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“Great Food, Wonderful Staff” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Top

The Top
30 North Main Street, Gainesville, FL 32601
352-337-1188
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Ranked #10 of 468 Restaurants in Gainesville
Price range: $10 - $15
Cuisines: Vegan, Vegetarian, Bistro, Fusion
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Romance, Bar scene, Local cuisine, Outdoor seating
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Reservations, Late Night
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Great Food, Wonderful Staff”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2014

This was my first time there. I read numerous reviews prior to going, but I didn't read any of the following tips I'm going to share with you. If you have a large party (we had 9), they will not seat you until half of your party is there. I don't know if it was because we had a large party, but they automatically added an 18% gratuity to eCh of our bills. Our server was fantastic, and very attentive to all of us. Our fox was hot and good. Especially the sweet potato fries with their garlic/ranch dressing.

  • Visited August 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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239 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    135
    71
    20
    7
    6
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Sarasota, Florida
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“The Top is "tops"!!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2014

This place, the atmosphere, food and service were just great! I only wish I had found The Top sooner!! I was in Gainesville, to move my daughter back home after her having recently graduated from UF. She and her friends suggested we go eat at The Top for her farewell dinner. I'd never been before. What a gem this place is! Although it was a Thursday nite and very busy, the 6 of us were seated within 10 minutes. Loved the kitschy decor around the place! Old 60's/70's style hanging light fixtures everywhere. Fun, funky lamps on dining tables. I loved the cypress "knees" up on the shelf in the bar area. We started with some cocktails. I had the Thai Mule, which was great. Vodka infused with ginger and ginger beer with lime. Very refreshing on a hot summer G'ville nite! We then ordered appetizers. Chili squid and corn nuggets. OMG! The Corn Nuggets (fritters) were awesome, dipped in the Tops homemade ranch dressing. It was the best ranch dressing I've ever tasted! The Chili Squid was lite, just-right-spicy and creamy. They provide sirracha sauce, if you want to ramp up the heat a little. Suggestion: Try dipping the Chili Squid in the Corn Nugget homemade ranch dressing.So good together!! Most of us ordered different burgers which were all fantastic! I had the Mastodon burger. I chose beef. Mine came on a yummy pretzel (or you can ask for a Kaiser roll). The large patty was cooked exactly as I had ordered. With fried onion strings, bacon and white cheddar. So great! My daughter gave me a bite of her burger, which came with a Shitake cream sauce that was to die for. We asked our server for an extra cup of the sauce so we could dip our french fries in it! So decadent! You have to try the black bean cakes. Very good. We ended the meal, by splitting a piece of strawberry, cream cheese frosted cake. Holy cow! Better than my grandma could ever make!! But I have to say the thing that was really the "icing on the cake", lol, was our server, Chris. Top, hang onto this guy!! What a superb, efficient, courteous and fun server. Knew everything about the drinks and the food. He was always around when we needed anything. Such an upbeat and personable guy. Thank you, Chris, for making our farewell dinner a memorable one. Highly recommend the The Top!

  • Visited July 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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Orlando, Florida
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Good, but not worth the wait”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 1, 2014

I was visiting the area and this restaurant was suggested. We went on a Thursday night. The wait was about 40 minutes for a table.

It took maybe another 40 minutes or so to get our food.

Corn nugget appetizer was pretty good.

The beer recommended by the waiter given my preferences, was great.

I had the pork belly, but the fat content was really, really high. I guess I shouldn't have ordered pork belly. But the corn relish served with it was nicely done.

My daughter had the bean burger. She managed to eat through half of it, but then stopped. I tried it and thought it was one of the most awful things I had ever tasted. If I had known it was that bad, I would have sent it back in the beginning, but given their super slow service, no telling when we would have gotten her replacement meal.

In summary, this place is very popular, however, I find the food and service not worthy of it. It would not be a restaurant that I revisit.

  • Visited July 2014
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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Gainesville, Florida, United States
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“HIGH RATING BELIES LOW REALITY!!”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014

Following a 40-minute wait on Friday evening (not unexpected so no negative marks), we were seated in a "first-available" table in the back corner of the patio where smoking is allowed and I am not at all down with eating in a smoking area. So we immediately expressed this dissatisfaction to our server who was not very sympathetic and who just seemed interested in getting our orders out of the way. It took only a little bit longer than normal to get our drinks and appetizers but what compounded the unappealing atmosphere were all the swarming bugs that would shoot from table to table. After again expressing our displeasure to the server, the reply we received was: "Yeah, it's summer!" At that point, one member of our party of five took matters into his own hands and within minutes we were moving our drinks, our apps and ourselves to a table indoors. We probably would have enjoyed the garlic & goat and corn nuggets a lot better under different circumstances but this was not to be the day, obviously. Our entrees included the San Diego chicken, the blackened salmon and the chimichurri grill with sirloin. The steak was undercooked and came out only lukewarm whereas the fingerling potatoes burned my mouth on first bite. In fact, they were SO very hot throughout that it was obviously that they had been microwaved (too long) before sending them out to warm them up (which couldn't be done with the meat) since they had cooled off while sitting out waiting for the chicken order to be completed. Of course, I sent the sirloin back to be upcooked and when it finally came out, the server noted that extra chimichurri sauce had been added. That would have been nice except that the new topping was cold and detracted from the sirloin, which, although the correct temp, was now too chewy! By this time, as you may imagine, my friends had completed their entrees and were ready to leave. And who could blame them? Not a pretty picture, to say the least. At only time did anyone come over to ask how things were and when she didn't get the expected vote of approval, she immediately turned tail and disappeared, never even offering a hint of an apology, never mind an effort to fix things. We paid our bill -- the ENTIRE bill, mind you -- and beat a hasty exit, unlikely to ever return to The Top. I will say, though, that its food -- the chimichurri steak notwithstanding -- would receive good marks overall under better circumstances. And that is the only reason that I don't rate The Top a 1-star. However, in all honesty, a 2-star rating is all I can muster for this disappointing and lackluster effort.

  • Visited July 2014
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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Vero Beach, Florida
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“Now I know why everyone loves The Top!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2014

First time visit last night. My son and I drove up to Gainesville to pick up our Airstream trailer. My son is a UF student and said," Let's see if we can get in The Top." The super-nice front desk guy said the wait was one hour. I asked if there was food service at the bar. He said yes, if we could find seats. We sat at the outside bar-- EXCELLENT attentive service from the bartender. Excellent food service-- I had the pork belly with kimchi fried rice-- my son had the mastadon burger.... We shared an appetizer of plantain chips. Super happy with everything all the way around!

  • Visited July 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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