Tribes: Who likes this place?
What the scores mean:
These scores tell you how well-liked a place is in each Tribe. Gogobot Tribes are groups who share a certain travel style, like Family Travelers or History Buffs.
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- 98%Outdoor Enthusiasts
- 89%Family Travelers
- 87%Luxury Travelers
- 70%Local Culture
- 68%Adventure Travelers
Member Reviews (29)
- NepentheMember ofOutdoor EnthusiastsBusiness TravelersGreen Travelers+ 1Feb 09, 2014
I can only say this once, and would under any other circumstance hesitate to do so, but this restaurant is situated in THE MOST BEAUTIFUL SETTING IN THE WORLD. Situated on a high escarpment over the Pacific Ocean in the heart of Big Sur, Nepenthe is more of a dream than a dining experience. The food is good. I won't wax on about that because it's a little on the expensive side and frankly, I'm satisfied with the very filling $13 burger. And I'd be lying if I said I came here for the food. This is a place you come to simply be there - and happen to have a meal while your out at it.
Are you looking for a good spot for a romantic occasion? I never talk about or even mention the word romance, but this place is romantic with a capital R. I've been here about a dozen times and always just with a platonic friend, but I'd characterize each of these visits as romantic. You can't escape it. The endless expanse of the mighty Pacific. The towering slopes of Big Sur, unfolding down the coast. Vivid Greens. Deep Blues - all framed in handcrafted wood architecture complimented with roaring open fire pits. The business is family run and you're not likely to ever forget your experience here. HINT: Arrive an hour or more before sunset and stay for one nature's greatest light shows.
- NepentheMember ofOutdoor EnthusiastsLocal CultureBudget Travelers+ 8Jul 05, 2012
Favorite restaurant in Big Sur. Unbelievable view and great setting. You can sit outside and overlook the coast while you eat. Great menu with some creative dishes as well. We'll keep going back.
- NepentheMember ofOutdoor EnthusiastsLocal CultureBusiness Travelers+ 1Sep 27, 2012
The Nepenthe restaurant is worth the drive from Monterey. I'd take the hour or so drive to get the Nepenthe Burger and sit on the patio watching the jays pick the acorns off the trees.
- NepentheMember ofOutdoor EnthusiastsLocal CultureFoodies+ 2Sep 11, 2012
You just can't beat their view!
The owners of Nepenthe know that fact, and are planning on mining it until the well goes dry (i.e. when your wallet runs out of cash). Their famous ambrosia burger is a rich man's version of an In-N-Out burger, complete with their own "secret sauce" which they call ambrosia sauce, better bread (french steak rolls vs. hamburger bun) and thicker, juicier meat. Of course, this rich man's version also costs roughly FIVE TIMES as much (six if you want to add cheese!) as the In-N-Out version.
Even though you're paying roughly $14-16 for your burger/sandwich, don't expect it to come with fries. You can order their basket of fries for $7.50, which is definitely good enough to share for a table of four. We also had the tuna salad sandwich, which was delicious, although nothing out of the ordinary.
Despite the exaggerated prices, Nepenthe totally would have deserved 4 stars if it weren't for the service. I called a couple weeks ahead to make a reservation for a party of 7 celebrating an important birthday. The person answering had assured me that the experience would be memorable. However, upon arrival, I realized we didn't get the best seat in the house; instead we were stuck staring at a bright orange fire house, which completely stood out in our pictures. And we were one of the first customers to arrive when they opened at 11:30am, so there really was no excuse. Luckily, after lunch, we were able to take better pictures from their viewing balcony.
If you're in the area, I would still recommend checking this place out, but just remember that it is more for the location than the food. Enjoy!