Wellesley Tavern

4.3
537 Reviews
$31 to $50
Fusion / Eclectic
We’re bringing fresh Pacific coast cuisine to our legendary Atlantic dishes. John and Laura Wolfe owned a landmark restaurant in La Jolla, California for 25 years before combining their love for clean, wholesome cooking with classic East Coast dishes.

Culinary Director Andrew Swanson and Chef Josh Gagnon transform and elevate a traditional tavern menu through a Californian lens to create the perfect blend of both coasts. Whether you're in the mood for small plates to share or an entrée to savor, our menus cater to your every craving. Elevate your tastes with one of our chef-inspired creations.

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
What 537 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
4.2
food
4.3
service
4.2
ambience
4.0
value
Noise · Moderate
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KM
KathyM
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Friendly and attentive service, nice atmosphere, beautiful bar area. Food was delicious, a great place to go.

NN
vipNancyN
New England
18 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall4food4service5ambience5

We had great service, and a nice clean restaurant
Food selections in abundance and we all loved the fried chicken and short rib tacos.
Yummy

LW
LindaW
New England
3 reviews
Dined on January 8, 2022
Overall5food4service5ambience4

A group of 10 of us asked to be accommodated sitting/standing in the bar area. The manager made a special area for us and the service was excellent!

Wellesley Tavern
Responded 5 days ago

Hello Linda! We appreciate the review. Thank you for taking the time. Hope to see you again soon!

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CD
CarylD
New England
21 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

We had a wonderful time. Surprised how few people on NY Eve but that actually made us feel more comfortable dining out!

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on January 8, 2022

Hi Cary, we appreciate the positive feedback. It means a lot. We will share this with the team!

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EO
ElizabethOutToEat
New England
6 reviews
Dined on December 22, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our server was excellent. He was knowledgeable about the menu and recommended the muscles appetizer special. It was delicious, and we were so glad that we ordered it.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on December 31, 2021

Hi Elizabeth, thank you so much for the review. We will share this with the team!

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SG
SusanG
New England
3 reviews
Dined on December 20, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Two good meals, nice atmosphere, and pleasant service!

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on December 31, 2021

Hi Susan, glad to learn your experience was a positive one. Hope to see you again in the near future!

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N
vipNewtonfoodie
New England
54 reviews
Dined on December 14, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Great makeover from door no 7 (which I also,liked). Open dining concept, high ceilings, comfortable booths. Service is great. Don’t miss $2 oyster Tuesdays if you are a fan. Fun drink menu but also has the usuals. We will definitely be back.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on December 31, 2021

Hi, that’s wonderful to hear. Thanks so much for leaving us a review. Hope to see you again soon!

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KR
KateR
New England
7 reviews
Dined on December 11, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Excellent service. Friendly, efficient, and knowledgeable (but willing to ask staff members who might know more, given that he was underage for drinking.) And the food was delicious and fresh, if not out-of-the-box/ super original. It was comforting and tasty. We were given space to take our time, which was much appreciated. Overall, it was a lovely evening out.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on December 14, 2021

Hi Maureen, we’re thrilled to get this kind of feedback. Thank you for taking the time to review us. See you soon!

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OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
10 reviews
Dined on December 10, 2021
Overall4food3service3ambience4

Server was great but things seemed short staffed. Drinks and food aren’t as sharp as they were when the Tavern opened. Still very good and great to see the restaurant so busy.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on December 14, 2021

Thanks for the review. We look forward to serving you again soon!

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S
Shamrock1
New England
4 reviews
Dined on December 9, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Friend dinner

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on December 14, 2021

Thanks for the great review. We will share this with the team!

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MP
vipMaureenP
Naples
1 review
Dined on December 8, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great waiter named Kevin!

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on December 14, 2021

Hi, that’s wonderful to hear. Thanks so much for leaving us a review. Have a great day!

