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“Pleasant surprise.”
Review of Il Giardino Romano

Il Giardino Romano
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Ranked #609 of 1,705 Restaurants in Geneva
Price range: US$33 - US$111
Cuisines: Italian, Pizza, Bar
Dining options: After-hours, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: After-hours, Reservations
Burlington, Vermont
Level 6 Contributor
288 reviews
164 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 168 helpful votes
“Pleasant surprise.”
Reviewed 16 June 2012

This wasn't quite the short walk from downtown we were expecting and the area gets a little sketchy with roadworks, graffiti and less than welcoming high-rises.  But we were pleased we didn't turn back as the staff were very welcoming and even the owner helped out and advised on wine by the glass and a little translation assistance with my pathetic French.
We were clearly the only tourists but don't let that put you off. The locals were a selection  - professionals in suits to teenagers out on a first date.
Quality of food was very good but not haute cuisine for the foodies. (e.g. the risotto was slightly undercooked and lacked an  intensity of flavors and a simple margarita pizza was a little too simple - never found any basil; just sauce and cheese but on a perfect crust.) Didn't have dessert but the cappuccinos were perfect.
I gave it five stars based on the total experience with ambience, friendliness and pretty good food & wine. I would certainly visit again.

  • Visited June 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank TourMD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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93 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Geneva
Level 5 Contributor
97 reviews
75 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 64 helpful votes
“Very nice family restaurant”
Reviewed 9 June 2012

Very nice, middle rank Italian (i.e. not great Italian food but not just a pizzeria/spaghetti bolognaise place - so common in Geneva). Presentation of the dishes was great, unfortunately everything was a bit bland and underwhelming. The restaurant itself is very attractive, great terrace, service was extremely slow - though the restaurant was packed out, so maybe the waiters were overworked.

  • Visited June 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Ritchissimo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vevey, Switzerland
Level 6 Contributor
136 reviews
63 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 67 helpful votes
“Great Italian food and nice people”
Reviewed 4 May 2012

Looking for a nice "upscale" Italian food treatment? Definitely this is the place ! I truly enjoy the atmosphere here. Food is good and tasty, with a good choice (for vegetarian as well) and a nice wine list. During the truffle season, don't miss the pizza with fresh white truffles...a MUST !!!

  • Visited April 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank REGR_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
geneva
Level 4 Contributor
37 reviews
28 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“TOP FOOD”
Reviewed 28 March 2012

This is probably the best food you can get in Geneva at almost half the price than anywhere else. I am surprised by the flexibility of the offer: you can have a very good pizza or other sophisticated italian dishes. I will get back soon

  • Visited March 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank maxGeneva
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Donneloye, Switzerland
Level 5 Contributor
66 reviews
41 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
“They don't come much better than this...”
Reviewed 11 January 2012

I've almost eaten more times in the Giardino than I've had hot dinners, so I'm fairly confident in what I'm writing. I've been frequenting this place for ten years now, and its standards are as high as ever.

As the manager Stefano admits, there is no such thing as an Italian restaurant outside Italy, and the Giardino is no exception. But it comes pretty close.

One of the big advantages here is the car park right underneath the restaurant, a big plus in Geneva, especially when it's raining. The decor is original and pleasant - my only regret is that it's in a modern soul-less block. The staff are grizzled to young Italians, quite professional and pleasant.

The menu changes from time to time but there are always sections for: primi, pasta and risotti, secondi and pizze. There is always a separate sheet with more temporary suggestions, and including the highly poular truffled dishes. The primi are delicious and light - try the carpaccio di polpo, paper-thin slices of octopus sausage; or if your appetite is jaded, take the green salad with bufala and tomatoes.

The truffled pasta and risotto are wonderful - Stefano comes round with a white glove (apparently some idiot complained about hygiene once) and a large black or white truffle (according to the season) in one hand and a slicer in the other. He then grates generous amounts of the precious tuber over your plate, until the aroma fills the area, including the next tables.

The main courses are as good as any in Geneva: the fish is always cooked to perfection, and the meat impeccable. One of the reasons may be that Stefano works in the kitchen when short-staffed there, so he knows exactly what's going on and how things should be. Well, that's a manager's role, you might say, but the establishments who do not appear to be aware of this are legion.

The pizzas are also some of the best I have ever had - the crust thin and crispy, and the toppings original. Try the one with truffles!

All in all perhaps my favourite restaurant in Geneva, and if I had to choose one establishment where I had to eat for the rest of my life, I think the Giardino would come top of the list.

  • Visited January 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
3 Thank nickmichael
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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