Chef Eduardo Coronel’s creative American dishes are some of the most flavorful, colorful and vibrant on the Monterey Peninsula and celebrate flavor in every mouthwatering bite!
In addition to the main dining room, Rio Grill has a comfortable lounge and full bar serving refreshing libations including the restaurant’s famous "Rio Rita.” The bar is lined with colorful caricatures of local faces and celebrities. Rio Grill's award-winning wine list by Wine Director, Gabe de la Vega, features more than 250 labels featuring a ton of local wineries and an extensive selection available by the glass. The restaurant opens for lunch daily at 11:30-4pm & dinner nightly from 4pm-7:30pm.
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- Surfaces sanitized between seatings
- Common areas deep cleaned daily
- Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
- Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
- Sealed or wrapped utensils used
- Limited number of seated diners
- Distancing maintained in common areas
- Extra space between tables
- Waitstaff wear masks
- Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
- Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
- Staff temperature check required
Rosemary-Blue Cheese Butter, Braised Mushrooms, Polenta Tots
Almond Wood-Smoked BBQ Pork Back Ribs
Fries, Horseradish-Poppy Seed Coleslaw
Chinese Chicken Salad
Field Greens, Sesame-Soy Noodles, Curried Carrots, Almonds, Tahini Dressing
The mussels are excellent with the special fries and dipping sauce
Smoked chicken is outstanding. Server nick was attentive
Thank you for the wonderful review! We're happy you enjoyed our world famous smoked chicken. Both the dish and your server Nick have been staples in our restaurant for many years. We look forward to welcoming you back sometime soon.
Food was not prepared to our specifications, service was horrible. Waiter was inattentive and rude. it was freezing outside and heaters weren’t working. I have enjoyed going to this restaurant for many years but based on tonight’s experience, I will not return (at least until the pandemic is over.
Hi Don, I have sent you a private message to learn more about your experience. We value our guests' feedback and are always looking for ways to improve. Gabe de la Vega, General Manager
A nice outdoor dining experience. Service was so-so
This was our first time eating out as a family in over a year. Rio Grill did not disappoint. Both kids ate everything in front of them and the wait staff was very friendly and helpful, we will definitely be back.
Thankyou you for the (5) Star review, we do have a unique kids menu that they do seem to enjoy. we look forwrrd to your next visit!
Rio Grill has a really good cover outdoor dining setup - the warmers worked well and we were very comfortable. It was busy on a Saturday night and the service was still really good. The chef came out and made sure we were enjoying our dinner. The food was excellent.
Lynne, thank you for your review. We're happy you enjoyed our outdoor dining space. We've put in a lot of work to make it as comfortable as possible, even on chilly Carmel evenings. Chef loves to come out and check in with the guests enjoying his creativity, and he's always such a joy to speak with! We look forward to welcoming you back soon.
We had a very nice time. Excellent service outdoors, warm heaters. Very friendly and attentive staff. My only complaint was that the rib entre was a little tough.
Thank you for the wonderful review Steven. We're happy you enjoyed the service and our warm heaters! We hope to see you again soon.
The Rio Grill has been our "Go to " Restaurant for years. It is consistently very very good. The fish is fresh and the food is interesting without being weird. It's always been my favorite restaurant here on the peninsula. and I've lived here since Rio Grill opened..
Thank you, Valerie, for making us one of your favorite spots to visit on the peninsula! If you keep coming, we'll keep serving our creative fish dishes for your enjoyment. We look forward to seeing you again soon.
Nice quiet atmosphere. Food was really good. I ordered the chicken salad and my boyfriend the works burger. Waitress and host were friendly and professional. Eventhough it was Valentines..the host tried to accommodate walk ins. Would definitely recommend this place.
Had a very nice Valentines Day dinner date. Nice outdoor dining setting due to the pandemic but it was comfortable and the heater provided warmth. The service was excellent as well as the Valentines Day menu items which my date and I ordered. The wait staff was friendly and provided excellent service. The drinks appetizers and entrees were delicious and arrived in a timely fashion. I would recommend the Rio Grill to anyone.
Thank you for spending your Valentine's Day with us here at Rio! We appreciate the kind words about our new outdoor dining space, the warmth, food, and service. Please come back and enjoy them all again sometime soon!
In the age of masks and social distancing, Rio Grill does an amazing job in all categories!!
Outstanding food and service. Very professional and a totally positive and wonderful experience. Staff was very attentive. This is especially good amid considering this Covid mess. It was outdoor seating. We had a heat tower next to us and we were totally comfortable temperature wise. As it is outdoors and its winter time we did get a few rain drops on us but it would not have been an issue unless there was a cloud burst. We will DEFINITELY be back to this fine establishment to enjoy great food, drink and service.
We are locals and Rio Grill is one of our Carmel favorites. It is under new ownership, and has only improved with the energy of the new owners. For Covid, they have set up one of the better patio dining experiences in the area. Before Covid, we enjoyed lunch in the bar or in the dining room. This place is always full of locals which says something.
