We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“It could have been a wonderful experience but came up short.”

Marisol at the Cliffs
Reserve with OpenTable
Marisol at the Cliffs is not available for your requested time. Choose another time, or search restaurants with availability.
The time you selected has already passed.
Ranked #20 of 109 Restaurants in Pismo Beach
Price range: US$25 - US$40
Cuisines: American, Contemporary, Bar
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, After-hours, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Cross street: Spy Glass
Transit: The bus stops right in front of the cliffs or down the street at spy glass.
Description: "Marisol" translates to "The Sun and the Sea" and no where is this more evident than through the flavors of the food. The menu at "Marisol" has been developed as New American Cuisine. As the premier choice of Pismo Beach restaurants, all of the dishes at "Marisol" are prepared with a soulful touch by Chef de Cuisine Victor Flores, featuring produce from fields of local farmers, seafood fresh off the boats of local fishermen, and naturally raised meats and poultry. The wine list for "Marisol" is awarded by Wine Spectator and has an amazing wines by the glass page with many local wines from Monterey to Santa Barbara County. For the finest oceanfront dining experience, try our award-winning Pismo Beach California restaurant "Marisol at the Cliffs".
Reviewed 1 May 2014

The View: This resort is located right on the water and is known for its great ocean views. The view this night, however, was not great as they had a large tent set up between the restaurant and the ocean. The ocean view we had seen in the ads was blocked by a huge circus size tent which had been erected for a special event the next day (probably a wedding). We heard a number of people in the restaurant complaining about the lack of an ocean view. One group of eight, in particular, had reserved a particular table for a special occasion and were quite unhappy with the canvas view and complained to no avail.
The Meal: Our meal began with appetizers, cauliflower soup with chips, and a rocket pear salad (arugula, pears, candied pecans, blue cheese crumbles). The soup was an interesting blend of flavors and the salad was fresh. For my entrée, I picked the eastern scallops with blood orange salsa The scallops were not particularly fresh and were bland and chewy. My sweetheart had the salmon and potato layered entrée which was tasty and fresh.
The Bottom Line: It was a Friday night with a good musician strumming a variety of pop and jazz tunes as an offset to the canvas view. Service was excellent. I would certainly want to check with the restaurant about possible upcoming events before committing to a dinner reservation. It was less than delightful. I should have taken a photo but didn't.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank mrmikeSantaCruz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cliffs_resort, Manager at Marisol at the Cliffs, responded to this reviewResponded 7 June 2014

Thank you for taking the time to review your visit to Marisol. We love guest feedback and use your comments to address both the menu and our service. I'm sorry you were unable to enjoy the view from the dining room, we have tents up during the spring and summer occasionally for weddings or large events. We know about them in advance so if you plan to come back please feel free to give us a call and we can advise what we have planned for the week! Thank you again for your comments on the food, music and service!

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a ReviewReviews (283)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language

174 - 178 of 283 reviews

Reviewed 22 April 2014

Wonderful food, stiff drinks and great service. The cliffs is amazing place to bring a date and WOW them. Check out the sunday brunch it is to die for.

Thank Paul B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cliffs_resort, Manager at Marisol at the Cliffs, responded to this reviewResponded 23 April 2014

Paul, thanks for letting us know that we truly impressed you and your date! Our staff really aims to make you comfortable to let you relax and enjoy the ambiance, and the Sunday Brunch is a fantastic way to sample everything we have to offer alongside some mimosas and an oceanfront view.

We look forward to seeing you both back again!

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 March 2014

Everyone in the Restaurant greeted us when we came in. Our waiter was happy to go over the menu explaining different dishes with us. We ordered several different things and then we shared bites with each other. Everything we order was very good. We were enjoying our dinner when Amanda Phillips the shift Manager stopped by our table to check and see if we were happy with our food, and enjoying our time at the Resort. She was very courteous and checked on us several times while we were there. Everyone there was friendly and the food was great.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Sherry M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cliffs_resort, Manager at Marisol at the Cliffs, responded to this reviewResponded 23 April 2014

Sherry, I am so happy to hear that all points of service had a chance to shine when you dined with us recently! We try our best to combine a great menu with personalized service, and it's great to hear that you had a chance to meet Amanda so she could make sure your experience was going well. We certainly hope to see you with us again soon, and thank you for telling us about your meal!

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 March 2014

Everyone in our group agreed that this was a memorable dinner - the food, the ambiance, the service and meeting the chef, definitely a 5 star experience.

I have been to the lounge/bar side of the Marisol a few times in the past to meet up with friends for wine on the patio at sunset, but this was my first experience in their dining room. I was with a large group and we arrived just in time to catch the vibrant sunset that evening. The lighting in their dining room compliments the sunset view so perfectly. It seemed as if there was a beautiful glowing hue around our table (with a scenic view of the ocean out the big window). Very lovely ambiance.

Our server, Marina, was also very attentive, friendly and she did a great job keeping up to pace with clearing off dishes and keeping things coming in a timely manner.

