One of the best places I’ve been to recently, Corkscrew Cafe is out of the way, but worth the drive.
The place itself is almost like a small house, that was once used as a motel and even a beauty salon way back when CA was still run by Mexico. It’s very quaint and nice indoors, without being old-fashioned.
Service was good…we had a friendly waitress who was very nice, attentive and very friendly.
The great thing about this place is the fresh ingredients they get. Being in the middle of Carmel means they get all the locally grown produce and fresh fish from the sea. This all added up to an excellent meal.
Even the bread served at the start of the meal was good: the french bread (stone-hearth baked, which is the best kind) was toasted into a crouton-like crunchiness and served with humus…delicious.
I had a very good salad with a walnut vinaigrette and marinated chunks of fresh mozzerella cheese…what made it good was definitely the freshness and quality of the ingredients.
We had a calamari appetizer which was well-made…a lot of calamar is overly bready and oily, but this one had a light fried taste to it which was refreshing. My only complaint here was the garlic aioli sauce it came with was a bit too heavy.
As good as the other dishes were, the entrees excelled even more. A beef short rib was very good, but, even better, I had a seafood linguini with salmon, clams, mussels and shrimp in a tomato sauce that was magnificent. All the flavors just came together beautifully and you could taste the freshness of everything there…awesome.
Dessert was a minor let down, probably only because expectations were so high after the quality of every other course. A brownie with vanilla ice cream was very good and freshly-made, but I had an olallieberry pie which was a bit too tart for my liking. If it weren’t for this, I’d have given the meal five stars.
Best of all, the price: very reasonable for the quality of food you’re getting. You can defintely go to SF, spend twice the money and not get food this good. We spent about $50 a person for a whole bunch of food AND wine (including tax and tip), so a good deal overall.
If you’re willing to make the drive, or heading out to Carmel already, then I would definitely recommend dropping by.