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“Horrendous Food”
Review of Soprano Cafe & Restaurant - CLOSED

Soprano Cafe & Restaurant
Cuisines: Seafood
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Neighborhood: City Center
Reviewed June 30, 2011

The quality of the food was probably the worst we've ever had - and I'm including airline and fast-food! My husband ordered filet mignon which tasted like rubber, wonder which part of the cow it actually came from. My salmon, which I was told is not sushi-grade, was in the same category of rubber. Bread - entirely devoid of taste. Service was mediocre, but I guess since they automatically add the gratuity onto the check, they just don’t even try. Next time definitely going to check with Food Network first before stopping at some random place!

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Thank SMK4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (23)
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8 - 12 of 23 reviews

Reviewed June 6, 2011

In 47 years of dining out, I've never before been chased down by a restaurant owner waving the credit card slip I'd signed, and threatening to call the cops on me. So, my dinner at Soprano's Cafe in South Beach was a first time experience for me.

First, however, the fundamentals. Soprano's is a storefront Italian cafe on South Beach's Lincoln Road Mall. The interior is unimpressive--but the restaurant spills out onto the sidewalk and offers a nice view of the people strolling by.

Like many restaurants on Lincoln Road Mall, Soprano's has a friendly/aggressive hostess who pitches the menu to passers-by. The evening we ate, there was a $40 special for two--two appetizers/salads, two entrees, and a bottle of wine for the table. Given the setting, the price seemed reasonable, so we chose to return and dine there. And since it is South Beach, we ordered two mojitos to start.

The mojitos were standard size, and good enough. The Pasta Fagioli was tasty, and the Caesar Salad was average. Our main courses were edible if not great--Eggplant Parm and a Grilled Salmon--somewhere in quality between a college dining hall and a coach-class meal on an overseas flight of an airline you'd not choose to fly again. if that was the extent of the evening, we'd have had a nice time--pleasant weather, an attentive cheese/pepper/water boy, interesting people watching, and a full stomach. The wine wasn't great--actually we only drank a half of the bottle between us--but it was free.

So it was a bit of a surprise when the check came, and the total for our $40 special and two drinks was $88. First we figured that an error in addition was made, so I asked the owner to come over to explain. Remarkably, the restaurant charged us $17.50 for each of the mojitos--adding $35 to the check. So I pushed a bit further and complained that was outrageous. The owner and someone else on his staff replied, essentially, that this was South Beach--and these prices were customary here. I don't buy it--I don't think a mojito at the nearby Ritz-Carlton would be $17, frankly--but I figured it was better to take it up with American Express. So, I provided my card, signed it, added "Paid under protest, pending challenge" in the tip line, and we got up to get some gelato at a nearby storefront.

We were at the gelato shop ordering when the owner of the nearby restaurant chased us down. Screaming, he had the charge slip in hand, "You can't write that on the check--I'm going to call the cops!". I explained to the owner and his accompanying staffer that I could write anything I pleased on the charge slip, and that his prices were a rip-off. The owner continued his yelling in the gelato shop, and repeated his threat to call the police. I shared with him that he should do so, but that I wasn't going to return to the restaurant with him. That's when he started a different tack, shouting at my friend and me and to all the others in the gelato shop--"You get drunk, and now you don't want to pay your check!". Given the low level of alcohol in his overpriced mojitos, and the half bottle of wine we left unconsumed--I can attest that we were quite sober. And growing more and more amazed at this evolving dinner theater. . .

He finally left, and we got our gelatos and left the shop. But our encounter didn't end there. We walked down the mall away from the restaurant, and remarkably, the owner caught up with us again, this time about a block and a half from his restaurant. "You have to return to the restaurant, so I can call the cops". Clearly his tenacity exceeded his logic with this heated request, and both surpassed the culinary standards of his restaurant. Anyway, we repeated that we were not going anywhere near his restaurant, that he had a signed (albeit challenged) charge slip, and to please leave us alone.

I plan to challenge the drink portion of this check with AMEX, and would suggest to anyone who might consider dining here to go elsewhere. Anywhere.

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1  Thank TravelBeard
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 18, 2010

Everything is busy on Lincoln and restaurants don't really care.

This place is pretty good with decent food and good prices.
Their bread is very good. We got two veal scaloppini, one with mushrooms and marsala sauce, one topped with melting cheese and asparagus. Both were served with (cold-ish) veggies and potatoes. It was very good for $20.

Glass of wine $8.
Service good for the location.

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Thank lasty13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 26, 2010

This was absolutely the very worse Italian dinner I've ever eaten. I got the Shrimp Alfredo from the $19.95 menu. It came with soup, main course and choice of either a glass of wine or soda. My choices for soup were Minestrone or Pasta Fagioli. I chose the Minestrone. What I got was a bowl of vegetable soup similar to what my grandmother would make. She called it leftover soup because she put in every leftover vegetable in the fridge. That's exactly what this tasted like- leftovers. The Shrimp Alfredo consisted of a large bowl of Fettuccine drowning in something absolutely tasteless with the consistency of milk and four grilled shrimp. I wouldn't recommend this restaurant to anyone.

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Thank justmeSyracuseNy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 20, 2009

I went to this restaurant Saturday night after seeing a nice crowd there Friday. I should have known better when the host offered us a free bottle of wine and half price on a second entree. And on a Saturday night? The host ushered us in quickly before I had a chance to even look at the food in the window.

First, the waiter took our wine order and our food order almost the minute we sat down. This should have been a cue to know we were being had. I walked up to the window and there were several dishes under plastic wrap in the window....mostly dried out steak and italian dishes that looked unappetizing. Two coulples sitting next to us were drunk and shouting at each other. The table next to us was so adjutated, the husband was standing up waiting to pay his bill and get out. The host ignored the drunk chatter while everyone else in the restaurant was stairing at the two drunk couples.

The appetizer was frutti di mar or it should have been frutti nightmare. It was a pile of tough calimari. There were a handful of cheap fried bay scallops and 3 small shrimp. I am italian-american and the marinara sauce tasted like Campbell's tomato soup......mmmm, bad! I decided to cut my losses.

I asked for the bill and got out. The free wine and appetizer with 17% tip were $53. I headed over to Pizza Rustica and ate quality italian for $7 per person. The host asked us what was wrong and I told him about the noisy couples. He could have cared less. I told him to just give me the bill, I was not going to insult his food. Avoid this place at all costs!

But I have to say it is about the same as most restaurants on Lincoln Road. Avoid any restaurant that they offer you: 1) free bottle of wine or drinks, 2) any dishes under plastic wrap, 3) reduced priced entrees or 4) any restaurant with a "barker." "Barkers" are for strip clubs, not restaurants.

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Thank PSTransplant
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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