1312 Spruce St, Philadelphia, PA 19107
Phone: (215) 732-3478
Vetri Foundation For Children
Bike Parking: Yes
Good For Groups: No
Good for Kids: No
Wheelchair Accessible: No
Take Out: No
Cuisines: Fine Dining, Family Style, American, Italian, European, Continental
Alcohol: Full Bar, Wine
Takes Reservations: Yes
Outdoor Seating: No
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Loved everything about Vetri. Couldn't wait to post about it, then I saw the negative review. Strange thing is the same person posted a negative review about Chloe, where we were on Thurs., and love it. Who is this negative reviewer? Why would you hate Vetri? Or Chloe? Are you a plant? Your review should be removed. Vetri is yummy. Service is top notch. Spinach gnochi haunts my dreams.
I just don't get how this restaurant gets so many positive reviews. Honestly, this was probably the worst meal I've had in a long time. My food had no flavor. I left completely unsatisfied. I'm sorry but Mercato is far superior and much more affordable. I really just don't understand why everyone raves about this place. I'll never go back.
08/16/2008Provided by Citysearch -
Whoever named Vetri as the best Italian restaurant in the country has certainly not checked out Babbo's recently, let alone about another half dozen jewels in other US cities. What's the big deal with Vetri? My family and I had the 15 million tasting course last night (both in number and US dollars) and I was unimpressed for several reasons --
- There were phenomenal dishes (onion tart) but many were lackluster (spinach gnocchi, veal)
- Many were underseasoned (a big mistake in this day and age)
- I view a tasting menu like a symphony with one dish preparing the palette for the next, and so on. For a great chef (Robuchon, A Ducasse, Batali), there is a seamless progression and order of taste and experience. There was nothing symphonic about the courses and the whole appeared less cohesive than the actual ""participants"" in each course.
- Batali talks about the ""tophography"" of a dish, with different smells and flavors both separate and whole in one plate. There is no topography in Vetri's case. There are either very strong flavors and unappealingly subtle ones. The veal served on top of hot rocks had way too much flavor with rosemary while the dish before (cordu fish with only tomatoes and oilve oil) had way too less. How does one's palette take on a direction if the chef has it going every which way?
- Service was really not five star with the staff forgetting a lot of things requested by the patrons.
- The space is really not conducive to fine dining and hence to the tasting menu experience. I've been in Ma and Pa trattorias all over Italy with more space than Vetri's. If you want true tastings, try Per Se in NYC. If I'm going to sit in a restaurant for over 2 hours for the tastings, I don't want to feel like I was in a chicken coop.
01/07/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I have been a long reader of CitySearch reviews but had been too lazy to get an account myself - but I read the unjust reviews below and got an account just now SPECIFICALLY for the purpose of writing about Vetri.
I've been to Vetri twice, once in fall 2004 and another time in April 2007 - over that 2.5 yr time span, they were consistently the best. Service can be a little slow there, but that is not a place you go in a rush. Go there and enjoy the freshly handmade pasta. You can't get that anywhere else. I've eaten all over Europe and Asia and been to 50 restaurants in Philly including the famed Le Bec Fin, Fountain's and Lacroix, and Vetri's beats them all in my book. Their gnocci, ear pasta with mushroom (forget the exact name) and lavender olive oil ice cream (which unfortunately is no longer served) are some of the most memorable delicacies that have graced my taste buds.
In case there are suspicions regarding my post being a potential PR scheme, I will say that I was not at all impressed by Osteria which is supposedly owned or started by the owners of Vetri. If you are curious as to what other restaurants I frequent or love, Overtures (BYO) is one of the best (food, service), Le Castagne is terrible (except for the gorgeous maitre'd they had in 2005), and Striped Bass, Washington Square and Positano Coast are at the top.
09/09/2007Provided by Citysearch -
Last night we had an exquisite meal at Vetri's and I felt the need to write a review having perused the last several negative reviews about the food. We opted for the six course chef's tasting menu with the wine pairing. The courses were each unique and delicious; the ingredients fresh. In fact, my boyfriend and I were severed different dishes for several of the six courses, which allowed us an opportunity to experience more than just six dishes each. The sommelier was fabulous and the wine pairings were truly complementary to every dish. As for the gnocchi, they are not the typical hard lumps of dough, but light and airy and clearly not popular with everyone. None the less, the meal was a wonderful experience and well worth the price.
08/11/2007Provided by Citysearch -
Although I do not usualy take time to review restaurants I felt it is a duty to do so for this one.
