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“Best restaurant in Guildford by FAR”
Review of Al Vicolo

Al Vicolo
Ranked #62 of 283 Restaurants in Guildford
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $39 - $55
Cuisines: Italian, Mediterranean
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Special occasions
Dining options: Late Night, Dinner, Lunch, Highchairs Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Godalming, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
61 reviews
56 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
“Best restaurant in Guildford by FAR”
Reviewed December 6, 2013

This restaurant is exceptional. Small and cosy with a real touch of Italy.
We have visited this restaurant so many times and each time it seems better then before.
The food is beautifully seasoned and no matter what I have ordered it has always been a good choice.
My husband is a vegetarian and there is always plenty for him to choose as well. The tomato soup is a winner,
Although we do not drink alcohol I have overheard people remarking at the brilliant choice available on their wine menu.
If you want an intimiate cosy night out with a loved one, this is the perfect choice. Not many tables (although there is a top floor as well) I would recommend booking.
Portion sizes are not huge so there is always room for dessert and the selection is always great.
I always feel welcome and the staff are very nice. A real treat and I think of it as a litle hidden gem.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank NikiTurner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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156 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    102
    31
    11
    8
    4
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Guildford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
11 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“3 out of 6 * - Poor to Good, highly inconsistent...”
Reviewed November 25, 2013

I don't want to be overly critical as I understand the impact such a review may have on a small restaurant....but the price to service to portion ratio is extremely off!

We have been several times and found depending on when you go, you can have anywhere from a poor to a great meal - unfortunately this is too inconsistent for us. When it's busier it get very, very loud (we're not normally noise sensitive) and service/food times seem to drop off beyond what I find acceptable...
While the food is generally good, the portions are too small, especially at these prices; I need a heavy starter and heavy main, plus desert to even start feeling a dent. A friend of mine seemed in agreement, when he ordered a second main, half way through his first. Given the prices at Al Vicolo that just shouldn't happen!!

We often got a nice Limoncello on the house at the end of our meal but I can think of several restaurant in Guildford in which one can enjoy the same/better quality food, for less, with better service and significantly better portion sizes.
We won't return.

This is not to be a shameless plug but an offering of ideas to fellow readers: Positano - Italian, Cote - French, Kinghams - English, Sir and Madam - Thai.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank JDP89_13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Guildford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
31 reviews
23 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Great Italian Food”
Reviewed November 4, 2013

Have been a few times for lunch with my friends,always good!The set lunch menu is definitely value for money,only wish it could change from time to time.The food quality is excellent,but a bit pricey if you just want a normal meal.Will probly go for dinner for special occasions.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Cindy_yuan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Munich, Germany
Level Contributor
113 reviews
48 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
“nice find”
Reviewed November 3, 2013

The title is intended to be both for the food, but also the location as really tucked away!.
I had contacted the restaurant by e-mail as my girlfriend has a gluten intolerance, and they assured us they had some gluten free pasta - so off we went and not disappointed at all.
It's a small place but when we arrived it was full apart from our table. Set up nicely. We did have to wait a little while to place order, but the owner helped with a wine choice (just right too) and nice crisp bread and olives started us off well.
We both really enjoyed the starters - swordfish carpaccio and baby calamari with chilli (quite a spicy oil). Mains were gnocci with sausage and the lobster pasta which were simple but nicely done. A shared amaretti cake and decent coffee finished it off well. We were chatting away and last to leave the restaurant that evening, very satisfied.

  • Visited November 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Chris D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
East Molesey, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
53 reviews
41 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
“Very pleasant evening”
Reviewed November 1, 2013

This little restaurant is run by its friendly Sardinian Chef-Patron.

The food is tasty and well-seasoned. I had stuffed chicken which was very appetising but I'd probably have liked to have had a few more vegetables on my plate and overall the spartan portions meant that the presentation lacked a little something.
My partner had the rib-eye, which was a smaller cut than I've normally witnessed in restaurants so maybe the owner's policy is "treat them mean and keep them keen!"
Can't comment on the wine as we didn't buy a bottle but the list looked interesting.

The atmosphere in the restaurant is convivial enough and music was being played (I can at least recall a nice Bryan Ferry track) without being overpowering. It was a Wednesday evening so not full.

The owner made a point of coming to our table to ask if we enjoyed the meal and she was happy to answer lots of questions about her island and its food.

This has to be one of the best places to eat in Guildford but be sure to book if you go at the weekend as it's bound to operate at full capacity at these times.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Molesey99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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