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“Delicious nouvelle Italian and Continental food” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Paradiso - Philadelphia

Paradiso - Philadelphia
1627-29 E. Passyunk Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19148 (Bella Vista / Queen Village)
2152712066
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Ranked #246 of 3,780 Restaurants in Philadelphia
Price range: $30 - $30
Cuisines: Italian, Mediterranean
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Neighborhood: Bella Vista / Queen Village
Cross street: Cross street between Tasker & Morris Streets
Wynnewood, PA
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
19 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
“Delicious nouvelle Italian and Continental food”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 23, 2012

The restaurant's decor is elegant and warm, the menu provides a variety of delicious and creative Italian specialties and Continental choices, desserts are excellent. I've been here several times and have been consistently pleased with the food.
The only reason I didn't give five stars is that it just misses on some points. For example, I asked not to have the olives and capers with my main course; a large white plate arrived with two small pieces of swordfish and spaghetti squash - all white in color and not appetizing looking. Couldn't the chef have looked at the plate and added a parsley garnish? or if that is too routine, add some sliced carrots or green beans? However, after adding a squeeze of fresh lemon to the fish (the lemon wedges arrived very soon after I asked) and a little salt to the squash, both were delicious and my plate was wiped clean. For another, the waiter arrived with a basket of bread and dips for our table of four. The bread was fine, the dips delicious - but less than a tablespoon of each dip to be shared by four? That was just chintzy. Again, when asked, the busboy delivered another plate of dips.
We ordered a selection of cheeses for dessert; they were delivered on a handsome cheese board, with four plates and one knife. Again, when requested, knives arrived for each of us.I

Bottom line: the instincts are good, the food is very very good (loved the fried chicken livers and caramelized onion appetizer!), the portion sizes considering the prices (the fish course described above was $ 29) were small and there doesn't seem to be a bigger vision of how things could be made perfect. I'll go back and our friends would, too, but it's not quite a five star place. Recommended.

p.s. We had three appetizers, four main courses, cheese plate, six drinks, special coffees for a total of $ 220 or about $ 55 a head, without tip. All felt this was reasonable for the experience.

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

Visitor rating
    23
    5
    3
    1
    1
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
San Rafael, CA
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“The Best Gnocchi Ever”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2012

I like to test a restaurant by their gnocchi. Tasted many since I am a San Francisco resident. This gnocchi won the prize as the best I have ever tasted. Amazing melt in your mouth gnocchi. And all other dishes we ordered among 6 of us were absolutely delicious. This restaurant is a gem in South Philly and I will for sure talk it up with anyone headed to Philadelphia. The meal I had here was the highlight of my trip over and beyond Amis

  • Visited October 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Blackwood, NJ
Top Contributor
59 reviews 59 reviews
43 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
“Something different on Passyunk”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 2, 2012 via mobile

We came to this restaurant expecting the typical Italian restaurant you would find in South Philly. No way. Although the menu is not large, it surely gives you enough choices and most are unique. My husband is a very picky eater and does not like to try anything different so it was not a good choice for him, but our friends and I had no trouble picking from the menu. The swordfish was fresh and prepared perfectly as per our friend. I had the pork special which was tender and good although not something I would order again. Service was grand. Thank you to Anthony and his newly hired helper Dylan. They were well informed and gracious. Would I return? Surely!!!

    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Washington, DC
Top Contributor
158 reviews 158 reviews
41 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 116 cities Reviews in 116 cities
167 helpful votes 167 helpful votes
“Bravissimo! A true gem!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2012

Bravissimo! Outstanding in every way – beautifully presented food that is consistently fresh and tasty and suitable for foodies, served by attentive and knowledgable staff in a comfortable upscale décor. I’ve been pleased to dine here twice and eagerly anticipate the next time I’m in Philadephia so I can experience it again. It’s a true gem.

  • Visited October 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Philadelphia, PA
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
40 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Poor service. MUCH better options in the area for less $$”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2012

If you are a picky eater or a vegetarian--this is probably NOT the place for you.

I (the picky one) dined here on a gorgeous evening with my boyfriend and our good friend (the veg). We live right near by and decided to take advantage of their prime, Passyunk location as well as a special offer to dine there through http://opentable.com. Now I see why this special offer existed...because you'd have to twist someone's arm to go here.

On the down side, the service was fair, to be NICE. Our server, I suppose presuming that three 20 somethings were going to stiff her on the check, decided we did not deserve the same level of service as she provided to her other tables. It's always very curious to me when a you can overhear your server give a warm welcome to the table next to you, read you delectable sounding specials, and offer wine specials, and then turn around to our table and say "Hi, what can I get you?". No "Good Evening". No "Is this your first time here". Nothing. We waited 15 minutes for to be offered dessert or our check. She took my drink from the table before I was through drinking it after I said I didn't want another. Our friend (the veg) ordered the potato gnocchi which he said was complete mush. I was forced to order the stuffed chicken (bleh) after I learned they were out of the only dish I would have eaten. Sub par. Won't go back.

On the plus side, I had the lentil soup which was quite good, the veg had the beet salad which he enjoyed, and my boyfriend admittedly liked his wild boar ragu.

Overall a sub par experience. Plenty of other better restaurants in the area.

Visited June 2012
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