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Dolphin Restaurant

$$ - $$$
American, Seafood, Soups, Bar, Pub
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71 Municipal Wharf, Suite A, Santa Cruz, CA 95060-5460
+1 831-426-5830
08:00 - 21:00
Open now
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Sun - Sat 08:00 - 21:00
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139 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 133: English reviews
Level Contributor
22 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 days ago NEW

We had a great day in Santa Cruz and took some time to visit the Wharf and had lunch at the Dolphin Restaurant. I had the crab cakes and I regretted it. I was disappointed at how greasy the crab cakes were and that they were made with backfin and claw meat, no lump crab. I know I'm spoiled by... More 

Thank Jeff R
Gjovik, Norway
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

We were travelling down the coast , and on our way to LA we stopped in Santa Cruz for a bite. We did like the pier so we went out there to grab some lunch. The weather was nice so we wanted to sit outside, the dummest decision that day. Everything was looking ok when sitting down at The Dolphin,... More 

1 Thank carinam827
Larry A, Management Team Member at Dolphin Restaurant, responded to this review

We sincerely wish you had asked to be seated inside the restaurant where you would have not been bothered by the birds. Sorry. More 

Fresno, California
Level Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

We had gone there for breakfast and I had the french toast which was very good and my wife had the crab omlette which was great! Fresh crab! Plus the waitress was a sweetheart. She took great care of us. We would go there again in a second! They were very inviting! :-)

Thank timhall28
Larry A, Management Team Member at Dolphin Restaurant, responded to this review

Our breakfast menu, staff and service are all the stuff of legends with locals in Santa Cruz. So glad you were able to enjoy the glories of all three. Next time you're in the area, come back again in, as you say, "a second". We sincerely look forward to that. More 

Wichita, Kansas
Level Contributor
18 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

So glad we kept walking to the end of the Pier to find the Dolphin. Outside seating available and the fish tacos hit the spot. Right outside the restaurant we were able to get great photos and see the sea lions sleeping and swimming below. Family friendly and wonderful service. Wish we lived closer so we could go back soon!

Thank Katie J
Larry A, Management Team Member at Dolphin Restaurant, responded to this review

Katie, Your 5 star review and everything you say about your Dolphin experience thrills us to no end. We also wish you lived closer so you could visit us more often. More 

Fresno, California
Level Contributor
126 reviews
65 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 April 2017

We decided to go for supper and the server Michael was excellent. Actually every one that came to our table to bring water or food was also pleasant and smiling. The clam chowder, oysters Rockefeller and Lobster Pasta were excellent. This was not a fancy restaurant, but it was worth the walk down to the end of the wharf.

Thank xtremern
Larry A, Management Team Member at Dolphin Restaurant, responded to this review

Let me start out by saying, our server Michael thanks you enthusiastically for your very complimentary comment about the service. We take great pride in that at the Dolphin. 5 Star Reviews are what we live for. Thank you so much for that, as well as for your glowing reviews of the food. More 

Level Contributor
68 reviews
50 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 April 2017

While the food was good, that all it was. I ordered the shrimp cocktail expecting it be be fantastic because of having the great access of seafood. It was a bit small with just average seasonings. I've had better in Las Vegas. The clam chowder was average at best. This is a busy place being right on the Santa Cruz... More 

Thank LaCoqui222
Larry A, Management Team Member at Dolphin Restaurant, responded to this review

We are very sorry we weren't able to make you happier. More 

Reedsport, Oregon
Level Contributor
22 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 April 2017

The food was really good and very reasonable. The fish and chips was only $9.95 and it was very good. The clam chowder was excellent and so was the shrimp cocktail. Would definitely go back.

Thank Linda G
Larry A, Managment Team Member at Dolphin Restaurant, responded to this review

Our take out window is a Santa Cruz institution that is revered by locals for the great service, food and awesome ocean view. So happy you were able to experience that, Linda. More 

Anchorage, Alaska
Level Contributor
90 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 March 2017

We both had Fish and Chips. The fish was snapper. The breading was nice and crispy but very bland, as was the tarter sauce. Since the fish itself has such a mild taste it was kind of boring. The fries were decent. The location is easy if you are walking the pier.

Thank nrretreat
Larry A, Management Team Member at Dolphin Restaurant, responded to this review

Thank you for taking the time to write this. Classic fish and chips, including the tartar sauce that comes with it, does tend to be on the mild side in terms of flavor, and that's so as to not mask the delicate taste of the fish. If you visit us again and would like to enjoy a snapper dish with... More 

Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
Reviewed 21 February 2017

My husband and I went for breakfast. The service was quick/friendly and the food was good. I ordered the crab cake breakfast and loved it. It was very much like eggs benedict but without the bread. I highly recommend checking this place out.

Thank warerhouseK
Larry A, Management Team Member at Dolphin Restaurant, responded to this review

We never tire of reading wonderful reviews like this one about our breakfasts. We are known as one of the best breakfast spots in Santa Cruz for our excellent breakfast food and out breathtaking ocean views at the end of the Wharf, and we keep reminding ourselves to make sure that never changes. Hope to see you again very soon. More 

Burbank, California
Level Contributor
232 reviews
116 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 February 2017

We meet our friend there on the pier and wonderful food, view and service. We would recommend this for dinner for sure. It is very casual and happen to hit it when it was nice and warm outside.

Thank CSS9112014
Larry A, Management Team Member at Dolphin Restaurant, responded to this review

You have literally made our day with this glowing review. Thank you so much and please visit us again often. It will always be our pleasure to serve you. More 

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Restaurant Details

Rating summary
  • Food
  • Value
American, Seafood, Soups, Bar, Pub
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Brunch
Restaurant features
Takeout, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol
Good for
Local cuisine, Kids, View, Child-friendly
Open Hours
08:00 - 21:00
08:00 - 21:00
08:00 - 21:00
08:00 - 21:00
08:00 - 21:00
08:00 - 21:00
08:00 - 21:00
Location and Contact Information
  • Address: 71 Municipal Wharf, Suite A, Santa Cruz, CA 95060-5460
  • Location: United States  >  California (CA)  >  Santa Cruz
  • Phone Number: +1 831-426-5830
At Dolphin Restaurant, we have something for everyone. Join us in our dining room for our favorites including everything from an eclectic breakfast menu to our traditional fish & chips. Or if you prefer, dine outdoors on the only outdoor patio on the Wharf. Our walk-up to-go window always has both visitors and locals lining up for our great seafood, clam chowder bread bowls, and a selection of American classics, like burgers and fries.

We are also proud to announce that we now have an in-house smoker, serving some of the best quality BBQ. Our mouth-watering pulled pork, baby back ribs, brisket, and other smoked delicacies.

Dolphin Restaurant has delicious options for everyone including the kiddos, so come visit the beautiful Wharf and enjoy a bite to eat at the Dolphin!

Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Dolphin Restaurant and other visitors
1 question
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Questions? Get answers from Dolphin Restaurant staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?