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“Plays favorites” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Ciao Bistro

Ciao Bistro
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Italian, Gluten Free
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups, Romantic, Families with children, Business meetings, Special occasions
Dining options: Accepts American Express, Accepts Discover, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Full Bar, Highchairs Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible, Wine and Beer
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Plays favorites”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2013

We have had this experience 3 times now and won't give the option of having it happen again. Three times we have had a reservation for this restaurant and all three times stood waiting for our table and watched the owner greet, hug and kiss, a party of his "regular" customers and give away our table. The first time was for a birthday celebration, we had 8 people and were told "that nice, big, round table is yours" only to watch another group of his "friends" come in and be seated at "our" table. He then pushed together 3 round tables for 2 for the 8 of us to jam into.
Second time there were 4 of us and watched him give his "friends" the next table without a reservation.
Third (and last) time, we had a reservation for 4, were told by his Host that our table for 4 was being cleaned to then watch the owners 2 friends be seated at our table for 4. When we questioned the "host" who seated two other people at our table for 4, after just telling my husband we were next, he said, "I have to do what my boss tells me to do". The owner then came out to us and said, " I'll get you a nice table next". To which we replied "Forget it, you have passed over us for the last time, we're leaving." To which he answered, "I couldn't make you happy anyway, GO!"
If this is how this restaurant operates, I hope he has lots of "friends" that will keep him in business. No need to make reservations here, Ciao, doesn't honor them.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Joescyn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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808 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Fernandina Beach, Florida
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Last Chance Not Good”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 2, 2013

My husband & I were with our out-of-town daughter &her husband on this visit. The first thing I noticed was that were no longer white table clothes but bare table tops instead, reminding me of a picnic table effect with the individual slats design. I ordered water w/lemon and had to ask for the lemon a second time. Upon reviewing the menu we noticed that one of the only two things that we came close to enjoying previously, breaded and fried mozzarella w/marinara sauce for an app. wasn't listed. Asked our waitress who responded that they aren't currently making it. We ordered 'breaded and fried cheese balls' with marinara instead which were just OK. The marinara sauce that came with wasn't nearly as good as we have had here before. My husband and daughter had spaghetti w/meatballs and marinara sauce. The dish came out looking like the pasta had been mixed with sauce in advance and left on a steam table with no additional sauce on the top. My husband, who is Italian mentioned to the waitress that the sauce was not marinara and she replied that that's what 'they' call it. I ordered scampi in a wine, lemon, garlic sauce over angel hair pasta. While the sauce was well seasoned, the pasta serving was so pathetically small it looked more like noodle soup with shrimp. I was still hungry after eating it and resorted to taking a remaining piece of bread to dip in the sauce. Having tiny portions of pasta at an Italian restaurant is a crime. My daughter's husband had lasagna and said it was good but he does not have a discriminating pallet so I have to take that with a grain of salt. On our previous visits we've had 'pasta Ciao' w/seafood in a 'pink' tomato sauce...not good at all; 'Caesar salad' drenched in dressing w/sundried tomatoes..who does that?; angel hair pasta in a pesto cream sauce which I thought was OK but hubby said it wasn't as good as I make. The waitress also made a mistake when splitting our check. We really, really want to like this place but find it loud and lacking on many, many levels hence 'Last Chance' in our title for the review. Sorry Ciao your restaurant doesn't make the grade with all the great spots on Amelia Island.

  • Visited May 2013
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Service
    • 1 of 5 stars
      Food
Helpful?
2 Thank dianej569
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
florida
Level Contributor
17 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Yummy pizza and pasta!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 26, 2013

We celebrated a friend's birthday on a Sunday night. The service was excellent with a very attentive staff. We enjoyed a thin crust pizza, perfectly fried calamari, and delicious lasagne.
desserts were quite nice, too. We will definitely be back.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Food
Helpful?
Thank mahaFlorida
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oslo, Norway
Level Contributor
10 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Quite Average”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 24, 2013

Our visit to Ciao Bistro was not memorable, neither in a positive or negative way. The service is ok, fast and professional, the menu aspires to be genuine Italian, but we found the food itself a little disappointing. Ciao Bistro seems to have a lot of returning guests though, so the place obviously have some qualities.

Visited April 2013
Helpful?
Thank Steinar K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orlando, Florida
Level Contributor
19 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Good food, fair on the hospitality side”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 22, 2013

Enjoyed the meal, service could have been better. Waiter seemed to barely speak to us (maybe because we were only 2), but spent plenty of time at the 4 tops. Dessert manu was lacking as well. Antipasto for one was awesome - a must get!

Visited April 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank FAP12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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