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“Food so-so, service terrible”
Review of North Star House

North Star House
Ranked #50 of 261 Restaurants in Ithaca
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $15 - $30
Cuisines: American
Dining options: Breakfast, Late Night, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Late Night, Reservations
Ithaca, New York
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Food so-so, service terrible”
Reviewed February 27, 2014

A close friend and I made Northstar our weekly hang out spot for almost two years. The food is only so-so, but the place is in our neighborhood and has decent beer so it worked. One night we went with my daughter and another friend and a group of waitresses sat near us on a break and stared rudely at my daughter. When questioned about it, the waitress in question denied anything happened. The she said that she and her fellows had stared because my kid had drank water direct from the bottle and they just "weren't used to that." I told her it was very inappropriate and was not pleased with the situation. I also shared with her that we had been loyal customers for years which made this treatment all the more unsavory. I shared the scenario via Twitter by stating that it is ridiculous to go out to eat/drink, spend money, and have to deal with rude wait staff and management that does not take customer service concerns seriously. I never received any reply or response from Northstar. Months later, my friend attempted to go back to Northstar for dinner and was told she would have to leave. Apparently we are not welcome there any longer for bringing this situation to light. Unbelievable! Do yourselves a favor and skip it. Mercado, Bandwagon, or Ithaca Beer have much better food and atmosphere.

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

Visitor rating
    35
    31
    11
    5
    1
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Ithaca, New York
Level Contributor
197 reviews
116 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 96 helpful votes
“A few problems dining here”
Reviewed February 8, 2014

This place is supposed to be known for its mac and cheese. Although it looked creamy like 'mom's' it was flavorless. I got that as a large side dish. In addition, my dining companion discovered a 2 foot hair in her order - just as a waitress was walking by. She quickly removed the order and replaced it with another which did not have a hair in it. My entrée was curry with chicken. It was low spiced, but not bad. However, I would rather have this dish in an Indian or Thai restaurant instead. Then, for dessert, there was the amaretto cheese cake. It had the look and feel of Jell-O Cheesecake No Bake Dessert Mix. It was shaped like a crème brulee and should have been called 'the crème dream. There was no hint of amaretto, and no cake texture to the dessert. It screamed 'help me - I am a Jell-O Cheesecake No bake dessert' in what is considered a restaurant that serves only locally grown ingredients .' The crust was some sort of damp chocolate graham cracker base. If you are looking for a New York style cheese cake this is not the dessert for you. Do you think I would be happy going back?
Needless to say, we had an adventure.

  • Visited February 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank kwebster2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ithaca, New York
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Favorite”
Reviewed January 23, 2014

Northstar is so elegant and personal. I recommend anything risotto stuffed (which I believe is usually a vegetable and changes seasonally).

The staff is friendly and gives you plenty of personal space for a great intimate night out.

Visited January 2014
Helpful?
Thank Lucy M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ithaca, New York
Level Contributor
21 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Delicious Local fare - veggie friendly - good music”
Reviewed January 6, 2014

This is the first place I recommend folks eat while in Ithaca - locally owned, the restaurant sources produce and meats from local farms, and makes innovative comfort food. More options for vegetarians than many places in Ithaca, its also great for meat eaters. Good for families, but easier for couples. They're so popular that you can count on a 20 minute wait at primetime dinner hour. The service is hit or miss, but the plates are always delicious. I love the R&B, jazz and reggae tunes playing in the background, and the casual, hip atmosphere. Its easy to run up a bill if you succumb to the Mac & Cheese specials, so I recommend just getting a large plate for your entree and splitting one of the many yummy appetizers. If you go in the summer months, sit in the beer garden behind the restaurant, and hopefully next year they'll have table service out there. (The first summer it was open, in 2013, you had to order food to go inside the restaurant, then bring it outside yourself in disposable containers.) Also, I love sitting on the front patio, where there is table service in the warmer weather. I probably eat here twice a month, so feel really confident about recommending it!

  • Visited December 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank shoshiety
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shorewood, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
69 reviews
37 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Don't pass up the Bread Pudding!”
Reviewed October 23, 2013

This restaurant is in a residential section of town, so don't get fooled-you've found it! The waitress we had was very friendly, but it seemed like everyone was. Extremely casual, and comfortable. A great place to keep going back to as a regular.
I was with family and had read reviews of this restaurant. I was planning to try the Vegetarian Bean Burger, but alas, it wasn't available during my visit. I did talk to the owner later the next day, so I'm hopeful when I visit again. I had a salad which was very good, a chicken one with lots of veggies. Other family pronounced their (meat) hamburgers tasty as well. I had seriously contemplated the curry though...
Dessert? It was suggested by other members of the family to have the Bread Pudding. If you're a fan of the wonderful, comfy dish, DO NOT, I repeat...DO NOT pass this up. Sharing is good, plenty big for two, and that's what I did.
We sat inside, but it looked really great to sit outside on their patio as well.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank KMcT1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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