We went for our 6th anniversary on a summer Friday: that is chef degustation menu only and saturday closed. I wish I canceled when I thought about doing so after reading Henry's review (December, 06) on citysearch but unfortunately I did not.
My wife and I are well traveled and dined, food and travel are a major hobby of ours and we are not shy about places upward 150$ per person and celebrity chef restaurants.
We got there on time and our table was ready for us.
The service was a bit short of excellent as our waitress forgot to bring me the wine list when i asked for it and remembered quite a bit later. Moreover, they abuse sparkling water. For some reason they pour it violently into a pitcher loosing almost all character.
The menu is not extensive and a lot of the dishes are the same from years back. You can not choose what you want to eat but let the chef know what you do not want to eat;like allergies, restrictions, and let him do his magic. This is exactly what we did.
The portions are good and far from being tiny.
Most plates were overly greasy. For example, his famed Spinach gnocci tastes like mostly butter.
The main course was also disappointing: the roasted baby goat with butter on the side, or was it polenta?
Most courses were not impressively executed and from cheap ingredients: yes, there was foie gras, branzino and venison among others but we got the hen tortellini, porc terrine, etc... remember you can not choose. Even if you can, you are here for the chef to impress you without you making him do so.
I expect bread with the porc terrine, I asked for it and was told that it came afterward usually but they got it for me. Most disappointing, none of the dishes was memorable and one out of two deserts was good. Most small pastries at the end were good though.
The sommelier, his wine list and pairings are excellent. I wish him the best.
07/09/2007Provided by Citysearch -
After reading the last 2 reviews I have to say something: do not trust them. I have worked in the business in the past (for 10+ yrs), and Vetri has in my opinion the best food in town. Absolutely nothing on their menu is less than excellent. Obviously some people writing reviews online do not know enough about food (please go to olive garden and enjoy the pasta there...)
04/23/2007Provided by Citysearch -
This was the most disappointing dining experience I have ever had. After reading all of the glowing reviews in various magazines, my husband and I were excited and called two months in advance to secure our reservations. We waited for our table for almost 1 hour and while this was not the most pleasant experience, the time only whetted our appetites for what we believed would be great dining - wrong! The menu was very limited and would excite only those who favor tripe, veal kidneys and other body parts I prefer to leave on the butcher' s floor. Only after the waiter presented the specials, was I able to find something that was not unappetizing, if not exciting - fettucine! So, while I waited for 40 minutes for pasta, I contemplated what kind of magic had Vetri been able to wield over pasta. At last, I was disappointed again - it was just pasta and not enough of it! Still hoping to find something to rave about, we eagerly grabbed the dessert menu, which offered absolutely nothing out of the ordinary. My husband had an olive oil cake that was heavy and insipid at best. I had a chocolate concoction that was on par with any lava cake in any eatery in the country. And to add insult to injury, the chef/owner, Marc Vetri chatted with every single table around ours, but never gave us a nod. Oh, well! the wine and cappucino were good, but not worth the agonizing wait or the wallet sacrifice.
12/03/2006Provided by Citysearch -
If you visit their website, click on the Menu, then Photos of the Food. You?ll see an empty plate and the phrase ?I guess somebody ate it, you?ll have to come to the restaurant!? Don?t be fooled. That?s what it looks like when they serve it. You could see the waitstaff nervously smiling either from feeling foolish or thinking you?re a fool when they bring it to the table. Eight postage sized bites of food with two glasses of wine each = $1,000. No, that is no mistake. That was the bill for four people. I would love to comment more on the food, however, there was so little of it, I can?t.
This was one of the most valueless meals I?ve ever eaten. How do I know? I am not a gastronome. But I do dine out about 160 nights a year as a result of my work. I avoid the big name chains and seek out local restaurants. During the year I have a few great dinners, and the majority are normally very good, representing good value, and very few bad. And I have spent upwards of $200 per person with varying levels of satisfaction.
I?ve traveled to Italy on numerous occasions and have eaten in many very good (not the equivalent of pricey) restaurants for authentic cuisine in Rome, Siena, Florence, Sorrento, Venice, etc?portions were alway satisfying and wonderfully prepared. This place was neither authentic Italian, unique or satisfying.
My advice is to buy a plane ticket to Italy, have dinner and return home. It?ll be cheaper and much more satisfying.
