We have been eating at Carmelo's for thirty years and it has long been our go to restaurant for special occasions. This was our first visit since Christmas day 1917, the last day Carmelo Mauro owned the restaurant. We were very much disappointed. The food was mediocre at best, far below the Carmelo standard we had come to expect. However, the prices were substantially higher. The service was quite slow considering there were only three other tables occupied during our visit. We had hoped a fine restaurant would live on under a new (supposedly highly acclaimed) new owner. It was not to be.
We have been to Carmelo's many times. The food has always been excellent, even though it is on the pricey side. We especially loved the 3 meatballs served as a complimentary appetizer, with bread and olive oil dipping compliment. Things have changed, however. We did like the changes in decor. There are now booths near a wall instead of one long couch with tables facing one way out to dining area. The meatball appetizer is no longer served. The olive oil for bread had a dark liquid in it and tasted sour. The menu has changed, and it appeared as though prices have increased. The food quality was not as good. It is definitely not a favorite spot of our's any longer. The food is way too expensive for the quality. We did not enjoy our entrees at all. The service is still superb. However, I do not believe we will be back. We also miss seeing wonderful Mr. Carmelo at the front of the restaurant, inside. I hope he is just taking some much deserved time off and that he is in good health.
Good to see an old favorite continue its excellence under new owners.
I'm nearly 50; ate at Carmelo's as a teen a few times. Had my wedding reception there 23 years ago. Been to a 'wake' there in the late 90s. And this trip was our 2nd visit for an anniversary dinner while in Houston visiting. It certainly isn't as good as it used to be, new menu isn't helpful. But it still very good. It was just better before the changes. And it could use a bathroom update. It's an older building and it's just time. It is still a nicer night out for dinner and excellent food. The new menu is hard to understand and I wasn't happy with that. I even noticed that a couple near us obviously are frequent customers and had to ask for help with the new menu. I hope that doesn't hurt them, but I suspect it will.
Overpriced and very average. Caprese was slimy and tomatoes looked and tasted like cherry tomatoes instead of advertised Heirloom tomatoes. Veal Picata was a generous portion with nice sauce but tough and overlooked. Frankly I wondered if even veal. When I expressed my opinion to the manager when he came by the table, he became defensive and was somewhat arrogant. No apology given. There is probably a reason only a few tables were occupied that night. This restaurant under new ownership will not make it to the end of the year with this food quality and arrogant management.
Great service- our party of 6 was not rushed in ordering. Staff was attentive and the food was delicious. Most importantly, we were able to carry on a wonderful conversations because noise level was minimum.
Wonderful food and service, but on the expensive side.
A great restaurant with fabulous food, exceptional service, wonderful ambience
Went there for the first time... Absolutely wonderful service from beginning to end. Food was savory and cooked to perfection. Exceptional wait staff, and scenic and cozy arena to dine for business and intimate settings. Would greatly recommend again, and reservations are easy to make. 20/10 rating :)
Very good food. We have been going there for years and have never been disappointed.
Exceptional from beginning to end. The Ricotta appetizer was outstanding, as well as the Wagyu Carpaccio. Great Lobster Bisque. The Veal Bolognese special was fantastic, as was the Eggplant Parmigiana. And topped off with some of the best Bread Pudding I’ve had. Great ambiance. Friendly and informed service that added to the experience. Just an all around great place for an outstanding dinner or a special occasion. So glad that Carmelos has stayed open, and is not just a good local place but one of the better restaurants in Houston. Will keep coming back, and bringing friends. We live in the neighborhood, and our house was flooded. I love that this amazing restaurant is still open and will be right around the corner from me as my new ‘regular’ place.
It was absolutely delicious!!! So excited about the changes Ben Berg of B&B Butchers is bringing to this classic HOUSTON restaurant!! Will be back so soon! (And, Joe, the manager, could not have been kinder to our group!)
Meal was good as always and the service treats you like family. It’s a great place to have a quiet meal and a better chat with staff.
Gino and friends will treat you like they have known you forever
Celebrated anniversary so needed some place special and Carmelo's didn't disappoint
Friendly wait staff and personal greeting by manager
I booked reservations here for my birthday, for myself, my boyfriend, and four year old daughter on a Saturday night at 7pm. Our table was tucked away in the very back of the restaurant, next to the emergency exit door, and a loud table of 6. I didn't mind they were loud; they were drinking and enjoying themselves, and lingering over a long dinner. They, too, had the same problem with their dining experience...so much so that a manager was called over to their table, apologies made, and extra attention provided for the rest of their meal because the patrons complained to the staff.
We made no complaints (because it was my birthday and I just wanted to let it go at the time), so our experience never improved.
The problem: It took 15 minutes to get water, 20 minutes to get menus, and we had 3 waiters throughout our dining experience. I'm not sure how, with 3 waiters, we still had to ask for everything, and they seemed confused about what they should be doing. We had to ask for a dessert menu, we had to ask for the check, a takeout box... We had to flag the staff down any every time we needed anything. They were too busy for us, and made little attempt to hide it.
Throughout our meal, NO ONE EVER, AT ANY POINT, ASKED US HOW OUR MEAL WAS OR IF WE NEEDED ANYTHING. I informed the staff through Open Table it was for a birthday celebration, and there was NEVER any mention of a birthday by them at any point during our experience there, either. We were very disappointed and won't be back, despite the fact that the food was excellent. The service overshadowed the food by far.
We went for Valentines Day dinner. Been a few times before. Food was good, I got Beef Stoginoff , wife had Lamb chops. We both had Bellinis , shared an escargot appitizer. Dessert we shared Baked Alaska( waiter didn’t know it was even on the special evening menu! ) and it wasn’t very good. We each had a specialty coffee. Bill over $200. + tip for not great service. Noticed over & over food being delivered to wrong tables. ( the restaurant was maybe 1/2- 3/4 full). To top everything when the waiter finally dropped us bill, he appoligeized that he was very tired because he worked another job, you know the “ feel sorry for me & leave a good tip” ! Overall everything was good for the most part but we could have gone to any number of other restaurants for that money & had supreme service. And yes, we left a $40 tip that really was deserved, we leave 25% tips often. Needless to say I was a little disappointed. May return at some point, will see.
Had a perfect dinner on Valentine's Day. Great food, great service. Definitely will be back.
Neighborhood gem that never let's you down. Will be back!
Valentine’s Day celebration. Excellent experience.
Celebrating Valentines a few days earlier, slow yet satisfactory service.
The escargot was not as good as the many times we had it before, less butterly
Wonderful experience! The waiters were friendly, the food was amazing, and the quietness was perfect!!
We had a great lunch. We ordered Steak Diane, cooked table side. It was delicious and beautifully prepared.
Our appetizer was frozen still inside so we couldn't eat it. The food was very bland and for the price should have been much better. The staff was confused and unorganized. They pushed the fact that it's owned by B&B Butchers now but it has some work to do to get to that level.
Great service and very good food.
We were excited to learn that Carmelo's didn't close after the Carmelos retired. We enjoy the food, service and atmosphere every time we visit. We have enjoyed several holiday events and wine events here. The staff and service that you receive is excellent. We highly recommend this restaurant.
The place is worse than before. Bad everything. We anticipated small changes from new B & B management but was told if would be 6 months. See you all in 7 months.
I found my food to be positively delicious; however, I mostly like will not return due to service and atmosphere. We ordered drinks immediately, but we're not given a food menu for a out 15 minutes. So for several minutes we did not have drinks in front of us, but only complimentary bread and meatballs. There appeared to be management walking and greeting most tables, ensuring everything was well... yet, didn't visit us until the end of the night after we were already just ready to leave. Our waitress appeared miserable and unhappy to serve us. Just was not the atmosphere I was hoping for.
Carmelo’s was my late father’s favorite restaurant. We drove down from Cypress to have a Christmas Eve dinner and was not disappointed. The food was excellent and the service friendly. Can’t wait to go back soon.
Carmelo's has been our favorite "special" place for over 30 years. We are so sad Carmelo is retiring but wish him & his family all the best in their new adventure!
My favorite restaurant. So many great memories. This is our destination for all special events.
Had not been there in a bit and it was just as delicious as I remembered. Definitely a wonderful place to dine.
Excellent place, fresh seafood and wonderful pasta dish. Our server Gino was excellent, very friendly and efficient
Food and service is always great
Wonderful food and the decor was devine. I can't believe I waited so long to try out Carmelo's. Mr. Carmelo was a gracious host and shared the fact that he has had the restaurant for 37 years. I highly recommend dining here. Attentive wait staff and an excellent menu. I will be back!
Our favorite restaurant in all of Houston. Really.
My client wanted risotto and was very pleased with his dish. I wanted chicken picatta and it wasn't on the menu. The waiter was kind and had the chef fix the dish with staueed spinach .
Will be back.
Still one of the best Italian restaurants in Texas. The Spaghetti Carmelo is a family favorite and my personal favorite as well. Carmelo’s salads are always fresh and are the right size. Desserts are delicious and worth the calories.
Another great meal in a great restaurant. This restaurant closing on Xmas day will be a loss for the city of Houston as it’s unique history and owner are worth the visit
Loved my waiter! He was so friendly and accommodating!