Five Unforgettable Dining Experiences in Monterey County

It’s Friday and I’m sure we all need a little vacation right about now! If you live in the Bay Area, Monterey County is a close spot that is perfect for a weekend getaway, and if you don’t live so close, it is definitely a place worth visiting. The dining scene is one of the best in the state, as many restaurants have breathtaking views and quaint atmospheres. I have been to Monterey, Carmel and Big Sur a number of times, and today I am partnering with See Monterey to tell you about my favorite places to wine and dine in Monterey County! After seeing some of these jaw-dropping dining scenes, you may just be ready to pack your bags and head to Monterey for the weekend 😉 

1) Nepenthe, Big Sur


© Nepenthe

Nepenthe is a tucked-away restaurant in Big Sur that is our favorite must-stop place when we visit Big Sur, or are driving down HWY 1. The views alone are enough to make you linger for hours, but they also offer delicious meals and a variety of drinks. I love to sit along the long bench pictured above with a glass of wine and soak up the sun and take in the breathtaking view of the Pacific Ocean.

2) Anton and Michele, Carmel

Anton and Michele

© Anton and Michele

A favorite spot of mine in Carmel (Carmel-by-the-Sea), Anton and Michele, caught my attention while strolling down the touristy streets of Carmel and peaking inside to see a cozy fire place and outdoor patio with garden and pool views from the tables. I was even more satisfied when I experienced the 5-star meals we had when we ate there. Whether you are looking for a cozy lounge to enjoy a drink by the fireplace after a long day of sight-seeing, or a romantic dinner by the garden/pool on the outside patio, you can’t go wrong with Anton and Michele!

3) Beach House, Monterey

Beach House Monterey

© Beach House

Ideally located at Lover’s Point in Monterey, the Beach House Restaurant and Bar offers incredible views and a beach right outside. The theme of this restaurant is “casual California dining,” so you can enjoy traditional California cuisine while overlooking the Monterey Bay. The Beach House is a perfect romantic dining destination, as well as a great place to enjoy beautiful views with family or friends.

4) The C Restaurant and Bar, Monterey

C Restaurant

© C Restaurant

My favorite thing about The C restaurant in Monterey is the cozy outdoor lounge on the dock, which includes heat lamps and nice lighting. It is located on Cannery Row, a popular tourist spot in Monterey. Inside, the restaurant has tables lined up against large windows overlooking the water. During an evening stroll on the boardwalk, stop by for a drink or dinner.

5) Tarpy’s Roadhouse, Monterey

Tarpy's Roadhouse

© Tarpy’s Roadhouse

If you are looking for a quiet garden-like setting to spend your lunch or dinner away from the tourist spots of Monterey, then Tarpy’s Roadhouse is the place for you. Both inside and outside offer peaceful garden views while you enjoy American comfort food.

There are many relaxing spots to wine and dine in Monterey County. For more ideas, check out the See Monterey website. Have you been to Monterey County? I would love to hear your favorite spots, too!


See Monterey will be giving away (1) complete trip package, including 2 nights at Monterey Tides, 2 tickets to the Monterey Bay Aquarium, and a wine blending at Joullian Vineyards (uhhhh amazing!!). Comment below on why you are excited to visit Monterey County for your chance to enter to win! A random winner will be chosen by See Monterey on or after October 17, 2016. Good luck!!



  1. Dori says:

    We just checked out of a place in another state that called us at 11:30 pm to ask when we were leaving! Monterey would be a great place to recuperate from that and several restaurants welcome dogs. An ideal quick get away – far enough for a mini vacation but close enough to get there in a few hours.

  2. Hayley Schermerhorn says:

    I would love to visit Monterey for a weekend getaway/ anniversary trip with my husband! Going out for dinner and wine tasting sound amazing by the ocean!

  3. Candice M says:

    That sounds like it would be an amazing vacation. I have never been to Monterey and this post makes it sound so incredible.

  4. theresa j says:

    Way back when I was a wee young lass I spent a year in Fort Ord and I remember weekend trips to Monterey, Salinas and Carmel. I remember the aquarium the best with the huge whale hanging from the ceiling. It was the first time I saw just how large animals in the ocean were. I would love to go back and see all the beauty that Monterey has to offer.

  5. Monica M says:

    I’ve been to California several times but never to Monterey and we’d love to see it. My husband’s also a chef so he definitely likes trying new restaurants and new foods.

  6. Ethan says:

    On a road trip through California we made a stop for lunch in Monterey but never got a chance to see really any of the sghts. I have always wanted to return and spend a weekend enjoying the beauty and food

  7. Kathryn Louise says:

    I’ve been to California several times but never to Monterey, being unemployed who knows when I will get there

  8. Jennifer H. says:

    Monterey is gorgeous! There are so many fun things to do and see. I would be really excited about the fresh seafood and local wine.

  9. Victoria Zingale says:

    I just turned 21 and there are so many options to try good wine! And I love Monterey! It is my favorite place to go! I love the aquarium.

  10. Amy Walter says:

    I spent my 38th birthday in Monterey, and I have been planning my next trip there since my plane landed. Regardless if I win or not I plan on visiting my favorite place on earth very soon.
    Good luck to all who have entered!

  11. Katy says:

    Wow! What an amazing recap and giveaway! I visited Monterey last year on a girls’ trip and would love to take my daughter and husband back to the county I fell in love with! I know they would love the Aquarium, food and people as much as I did!

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