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“Trying to be highbrow fancy but missing”
Review of Halsey's

Halsey's
Ranked #4 of 89 Restaurants in Geneva
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $25 - $50
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings, Local cuisine, Special occasions, Romantic
Dining options: Late Night, Dinner, Reservations
Syracuse, New York
Level Contributor
71 reviews
48 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
“Trying to be highbrow fancy but missing”
Reviewed January 1, 2014

We arrived in Geneva needing gas for the car. Realizing we didn't have a reservation, we wondered if we could sneak an early dinner in on what we knew was going to be a busy restaurant night. My partner pumped the gas and I tripadvisor searched for a place on my phone. We were hoping for a bistro type place and quickly called and got a bar table in the window. Score!! We drove the couple blocks and parked on the street out in front. We entered Halsey's to find a lovely bar room where our table was a nice hightop in front of huge windows overlooking the street. Quite a lovely table and the windows were well insulated (which was a bonus on the frigidly windy cold night). The waitress came promptly and brought the large two sided sheet menu and a page of specials. It was immediately apparent that they push their drinks which frankly are incredibly overpriced (especially considering you are sitting right in the heart of NYS wine country!!) as the entire one side of the menu was only bar drinks. I ordered a $8 glass of pinot noir and my partner ordered a $8.50 bottle of beer. We found the menu very, very limited with very few choices. We chose a wood fired meatballs to begin, the salmon salad to share and a margherita pizza. We were told the meatballs take 20 minutes to come out. They brought the salad first which was appreciated. The salmon over this salad was remarkably delicious. It was moist and delicious served over spinach and romaine with sliced apples, slivered almonds, capers, some blue cheese that my partner loved and dressed just enough to moisten it but not overwhelm the entire goodness. Awesome salad. The meatballs came out and were INCREDIBLE!! Just really tasty for a restaurant meatball. I think there was a hint of nutmeg in them with a good consistency, served in a oven dish with delectable red sauce and melted cheese over the top. Very nice appetizer! The pizza came out shortly after that and we were just so disappointed with it. The had halved cherry tomatoes on top of it. Who puts CHERRY TOMATOES on the pizza? They were slippery and squishy little slouching halve sitting on the pie. Think, like what would happen to a cherry tomato on a shishkabob. Icky! There was not very much fresh mozzarella on it and the worst part was the crust was VERY floury and white and powdery with flour. It was pasty in your mouth. We only each ate one piece. All in all, it ruined the whole experience. The dinner entrees are in the $30 range and weird. If you do salmon so incredibly well on the salad, why on earth don't you offer a salmon entree?? If you do meatballs that are so luscious, why are you not offering a pasta entree with these delicious treasures?? I just feel the menu was a disappointment in I don't see how burgers, filet mignon and alligator can make your menu? They obviously have someone that can really prepare good food. Why be so limited? It seems the identity is clouded. If this were truly a fancy, highbrow food restaurant that needs to charge $8 for a 2 1/2 ounce glass of wine served in an overly big goblet, then maybe you should have the waitresses wear something much fancier than dingy old faded blue jeans!

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

Visitor rating
    175
    87
    25
    21
    10
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
11 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Excellent food, friendly atmosphere”
Reviewed November 18, 2013

I have been to this restaurant a few times and have been very impressed with everything about it. The service is excellent - prompt and sincere. Most recently, when I took my daughter and three of her friends here, everyone had a different appetite (some only wanted a salad, some wanted two courses) - this did not give our waiter any problems. Whether it's a salad, a pizza or one of the specials, the menu is imaginative, the ingredients are fresh and appetizing and the cooking is first-rate.

There is always a lively atmosphere at the restaurant. I would definitely recommend that you book ahead.

  • Visited November 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Peter H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dundee, New York
Level Contributor
25 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Fabulous food, great staff, awesome place”
Reviewed November 16, 2013

As a "local" this is one of the restaurants that I visit regularly that consistently offers a great experience. Their wait-staff is exceptional, the food delicious (especially their brick oven pizzas - YUM!), and the environment is friendly and warm. A huge bonus is that they have a great selection of Finger Lakes wines. It's great to see a local restaurant support the local wineries - major bonus points. I love Halsey's and highly recommend a visit.

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Steven F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Whitby Ontario
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Great food, service and location ... they know their pizzas !”
Reviewed November 10, 2013

Forget other reviews you might have seen that critique (unfairly) Halsey's stone oven pizzas ... they are terrific, a tad black on the bottom (what else do you expect from a wood fired oven?!) and served by friendly servers that bend over backwards to ensure you are well taken care of. Well worth the visit for sure !!!

  • Visited November 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank SteverWhitbyOntario
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
70 reviews
36 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
“Great casual spot with excellent food.”
Reviewed November 9, 2013

Had a lovely dinner at Halsey's while spending a couple days in the Finger Lakes area. I had the steak special which was a very well done. My friend had a great pizza and we both enjoyed our Caesar salads. Good wine choices by the glass. Friendly service.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Pam M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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