My hat is off to the owner though. Vetri craftily separated us from our money. Once. It's ashame he doesn't utilize that same inspiration to give his customers something memorable other than an inflated bill for a most uninspired meal.
11/18/2006Provided by Citysearch -
Yeah, we've all heard it by now.:""Best Italian Food in the Country"". Pulll-eeeese. All I can say is this: if you need to hire a Public Relations expert, hire whomever the owner of Vetri's uses.
Don't get me wrong. The food was tasty. But I've had food as good as Vetri's at weddings -- and in my family's kitchen. The tasting menu is $95 per person, and the portions are tiny. In other words: good food, but way, way overpriced.
The service was too much of a good thing -- we felt overwhelmed as we were asked if we wanted wine/dessert at least twice each (do they understand ""No""??). I really felt the staff was under orders to pad the bill with high-margin wines and $12 desserts.
10/06/2006Provided by Citysearch -
This place is absolutely the biggest ripoff in the city!! Tiny, cramped, overheated place, mediocre food and so little of it!! They tout their wine list - well, I had the wine dinner and can't remember a single name of the 6 wines we had, none memorable enough to even write down! Overpriced, pretentious, and they call this Italian??! Be warned...you'll leave your wallet (2 people at ""wine dinner"" was $380) and then go home and make a sandwich!! A disgrace what they get away with!!
10/04/2006Provided by Citysearch -
We did like they said we made our reservation two months to the day in advance. We waited and waited in anticipation. We thought to ourselves is it going to be as good as we heard. Well....it was better than that, Vetri was the most incredible Italian Gastronomic experience we have had in the USA. On a par with the best Italy has to offer. The intimate space, the attention to detail, the well thought out menu and well chosen wine list are to be applauded. Vetri does Philly proud. Bravo
05/30/2006Provided by Citysearch -
Vetri is by far the best restaurant in Philadelphia. Both Jeff and Marc make dining at Vetri a unique experience....we have never had dinner at Vetri when we didn't come away saying ""That was a Top Five"" dinner of all time. A great special occasion restuarnt...or a great night out in a most relaxed atmosphere and a congenial staff...most importantly, a chef, Marc Vetri, who really knows what he's doing in the kitchen! I cannot recommend it highly enough!
10/10/2005Provided by Citysearch -
Booked reservations for 4 on a friday night,waited 6 weeks to go. Antipasta awesome,price but awesome. Menu is far to ""artsy"" and unique to appeal to everyone.Had to order their signature disk a week before(Lobster), lacked any distinctive flavor,just ok. Had the almond Gnocci,excellent taste however 5 small gnocci for a grown man is an insult. The wild boar taste great but looks like a kids meal. Skipped dessert and split a cheesesteak at Jims..4 people w/drinks & tip ran 270.
Go else where,this is not the place you want to go if your hungry.
05/20/2005Provided by Citysearch -
The food was devine and the decor was charming. We ordered the pre fixe menu, where it's basically the chef's choice. The food took a while to come out, but it was always hot and you knew it had not been sitting in the kitchen. I thought the portion sizes were small until we got past the appetizers and into the pasta and meat dishes. The spinach gnocchi is really to die for. The asparagus flan was an inspiration from heaven. It might be hard to get a reservation, and it might be noisy, but go for the food-- which I found to be truly inspired/inspiring cuisine.
05/09/2005Provided by Citysearch -
A Zagat 27 means something very different in Philly than in NYC - this is an absolutely unrepresentative rating for this particular restaurant - our salads were bland, our fish mediocre and everything overpriced. The service was very good as was the wine selection but if this is the best italian that this city has to offer, there is an astonishing amount of room for improvement. I was extremely dissapointed with my meal after readying all of the hype with this restaurant. Save your money and go elsewhere. Furthermore, this restaurant is not particularly romantic in any way - we were seated opposite a slab of pork and an espresso machine - and there are only 12 tables or so, so there's not much room if you don't want a pig extremity in your face while you're trying to woo your sweetie. . .
02/11/2004Provided by Citysearch -
finally got a chance to experience Vetri recently and regret only having not gone there sooner! Had heard
so many superlatives over the years that i really was
afraid i'd be disappointed but instead was totally blown
away! Recommend the chef's tasting menu for first
timers-you get a lot of awesome food and a really great
variety of tastes and textures. Trust Jeffrey to choose
your wines by the glass for each course and i promise you'll be amazed at his skills-nearly perfect rustic
Italian with wonderful staff and atmosphere-Do Not Miss! Marc Vetri, my compliments!!