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“Fine dining at its best” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Michael Anthony's Cucina Italiana

Michael Anthony's Cucina Italiana
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Ranked #5 of 362 Restaurants in Hilton Head
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $20 - $35
Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Large groups, Special occasions, Local cuisine, Business meetings, Families with children
Dining options: Dinner, Accepts American Express, Accepts Discover, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Full Bar, Parking Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Description: Michael Anthony’s Cucina Italiana offers traditional regional Italian cuisine combining innovative presentations and style. The award winning culinary team presents a menu using the freshest ingredients for an unforgettable culinary experience featuring homemade gnocchi, succulent veal,daily selections of fresh fish and house-made desserts. Acknowledged by food and wine enthusiasts and critics alike, the restaurant presents a fine-dining experience combining an award-winning wine list, exquisite food, attentive service and the personal touch of a family-owned restaurant serving the Lowcountry since 2002. In addition, Michael Anthony’s operates a Cooking School conducting weekly hands-on and demonstration style cooking classes and a specialty Italian market. Please visit our website or call for information for our class schedule or dining reservations.
Bluffton, South Carolina, United States
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Fine dining at its best”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 23, 2013

This is the ultimate dining experience. The ambiance service and food offer the best in Hilton Head Island. Their early bird menu offers a variety of dishes that are prepared as ordered. Highly recommend this venue for a delightful evening.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank SamN40
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,285 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    1,038
    150
    68
    19
    10
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
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  • Japanese first
  • Spanish first
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English first
Level Contributor
21 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Lovely meal”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 22, 2013

We went after an afternoon theater so we were there for the early dinner special. The early bird special was a wonderful bargain and the food was delicious. The waiter did not bring the asked for butter. Otherwise, the service was very attentive. What I didn't like was the atmosphere . It was very tired looking and smelled damp.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Patricia M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chesterfield, Missouri
Level Contributor
9 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 22, 2013

The Good. The amuse-bouche, a hummus, was very good and a nice surprise. The chocolate molten cake was outstanding, perhaps the best I ever had. Our waiter, Josh, although my wife found his habit of not looking at us while he was talking to us a bit unnerving, was attentive without being intrusive as were our other servers. The wine flights menu is a great idea. I asked the waiter to have the chef suggest glasses of wines to go with my meal, and his choices were a little unusual and excellent. The waiter thoughtfully explained each selection and the wine’s characteristics, which made it more enjoyable.

The Bad. Perhaps not bad, but disappointing, especially given the price. The quality of the beef Carpaccio was good, but it was quite bland. The Capellini alle Pescatore, although it had a spicy sauce, the amount of sauce was skimpy and the dish was otherwise bland. The dish contained only three mussels, a lot of very small (about size 65) shrimp baby calamari, which were overcooked and quite rubbery. The pasta was similarly overcooked. I typically cook pasta one minute longer than the instructions for al dente, but this pasta had to have been cooked longer than that. My wife had the Penne Salsiccia e Peperoni, which she also said was bland. She ordered it in part because she thought it would be spicy, given that the menu states that the dish contains hot peppers, but she could not detect the hot peppers and said the taste was overwhelmed by the caramelized onions. (I should note that we like our food spicier than most people.) Our 14-year old daughter had Gnocchi di Patate al Pomodoro e Basilico, which she said was ok. (Trying to get more specifics from a 14 year old isn't easy.) We’ve eaten at many Italian restaurants in St. Louis, where we currently live, and in Chicago and New York, some of them excellent. Food wise (except for the chocolate molten cake) Michael Anthony’s was definitely in the bottom ten percent. I’ve had better pasta at Olive Garden.

The Ugly. The restaurant also has a market where wines, oils and other items are sold. As we were leaving, we passed the market, which was open, and I saw bottles of wines on the shelves. I was interested in seeing and perhaps purchasing one of the wines that had been served with my pasta, and given that the market appeared to be open – no signs were posted to the contrary – I walked in. There was a table of about ten people, sitting on one side of the market, eating dinner. As I walked in, the waiter in the room came rushing up to me and asked if he could help me. Before I could say more than “Yes, I,” he started saying, in a dismissive manner, “outside” and motioned for me to leave. The look on his face was belittling. I was taken aback, thinking that I must have committed a major transgression, looked at him questioningly and said “outside?” He simply repeated “outside,” motioned for me to leave and hustled me out of the room, walking quickly, immediately on my heels. I did not know it at the time, but a hostess had simultaneously rushed up to my wife and told her that the market was not an exit. My wife explained to her that I knew that but I was interested in the wines. The hostess said “ok” and walked past me, into the room, as the waiter and I were leaving.

Once I was out of the room, I turned to talk to the waiter to explain what I wanted, but he had never stopped, instead walking into the kitchen. I stood there for some time, waiting for him to come back. When he did, I asked him why he had left me standing there after stating that he would help me, and he said he thought the hostess was going to help me. Given that he had never stopped long enough to confirm that to be true, and that the hostess had already walked past us, I must confess that I was a tad skeptical of his sincerity. And he had yet to apologize for any of his actions up to that point or explain why he had hustled me out of the market. Eventually, he did say he was sorry, but only after he recognized that I was upset by his dismissive behavior.

After we left, I told my wife that I wondered if the people at the table in the market were special guests or regulars, who the restaurant was anxious not to disturb. I have no problem with that, but posting a sign at the entrance of the market or simply explaining to me that the market was closed in a courteous, respectful manner would have been easy to do. I later looked at some of the other reviews on TripAdvisor and read with interest that some of the reviewers suspected that they had received inferior service versus regular customers. Again, I have no problem with giving extras little perks, but every customer should be treated in a courteous and respectful manner. The restaurant states on its website that each of its staff members has “many years of experience.” I would have thought in that time the waiter who confronted me would have learned some basic respect and courtesy.

In Sum. Considering going to the wine bar and ordering the chocolate molten cake and a glass or two of wine, but avoid the tall, well tanned waiter with dark hair.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
4 Thank Brian975
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
54 reviews
50 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Sunday night early bird 3 course a big winner”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 21, 2013 via mobile

Went after theater for a great dinner. The $18.50 three course a winner. Service was good and all of our parties meals were excellent. Have the cream puffs for desert; soup is good first course and pasta with crab a real treat. Would go back anytime.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
Thank Buck M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Placida, FL
Level Contributor
27 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Don't miss the Tiramisu!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 15, 2013

We had a party of 8 on July 12, 2013. We had a comfortable table upstairs, great, relaxed atmosphere! Our waiters, JP and Ian were passionate, enthusiastic,and knowledgeable.
The food was phenomenal! We started with a featured lobster and crab salad that was delicious. The tagliatelle pasta was homemade and worth every calorie when served as a substitute for the spaghetti in the con Granchio. JP highly recommended the Tiramisu, claiming it was in the top 3 anywhere and he was right!
All four couples loved the food, the setting and the staff!
I highly recommend and will go back next trip to HHI!!

  • Visited July 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank MrsVee11100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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