The highlight of the evening for me was getting to meet the Chef, Gregg Wangard. I had heard a lot about him before so it was a treat to meet him that night. We got to ask him questions and he talked to us about all the different ingredients used in the dishes we were eating, where they came from, why he chose them and how he prepared the various dishes. He is very personable and so passionate about local/sustainable food. And clearly, he is good at what he does! I really admire how he takes the time to come out of the kitchen (when he's not swamped) to connect with the people who are there to enjoy his food!

I started with mushroom soup. I was apprehensive, because I have never cared for bland old mushroom soup before, but this was unlike anything I have ever tasted! It had a wonderful rich-earthy mushroom flavor and he told us about how he thickened it with mascarpone cheese and bread instead of cream. Oh my gosh, so good! He pours a little truffle oil on top, which gives it an extra melt-in-your-mouth yumminess in every spoonful. I clearly enjoyed the mushroom soup and hope to go back and get it again!

I also had an arugula salad with poached pears, yellow beets, caramelized pecans, blue cheese crumbles with a thyme vinaigrette dressing. I have had this same type of salad 100 times over but this one really stood out. Let me just say, if they start bottling and selling that thyme vinaigrette dressing, I would buy a case!! Also, I am usually not a fan of the stinky cheeses, but Chef Gregg is clearly a cheese connoisseur (naturally, the guy is from Wisconsin). This blue cheese was so creamy and didn't have the typical hearty stink that turns me off. Instead it had a really delicate flavor that nicely complimented the cinnamon spice of the juicy poached pears and the crunchy sweet pecans and the peppery arugula, instead of overpowering the salad. Again, another great dish!

Finally, there was the salmon dish, a perfect marriage of textures and flavors. Farm raised salmon with a crust of thin sliced potatoes on top, served over rice infused with lemon. In one bite, you get the crunch of the potato crust mixed with the juicy, buttery fish, followed by the pop of lemon in the rice. There was also a balsamic glaze on the plate to dip into, which gave an extra zing to the overall bite.

Yum. Seconds please!

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank SLORosemary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 February 2014

As a kid, I was a bit of an arrogant turd. I found it easy and pleasurable to make fun of people who talked to their pets with a funny voice. Of course, with perfect karma, I then grew up to be one of those blubbering people.

Now, as an adult, I must admit I’ve heard myself (in my sometimes noisy mind) making fun of the “foodies” – people who claimed and behaved, in my view, with excess enthusiasm for the culinary experience. So, when my wife dragged me (with loving exuberance) to a wine and food experience at Marisol, I was not expecting much. In fact, I’d get new ammo to with which to undermine kind, food-loving folk.

First, here’s the end of the story: My ignorance was magnificently highlighted by an extraordinary food experience. I now stand humbled, well fed and, yes, transformed.

Here’s how I got to that surprising end…

I entered Marisol as sunset was beginning. As I strolled in, I found myself inside a Church of Food and Beverage. The late afternoon light was relentless as it bathed us through the giant, ocean-facing windows. The stained glass kept increasing in intensity. I was having an out-of-drug experience…and I hadn’t even sat down.

After being graciously greeted and then seated, I was immediately presented with a most unusual drink – a whiskey that had the dry, smooth smoke-filled liquid running through it. It was new to my palate…and stunning. Who knew one could take slow, deep drinks of smoky, liquid air. It didn’t even make sense. I was beginning to awaken.

As I listened to our teacher and guide - the passionately joyful, Teri Bayus, dish out culinary knowledge, another delicacy, Foie Gras, was placed before me. A splash of Spanish sherry came with it. I had a conflagration in my mouth. I now have intimate knowledge of how fire reacts when gas is poured on it. My transformation into a foodie was accelerating.

Other highlight and takeaways from my birth of a foodie evening…

-LIFE AS A WOMAN? I more deeply understand the meaning of “awakening my senses.” I think I may have more insight into how a sensuous woman experiences life. Lucky me!

-An HONORABLE AFFAIR: I learned a well-designed food and beverage can be like having sensuous and satisfying affair with an exotic and gorgeous woman (her name would be Marisol, of course!) And the best part? I can thoroughly enjoy the affair with my wife. Gosh, this is sounding odd! Well, no one ever said rebirth was clean and orderly.

-GETTING PRESENT: The experience at Marisol showed me there is a new universe in every bite. Especially if that bite is paired with a perfectly mated beverage. When PRESENT, the past is dead and the future is an eternity away. No therapy or meditation required. Just brilliantly conceived and prepared food and beverage.

My experience at Marisol was one of the better deaths of my life.

Zazz Daniel

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank ZazzDaniel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers who viewed Marisol at the Cliffs also viewed

Pismo Beach, San Luis Obispo County
Pismo Beach, San Luis Obispo County
 
Pismo Beach, San Luis Obispo County
Pismo Beach, San Luis Obispo County
 

Been to Marisol at the Cliffs? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing