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  • Taverna Banfi

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Taverna Banfi
Taverna Banfi

Taverna Banfi Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.tavernabanfi.com
  • Phone: (607) 254-2565
  • Hours of Operation: Breakfast: Monday - Friday and Sunday: 7:00am - 10:00am, Saturday: 7:00am - 11:30am, Sunday Brunch: 10:00am - 2:00pm; Lunch: Monday - Saturday: 11:30am - 2:00pm, Dinner Sunday - Thursday: 5:30pm - 9:00pm and Friday and Saturday 5:30pm - 9:30pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Executive Chef: Eric Szymczak, Chef de Cuisine
  • Dress Code: Business Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Smoking Area, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
  • Private Party Facilities: For parties of 5 people or more, please call the restaurant.
  • Private Party Contact: Sales Department (607) 254-2678
  • Special Events & Promotions: Call 607-254-2624 for reservations

Getting there

  • Cross Street: 130 Statler Drive
  • Parking: Valet
  • Parking Details: Parking is complimentary
A word from Taverna Banfi
Taverna Banfi is proud to be the region’s premiere Tuscan-inspired restaurant, featuring local ingredients from over twenty regional farms and an award-winning wine list. Taverna Banfi has two private dining rooms for celebrating special events or conducting business functions. For your convenience, we offer complimentary valet parking for all guest dining at Taverna Banfi. We look forward to your visit and thank you for your patronage.Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerItalian
  • Diners' Choice WinnerGreat for Lunch
Diner Reviews
  • "Our office most always uses Banfi's as our go-to place for special occasions whether we reserve a private room or sit in the general dining area. The staff is super and always knowledgeable and accessible. Love the lunch buffet and the chance to be adventurous and try new dishes. Of course the dessert bar is a wonderful ending to a good meal!"
    Dined on 7/22/2014
  • "The service was excellent. We weren't expecting for there to be only a brunch buffet and no menu on Sunday, but the food was still delicious and we loved it. Overall a great experience."
    Dined on 7/20/2014
  • "Food was good, talking to the waitstaff was fun - all students at Cornell - but the atmosphere was not as nice as I remembered: no tablecloths, looked less like a fine dining restaurant and more like a Howard Johnson's and played the worst music I've heard in a restaurant in a long time. We were told that it could not be turned off, changed, it was the owner's favorite; could be but it was a turn off for us. Given the overall atmosphere, not sure that I'd return."
    Dined on 7/17/2014
  • "Taverna Banfi is one of the best restaurants I've ever been to! The entire staff - from the manager and chef to the server - embodied a passion for customer service. Our server, Kelly, was extremely attentive and very knowledgeable about the menu. We were very happy to be approached by the manager (I believe his name was Chris), and the chef, who both wanted to make sure everything was up to standards! Overall, this was one of the best meals of my life and I can't wait to come back!"
    Dined on 7/8/2014
  • "On our third visit, the Taverna Banfi shows how well a student restaurant can be. Outstanding food and professional service. Never a disappointment."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "We went to Ithaca for a class at Cornell and stayed at the Stadler. The food here was great! We all had very different entrees- the Shrimp Pasta was big enough for at least two people and much to my surprise- the ceasar salad was possibly the best we have ever had!"
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "The locals tell us that the restaurant is iffy- sometimes good, and sometimes not. This was our second visit, and it was one of those iffys. We would certainly come back, and perhaps for brunch or lunch instead of an expensive dinner."
    Dined on 7/1/2014
  • "Llevé a mi familia para celebrar el cumpleaños de mi madre. La comida fue muy rica y sabrosa. Los precios fueran respetables y nuestra camarera sabía mucho de los vinos. Soy de Ithaca y éste fue la primera vez. Quiero volver con mi novia."
    Dined on 6/27/2014
  • "I expected much more. Much better. Not at all as described. No white table cloth. Quite an ordinary place that was no different than your standard place in a hotel. And I've been to far better ones. Convenient though. Waitress was not familiar with menu. Didn't even know the amount of crab cakes in an order. She said 4. It was 2. Burger was good. Pasta with sausage was fair at best. Should be better."
