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“Italian-American food, wayyyyyyyyy over-priced”
Review of Lucatelli's Ristorante - CLOSED

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Lucatelli's Ristorante
Price range: $0 - $20
Cuisines: Italian
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Reviewed July 13, 2009

My wife and I have eaten at Lucatelli's more than a few times since we moved to Ithaca 4 years ago and it has steadily gone down hill every time. Well we went tonight and I just had to post this. The soup on the salad bar was so old and burnt it stunk up the whole restaurant. I made a comment to our server but after our meal it was still there. I have been cooking for over 20 years so I know when a soup is burnt and it was crispy. My wife and I had 2 cokes, 2 glasses of house wine, 2 orders of cheese sticks, ravioli and veal parm and our bill was $87.00. We ate a HUGE meal with all the trimmings and loads of wine at Just a Taste 3 nights previous and our bill was $89.00. Lucatelli's is grossly overpriced for what they call "homemade" food.

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Thank NYRGuy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (24)
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15 - 19 of 24 reviews

Reviewed July 6, 2009

Wife and I were really looking forward to some good Italian food and were set on Za Za's from previous reviews on TA. Hopped in the car and headed over and Za Za's is closed for a wedding party. Kind of had the Italian thing on our minds and never thought of a plan B. Walking back to the car I spotted some locals hanging out in front of thier house who tell us about Lucatelli's. Very happy they did. When we arrived they asked us if we wanted to sit in the bar because they had a lounge singer. No thanks for us but the previous reviews that mentioned the fifties had me cracking up because that is dead spot on. Bar was packed though.
We sat in the dining room and was one of three occupied tables so needless to say our service was attentive and the waitress was very nice. Maybe different on busy nights as posters have stated. The salad bar was excellent the night we were there with fresh green lettuce and greens. We split a bowl of pasta and the wife and I really liked thier sauce. Sauce is such a personal thing but it was not too bitter or sweet and was nice and thick. Split a veil dinner that was cooked perfectly. Had a little too much garlic for us and we like garlic. This was easliy remedied and not a big deal. Finished with the absolute best cannoli I have ever had. Real decent prices and a real decent meal. Ambiance is a little dark but the dinner more than made up for trivial things. Good value.

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Thank AlbanyHules
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 4, 2009

My mom and sister live in Ithaca, and Mom was born in Sicily. Going out to dinner always meant going out for Italian food. This restaurant is just like the nice restaurants I recall from childhood. In the end, there is really nothing special about the food or atmosphere at Lucatelli's. It is just a nice place with average food. Mom likes it a lot though. The salad bar contains both bowls of romain and mixed baby field greens accompanied by the fixings and potato salad, macaroni salad and a soup. They always have a homemade pasta selection with choice of sauces and the usual entree's you would find at a "old time" Italian restaurant. It is reasonably priced, the helpings are generous and the service has ALWAYS been friendly and efficient. I don't love Lucatelli's, but I like it. It is comfortable and the food is very consistent, not marvelous, but OK. I will go back. It will be fine. There is some comfort in that.

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Thank Live2EatBaltimore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 19, 2008

Owner Juliano was a pleasure to meet. From the time my wife and I came through the door, we were treated like gold! Service and our meals were fantastic. We lived in Italy for 4 years while we were in the military and felt we were back there after eating the fine food at Lucatelli's. We live in the Tampa bay area and look forward to going back to Ithaca to have another great night at this fine Italian staple.

Ray

Thank zuluf16
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 5, 2007

When we asked the front desk at our hotel for directions and received in addition a snide comment about the hotel dining room being a better choice, we should have turned around then and there and headed in the opposite direction. Granted, it was a Saturday night, but we had called the restaurant several days before and got 6:00 PM reservations for our party of 6 without a glimmer of concern. When we got to the restaurant, the parking lot was busy -- sometimes a good sign! But we had to push our way into the restaurant, and fight our way to the hostess' desk through a standing crowd. The restaurant itself seemed half full, so when they told us it would be a short wait, we believed them. 15 minutes went past, then another 10, and we returned to the beleaguered hostess to complain, only to be told that another party of 6 had arrived before us, and were to be given preference. At that point, we were becoming outraged, and searched for alternatives. A call back to our hotel restaurant delivered the bad news that another table would be available in two hours, and we had passed several busy restaurants on the way, so unless we were prepared to eat take-out pizza (which we weren't) our best hope was to just sit tight and steam. As people came into the restaurant from that point on, we made a point of telling them we were approaching the hour mark in our waiting. My husband, who has disc issues in his back, couldn't find a seat in the busy foyer, and I was ready to faint from lack of food and a glass of wine on an empty stomach. Finally, an hour after we had walked in, a waitress came for us and took us to our table. While acceptable, the family style cooking was no reason to stand in a cramped and crowded lobby with insufficient seating and wait for an hour. There was no apology on the part of the management, no desert or drink on the house, and even though we had asked to speak to the manager on duty, s/he failed to appear. We wanted to ask what is the point of taking reservations if they won't be honored? Suffice to say, we will NEVER be going back to Lucatelli's, and certainly plan to write to our hotel to request that they also dissuade their clientele from a potentially unhappy experience. There are too many restaurants in Ithaca to put up with the kind of treatment we experienced.

2  Thank Exotikat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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