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“Didn't Make a Good First Impression” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Symphonys

Symphonys
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Ranked #48 of 277 Restaurants in Evanston
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $30 - $30
Cuisines: American, Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, Breakfast, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Prairie (2 blocks west of Green Bay Road)
Transit: 2 blocks west of Central Street Metra stop. One mile west of Central Street El station. 201 Central Street bus stop in front of Cafe, runs every 15 minutes until 8 pm.
Chicago
Level Contributor
228 reviews
181 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
“Didn't Make a Good First Impression”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 25, 2013

This was our first visit to the restaurant and we are always looking for a new place. The menu offers a variety of option and at first glance looked inviting. Reviews seemed to be mixed but felt like trying something different.
The prices range from low teens all the way up to high 20's. For such a price point I'd have expected a bit more to the place. The front sections seemed nice, but were were put way in the back; which didn't add anything to the experience. Ambiance was a zero.

Each course came with soup or salad. I had the pasta fagioli; which was watery and a bit tasteless. My son had the chicken soup, which was good, and my wife's salad was also good.

For entrees my son had spaghetti and meatballs, which was just okay. The sauce was thin and the meatball dry. I had the Chicken Marsala. The chicken was a good portion and cooked correctly as it was still moist. The marsala sauce was also good but is described as savory on the menu, it was more sweet then savory and due to this the mistake the chef made was to put carrots in the dish. Marsala is already sweet so adding a sweet vegetable like carrots was adding sweet to sweet. My wife ordered the tilapia and had to send it back as she felt the fish wasn't good. My wife is in the restaurant business and knows her stuff. Our server took the fish away with no issue but later said they were trying a different preparation and the whole staff didn't like it. Question, if this was true then would you tell your patrons, especially those regulars that the dish has been altered. I'm tending to the fish was just bad.

Service was good and friendly, but expect more considering some of the prices being charged. May give it one more try as some things were good and others we know to stay away from.

  • Visited December 2013
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank aender
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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52 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    21
    17
    9
    3
    2
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
365 reviews
291 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 77 helpful votes
“Nice standby”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 7, 2013

Symphony's has nice decor with a pleasant bar area. Service is nice too. The food though, while decent, is nothing special. It has old stand bys & is fresh, but no unique flavors or exciting & interesting twists. Ok for breakfast, brunch, or lunch, but not too great for a special dinner.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
Thank Justsaygrace
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canton, Mississippi
Level Contributor
246 reviews
166 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
“A perfect Saturday brunch spot!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 20, 2013 via mobile

The menu is interesting and i had the French foursome which had French toast, link sausage, bacon, and eggs! It was just what I needed, as well as terrific coffee. We had a leisurely brunch but had to ask for water twice. But still a great place!

  • Visited May 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank BeBe53207
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago
Level Contributor
22 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Started slow and went downhill from there”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 24, 2013

We arrived at 6:25 for our 6:30 reservation and was told it would be a few minutes. Heard that repeated many times to others before we were finally seated at 7:00. The hostess said they were out of menus. Our server came over and said he would find us some which he did, but still couldn't come up with the specials menu. We ordered a bottle of wine and was told they were out of glasses. Eventually we got our wine (with glasses) and specials menu. I ordered Seafood Pescatore and my wife ordered grilled Tilapia. We both ordered salads and enjoyed our Malbec while we waited. This is a nicer restaurant and we appreciate when the food doesn't show up almost immediately. After about 30 minutes, the waiter brings our entrees. I told him we didn't get our salads and he suggested we get them in a to go box. We weren't buying that and told him to take our entrees back and get our salads. After a few minutes, he returned with our salads, but did not offer fresh pepper (which we saw other diners getting). After we finished our salads he returned with our entrees and left. Unfortunately mine was lukewarm and my wife's was boiling hot and was slathered with the sauce she requested on the side. The waiter never came back or even walked by to see how everything was. Halfway thru our entrees, another hostess came by and tried to take our wine glasses (there was still wine in the bottle on our table) and we refused. Eventually we flagged down the busboy and asked him to get our waiter. The hostess appeared and said he was too busy and asked if she could help. She agreed to get the waiter. When he finally came back to our table, we just wanted to get out of there so we asked for our check and took our half eaten entrees home. The waiter offered no apologies and didn't inquire as to why our entrees were half eaten.

Every restaurant has a bad night, but it appeared to us no one was in charge here and training in customer service was lacking. There are lots of restaurant choices in Evanston and we won't be returning here.

  • Visited March 2013
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Michael A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Evanston, Illinois
Level Contributor
99 reviews
68 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
“OK for neighborhood”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 11, 2013

Nice place to visit if you want a simple night out. I think they do a better job with breakfast and lunch.

Visited October 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank Maureen M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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