2321 Fairmount Ave, Philadelphia, PA | Directions 1913039.967450 -75.176076
Neighborhoods: Fairmount/Art Museum, North Philadelphia
Avoid at all cost – I have to write this review after the horrible food we recieved Saturday. We ordered take out over 90 dollars in food when we picked it up the pizzas were burnt.. Not to mention the salads and other appitizers we ordered looked like they were thrown together and did not taste good at all!!! Do yourself a favor and don't waste your money!!!
Good Luck Even Ordering- – I tried to go here last night for dinner. I was excited when I walked in. It looked like my kind of place. My friend said the food there was really good and she was craving their pizza. We decided to take seats at the end of the bar. There were two women sitting down the bar from us. When we came in, the waitress looked at us from the corner of her eye but ignored us. No 'hello' or 'I'll be right with you.' I kid you not, we sat there for 10 minutes while the waitstaff looked at us from afar. They saw us sitting there and did NOTHING!!! Isn't it a BAD economy??? You would think that if you still had a job, in the service industry no less, that you'd be jumping at the chance to grab another table. I also want to point out, it was just getting dark- it's not like we walked in at 10 o'clock. The place appeared empty, no bartender, no hostess, only 2 servers. I really don't understand how a resturant with such a cool atmosphere could have such poor service.. how are they still in business??
The best for Fairmount pizza – I have had only excellent experiences from this restaurant. The first time, we ordered pizza, salad and soup for dinner, and the waiter was very attentive, the food excellent. Their dessert portion was a whopper - two servings of cheesecake (because it was the end of the night, and I guess we were the lucky two).
The next time, a friend and I went in for happy hour and treated ourselves to two delicious glasses of wine - not the crappy stuff I've been served at other nearby popular establishments - happy hour should be a time to bring in new customers, not serve vinegar. Anyway, this wine was wonderful, and the atmosphere is warm and inviting -and beautiful.
Two nights ago, I ordered a take-out pizza for my boyfriend, who has been making pizza his whole life - he resisted at first, but finally approved of the whole-wheat margherita. It was really delicious - he had already eaten a slice on the two block walk home and said "all these years, I've been ordering from the wrong place - wish I had known about this one"
I hope all the recent bad reviews won't take this establishment away. Maybe the other reviews are right, but they haven't proven right for me. I love it here and will continue to populate this place - and order many pizzas for as long as it is around. Thanks Illuminare
Overpriced, weak service, small portions – I live in the Fairmount area yet had never tried Illuminare and had been dying to try. Unfortunately, maybe I should have waited til I died. For a Saturday night, the place was dead, yet my girlfriend and I were treated as if the place was full. The mussels as an appetizer was tasty and plentiful enough but unfortunately I cannot say the same for our main course. I ordered the veal and she a pasta dish. Both were ok, mine being the veal, was a tad too salty, but the portions were extremely small for the price they were charging. I understand we are currently in tough times, but the bread portions were weak to say the least. One of my favorite parts of ordering mussels is dipping my bread in the sauce. Two pieces total is fairly weak. Just the same, the restaurant itself is inviting and comfortable, but outside of that the experience itself leaves you kind of empty. Other patrons had pizza which looked fairly good, perhaps I'll try that as take out next time, but thats about it.
avoid at all costs – Wow. This place used to be good. They are not open for lunch or brunch anymore. could it have something to do with the poor management and horrible staff? Brian Augustine used to have a good place but after my last few disgusting visits I vow to never return.
VERY BAD CUSTOMER SERVICE – The management is rude and does not put the customer first. Do not eat there!!!! Not worth the grief...
Where is Ann? – My friend and I went to Illuminare for lunch on Saturday. We have always had a great dining experience at this restaurant partly because of our server Ann. We were shocked to find out she no longer works there. Apparently, several members of the staff were let go recently. While very disappointed, we decided to stay anyway. Perhaps one of the staff members let go included the person that does the ordering. They were out of several menu items like hamburgers and limes. I must say that I am not in the restaurant business but I think it is safe to assume these two items would be on a restaurant?s shopping list. If in the area, I would recommend London?s or Rembrandt?s until Illuminare reorganizes.
once enjoyable now not so much – My husband and I live in the neighborhood and have been coming to this restaurant for some time now. The service was never too bad and the food was usually up to par. Lately though we have noticed that things have changed a little bit and they havent been for the better I must say. Last week we went out to dinner on a monday night and when the waiter came to our table it threw me off for a second because I was used to Molly who was always a joy to have as a waitress. We gave the young man our drink orders and noticed that it seemed to be quite busy for a monday evening. After we placed our dinner order, we waited 15 minutes to recieve bread which was hard and cold. Dinner took another 30 minutes and we tried to flag down the manager but he was running around flustered helping out our waiter. Once dinner arrived it was cold and incorrect, and since the manager seemed as if he were too busy, we ate some of the food and left the rest. We then waited ten more minutes to recieve our check. On our way out we overheard someone saying that our molly had been fired. The manager, who had been our waiter once-and was awful-was telling customers coming into the restaurant that there was no room to serve them. This seemed odd to me seeing there were plenty of tables available. Over all, our server seemed as if he was clueless and the manager seemed aloof to his position. We will not be returning here and will tell our friends not to return either.
Great Staff, Amazing Food, Stunning Decor – I visited Illuminare for the first time last week. I brought my family from Cherry Hill to my new neighborhood and we were planning on having an ordinary night of pizza and beer. We were shocked to find such a nice restaurant with quality ingredients, friendly and neat staff, and amazing ambience. We offered to sit up front, but the host insisted there was room in the back for us. We were welcomed as if into someone's home, the chefs and servers all greeted us and we were placed in a very comfortable booth with a charming view of the dining room. The price range and entree choices welcomes all, whether it's a night of just pizza or a special occasion dinner. I will defenitely make this my place to take out-of-town guests.
great food, great chef – I'm live in the fairmount neighborhood and frequent the local restaurants often. i would go to illuminare quite a bit because its beautiful and its the perfect setting for an intimate dinner with friends, etc. some times i was a little disappointed with the food because it wasnt consistent. however i was there on new years eve and learned they had appointed a new head chef and boy does it show. the quality of the food has improved dramatically. we ordered the specials for the evening i had the surf and turf and my wife had the veal oscar. both were amazing. not only did they taste great but the presentation itself was something to take notice of. i actually spoke to the manager about the noticeable difference in the food and he informed me about the changing of chefs. apparently the new head chef even had one of his soups mentioned on the oprah winfrey show and the other new chef they hired worked for donald trump. impressive in my book. i was also told to be on the look out for new menu items which im looking forward to. i cant wait to go back. i would recommend this place for valentines day as well because its really a beautiful place.
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