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“South Bend: Meet Your Best Restaurant”

Carriage House Dining Room & Gardens
Ranked #9 of 295 Restaurants in South Bend
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $16 - $50
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings, Special occasions, Romantic
Dining options: Breakfast, Late Night, Dinner, Outdoor Seating, Private Dining, Reservations
Description: Indiana's most nationally recognized restaurant - 28 years AAA Chicago Four Diamond and 30 years Wine Spectator "Award of Excellence." Formal Main Dining housed within historical 1851 building featuring the freshest farm-to-table foods and extensive fine wine list. Michiana's premier outdoor fine-dining facility, ALFRESCO FINE DINING & GARDENS, featuring a wood fire oven, patio seating adjacent to outdoor stage exhibiting local musicians every weekend during summer. Two Excellent Venues - One Superb Restaurant!
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
395 reviews
246 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 182 helpful votes
“South Bend: Meet Your Best Restaurant”
Reviewed April 20, 2014

On the far Northwest part of town lies the Carriage House, a converted church. I believe it to be the best restaurant in the South Bend area. Reservations a must. Full bar and great wines and oysters on the half shell or Rockefeller. We were celebrating an important birthday and with advance notice made a cake for us. Long time specials are Steak Diane, Veal dishes and a few seafood dinners. I would suggest this place to celebrate a graduation at Notre Dame, winning a football game, birthdays or holidays. Service is attentive and well done. My martini glass was half filled and I am used to a full glass martini/Manhatten. Perhaps smaller glasses or more drink would solve the problem, but it is minor. Bill for 5 was $500+

  • Visited April 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank Kimo688889
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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240 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    179
    30
    12
    13
    6
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Simply awesome”
Reviewed April 10, 2014 via mobile

I just love this place! Great food, great ambience and an awesome staff. I have to say the triple layered chocolate cake with a little bit of Haagen Dazs Vanilla ice cream is a perfect way to end or start a meal...just sayin.

Visited March 2014
Helpful?
Thank Sara M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
East Rutherford, New Jersey
Level Contributor
12 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Hidden gem”
Reviewed April 7, 2014

The drive to this place was a little scary. You have to wind your way through an unlit road, and the parking lot is barely noticeable. But, when we opened the doors, the restaurant was absolutely packed (It was a ND football weekend, so that could explain the crowds). What a surprise! This place is a delight. The filet mignon was cooked perfectly, and the dessert table was impossible to resist. I will definitely be back!

  • Visited May 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Kelly A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Detroit, Michigan
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Best Restaurant in the area. However.”
Reviewed April 4, 2014 via mobile

We dine at Carriage House infrequently. When we would like to enjoy a fine dinning experience it typically becomes Carriage House, Cafe Navarre, or La Salle Grill. All very fine dinning establishments, but give a nod to Carriage House as the best 6 times out of 10. A very nice atmosphere. Quiet. Out of the way but still close by. Supports local artists, which my wife and I accommodate them for. Service is always very attentive. Don't know if the deserts are prepared on site, or if they have them made elsewhere, but they were fabulous. We have dined at Carriage House for many years. The current owners mother was always kind to us, her daughter (the present owner) seems to be following in that great tradition. She stopped by our table and spoke to us personally after our very scrumptious meal. A very nice touch.

However, I will have to say that the prices are extravagant compared to other options. We have dinned at many a fine restaurant. Included are Charlie Trotters in Chicago, Daniel's in New York, Auberge de Soleil in Napa and many others in Europe to name just a few. At some point you have to consider whether or not you received value equivalent to your experience. Unfortunately, it is our considered opinion that Carriage House while all that they do well, has an inappropriately priced experience. I commend them for the experience they are trying to create, and for the most part having some limited success in accomplishing. However, more attention will be required in order to produce a better balance of value and experience. For what it is worth, I would suggest their very survival depends on it.

Visited March 2014
Helpful?
3 Thank Michael B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
judyoody, Owner at Carriage House Dining Room & Gardens, responded to this review, April 14, 2014
Thank you very much for dining at my restaurant. Yes, our Pastry Chef makes all our desserts on premise as well as all our breads. And after dining in New York for the last two weeks, I can safely say that we are an exceptional value for the high quality we deliver.

All the best! Judy & Adrian / Owners
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Illinois
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Great establishment...needs to review pricing/menu structure”
Reviewed March 26, 2014

A couple of weeks ago, we dined at this establishment withe several of our friends..We are long time patrons of the Carriage House; we used to dine here when the current owners dear Mother ran the restaurant. The food was excellent, the selection was great, etc. but the pricing was daunting. Even with all of us at the table being successful individuals..when we received our checks we were in pain. The price of our meal for my husband and I, with a 50.00 bottle of wine, (which was one of the best values on their menu) was $ 350.00.(this was for one appetizer, two salads, two entree's)..we had some friends with us, who had their two children with them, their tab was almost $ 600.00. The pricing is not in-sink with the value of what you are getting. This is not the Everest, or True in Chicago. Some of the restaurants that we frequent in the area are Corndance Tavern in Mishawaka, La Salle Grille and Cafe Navarre in South Bend, Bentwood in New Bufflalo; all high end Restaurants. The most expensive entree's are in the $ 30.00's. possibly low $ 40.00's on very rare occasions...with excellent quality; locally sourced products, wild-caught fish, organic vegetables, etc...A far cry from the $ 55.00-85.00 range at Carriage House. What's really sad,that as you pay your bill, you are handed BOGO coupons for brunch, and some of their meals. This adds another element that is not fitting for a high-end restaurant. My suggestion would be offering pre-fix menu's for a set price...or "Dinner for two" options...that would help somewhat..
We had not been at this establishment in a few years...and unfortunately it will be a while before we get over our sticker shock, and think about going back...There are to many other options out there, that have great atmosphere, gourmet food and wine...and are a bit more wallet-friendly!!

  • Visited March 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
5 Thank sugarbasil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
judyoody, Owner at Carriage House Dining Room & Gardens, responded to this review, March 28, 2014
Here again we are criticized for not only having luxury items, but guests who order them, say they are too expensive afterward and then comment that our menu is too expensive on tripadvisor based on the cost of our most expensive items (which no one else carries in the region). Yes, we are not Tru or Everest, nor do we wish to be.
There are many things we do and are which other restaurants cannot match. We see that we are in the "wilds" of Indiana and not Chicago as a huge plus as we grow our own foods or live next door to the farms whose owners bring their product to our kitchen door - something that cannot happen in a city. That is unmatched quality and value.
Two luxury items we carry, the 3 to 4 pound Maine Lobsters and the USDA Prime Bone-In Filet, no one else carries. When our customers order more expensive items, we never question our guests whether they can afford what they are ordering.
We do not intend to change this policy or change the price points of our Main Courses - which varies the most in the industry, from $14.00 to nearly $100.00. More choices at more price points does not make us more expensive - for the vast majority of our customers, they see this as what it is - Value.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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