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“From Amuse-bouche to Dessert - FANTASTIC!”

John Joseph Inn and Elizabeth Restaurant
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups
Dining options: Reservations
Description: An elegant estate on over 110 acres offering weddings, retreats and private functions year round. Our Inn offers 6 luxurious suites with fireplaces and jacuzzi tubs with full private baths year round. Built on the foundation of the culinary attributes of Chef/ Owners and Culinary Institute Of America Alumni John and Elizabeth Hamilton, bringing local ingredients and truly memorable culinary experiences. Join us for our winter public dinning series where we host multi course tastings open to the public!
New York City, New York
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“From Amuse-bouche to Dessert - FANTASTIC!”
Reviewed April 25, 2012

I recently went to Elizabeth Restaurant with a group of my friends and Cornell Law professor. I have to say, I am so sad to have only found out about this restaurant during my third year of law school! The food is fantastic and it is obvious that John, the owner and chef, really cares about every detail. There are only a few restaurants in this area that can rival fine dining in New York City is this is at the top of the list. If you are doing your research I am sure you are aware of the other two or three restaurants I am referring to. However, I have to say that Elizabeth Restaurant is a far better finger lakes experience. The restaurant is located on a beautiful piece of land with an orchard in the back and the restaurant itself has a very rustic, yet elegant, interior. Whether you are visiting the area or are a student up here, you need to check out this place!

I hope Chef John represents the finger lakes on Chopped, soon!

  • Visited April 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank jpm297
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

32 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    21
    7
    0
    2
    2
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Ithaca, New York
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Wedding Venue Review- terrible experience”
Reviewed February 9, 2012

My fiancee and I visited the John Joseph Inn during August 2011 and booked our wedding for 13 months later with the requested deposit. We then proceeded to put all the other event pieces in place, including Church, photographer, flowers, music, makeup, hotels, transportation. With 90% of the planning done we were extremely surprised to receive a call in January 2012 from John Hamilton saying that he had gone through computer updates just before our first meeting last August and had us down for two dates in the computer. After verifying the date we had requested, John informed us that another couple had put their deposit down before us for that weekend. He had double booked and took FIVE months to figure it out and let us know.
On the day we found out, John stated multiple times that this had never happened before, that he would do anything to make it right, that it made him sick to his stomach and that he would refund us our initial deposit and any other vendor deposits lost due to change of date or venue. I asked him if he could recommend another suitable venue in the area since I had a 200 person wedding planned. His response to me was "no I really can't" and pompously implied that no other venue matched the class of the John Joseph Inn.
With the venue booked for our date and John's attitude less than helpful we asked for our deposit back and provided a list of other vendors whose deposits would be affected. This is when John began to backpedal contacted our vendors without letting us know what he was doing. After attempting to "make a deal" with each of our vendors, John presented us with a new wedding date that was agreeable to him, the florist, makeup artist and a completely DIFFERENT church. Our vendors were upset, we were upset, and we were appalled that he would even do something like that. With all the balls in motion, we could not change our date and told him that we wanted our money back. Ten days later we received simply a check for solely the John Joseph Inn deposit. John Hamilton did not have the professionalism to provide a note, to follow up, or to carry through on his initial offer to cover our losses with other vendors.
We ended up having to go back to step one to find a venue and resulted in moving our wedding 150 miles away in order to meet our needs. Fortunately most of our other vendors were understanding and helped out. We did though lose plenty of our own time and money and are extremely disappointed in John's handling of the situation before, during and after. I would not recommend this as a wedding venue to anyone that wasn't willing to deal with a pompous, unprofessional service.

Visited May 2011
Helpful?
10 Thank Mish6484
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bellyfull, Owner at John Joseph Inn and Elizabeth Restaurant, responded to this review, February 11, 2012
As the Owner of the John Joseph Inn, I certainly was extremely saddened by this occurrence. We take great pride and personal responsibility in all of our clients weddings and their entire experiences with us. During the 2011 booking season for 2012, we had undergone a tremendous update to our computer systems and servers. During this transition a technical error took place with the contracted consulting company in the booking system and unfortunately, the date was double booked. Upon the finalization of the upgrades, the mistake was uncovered and our client was immediately notified. Fortunately, we had several alternative weekends available at that time that the client was able to move to, all close to the original date. Upon that first conversation after the computer error was identified, the client informed me that she wasn't upset about the particular date, just the fact that her outside vendors had already been put into place. I informed the client that I would do all in my power to correct the mistake and make the error right. Not only did I inform the client of alternative dates but I said that if any of the vendors were not able to rebook that date, if she stayed with us, I would refund those lost deposits from her bill and give her additional discounts for the mishap so she would not incur any losses and be compensated for the unfortunate experience. Since all of the clients' vendors aside from the florist and the Church were all people with whom we had worked with in the past and had great relationships with, I contacted them to find if they had the same weekends available to reschedule the client. I never aimed to make a deal with any of the vendors, I only intended to fix the problem and provide my client with as many options as possible so it would be an easy transition. Being that it was eight months prior to the date, there was ample time to make the transitions. Upon speaking with the vendors and the Church, I found that the majority of the vendors, including the Church, had several of the dates open and would be happy to move. In addition, I contacted other Churches and vendors of impeccable reputations to provide my client with additional options and to cover all of the bases, insuring that there could be an easy transition. In addition, I contacted other venues in the area to provide alternative options for my client in the instance that they wanted to keep the same date, vendors, and Church. Once I collected all of this information, I provided it to my client in a written letter to provide them with all of their options in moving forward. I reiterated my offer of compensating them with further discounts if they were to remain with us and my sincerest remorse for the honest technical error. Not at any point did I express an attitude of being pompous, I was extremely saddened and embarrassed by this occurrence and made every effort to correct the mistake. We take tremendous pride in our relationships with our clients and make every effort to ensure that all of their experiences with us are positive and wonderfully memorable. In all of the years that we have hosted weddings and private functions, this has never happened and we see to it that our clients and their guests are well cared for beyond expectations. We strive to ensure that they take part in hosting "the best wedding ever" and have had years of great success in providing that to our couples and their guests. All of our systems are running smoothly and we have taken extra steps to ensure that this occurrence never happens again.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boulder, CO USA
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Excellent food in an elegant setting”
Reviewed January 15, 2012

