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“We felt like we were on Kitchen Nightmares!” 1 of 5 bubbles
Review of Digiovanni's Dock of the Bay - CLOSED

Digiovanni's Dock of the Bay
Price range: $15 - $29
Cuisines: Italian, American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Special occasions, Local cuisine, Business meetings
Dining options: Dinner, Outdoor Seating, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Herndon, Virginia
Level Contributor
31 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“We felt like we were on Kitchen Nightmares!”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 7, 2013

For my boyfriend's mother's birthday last night, we all decided to head down to Digiovanni's for the first time. The weather was beautiful, so we wanted a place to eat that was outside and had a nice view of the water. The house that the restaurant was built into was cute, except for walking by what looked like a home office to enter the main dining room. When we arrived we were seated quickly outside at a table with an excellent view of the water. They seemed to have quite the potpourri of wait staff and attires- some servers were dressed in a collared shirt and slacks, others were in tattered cargo shorts, others weren't in any uniform at all and looked like they were about ready to hit the club! It was a little unnerving trying to figure out who actually worked here and who didn't. Our server, though a little frazzled, came around promptly and took our drink order. A few minutes later he came back with drinks and a basket full of Italian bread, where we could use the olive oil on the table to dip. That's when the trouble started- as we ate, the birthday girl noticed that the bread inside was molded- bright, mature mold, not the slight discoloration of a day or so. We brought it to the waiter's attention, who said, "Oh no, I'm so sorry, I thought we threw all of that out..." Hang on- you knew about this before? He took the bread away and promised a fresh basket, but came back rushed later on mumbling something about how he wasn't going to bring us anymore bread. I love bread, so that was pretty sad.

When we ordered, there's a very specific part of the menu that mentions if you have any food allergies, to mention it to the staff. Great! My boyfriend and I are both lactose-intolerant, so we mentioned to the waiter that none of our food should have cheese, cream, etc. My salad comes out covered in goat cheese...and I hated to do it to the waiter, but I had to send it back. After about 20 minutes our food arrived (I had the spinach salad and the chicken gumbo), and we all comiserated with each other wishing that there was bread to sop up some of the sauces, or in the case of my boyfriends' father, to sop up the grease at the bottom of his seafood pizza. My boyfriend ordered the simple spaghetti and meatballs, but after a few bites I looked over to see him turning green. He said that not only did the red sauce have a strange, plastic aftertaste, but there was a thick, black HAIR sitting right on the plate next to a meatball. We called the waiter over, and he apologized (like you do) and said he would have them make another, which my boyfriend declined, as he'd lost his appetite from the meal. All in all, the rest of us ate quickly, and the waiter had politely taken the spaghetti off of the bill. Even with that removed, the prices were FAR too high for the level of quality for not only the food, but the restaurant itself. We felt like we were on an episode of Kitchen Nightmares, everything edited together with all the gross parts happening in one meal- which it did! I will tell you, this business will not have our service again. It's a shame, because it came highly recommended...maybe everyone else had spent some time at the Tiki Bar down the street before eating at Digiovannis, I don't know. Either way, I know we will not be returning.

  • Visited September 2013
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Christine C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

50 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    21
    11
    6
    2
    10
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
MD
Level Contributor
14 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Unbelievable, romantic, awesome food and incredible service!!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 1, 2013

We totally enjoyed ourselves at DiGiovanni's! The only thing better than the food was the service. Gerri, the manager/hostess, greeted us with a smile and a very warm welcome. Kelsey, our waitress, provided unparalleled service throughout the night. She met our every need. The caprese salad was fresh and ample, the baked oysters were exceptional, the gnocci was to die for. We let them know when we made the reservation that it was a special evening and they remembered every detail. They made a special evening even more special. We highly recommend DiGi's!

  • Visited August 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank BannerJA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Greencastle PA
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Excellent food”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 19, 2013

We stopped here for drinks one night and sat out on the deck. We didn't even order food and one of the servers brought us a basket of bread any way, just to be nice. Because of this young man we came back the next night and was not disappointed. We were greeted warmly, the server was nice, the food was great and the view of the water makes it a great place to go. Diffidently will go here again the next time we're in town for a visit.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank barbara_wllms
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Solomons, Maryland, United States
Level Contributor
335 reviews
243 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 90 helpful votes
“All the right moves and food!!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 31, 2013 via mobile

Digiovanni's has been a favorite of locals for decades, but suffered some down time as it changed hands. The locals were patient and vocal in what their "Digi's" needed to be; and the owners listened and revamped the decor and improved the service thereby restoring the loyal patronage it was losing fast. It tonight was used as evidence, the transformation has been an unqualified success as the dining room and outdoor venue started filling up steadily at the end of the day. Servers were scurrying back and forth to keep up with demand for appetizers like Calamari, main dishes of sumptuous Italian favorites and specialty seafood variations including tasty Mussels and Scallops as well as desserts to die for and coffee derivatives.

The waterfront view of the Solomon Harbor is tranquil and entertaining to watch as you enjoy dinner or a cocktail. The staff endeavors to get to know you and is very attentive. Tonight featured live music by a local troubadour that was right on target. The atmosphere was warm and inviting throughout the meal with notable locals coming and going including the proprietors of a popular local restaurant.

Note: the waterside location allows for arrival by boat and several slips are kept open for that option.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Hey_Joe54
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
31 reviews
24 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Take it from an Italian....”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 29, 2013

This is the best deal in Solomon's Island, when it comes to dining out. The restaurant atmosphere is casual, so you feel very relaxed. The water views are some of the best, for what the restaurants in town have to offer. The service was good. The food was excellent!! They make their own pasta and it is authentic Italian pasta. They have a menu that offers a wide variety from Italian dishes to meats and seafoods. Their prices are more than reasonable. This is a most do, when Solomon.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
Thank Steven A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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