Williamsburg and Hampton Roads Restaurants

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The Trellis

Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating:  

The Trellis Review

With vaulted ceilings and hardwood floors, the Trellis is an airy and pleasant place. The imaginative lunch and dinner menus change with the seasons. A good wine list complements such dishes as homemade tomato bisque, wild boar, and soft-shell crabs. The seafood entrées are particularly good, and many patrons wouldn't leave without ordering the rich Death by Chocolate, the restaurant's signature dessert. Prices on the outdoor terrace menu are lower than in the indoor dining room.

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Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating:  
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    Times do change....Marcel, where are you?!

    The Trellis used to be my all time favorite restaurant. My husband and I would make the hour and a half trip to Wmsbg to eat there seasonally or for a special occasion and certainly if we happened to be in town. We have always loved the fine service, creative food and attention to detail such as freshness and interesting combinations. Each course was prepared to perfection and even dessert was divine (we are not dessert lovers). We bought each of Marcel Desaulnier's cookbooks and have enjoyed fixing his recipes over the years. We have recommended this restaurant to many friends.

    BUT...alas, Marcel must have retired and perhaps The Trellis should join him. Last night we had dinner for four and we were so disappointed. Our food was mediocre and service was slow and poor. Orders were brought incorrectly (twice!). Flatware on the table was missing. Our server kept telling us our requests were "upgrades" (we ordered a salad listed on the menu with no dressing) and that there were no refills on drinks. (What is this? IHOP?!) The prices haven't changed though...still expensive but now not worth it. Even the desserts were lackluster. The atmosphere is dreary and tired. The restrooms were dirty and unattended. My seat was full of crumbs from the last diner and no attempt was made to clean the area before we were seated.

    We are terribly saddened but realize all good things must come to an end....even our favorite restaurant. Too bad for us because we now have a family reason to be in Wmsbg more frequently and will not know where to eat!

    Someone please either buy and rescue the Trellis or replace it with a fine dining establishment! Marcel's legacy should be honored in a way more fitting to his culinary reputation.

    by srk101, 4/14/09
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    It may be getting better

    I live in Williamsburg and eat out frequently. I enjoy good food and am willing to pay for it. Last night was the fifth time my husband and I ate at the Trellis, the first four times we had no idea what the fuss was all about. It was barely adequate.
    Last night was an exception though, We entered with no reservations after trying to get into several places to no avail, on a Friday evening and were told we could be sat right away but would have to chose our entree from the cafe menu As the place WAS packed and the chef could not handle anymore of the main dinner menu. I looked it over and we decided to stay. I am so glad we did. The hostess staff on previous occasion was to say the least snotty, Last night they could not have been more accommodating. Our server "EVAN" was amazingly professional and although busy, was "Johnny on the spot" with us the entire evening. He earned a 20% tip. The food was really good also, the other times we paid much to much for what was basically a pot roast dinner and last night I had the Grilled boneless breast of chicken with julienne of pumpkin, apples, shiitakes, Applejack and cream on pumpkin fettuccine. I was wonderful! I did not even feel the price was to much I guess because it was off the cafe menu which is lower priced I think my dish was $20. Well I guess in conclusion I will just say we may be going more often.

    by kittn1, 11/3/07
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    Don't bother

    This place must cater to travelers because locals would never go back. Located close to Coloinal Williamsburg it looks great. But the food is overpriced and just not that good. There is no kids menu and teens will not like it. Well unless you have a daughter who likes $12 salads. The waitress couldn't speak English and couldn't care less that our glasses were empty on a 90 degree day. Then we got the bill and they charge for refills! Just say no and don't go.

    by maizenblu, 9/9/07
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    A Miss for Mother's Day

    We just tried The Trellis again for the last time. The popularity of this restaurant amazes me. Please do not waste your time on this place. We waited in line for our reservation to be honored. After being sitted by the waiters door to the kitchen I knew this wouldn't be the any better than the last visit 3 years earlier. The waiter tried but he seemed off his game. They did not offer a special Mother's Day meal just the same lunch they would offer any day. My soup was un impressive, the salad bitter with a bitter dressing, my mixed grill was had overcooked chicken breast, barely cooked "skirt" steak pieces, baby green beans over salted, and potatoes that had no taste. My husband's chowder was ok and his grilled salmon had no taste. I was unlucky enough to see the staff prepare the chicken, salmon, and "skirt" steak but dumping everything out of plastic bags or a large container cooking them all at once, then putting them into a holding oven for the plate preparers to pull from good luck on ordering anything individually. For the prices charged one would hope for better preparation than that. We wil not be retruning.

    by Doxylover, 5/13/07
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    perfect romantic night out

    The atomsphere is great, the staff is friendly, and the food is fabulous. It is a little pricy, but it's meant to be a classy restaurant, so the money is more than worth making dinner a special occasion. I wouldn't pass a meal up there ever!

    by soccergla, 12/14/06
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    Avoid at all "costs"

    I have signed up on numerous travel review site for the express purpose of warning people about the Trellis.
    Their food is average, but at an above average price. Service is below average, but the hostess setup has to be the worst in Williamsburg, or for that matter the state of Virginia.
    When in Williamsburg, eat at Fat Canary, Berret's,etc, but do not eat at Trellis. You will thank me for warning you.

    by j_bensley, 12/14/06

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