    Dined on 6/20/2014
  • "Last minute plans led us to this restaurant. We were lucky to get a reservation during the busy reunion weekend at Cornell. What an excellent dining experience it was. The food was fresh, healthy, and flavorful. I can't wait to return."
    Dined on 6/6/2014
  • "Unfortunately, the food was cold, they ran out of desserts and roast beef while I was having lunch with my family. "
    Dined on 5/23/2014
  • "Food is mediocre but Dessert is absolutely fantastic."
    Dined on 5/23/2014
  • "We selected Banfi because of its association with the Statler Hotel and hospitality program at Cornell University. The food was very fresh and most locally sourced. The menu had a great variety but not so much as to suggest an overstressed chef and kitchen. The wine list was varied and deep. You could find a great wine for a casual wine drinker but also find that very special, unique wine for the enthusiast. Food preparation and service was of high quality and in our instance all three dinners were perfectly prepared. Timing between courses was perfect. Server and manager were very quick to respond to a question we had about a locally sourced ingredient and where to purchase it, since we liked it so much. "
    Dined on 5/22/2014
  • "Daughter spent 4 years at Cornell, this was our first experience dining at the Statler, as a special occasion for graduation. Food was excellent, but service was abysmal. Our primary server was obviously in training and didn't have a clue of how to take drink or dinner orders. The person training her was not much better. Choosing to train someone at the beginning of graduation weekend was a poor choice by the restaurant management. We were very disappointed, and will never go back. This is one of Ithaca's pricier restaurants, and they should be able to do much better. p.s. Restaurant was FREEZING, and requests by us and other diners did not result in any change. Completely ruined what was left of the dining experience."
    Dined on 5/22/2014
  • "The food was great and servers were nice, but small things such as not getting coffee refills and a lengthy time for our food (salmon and salad) took away from an otherwise satisfying experience. Also, a man right next to us engaged in a lengthy phone call despite the no cell phones request on the menu and no one seemed to enforce this despite having tables right next to him. "
    Dined on 5/16/2014
  • "Taverna Banfi offers excellent Italian cuisine at appropriate prices. I have had many professional meetings there and have once met in the back room with a group of 15, and every time the food and service is excellent. Portions are on the small end, but the quality is excellent!"
    Dined on 5/9/2014
  • "It's a pity we locals don't treat Banfis as a dinner option often enough. It's a great choice for foodies. As a lunch stop on a working day it's an elegant option to cafeteria fare. The food quality and menu choices position it way above the mid-range lunch buffet. It is not accurate to describe it as an establishment run entirely by hotel students. It employs professional staff who are warm and attentive. Say "hello" to the restaurant manager, Mohan Nair (of international repute) for testimony to this fact."
    Dined on 4/30/2014
  • "Always a good buffet lunch, with a carved to order meat, but the real highlight is desert buffet: at least 5-6 choices in small portions to encourage tasting 2-3. All high quality. Overall, a nice deal for a reasonable price."
    Dined on 4/29/2014
  • "We have lived in Ithaca for many years. We have tried most of the restaurants but come back to Banfi's for the special event experience. As Cornell alums we enjoy speaking with the waitstaff about their hopes and dreams after graduation. Excellent service. Great food. Adult atmosphere."