My husband and I got married here this past October, after having an amazing dinner here last winter. We received rave reviews from our guests about the food, the ambiance, and the service. The Inn and Restaurant are located just outside Ithaca, on a beautiful estate in the Fingerlakes countryside.

At our first meal here, we ordered the 5-course tasting menu, each paired with a different wine. We were so impressed by the presentation and attention to detail, not to mention how delicious it was, that we were inspired to hold our wedding reception at John Joseph. The restaurant has an understated rustic elegance that is hard to capture in words. Imagine hardwood floors, oak-paneled walls, wooden rafters. There's a small but comfortable lounge area set off from the dining room near the bar with a leather couch and armchairs.

Wedding planning went smoothly - John, the owner, met with us several times in person and responded to numerous emails and phone calls to ensure that every detail, from the menu to the table cards, was taken care of. He was able to tailor the reception to our vision, from a special Champagne that he ordered for us, to the arrangement of the tables in the dining room. And, on game day, he and his staff navigated some last-minute changes with grace and professionalism - including having to rearrange some of the seating because I miscounted the table cards, and quickly converting the conservatory in the Inn into a ceremony space due to inclement weather.

I have nothing but wonderful memories of that day, and much of that is owed to John and his staff for making everything so easy and seamless, and for making such delicious food. If you are looking for a culinary experience or for a lovely place to hold your wedding ceremony and reception, consider John Joseph Inn.

  • Visited October 2011
    • Value
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    • Food
Helpful?
Thank AlbaBoulder
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Underhill, Vermont
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Magical!”
Reviewed September 27, 2011

My (now) husband and I were married at the John Joseph Inn and Elizabeth Restaurant this summer and I will not be able to say enough about how amazing our wedding was! From the rehearsal dinner to brunch on Sunday, every detail was taken into account and executed perfectly. We received so many compliments from our guests on everything from the beauty of the venue to the attention they received from the staff. The rustic yet sophisticated landscape provided the perfect setting; the rolling green hills, English Gardens and apple orchard made the grounds truly magical. The staff was warm, friendly and went out of their way to accommodate our entire party-young, old, sober and…not so sober. And I haven’t even mentioned the food! Absolutely outstanding. Elizabeth’s creations are beyond delicious; several guests said they were worried about being able to finish dinner because they couldn’t get enough of the appetizers! Yet somehow they managed to work their way through a bright, crisp salad, perfectly cooked filet mignon and sinfully decadent wedding cake ;)
John and Elizabeth truly make you feel like your wedding is as important to them as it is to you. John is no-nonsense in a way that lets you know everything will be taken care of and that he will do everything in his power to go above and beyond for you.
This place swept me away. It was exactly how I wanted to feel on my wedding day; overjoyed, giddy, carefree and blissfully happy because I knew I had nothing to worry about and the details were taken care of. I could not have been happier with my experience and would HIGHLY recommend this place to anyone looking for a superb venue, an outstanding culinary experience and an overall magical wedding.

  • Visited July 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
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    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Lindsey F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ithaca, New York
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Amazing Food, Terrible Customer Service.”
Reviewed April 24, 2011

I absolutely love the food at the Elizabeth Restaurant. These are some incredibly accomplished chefs. Though it's a tad pricey, I find a way to get there as much as I can. Recently, however, their customer service has gone from passable to neglectful. Their website is not at all efficient, loads incredibly slowly, and has outdated information. They only serve dinner on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, so you have to call and leave a message if you'd like to make a reservation for Thursday. They NEVER return my calls. A couple weeks ago, I attempted to make a reservation for Thursday and left a message. I was to meet a friend there for her birthday dinner at 5:30pm. I called all day on Thursday to try to confirm my reservation but never got a person and got the usual recording telling me their dinner hours. I finally had to leave to meet my friend on the date of the reservation, and my spouse continued to call to try to confirm the reservation. Finally, my spouse was able to get through, as my friend and I were sitting in the driveway of the restaurant, and told me that they would be closed for that week. There was no mention of this on the recorded phone message, and no mention of this on the web site. The person we spoke to acknowledged that he had recieved my calls and that he also could see that I had called several times that day. I was very unhappy (since I had been raving about this place for years, and set aside money so I could share this experience with my friend) and ended up going elsewhere.
I will give the Elizabeth restaurant another shot, as it's an amazing culinary experience. For the cost of food (and lodging) there, customer service should be a priority. I really hope they're able to turn things around.

  • Visited April 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank truebean00
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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