Hi Bob, Thank you for your 5 star review! We are thrilled you enjoyed our outdoor patio as we worked hard on it! Our locals have always taken care of us, and we constantly strive to do the same. Come back and see us soon. Gabe de la Vega, General Manager
Love the setup. Excellent customer service from the staff!
Hi Lex, Thank you for taking the time to review us. Customer service is our middle name! We are so glad you enjoyed your experience with us. See you again soon.
Ate outside on beautiful patio.
Outstanding music for entertainment.
We celebrated my husband’s 80th
He was extremely pleased.
Rio Grill is one of our very favorite restaurants and we’ve been coming here for years.
Rio Grill has done incredible job of "outdoor seating". Food excellent, service exemplary, such difficult times, handled with such expertise. We were delighted.
Great flavors. Great service. Will definitely go back
Great to be eating out. Staff went above and beyond normal service, as per usual for this place.
Service was a bit slow... our app took so long it was delivered with the entrees (prob a kitchen issue not necessarily server). Took 15-20 mins to get our check.
Making the best of outdoor dining with heaters and just very good food and service
Hi Tony, thank you for your 5 star review! We have done our best to adapt during these times and we are so thrilled you enjoyed your experience. Our patio awaits your next visit! -Gabe, General Manager
Well done outside dining at our favorite Carmel restaurant
We are honored to be your favorite restaurant in Carmel! Thank you. We look forward to seeing you again on our patio! -Gabe, General Manager
Always great. Service and food hard to beat.
Hi Steve, thank you so much for you 5 star review! We certainly appreciate your feedback and look forward to delivering another incredible experience for you soon. Come back and see us! -Gabe, General Manager
As always, our lunch at Rio was excellent. So sad that no more outdoor dining will be available for a while as it will be missed. Special thanks to Sparticus and Elbert for the outstanding service. I sincerely hope that the government will give assistance to this and other local businesses to keep them open and their employees working. I look forward to the time when we can again go to and enjoy the Rio Grill.
Hi Linda, Thank you for your 5 star review. We certainly miss being able to take care of our customers on our outdoor patio as well. I'm so glad to hear your visit was made special by Spartacus & Elbert! We can't wait to see you again. -Gabe de la Vega, General Manager
Food great as always - calamari and salmon BLT. Decadent desserts! Warm and friendly service. Dined outside on patio with overhead heaters keeping us comfortable. Almost forgot the blood orange margaritas. My fav!!!!
Can't forget our blood orange margaritas! (They're one of our favorites too). We wish we could serve you again on our patio, but until then we do offer take out every day! Thank you for your 5 star review. We look forward to seeing you soon. Gabe de la Vega, General Manager
Considering we had to dine outdoors everything went smoothly and was delicious with attentive service.
Hi William, I am glad to hear you had a pleasant experience with us on our outdoor patio. Thank you for your review, and we look forward to seeing you again soon! Gabe de la Vega, General Manager
Very nice patio--you don't feel you are sitting in the street. So sorry everyone has to close up--not fair!
Hi Peppy, Thank you for your review. We wanted to create an intimate setting on our patio, unlike any other. Though we are sad the patio is closed for now, we do offer take out every day from 11:30-7:30pm. Come back and see us soon! Gabe de la Vega, General Manager
We have been to the Rio Grill many times. It's the best restaurant on the Monterey Peninsula. We had lunch and the food, as usual, was excellent as was the service. There when we needed them but not hovering. Of course we ate outside but at least we weren't out on the street or in a parking lot. You can sometimes get a table for lunch without a reservation but you always need one for dinner. At dinner, if you need to you can get two heaters-one on a pole above you and one blowing warm air around your feet.
We always love dining at Rio Grill. The food is delicious, and the service was excellent.
Fantastic Southwestern cuisine as always. Rio has really done a great job crafting their outdoor dining area, well-spaced, plenty of heaters, very comfortable. So long as the County allows, we'll be back as often as we can.
Food and service were excellent. Becauseof health orders, we had to sit outside ad we froze!!!!!
Service was excellent. The food was great as usual. Went for lunch, so it wasn’t that cold and the heaters made it more than comfortable. Sat on the parking lot side, containered hedge plants separated us from the cars. The hot cider and bread pudding made the afternoon perfect.
Somewhat expensive, but understandable during Covid!
Great food and cocktails
Nice patio. Excellent social distancing. Friendly waiter. Music too loud
Everything was wonderful and the adherence to public health guidelines was impeccable. Britney was a great server.
Food is always great, large patio for outdoor dining.
The meal was great. Had to dine outdoors. They did a fine job. Good food, good ambiance. Fine place to dine.
Before or during pandemic, Rio Grill is always a great place to have dinner. We have been eating there for more than 20 years and food was as good as ever.
Rio Grill offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (831) 625-5436.
Rio Grill is rated 4.6 stars by 1624 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.