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JB
JimBob78
New England
1 review
Dined on December 8, 2021
Overall2food2service2ambience4

This was our first visit to the Tavern. Perhaps we'll give it another try at some point, but... Service was okay but not optimal. We were seated quickly and the server was prompt and friendly. He made an excellent beer recommendation, which - in the end - was the highlight of the night (although at $10 per glass, it should be outstanding). We had an appetizer, entrees and a side of fries. The fries never arrived (which was probably for the best), despite only 4 other tables being occupied at the time (i.e., it wasn't busy at all). The food quality was simply ok and I expected much more for the price. I had the short rib tacos, which lacked flavor - it was rather bland, actually. On the positive side, the interior environment was great - beautifully arranged interior with plenty of space for dining (and social distancing), the music selection was fantastic, etc. One recommendation for the restaurant is to not have three large bags full of trash just lying outside next to entrance. All in all, it was great to get out for dinner, but there are better options in town for dropping $100 for a week night dinner.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Tampa
1 review
Dined on December 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience3

Great food, great service. I wish that they have the music a little loader so they can create a little more of a environment.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on December 7, 2021

Hello, that’s wonderful to hear. Thanks so much for leaving us a review. We will share this with the team!

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NT
NTBDL
New England
2 reviews
Dined on December 4, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience5

We shared the nachos which were excellent! The tuna tartare was pretty good, but I think had been previously frozen. The fish taco was reported to be OK, the roasted chicken and the cod were said to be very good. We will definitely go back!

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on December 7, 2021

Really glad you had a positive experience. Thanks for reviewing. See you next time!

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PC
PhyllisC
New England
4 reviews
Dined on December 4, 2021
Overall2food2service3ambience4

I would not recommend this restaurant to family or friends.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on December 7, 2021

Hi Phyllis, we sincerely apologize for the experience you had, but thank you for bringing this to our attention. Your remarks will be shared with the team.

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JA
vipJillA
New England
6 reviews
Dined on December 3, 2021
Overall2food3service2ambience3

Waitress was nice, lights were too bright and she lowered them slightly. It would have been nice if she asked if we needed anything else or offered dessert.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on December 7, 2021

Thanks for taking the time to leave us your feedback. Your remarks will be shared with the team.

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OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
1 review
Dined on November 30, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great birthday dinner!

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on December 7, 2021

We appreciate the positive feedback. It means a lot. We look forward to serving you again soon!

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L
vipLinda
New England
18 reviews
Dined on November 27, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience3

The staff were all very friendly; there were smiles and greetings from all! Thalise, our waiter, was friendly, fun and efficient.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on December 14, 2021

Hi Linda, that’s wonderful to hear. Thanks so much for leaving us a review. Have a great day!

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OT
vipOpenTable Diner
New England
9 reviews
Dined on November 16, 2021
Overall4food3service4ambience4

Cocktails were delicious!

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 20, 2021

Thanks for the review. Hope you have an amazing day!

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KK
KimmyK
New England
9 reviews
Dined on November 16, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience4

This was our first visit to the Wellesley Tavern. We loved the drinks and menu. The service was great too. We will be back.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 20, 2021

Hi Kimmy, we’re thrilled to get this kind of feedback. Thank you for taking the time to review us. We look forward to serving you again soon!

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Y
vipYuliyaks
New England
12 reviews
Dined on November 14, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great experience, amazing food, outstanding service

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 17, 2021

We appreciate the review. Thanks for taking the time. Have a wonderful day!

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OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
1 review
Dined on November 13, 2021
Overall3food3service4ambience4

A friend and I went out to celebrate her acceptance of a new job. We both haven’t eaten around Wellesley much and thought this restaurant would be a nice place to start. The atmosphere gave off a wonderfully modern and sophisticated feeling but was relaxed and warm enough that you didn’t feel you had to dress to the nines. In addition our server was pleasant and attentive which is always appreciated.
Unfortunately at this Wellesley establishment the up charge in the price of their dishes seem to be validated by the atmosphere around you not actually the food your consuming. The appetizers and drinks we got were all very instagram picture worthy but the actual eating of them left me quite disappointed. The Bruschetta that we had was clearly made with fresh ingredients but like I said to my companion that night; The ingredients were fresh but it was constructed poorly. What really bothered me was that the toasted bread tasted of beef; not a flavor I associate with Bruschetta in the slightest. My guess would be that the chef decided to toast the bread with quite a bit of butter in the same spot in the grille as where he cooked the meat. A careless over site which helped me over the edge of deciding that I was not a fan of the dish. Just thankful neither of us was vegetarian because I would have sworn there was a slice of beef on that plate after tasting that bread. Thankfully the drinks we ordered were properly strong and well made.
The other appetizer we had were the dumplings. These hand-made fried dumplings were good, but the picked slaw that came with the 4 dumplings was delicious! Our waitress gave me a wonderful cocktail recommendation for my second drink I will add.
Over all I feel that your paying the bit extra for the atmosphere rather than the foods attention to detail/taste but for some that is what they look for from time to time. Myself, not so much. I don’t think I’ll be rushing back anytime soon and when I do, it will be for the drinks.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 20, 2021

