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“You said your customers were your "REAL CRITICS"”
Review of Secret Garden - CLOSED

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Secret Garden
Price range: $30 - $30
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Reviewed July 24, 2013

Chef/Owner, - You said your customers were your "REAL CRITICS"

I think it's important to start off with the fact that I created this account just to leave this comment for your restaurant.

I remember being so excited about visiting your restauarnt especially because it was a gift from my mother for my 1st anniversary and I was very excited to try this award winning Romantic restaurant (so stated on your website).

First impressions were interesting - COULDN't find the front door and hated what ended up being the entrance. I felt I was being sneaked into the restaurant.

I loved our waitress but that is the only thing that earned this restaurant a star. The place was empty and while I sat at my seat I felt sorry for the owner (for financially reason) and couldn't help but notice the decor was outdated and the restaurant was dirty on top of it. To sum it up the glamour of going to this ROMANTIC restaurant was destroyed.

The Food:
Overpriced, BLAND and took forever. The food missed on all levels!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I would sum up the night with the fact that our 20 dollar movie was better than our $130.00 dinner including tip (because we didn't want to punish our waitress for your food) and coupon.

What I am so upset about my visit is the fact I went to this restaurant after it was on Kitchen Nightmare and it's sad to see that the Owner restored back to his old ways and didn't keep to the Standards that Checf Ramsay left.

To be honest its really simple :Gordon only teaches one thing, its not a recipe, its not style (remodel), HE TEACHES STANDARDS!!!!!!!!!!!! and this place lacks them.

All I have to say is if Gordon Ramsay couldn't help you who can.

To potential customers GOOD LUCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and bring your wallet..

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16  Thank Shane H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (26)
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11 - 15 of 26 reviews

Reviewed February 15, 2013

My wife and I seldom venture out for Valentine's Day, having had our share of bad meals and poor service. This year, we decided to make an exception and go to Secret Garden for a romantic evening. Although past experience's on Valentine's Day left me doubtful, we were pleasantly surprised by being seated in a timely fashion, the excellent service, and the delicious food, a rare combination on a busy holiday. My wife enjoyed the delicious lamb and Chef Michel prepared a delicious vegetarian entree for me. The owner has managed to create a very romantic atmosphere which was especially evident on Valentine's Day. The staff was very friendly and very attentive to our every need. I would definitely recommend Secret Garden for a special, romantic evening with that special someone.

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1  Thank Blackdogg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 14, 2013

My husband and I just returned from a fantastic dinner at the Secret Garden. We both had the rack of lamb which was cooked perfectly. We keep being amazed the meals we have there. It seems that each one is better than the last!

Since it was Valentine's Day, the meal was a part of a pkg....a little more expensive than usual. But the package included meals for two, a bottle of wine or San Pelligrino, dessert and a horse drawn carriage ride down High Street. We thoroughly enjoyed the evening.

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1  Thank Barbara S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 13, 2013

We've lived in Moorpark for eight years and never visited the Secret Garden. A Living Social special prompted us to try the restaurant for the first time. I would expect that the promotion would be an opportunity to really shine. We were completely underwhelmed. Saturday night and the place was practically empty. The poor kid waiting really struggled. The food was bland, overcooked and generally just plain bad. No salad forks, the butter was hard as a rock, no fresh ground pepper...and on and on. However, it was so romantic to see the owner snuggling in the corner and having his staff wait on him in an empty restaurant. Definitely won't be returning. Thank goodness we had a promotion and didn't have to pay full price.

16  Thank climbon_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 16, 2012

I read some of the reviews and see that they are all over the map. A lot of things are just subjective and some people are not comfortable with things done in a manner other than they are used to. And any place or any one can have an off day, yes, even you. So please, apply some reason when considering the merit of any review.

The Secret Garden is a French restaurant decorated in a romantic but vintage style. It is decorated in what is now referred to as 'shabby chc'. I just had my wedding reception there and I'm going to share the email that I sent to the owner, Michel Bardavid.


Michel -

You and your staff provided wonderful meals and ambiance for our wedding reception at the Secret Garden. The level of professionalism was unparalleled, the food was without equal -- people could not stop talking about how wonderful the food was and how they couldn't wait to come back there - the cake was the best German Chocolate that Arland or I had ever had AND it was beautiful!

You have been so sweet and accommodating throughout. Michel, you made our reception like something out of a dream. It was the perfect end to a wonderful wedding and celebration.

Thank you and God bless you!


That pretty much says it all....except that when compared to the prices that we would have paid for the ballroom at a hotel and the per plate price for 'hotel food' which was not up to the quality of Chef Michel's food, we got a major bargain. Add that to the raves of our guests, and it made the whole event just that much more memorable.

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1  Thank Barbara S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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