifacts, adorning reconstituted teak walls.
Spenger's Fresh Fish Grotto Ratings and Reviews
Spengers! I really really want to love this place.
Super convenient...Great History...the food was actually quite tasty.
But, for the scene- ( a bit worn out and tired) and not great service (although our waiter was very helpful and friendly and accommodating) it is just way too pricey.
I can spend that money and get a fab meal at Chez Panisse or other places.
Bring the prices down a bit. tighten up the service and the dining room will fill up!
Hope it can improve!
We were four for dinner, on a weeknight and with a reservation. We waited a long time for our drinks, which were forgotten by the server until we reminded her, after the appetizers had arrived. Then we were told that one of the beers we had ordered was unavailable. A different beer was ordered, and 5 minutes later we were told it was unavailable also. Apparently they were out of beer altogether so the beer drinkers ended up having wine or water instead. Not in itself a problem but should have been clarified right away, not half an hour after we sat down. After dinner (which wasn't bad but was totally unremarkable), I went to the Ladies' room and found that one of the two toilets was nearly overflowing and the stench was literally unbearable. The whole place had an "in decline" vibe. I will not be returning to this restaurant anytime soon!
If you want a $10 cut of meat that costs you $40 this is the place to go. Who doesn't love a chewey ribeye that reminds you of when you were a kid shoving too many pieces of bubble gum in your mouth? How about some flavorless fish atop risotto paste? You betcha. At least you'll be serenaded by all of the middle aged people requesting the Happy Birthday song.
We had a group of 20 that shrunk to 16 due to a few last minute issues.
I dropped in to chat with the manager before the group showed up and he made sure it all came together right, including getting timing down so we could attend a Cal hoops game on time.
While we were not quite big enough for a private room, our 2 tables worked well.
Service was very good. Food was done right with only one "timing" glitch on a busy night.
Our Cal group has 45+ years of prior experience with Spenger's and, despite changes over the years and some "complaints" from other people in their online reviews, we were treated right, the food was top notch and we had a great experience, with the staff helping to make that happen.
THE crab Louie was $28 and had little crab sitting o small bed of lettuce a few cucumber slices, 5 olives and 2 hard boiled eggs sliced and then some tomato wedges. My guest's sand dab entree was cold and had to be sent back. The mussels were good. We ordered a bottle of wine which the waitress poured the first glass but never returned to pour again.
I would recommend this place if it was the only place left for the bread and water. And thats if it came within a reasonable time from when you sat down. We had no utensils no napkins no appetizer plates but food was sitting getting cold. I asked for a pint glass for my beer from three separate people and ended up drinking it out of the bottle.Next time I'll bring my own paper bag. If you want fried fish go to McDonald's. Filet O Fish is half the price and half the wait. The scatter was told to be the captain's platter but instead was worse than all you can eat Red Lobster shrimp and fries from Wendy's. My Jim Beam and Coke looked like cheap whiskey and water and didn't taste much better. I will pay the price for good food but growing up going to this restaurant to seeing what it's become is sad. All other reviewers who know what this place used to be say the same. I would put more money into your service and quality of food instead of changing the look of what was once a great restaurasameBy the way the lingering smell of Pine-Sol throughout the entire restaurant makes it smell like a one star rest home. Stop trying to be what you are not or step your game up. Otherwise tear it dowdown. Perfect location for an In and Out.But f... it. Im sure the other watered down restaurants numbers that also belong to this chain even out Spengers losses. Take note from Dead Fish and Stinkin Rose.
I thought the food was a little bit overpriced. I paid $3.75 for a glass of ice tea which was never refilled and sugar was not offered. The shrimp scampi was seven dollars and I got three shrimp which had no garlic on it and they were cold, but it was meant to be a hot dish. The shrimp or cold but the sauce around it was hot. Not good value.
We had to wait 25 minutes for a table we had reserved in advance. The hostess told us she'd bring us a cocktail menu as she seated us but she never did. The featured wine of the day was not available and we were there at 7:00pm. The french bread they served was stale. Even though we ordered a bottle of wine we had to remind the waitperson to bring it to our table after he delivered our salads. The roasted potatoes were so hard you could barely chew them. One of the wait staff (bus person) left the men's room without washing his hands. A bartender was seen blowing his nose and not washing his hands as he continued to prepare a cocktail.
Good news: lots of validated free parking. Bad news: you will be parked for a long, long time. This restaurant recently changed hands and it appears it lost all its wait staff and kitchen staff and bartenders. After being promptly seated and told the server would be right over, we waited over 20 minutes to get bread and water. After our order was taken, it took another 20 minutes for drinks to arrive. Once the food arrived - and it is good food - a refill request on a glass of wine went unfulfilled. The wait staff - one person - had far too many tables. This used to be a good restaurant. No longer. Write if off for good as it is not worth the wait.
Late Sunday afternoon dining. Seated in what was the old Spenger's bar. Not busy but service was terrible barely ever refilled water and didn't check on meals until we were done. I understand there was a very recent change in ownership and I am hopeful the new owners will be able to restore the food and service levels.
We enjoyed the flexible Happy Hour in the bar, with a good assortment of reasonably priced bar food, modestly priced beverages, and the option of ordering from the main menu as well. The service was slow but better than it used to be and our waiter pleasant but over-burdened. Two bars were open--it would be nice is one were quiet and sports-free. By some miracle, my nice sand dabs and the accompanying vegetables were not overly salted, but the chef had not compensated adequately by using other seasoning, and the vegetables were not just al dente but undercooked and cold. All in all, we enjoyed the ambience.
The food remains delicious and a good value. The service was strange--over 30 minutes from ordering soup and salad starters until they arrived. The warm bread delivered when we were seated was cold by the time the food came. The entrees were attractively plated, served hot, and very tasty. It took a long time to get the check. This was for a Friday lunch and they were not at all busy. One whole dining room was not in use.
We went to Spengers for a birthday dinner. Two of the five dinners ordered were wrong. One of our party ordered scallops and pasta and was given fried shrimp and french fries instead. One of our party ordered chicken and was given fish instead. The restaurant was not busy and I do not understand was two of our orders were wrong. The overall bill was $165.00 plus %18 tip which seemed high for 5 meals, two of which were wrong. Will not be returning.
The food was excellent. The service was okay could of been a lot better. We had to ask for more water. Server never came by after food was brought to see if everything was good or if we needed anything. After meal had to try and catch server to ask for dessert menu. Had to wait 20 minutes for dessert. Server walked by twice never contacted us on update about dessert. Had to catch server again for check. Waited 10 minutes for server to pick up check then had to find him again. Based on the service I would not eat here again. Poor service for price. I could maybe understand if the place was packed but there were several open tables.
We were a group of three veterans making our annual pilgrimage to their Veteran's Day special. We were quickly seated but not in the main dining room. A table of 5 ladies were next to us and had a loud and lively conversation the whole time we were there. Fortunately, we ordered appetizers because the entrees took what seemed to be a very long time. My fish and chips had a generous portion of fish (4 pieces) - too bad it was overcooked and dry. I've been coming to Spengers since 1974 and this was my least favorite visit.
This is a good place to go with a group because there is space and you can make reservations. The ambiance is classic and unchanged for decades, like an old fisherman's hang out. Lots of wood and portals and relics from a fishing era. However, the lunch menu is limited, the food is average, and the prices are very high for what you get. Best when you care more about hanging out than how much you will spend. Definitely not a bargain.
Went for Veteran's day celebration. I appreciate their free meal for Veterans. However, I was surprised that they didn't have a lunch menu for guests that were not veterans like they have in the past. My guest had to order off of the dinner menu. My meal was good and so was the service.