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Cafe Rio Aptos

$$ - $$$
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131 Esplanade, Aptos, CA 95003-4501
+1 831-688-8917
15:00 - 21:00
Closed now
See all hours
Sun - Sat 15:00 - 21:00
Fri - Sat 15:00 - 21:30
More Info
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101 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveller rating
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Time of year
Showing 100: English reviews
Huntington Beach, California
Level Contributor
410 reviews
269 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 172 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 November 2016

We went here for a special birthday dinner with 7 people. Our server wasn't attentive and we had to flag her down several times. Two of us were surprised how small the swordfish portions were- more like a lunch size. Salads or soup were ala carte. Evidently the sand dabs are good but we weren't impressed with the food nor... More 

Thank Loves2TravelALOT_11
Watsonville, California
Level Contributor
316 reviews
198 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 95 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 November 2016

The food is very good here. Nice choice of appetizers , salads & entrees. Beet & Goat cheese salad with pecans is wonderful. A bit costly ($16) but easy to split as it is big. I had salmon & ahi poke ( appetizer) for my entree. Delicious! Sand Dabs always well done here. Fish special was Opah with orange -... More 

Thank Kerryloves2travel
Level Contributor
75 reviews
51 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 October 2016

Margaritas were perfect. Loved the hummus appetizer and grilled artichoke. Ocean just across the street. They also have a dinner happy hour on the patio. Full dinner and glass of wine for 10$

Thank ScottsdaleSchnoodle
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 September 2016

We had an amazingly good meal here this weekend - went with group of friends and all of us were very pleased. 3 of us got the sand dabs and the portions were very generous and the gorgonzola polenta was outstanding! Would definitely recommend! The patio right across from the Rio del Mar beach is very comfy and heated and... More 

Thank Maggie N
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 September 2016 via mobile

We had a wonderful time on the patio and with great service. Definitely recommend to others! Great atmosphere.

Thank Anne F
Sacramento, California
Level Contributor
36 reviews
23 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 August 2016

I enjoyed a few meals here this week while visiting Aptos. The first time I stopped in I was solo and just returning from a long hike. I sat in the nice outdoor patio and enjoyed a delicious Margarita and an order of raw oysters which were fresh and delicious. On Sunday evening I returned with a large group of... More 

Thank Patriziadalucca
Level Contributor
12 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 August 2016

I have been eating at Cafe Rio for over 10 years and they never disappoint. You can always count on an excellent meal in a great location.

Thank Delrae J
Fremont, California
Level Contributor
3 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 August 2016

The wild caught swordfish was melt -in -your mouth and the couscous side dish, asparagus and sauces were equally delicious. Our server, John, was attentive, fun and informative. My only criticism: The local,lavender infused gin was tasty but I would recommend offering a choice of tonic water since whatever the bar was using that night was flat. Bad to mediocre... More 

Thank woodzy216
Level Contributor
76 reviews
45 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 August 2016 via mobile

Good service but the pizza lags in taste. Location is pretty good. Go for a snack and sit a little bit outside.

Thank 79j_rgw
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
129 reviews
84 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 August 2016 via mobile

Nice soup - non cream based. Sand dabs were fresh, but the skin on the backs was too mushy. Either should be crispy or just removed completely before prep. Food is ok but with a little bit more effort it could be so much better. Place was quiet, so atmospheric a Sunday night wasn't that great. Assume most folks had... More 

Thank tahirs

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Restaurant Details

Rating summary
  • Food
    4 of 5 bubbles
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Average prices
US$9 - US$32
American, Bar, Seafood
Lunch, Dinner, After-hours
Restaurant features
Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Television
Good for
Child-friendly, Groups, Bar Scene
Open Hours
15:00 - 21:00
15:00 - 21:00
15:00 - 21:00
15:00 - 21:00
15:00 - 21:00
15:00 - 21:00
15:00 - 21:30
15:00 - 21:00
15:00 - 21:30
Location and Contact Information
  • Address: 131 Esplanade, Aptos, CA 95003-4501
  • Location: United States  >  California (CA)  >  Aptos
  • Phone Number: +1 831-688-8917
Local Favorite! Amazing views of the Monterey Bay, this restaurant has food for everyone...including Gluten Free Pastas, Steaks, Fresh Seafood, House made Desserts. You can also bring your tail wagging friend because the spacious heated patio is Dog friendly.

Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Cafe Rio Aptos and other visitors
1 question
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26 days ago

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Questions? Get answers from Cafe Rio Aptos 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?