    Dined on 4/27/2014
  • "It's located in hotel 2nd floor. Enterance is a little funny. We had buffet course during noon time. All food was fresh and tasted very original. The steak was excellent. Desert was nice. it was one of family trip restaurant. "
    Dined on 4/19/2014
  • "The college town campus was scheduled to be very crowded that day. So, I planned a couple days ahead for a noon reservation. Waiting in line for the maître d', the groups behind us were asking if a reservation was needed and commenting that I had done well to plan ahead. When we got to the reservation desk, our Opentable reservation had been lost. Luckily, the maître d' quickly sat us at the first open table. It was awkward, but worked out. If I had had to wait a fair amount of time, this review would have a much different tone. Will I still get the scheduled 100 dining points for this reservation? The buffet food was fine, but the kitchen staff struggled to keep items continually available. "
    Dined on 4/19/2014
  • "As usual, my experience at Banfi's is always splendid! My mom was visiting Cornell, and so she took me and some of my friends out to dinner at Banfi's! The food and service are always excellent and I enjoy seeing some familiar faces as my waiters! I think the Hotel School is a wonderful establishment and a place that I hope to spend a lot of time in when I come back to visit Cornell! :)"
    Dined on 4/18/2014
  • "We had heard abouth the restaurant on our visit to Cornell and being foodies from NYC was curious how good it would be. We were very impressed; delicious food and wonderful views. We loved being served by the students. "
    Dined on 4/17/2014
  • "Beautifully situated on Cornell's breathtaking campus. My husband enjoyed the Rigatoni Butera, past cooked perfectly al dente & seasoned to perfection. I tried the grilled eggplant on our servers recommendation...sinfully rich & a vegetarian delight! We topped our dinner off with the semi-freddo. It was a chocolate, banana & caramel masterpiece and an architectural marvel! The Statler & Taverna Banfi will not disappoint!! We returned to the Regent Lounge for late night drinks, first sitting at the bar where the bartenders were fun & friendly. They answered all our questions & helped us choose THE best drinks! Later we moved to a comfy couch & enjoyed another drink with friends. It was a great place to chill & a perfect end to our day!!"
    Dined on 4/12/2014
  • "Outstanding food and service. And very clean. If you are staying at Cornell, the Statler is the only place to stay and the Taverna Banfi is the best place to eat."
    Dined on 3/27/2014
  • "It is always a pleasure to return to my alma mater to dine. The ambiance is energetic, with a helpful staff and delicious, freshly prepared and custom-tailored offerings (if you make a request) for any diet or palate. Although I've had several menu items, you can't fail with the dazzling buffet that offers a wide variety of vegetarian, vegan, pasta dishes, cold salads and a numerous array of delectable desserts. Meat eaters will delight in the carving station that offers turkey, pork or beef. Make sure to try the root vegetables that are cooked to perfection. I particularly enjoyed the perfectly-cooked trout with the avocado mousse. Mohan Nair, Taverna Banfis manager is legendary for service, management and remembering his customers."
    Dined on 3/25/2014
  • "Overall, the food is delicious and well presented. I really like the smoked salmon, yogurt parfaits, and cheeses. Also, there is wide variety of toppings (craisins, granola, etc.) for the oatmeal. If there was anything they could improve on, it would be to refill the fruit plate more often. I would also like if they offered crackers alongside the cheeses so that I don't have to put/spread the cheeses on toast to sample them."
    Dined on 3/15/2014
  • "Loved the food. However, I was at dinner with my mom, and she got up to go to the bathroom. Our main entrees were dropped while she was in bathroom. I was shocked that happened. I expected excellent service from banfis. Dropping entrees when not everyone is at the table is not cool."
    Dined on 3/8/2014
  • "I went on a Saturday for lunch with a visiting colleague. There was only one vegan choice in addition to one of the salads There was only one soup choice which had meat. Need more vegan options especially when there is no buffet."
    Dined on 3/8/2014
  • "The food as very good and the wait staff was trying to deliver a quality experience. From a service stanpoint, the appetizers and salads weren't delivered in a staged manner, as an intended shared appetizer and all of the salads arrived at once. The initial bottle of wine which was ordered was not in the house. Supposedly, someone before had just ordered the last bottle."
    Dined on 2/28/2014
  • "Great view of campus. Sterile atmosphere/decor for evening dining, but fine for lunch. Food is very standard restaurant fare- nothing outstanding and food could be a lot better. Student staff are enthusiastic but still learning. Bar is very sterile experience as well, definitely NOT a hot spot."
