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“Mellow and pleasant Italian restaurant in State College”
Review of Mario & Luigi's - CLOSED

Mario & Luigi's
Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Groups
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations
Reviewed 12 June 2013

Maybe I should start with a point of nomenclature: this fine Italian restaurant on the northern outskirts of State College, Pennsylvania, was called Mario & Luigi's when we moved to State College seven years ago, but now it is simply called Mario's. Luigi has left the building, quite literally. I don't know why.

But whatever the restaurant's name, it provides good Italian food in a pleasant and stylish setting at reasonable prices. The décor -- white walls, white tablecloths, pictures and engravings from Italy -- is suitable and atmospheric. The servers, many of whom are students at nearby Penn State University, are energetic, conscientious, and cheerful. (The restaurant is far enough away from Penn State that, aside from the servers, there is not much of a collegiate atmosphere to the place.) The menu includes a list of seasonal specialties, but I find that I usually go to a selection of familiar favorites, such as the rotisserie half chicken (the house specialty), the veal parmigiana, and the scallops al Mario. Good Italian wines like pinot grigio and chianti classico are available by the glass. The desserts are very fine; I particularly like the cheesecake. Mario's is a very fine place to go with friends, or to enjoy a leisurely dinner before seeing a show at Eisenhower Auditorium.

Mind you, I still don't know whatever happened to Luigi. I also don't know if the original name had to do with Mario and Luigi being the names of characters in the old Donkey Kong video game, or if some other cultural referent is responsible. But whatever the reason for Luigi's departure, Mario is doing just fine without him. Mario's is a good and well-run Italian restaurant that gives you your money's worth and provides for a pleasant evening out.

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1  Thank GettysburgPaul
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviews (120)
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70 - 74 of 120 reviews

Reviewed 11 June 2013

Last night we dined at Mario's for the first time...and were satisfied overall for what we'd expect in State College.
The menu is definitely on the pricier side - we spent over $100 pre-tip with a bottle of Italian wine on our meal for two.
Salad was good but our shared appetizer - a buffalo mozzarella mini-pizza - was undercooked and lukewarm with the cheese not completely melted. My husband's veal dish had too much sauce on it My sea bass order (a special that evening - and as per another reviewer I was told initially they were out of but someone they did manage to find one last order for me!) was very good.
Service was a bit sketchy as our waitress had a trainee - he wasn't sure what type of cheese he had in his hand that he was offering to grate onto our meals for us and did not offer fresh ground pepper that I saw other patrons receiving, so I had to ask for it.
The ambience took a downturn when we headed to the restrooms and had to skirt the 8 or so buckets strategically placed throughout one area to catch the rain dripping into the dining room as we had a thunderstorm going on. (I can't remember ever eating at a restaurant that had this going on; if the management reads this - please fix your roof!!!)
Overall a satisfactory dining experience (probably one of the best you'll get in State College!!), but not sure how soon we'll return. Most definitely not if it's raining as the rain catching buckets really do detract from the dining experience... ;-))

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Thank cfuter1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 June 2013

The menu was extensive and had offerings at every price range. However, we ordered a limited special for wild salmon that was much pricier than anything else. It was well-prepared and delicious. The waiter was very friendly and helpful.

Thank Weena
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 June 2013

Quite good Italian food in a pleasant atmosphere. A draught beer arrived flat but waiter cheerfully exchanged. Fresh bread was tasty. Pizze was a bit dry.

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Thank DrElTiger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 May 2013

This is one of our favorite restarants in State College. The service is excellent, the menu offers a variety of Italian American cuisine. They have a wood oven (always a plus) and the pizza is as near to Italy as you can get. Buon appetito!

Thank BL H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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