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“Day-trippers from Washington now have a place to eat” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Soul Mountain Cafe

Soul Mountain Cafe
300 East Main St., Front Royal, VA 22630
540 636-0070
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Ranked #41 of 73 Restaurants in Front Royal
Cuisines: Eclectic
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Reservations
Virginia
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Day-trippers from Washington now have a place to eat”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 1, 2013

Front Royal, Virginia, aspires to be more than the entrance to Skyline Drive and the last exit before you get to Highway 81. To this end, the city has developed a little downtown area, and that in turn has attracted an interesting restaurant, the Soul Mountain Cafe. It comes complete with family photos and back story on the wall as well as a promise of the world's best barbecue. My family appreciated the short ribs a lot more than the chicken BBQ, possibly because the chicken was only lukewarm. My Maryland crab soup presumably came from one of the owner/chef's grandmother's recipes. It was satisfyingly spicy, but it too came lukewarm. Service was slow, but everyone seemed friendly and eager to please. When we asked for their signature corn muffins after 10 or 15 minutes of waiting for something to develop, we got order after order for the rest of the meal. They were sweet enough to make dessert seem unnecessary. We walked out satisfied. It's an interesting place with real food and their heart certainly seems to be in the right place. It's a welcome break from exit ramp chain restaurants and local pig-out places. And at one hour's drive west on Highway 66 from Washington, it's a great addition to one day outings to the mountains. And reasonably priced!

  • Visited December 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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83 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Winchester, Virginia, United States
Top Contributor
120 reviews 120 reviews
64 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
44 helpful votes 44 helpful votes
“Surprisingly good”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 7, 2012

Recent visit with a girlfriend to an institution which has had many incarnations; most recently this throwback to a hippie enclave. The food was fresh, generous and good. Atmosphere ok, paint fresh and floor clean. Bathrooms not assessed. Make sure you are hungry if you order the delicious artichoke dip--huge portions of the rich cheesy delight come to the table with fresh pita wedges. My friend had the Maryland Crab Soup--authentically Old Bayish but a tad sweet for me. We split a delicious salad. Try it.

  • Visited December 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Myers
Top Contributor
93 reviews 93 reviews
44 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
“Great place”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 21, 2012

Great inexpensive menu. Had pulled pork and fries which was cheap and good food. Wife had salad with grilled chicken which she also said was world class. Fast and courteous and attentive waiter. Cook came out to see if it was to our liking

Visited November 2012
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Odenton, Maryland
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Second Not Good”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 5, 2012

We had eaten here on a previous trip to Front Royal and it was excellent; however, this time, the wait for staff to even give you water and a menu was slow. After ordering, it took almost 40 minutes for our food...they were understaffed in the kitchen we were told. When my food arrived, it had a side dish which I did not order; as I questioned the waiter, he said: "The chef decided to give an extra side." Really....without asking me if I wanted or wanted to pay for it? We were totally dissatisfied with the staff, cook(s), and management this time around. Skip it!

Visited September 2012
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Tuckerton, New Jersey
Top Contributor
64 reviews 64 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
“In two word-boiled ribs!”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2012

The ribs had a very peppery sauce on the after I asked no to put a lot of sauce on them. The rib itself was cartilage. No bone. This indicates boiling, I think. The ribs were very dry and over cooked. My husband's fish was overcooked also.

Visited September 2012
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