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“A great (and expensive) way to spend a birthday!”
Review of The Ryland Inn

The Ryland Inn
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Price range: $31 - $50
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Breakfast, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Lebanon, NJ
Level 5 Contributor
90 reviews
61 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
“A great (and expensive) way to spend a birthday!”
Reviewed March 14, 2013

We visited the Ryland Inn about 8 years ago and we were the youngest people in there and the atmosphere was a bit stuffy for my taste. It was a fantastic yet very expensive meal! We never really intended on going back until our curiosity with the renovations got the better of us!

We went in December for my husbands birthday. The cocktails at the bar were creative and when we sat down, my DH had his own personalized menu and our service was impeccable throughout the meal!

We had the chef's tasting menu for $85 pp and also ordered the wine pairing for an additional $55 pp. The food was delicious and unique. Not necessarily the foods I would normally order, but the combinations of flavors were terrific! The wine was delicious with each plate and the pours were very generous.

The atmosphere was much more relaxed than our first visit and our server had a great sense of humor. He took very good care of us and that is important when you are paying so much for a meal!

I don't anticipate going back there anytime soon...not because we didn't love it but because we would go broke! :o) If the prices were competitive for a private party, I would definitely consider having an event in the upstairs room.

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank gpec24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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168 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Level 4 Contributor
43 reviews
34 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“Glad to see it back!”
Reviewed March 11, 2013

Excellent food, excellent service, not wanting for anything.

I had the monkfish which was spectacular and my wife had the braised short ribs

I started with the winter vegetable soup and she had the Asian pear salad

Would go back in a heartbeat; actually will soon

No rush, very attentive service including unlimited bread.

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Buckscountyfoodie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Jersey
Level 6 Contributor
133 reviews
68 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
“Great food but atmosphere lacks warmth and charm”
Reviewed March 10, 2013

I took my wife here for her birthday last week. We found it to be an elegant restaurant but lacked charm and character. Overall, the experience was very nice. To get to our table we walked through the bar which was elegant and had a lot of activity. It seemed like a nice place to hang out but really too nice (and expensive) to stop by for drinks after work or for happy hour, so I can't see myself coming here just for just the bar. I would come extra early for a reservation next time and enjoy a drink before hand. They do have an extensive wine and cocktail list to choose from. For the food I thought all of my choices were really exceptional - the use the freshest seasonal ingredients and you can really tell. They change their menu every few days depending upon what is available. I tasted my wife's and thought it was also great. She wasn't quite as impressed, but still thought it was very good. While the service was top notch, it was also a let down. For both of us it came across as somewhat cold, distant, formal and maybe forced or military like, which made us somewhat uncomfortable and took away from the overall enjoyment of the meal. We didn't get that warm and inviting feeling that you want when you're splurging for a special meal. That was the biggest disappointment to an otherwise nice evening.

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank viabrera
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“They talk the talk, but don't walk the ...”
Reviewed March 9, 2013

After reading the reviews on numerous sites, we decided to celebrate our birthdays by dining at the Ryland Inn. When Craig Shelton ran the Ryland Inn the restaurant was superb, we ate here often. The hype around its new reincarnation excited us. We were disappointed.

As others have mentioned in the reviews, we felt rushed. Our food appeared so quickly. We sat down at 6:45 and were already served our dinner by 7:15. Yes, we did have drinks then appetizers too... I should mention that the first page in the menu included a "happy birthday" which was very nice.

Our appetizers included the hamatchi and octopus which were rated as, "just ok". The fois gras was fabulous!!! Lots of different tastes (such as pomegranate) on the plate with delicately prepared fois gras, that melted in your mouth. Our first round of drinks was served promptly and were good. The waiter asked if we wanted another round with dinner and a few requested wine by the glass. He disappeared to wait on other tables and did not return until well after the main course was served. The main course was served luke warm. Three of us ordered the strip steak which was might have been better if it was hot. My husband requested no spinach on his plate, so the waiter offered a saute of seasonal vegetables. This never happened - there was spinach on his plate. We never saw the waiter again during the major part of eating the main course, so nothing was said.

Dessert selections were uninspiring. We shared a selection of sorbets and had after dinner drinks instead. The complementary dessert at the end was delicious. Little bites with different tastes - lemon, shortbread, etc. They even decorated the plate with a happy birthday in chocolate.

All-in-all, the wait staff was pleasant but their attention was very spotty, the food was okay but not served so patrons could enjoy a freshly cooked meal, and some of the selections were not finely prepared.

If you wish to dine in a beautiful setting with just okay service for an expensive meal this is for you. I hope the Ryland Inn can develop their restaurant to be a wonderful place again. I know they are trying to become a wedding (and other) venue - maybe that will fair better.

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank vidalia2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Woodstock, New York
Level 4 Contributor
31 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed February 28, 2013

The Ryland Inn was awarded the James Beard Award 10 years ago for the best restaurant in the Mid-Atlantic States. There is no question that once again, the sublime cuisine, ambiance and personalized service merits the attention of all serious diners.
This is truly a restaurant that lives up to its reputation.
Bravo Chef Anthony Bucco and the team of Ryland Inn.

Visited February 2013
Thank Eric W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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