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“Ugh...very disappointing”

Maria's Garden and Inn
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Maria's Garden and Inn
Reviewed 14 July 2013

I read some of the reviews on Yelp and this place sounded like an authentic Italian restaurant. It might have been at one time because the owner's are Italian but the cooks aren't. The two waiters were friendly enough but certainly didn't make up for the food. The salads were just your run of the mill lettuce with lots of onion pieces on top, the bread looked like sub rolls cut length wise and the spaghetti and meatballs wasn't bad but certainly wasn't equivalent to a true Italian restaurant. The fettucine alfredo was VERY SALTY and was swimming in what tasted like a "jar" alfredo sauce. We were all still trying to eat our dinners when the waiter came up and asked us if we wanted dessert? The décor is overwhelming with all the religious statues and pictures. There must be over a 100 pictures and figurines of the Virgin Mary in just the one small dining room. There's also an angel filled Christmas tree lite up in the bigger dining room. We were talking to a mother and daughter at one of the local spas and they stayed in one of the rooms last year and told us they would not go back. This place as seen better days.

Room Tip: You might want to see the room in person before you book.
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  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with friends
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2  Thank LeilaniESVA802
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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21 - 27 of 45 reviews

Reviewed 21 May 2013

I have eaten in at least 50 "Italian" restaurants in the US over the past 70 years. With the exception of wine service and temperature control, Maria's ranks above average.

We arrived a little before 5 PM on the Monday before Memorial Day, i.e., before the tourist season. The waiter was cheerful and presented the food options very well. The room was a bit cooler than we would have liked., but tolerable. The waiter asked us if we would like to have the overhead fan turned off. We said "yes", but she never did and offered no explanation.

We found the decor to be pleasant and not overbearing. However, if you look closely, the decorations are all Roman Catholic art, especially Marian art. This is indeed "Maria's" garden! I enjoyed looking at the artwork and found some of it to be very interesting.

Service was quick. My wife and I respectively ordered veal and eggplant Parmesan. The veal was ground meat, as it is in all but the most expensive restaurants, but very good. The tomato sauce was excellent, with just the right amount of sweetness and no overt saltiness. Pasta was done to al dente perfection. My wife also ordered onion rings, in which the onions appeared to be fresh. I had a very-enjoyable potato soup, with potatoes and onions cooked just right in light creamy broth. Dinner was served with vey fresh garden salad and superb house creamy-Italian dressing.

Wine is central to Italian cuisine. It does not have to be fancy, but it must be offered competently in any restaurant that calls itself "Italian". Maria's falls flat here because it does not even have a written wine list, much les one with quantity and prices. The waiter had a few brand names hand-written on a piece of paper. At my request, she showed us the bottles, and I chose Carlo Rossi chardonnay from a jug. As to quantity, the waitress asked us if we wanted "two glasses", and I said “yes”. The wine was served well chilled, as it should be, and we each enjoyed the first glass. The problem was that the waitress served two full glasses plus a full carafe, far too much wine for two people at one sitting. I wish I had sent it back for a half-carafe or two single glasses of wine. This flood of good wine debased would have been a great meal.

Room Tip: Sorry, we only visited the restaurant.
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  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank DonC1958
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 April 2013

We were looking for a fast lunch before our spa appointments and thought this little family place would do the job. Wrong! Problem is it is very much a locals place -- I guess in this highly religious rural area they get used to the overbearing religious "decorations" -- and the family/staff has to exchange tne latest gossip with everyone who comes and goes. As a Catholic, I found the decor inappropriate and offensive, not honorific. Add to that the very mundane food and slow service, and I would definitely not go back. We did not stay at the inn, and given this experience at the restaurant, I would not.

  • Stayed: April 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank MrsPincheon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 February 2013

I read good reviews of the food on yelp and we thought the decor would be fun. It was definitely interesting, but the food was not. One dish was only a little warm and the other dishes seemed to come out of the freezer. I had read the online description of the owner wanting to cook food like in Italy...this wasn't it. The pasta was worth maybe 6 dollars, not he 13 we paid for it. Spend a little more and head to the Panorama instead.

  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled with friends
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1  Thank jatravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 February 2013

We live outside of Berkeley Springs and have eaten here several times. We have always enjoyed both the food and the reasonable prices. The staff have always been friendly and the service good. The hundreds of religious icons which decorate the place are fun to browse.

  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank dsrdsr1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 January 2013

We travel through Berkeley Springs a few times a year on business and have never stayed at the B&B, but we did stop here once for lunch because it looked like a quaint place to eat. The only word I can use to describe the restaurant itself is "creepy". The decor is all things Catholic...pictures & statues of Virgin Mary, the Pope (past and present), crosses, Jesus, various Saints, rosaries, scapulars, etc., and they are EVERYWHERE. We are not heathens or non-believers, but it's hard to really enjoy a meal with all of these items looking at you, and hearing the "heavenly" music. As for the food... marginal at best. We each had a sandwich that was served on plain white bread that you would buy at your local market which was served with a small side of potato chips. Not to mention that our small order took a very long time to arrive. The staff was nice enough, but the theme of the restaurant really is a bit much. I know that we will not go back.

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled on business
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2  Thank gsdull
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 January 2013

We've eaten at Maria's several time, and have enjoyed it every time. The food is good, the prices are reasonable, and the staff is friendly. The restaurant is decorated in a unusual way. The theme is religious, with many pictures and artifacts you will probably not see in one place anywhere else. It's an interesting restaurant, don't miss it.

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Jim D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Maria's Garden and Inn

Address: 42 Independence St, Berkeley Springs, WV 25411-3249
Region: United States > West Virginia > Berkeley Springs
Amenities:
Kitchenette Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #10 of 11 B&Bs / Inns in Berkeley Springs
Price Range: £69 - £103 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Maria's Garden and Inn 3*
Number of rooms: 11
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