Thanks to all of you who offered suggestions for my small (10 person) "reception." I appreciate all your input. My FI and I were in Cabo last week. In addition to the quality of the food and ambiance, we also need a place that will allow us to bring wine and cake from the outside. I jotted down some thoughts on the restaurants we tried. I hope it helps some of you in the future.
La Panga Antigua
We loved the food and the ambiance here! This is probably the winner for our dinner. The food was great and the service was impeccable. The restaurant has a private room that would easily fit our guests and could probably fit up to 20, but we actually liked some of the other areas in the restaurant. The restaurant is terraced and has three or four levels (depending on how you count the levels), plus a bar on the fourth/fifth level. The style is stylish colonial/Mexican. The tables are surrounded by plants and fountains and lit by candles. We even noticed that the restaurant had a dehumidifier. (My hair sure needed it). The manager told us that we could bring a cake from the outside and that there would be no supplemental fee. Also, the corkage fee is $15.
French Riviera Restaurant and Bakery
We really enjoyed the food and service here. This is actually one of the top contenders for our rehearsal dinner. Although the portions were a bit small, the food was superb and the ambiance was romantic, but not stuffy. We are still trying to work out the details with the restaurant’s sales office, the corkage fee is a bit stiff ($25 compared to everyone else who has told us $15). The only draw back, which is minor, is that the restaurant appears to be in a strip mall. Also there’s some construction that detracts from the view, but this won’t be a problem if you’re dining after sunset. We are probably going to get our cake from the Bakery. The cake is $6.50 per person. I will be posting something about the cake in the cake forum.
Mi Cocina at Casa Natalia
The food was good, but the service and attitude lost us. Sorry guys, I know several of you are big fans of this place, but we were unimpressed. We ate dinner there last Wednesday. While at dinner, we decided to ask about a possible wedding “reception,” corkage fee and bringing in an outside cake. We spoke with the manager who indicated that the corkage fee would be $40 per bottle and that absolutely no cake could be brought from the outside because the restaurant had several delicious cake options. We must have looked disappointed about the corkage fee because the Manager then told us that it wouldn’t be worth it for us to bring $12 bottles of wine. I was taken aback by the comment but it wasn’t worth trying to explain our circumstances. We ordered dinner including a couple of glasses of red wine. (I was sick so we didn’t want to order an entire bottle). Anyway, when we got the wine, it was chilled. I don’t know much about red wine, but I do know that it is not suppose to be chilled. So we sent it back. We got our food promptly and it was good, but I was really looking forward to dessert after hearing the manager exalt the cake. Unfortunately, we didn’t get the chance to try it. After waiting for about 20 minutes and having our waiter successful dodge us, we finally managed to flag someone down. We got our check and left shortly thereafter. After all that it just didn’t seem to be worth the trouble. My FI also did not like the ambiance. He said that he felt as if it could have been a place back in LA and just didn’t feel as if we were in “Cabo.”
We liked this place a lot. We found out the restaurant is owned by the same company that owns la Panga Antigua. The dÃ©cor is similar to la Panga with plants, fountains, a fireplace and candle light. There are lots of areas to have a private dinner. The manager was really nice. Corkage was $15 per bottle and we could bring an outside cake for $15. If things don’t work out with the French Rivera we’ll probably go with this restaurant. Although the food was good here, La Panga is still better.
We had lunch here. Nice ocean views and good atmosphere. We liked the food, but the menu was a little small. The menu was very surf and turf and wouldn’t work for a couple of our guests who are vegetarians. Also during lunch we noticed that it was a little loud because it is so close to the highway (this probably wouldn’t be a problem at night).
Sunset Da Mona Lisa
Great ocean views and ambiance. The service was pretty good too. But, we didn’t think the menu was too extensive. Also my entrÃ©e was better than my FI’s. I would definitely go back (preferably before the sunset), but we don’t think it is right for our dinner.
Morgan’s Encore Restaurant
We did not have a chance to eat here, but the restaurant looked charming and had a private terrace that would accommodate a group of 10 to 16 persons. There manager was very nice and appeared will to work with us to on what we needed. Outside cake could be brought in and $15 corkage fee. .
Casa Rafael's Restaurant
We did not eat here. This place wasn’t right for us. It was a bit loud when we were there and it did not have any private areas. The ambiance is similar to Panchos and Mi Casa (very festive, but a bit loud for our small group).
We did not eat here. The ambiance was chic mexican. There was a nice wine cellar room that would accommodate our group. The entrees are expensive and we ended up not having time to eat there, so it got cut. Looks interesting. Maybe next time.