Thank you for the constructive criticism. We’ll use this as a learning experience as to how we can improve. Have a wonderful day!

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OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
3 reviews
Dined on November 13, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Have been a dozen times. Food and service are terrific. We are both gluten free and plenty of options. Comfort food every time. The takitos, Brussel sprout salad w Chix and tuna tartar are all to die for. If you like a drink, try the Purple Haze! Bartenders and staff are really good people.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 15, 2021

Thanks so much for the kind words. We will share this with the team!

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DG
DonnaG
New England
4 reviews
Dined on November 13, 2021
Overall4food5service5ambience3

Our server was terrific. He was knowledgeable, but when he didn't know the answer himself, he knew who to go to get the answer.
Food was excellent.
We were in the back and there was some loud discussion by one waiter (not ours) that was a bit inappropriate. It is very loud in the back where you can see into the kitchen.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 15, 2021

Hi Donna, that’s wonderful to hear. Thanks so much for leaving us a review. Have a great day!

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AY
AbeY
New England
7 reviews
Dined on November 13, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food! Service was perfect.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 15, 2021

Thanks for taking time out of your day to review us. Hope to see you again in the near future!

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A
Alex
New England
2 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2021
Overall3food1service5ambience5

Service and atmosphere were great. Unfortunately the food was a D. Meatballs were soggy with too much cheese, dumplings were over cooked and hard, fish and pork tacos had no flavor. The only good thing was the brussel sprout salad. We all liked it. Sorry to report we will not be back.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 15, 2021

Alex, thank you for the feedback. Your comments will be passed along to the management team.

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OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
2 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2021
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Very good as usual. Expensive. Consider 1) more vegetarian meals 2) bread and oil ; also when we have a 5 pm reservation you should have front door open and unlocked at 445. We are fine waiting inside near or at bar. It’s a bit rude for us to show up early but then be locked outside in the rain, even if u unlock door at 5:03

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 15, 2021

Really glad you had a positive experience. Thanks for reviewing. We will share this with the team!

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OT
OpenTableDiner
New England
1 review
Dined on November 10, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and unique cocktails. Highly recommend the Salmon Pad Thai entree and the Crispy Beef Teriyaki Dumplings for an appetizer.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 15, 2021

Really glad you had a positive experience. Thanks for reviewing. Have a wonderful day!

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OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
3 reviews
Dined on November 9, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience5

It was a quiet night, the restaurant staff was awesome and very attentive. The food was good but not great. My fried chicken was a little chewy. Fries were yummy and Brussels sprouts pretty good.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 15, 2021

We appreciate the positive feedback. It means a lot. Have a great day!

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F
vipFridaynightlights
New England
79 reviews
Dined on November 7, 2021
Overall3food4service2ambience3

The service was incredibly slow. It became very frustrating.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 10, 2021

Thank you for the feedback. We will share this with the rest of the team.

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OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
4 reviews
Dined on November 6, 2021
Overall3food2service3ambience3

It’s as if the owners hired a consultant or followed some paint by numbers business plan for a local slightly upscale tavern esque feel. There is zero conviction or passion connected to the menu. It would be one thing if they executed on the dishes, but they didn’t.

My fired chicken breasts has zero flavor. None. The Mac and cheese had no point of view and bland.

The slaw was fresh and used interesting veggies, but lacked a POV re flavor.

My wife’s tuna sandwich came well done. It was nearly impossible to flag someone, so I left my seat to inform the bar. They did replace it, but the replacement was just a cold version to achieve the rareness they promised. Again, a signal that there really isn’t much commitment to excellence. They are using very thin slices. So, not my problem that it creates a problem for a kitchen to cook that consistently.

Will I go back? Not clear. I may try the burger next time.

So the other day, my wife and I went to the Cottage across the street. I ordered a burger. It was pretty good. However the patty was very thin relative to the price. So, I won’t hold my breath.

For some reason, sub par restaurants survive in Wellesley. Given the socio demographics, you’d think it would be different.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 15, 2021

Thank you for the feedback. We will share this with the rest of the team.

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ST
SueT
New England
10 reviews
Dined on November 5, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience4

This was our first time at the Wellesley Tavern. The food was good, cocktails interesting and we can see returning for another visit.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 9, 2021

Sue, we are really glad you had a positive experience. Thanks for reviewing. Have a wonderful day!

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IC
IC123
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on November 4, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This place exceeded my expectations. The food was super and the portions were generous

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 9, 2021

We’re so happy to hear you had a good experience. Have a great day!

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SG
StaceyG
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Great spot and yummy cocktails. The food is mostly good- had a couple of misses in food being cold when it arrived but otherwise tasty

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 4, 2021

Thanks so much for the kind words. See you soon!

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D
Doogamundo
New England
1 review
Dined on November 1, 2021
Overall3food3service3ambience4

Very lovely space, but on a Monday night, there were very few diners so it was quiet. My friend and I remarked that it would be a fun place to go when it was busy.

Our waitress was working her very first shift and she was earnest. She was shadowed by a manager who took our drink order and had to be reminded to bring it after ten minutes or so, which was odd because we were one of the only tables. We had to wait longer than expected to be asked for our order (I do not think it was the fault of our new waitress). When we placed our order, my friend ordered something to take home to her husband and asked that it be ready when we were finishing up. After dinner, we paid the bill and waited another fifteen minutes or so more for that order, so that was a little annoying.

Overall, the food was good. Nothing spectacular, but tasty. I had the short-rib tacos which could have been hotter. My friend had the Cauliflower bowl and said it was delicious. I would try it again on a busier night.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 4, 2021

Thank you for the feedback. Your comments will be passed along to the team.

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LD
LaneyD
New England
1 review
Dined on October 31, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience3

Food was fantastic! Service was amazing! Red Sangria was delicious!
Ambiance is relative, right? The space is white and brightly lit, so if you prefer the typical dark "tavern" experience, this is not it, but the space is welcoming, clean and spacious. Will definitely be coming back again!

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 4, 2021

Thanks for the review. We will share this with the team!

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TC
ThomC
San Francisco
10 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2021
Overall4food4service5ambience5

Pleasantly surprised. Great ambiance. Love the bar and would be very happy eating upscale tavern. Cocktails excellent. Food was very good. Service was outstanding.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on November 15, 2021

Thanks for the review. Hope you have an amazing day!

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b
vipbethl
New England
18 reviews
Dined on October 24, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Booth in bar area. Quiet Sunday night. Great service. Loved our waitress. Tacos, cerviche, scallops, burgers, salad. Excellent

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on October 27, 2021

Thanks so much for the kind words. Hope you have an amazing day!

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A
vipAdele
New England
1 review
Dined on October 23, 2021
Overall4food4service4ambience4

The only issues is that they seem short-staffed, as many restaurants are. Service was a little slow, we didn't get exactly what we wanted (substitution of veggies for fries didn't happen), and one dessert didn't come. We love the place so we forgive them.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on October 27, 2021

Thanks for the review. Hope to see you again in the near future!

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PM
PattiMcG
New England
9 reviews
Dined on October 23, 2021
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything was great. Highly recommend.

Wellesley Tavern
Responded on October 27, 2021

Hi. That’s wonderful to hear. Thanks so much for leaving us a review. See you soon!

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FAQs

You can order delivery directly from Wellesley Tavern using the Order Online button. Wellesley Tavern also offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (781) 391-6500.

Wellesley Tavern is rated 4.3 stars by 537 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.