    Dined on 2/19/2014
  • "Every year my daughter and I like to dress up a bit and go to Taverna Banfi's for a nice brunch around Valentine's Day. The food, as always, is excellent and the service is amazing. We love the fact that they make it a special visit for us every time we go. It's become one of our favorite family traditions."
    Dined on 2/16/2014
  • "When we made a reservation we asked what the dress attire should be and were told somewhat dressy. Given that info, and that on the restaurant's website, we expected more that we got for the price. We described it as a mediocre meal for a top of the line restaurant price (I had the salmon, which was good but too salty-and I like salty!, and my partner had the lobster bisque and a salad). We payed $70!!, for our meal and 2 cups of tea and a $12 tip. The service was also mediocre. Our server seemed new and was pleasant, but we had tea and didn't get spoons, and he forgot the honey after we had asked for it (we got a small cheap packet of honey with our tea. Very tacky). Overall we were not pleased with our experience at Taverna Banfi."
    Dined on 2/15/2014
  • "This restaurant has to be in my top five for places to dine in and around Ithaca, NY. The food had noticeable and distinguished flavors that complemented each other extremely well. The menu was diversified enough to please my dates picky taste in food and the entire meal with a few glasses of wine was reasonably priced. I thought that our server was attentive enough while still allowing enough intimacy to build a memorable experience. I personally thought that the music was turned up a little high between that and the ambient noise of other tables conversations made it difficult to hear at times. Overall, I hope to do it again soon it was definitely a unforgettable night."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "Drove 1 hr to celebrate 80th birthday (mom & twin sis). When confirming, told restaurant about celebration and was assured they would do something to mark the occasion but didn't. Table huge, not conducive to intimate conversation for 5. Olives appetizer never came. Tuscan kale salad was merely chopped kale with a few slices of radish. Bass entree was dry, overcooked. Short Ribs lacked seasoning other than salt. Eggplant entree excellent. Wine selection extensive but expensive with few moderately priced choices. Bright spot: Our server. Chelsea (I believe this was her name) was friendly, attentive and kind but she should have picked up on the cues especially after she was told of the occasion table-side and wished them a happy birthday."
    Dined on 2/8/2014
  • "A great lunch spot and you don't even have to leave campus!"
    Dined on 1/29/2014
  • "We always come for a meal when visiting family in Ithaca, this time for my parents' anniversary and my birthday. The menu is rich and varied without being too extensive and confusing. We enjoyed all our courses, from salads to crab cakes to lobster bisque to short ribs. The wine (Markham Merlot) was outstanding and served in a proper [crystal] red-wine glass. Our favorite part of the meal was the quartet of crèmes, which we shared. Our server, Lee, was delightful, though a little unsure at times about pacing."
    Dined on 1/20/2014
  • "Three of us went to lunch at Banfi's as a final get-together before going our separate ways. It was the perfect setting, and the food was wonderful. We all got the soup, salad, and dessert buffet, so we had the chance to sample many options, all of which were healthy and delicious. Well, perhaps the desserts weren't exactly healthy, but the small portions gave us the opportunity to taste everything we wanted. The wait staff was perfectly fine with our lingering as long as we wanted."
    Dined on 1/20/2014
  • "This is a very nice restaurant on the second floor of the Statler Hotel on the campus of Cornell University. The menu varies and the wine list is impressive. I would recommend this to someone looking for a place to celebrate a special occasion and if you live in or are visiting the Cayuga Lakes region of the Finger Lakes. The service was good and the servers are students at the university."
    Dined on 1/16/2014
  • "We had done the Sunday brunch before and it was about average. This past Sunday the food was much better, fresher, better variety and so on. Beef was really good as were the crepes and fruit. Ideally would like to be able to get an omlette for the price paid, but it is a minor drawback - thus a 4 vs a 5 rating. This is worth the price if you are hungry and want to enjoy a nice setting."
    Dined on 1/12/2014