Refectory

4.5
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54 Reviews
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$30 and under
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American
Refectory is the newest concept in the Zavino Hospitality Group profile. We are focused on a New American cuisine, featuring our raw bar and osaka style sushi. Come and try some of our favorites : baked brie, spinach and artichoke dip, and grilled branzino. Our wine program is a mix from around the world. Our six cruvinet options allows us to pour some higher end wines by the glass.
What 54 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.5
service
4.6
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
97% of people would recommend it to a friend
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K
Philadelphia
11 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall3food5service2ambience4

Food is excellent. Service is spotty. Mgr was terrific. A bit loud

SO
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on November 5, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Great food and service.

EA
New York Area
17 reviews
Dined on November 5, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

We hit the Refectory before the Villanova men’s basketball home opener. The bar was packed for happy hour specials which included all specialty cocktails and a limited selection of appetizers. Over the course of our time there, every table filled.

The burger was done exactly as I requested and our server recommended the sweet potato fries, which did not disappoint! He also recommended the fried chicken sandwich, which my friend found absolutely delicious.

We topped off our meal with coffee and tea and blueberry crumble which was tart and tasty. Reservations recommended.

BM
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on November 3, 2019
Overall4food3service5ambience5

Too much searing for a steak. We needed to peel off the surface of the steak because it was too bitter. The chicken was succulent but too salty. Service was impeccable. in sum, food was good but not great. Service and ambiance were great.

JG
1 review
Dined on November 1, 2019
Overall3food3service3ambience4

As a Nova alum, I am thrilled to have an upscale restaurant on campus. Truth told, the overall experience was average. We will definitely go back given the uniqueness of Redectory, but the overall experience could improve. Entrees were slightly over priced, and in spite of the friendly and helpful nature of the staff,.service was poor. A few tweaks here and there and The Refectory will be outstanding!

V
Philadelphia
98 reviews
Dined on November 1, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food ran into some friends good new place

OT
Philadelphia
5 reviews
Dined on October 30, 2019
Overall2food1service2ambience3

Sour French onion soup, bitter cappuccino and inexperienced wait staff. Not worth the $

OT
1 review
Dined on October 30, 2019
Overall1food1service2ambience3

The sushi was bad.

SG
Philadelphia
7 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2019
Overall4food5service4ambience5

Delicious food however I posted on open table and asked the hostess to tell our waiter,Dan, that we were celebrating a bday. It was not relayed. Better luck next time.

D
Philadelphia
49 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

The Refectory opened in September in The Commons on Villanova University’s campus. There is parking in the garage on the corner of Lancaster Ave and South Ivan which will be validated when necessary. There’s not much signage other than on the door to the restaurant which makes it feel like a secret place. The interior is very well done with booths, tables and a full service bar. It’s not a huge menu yet the food is delicious with a very pleasing presentation. It’s an open kitchen and I had a view of a well organized operation. Our group of 4 started with the spinach artichoke hot dip with house made tortilla chips. Two of us had the crab cakes which came with two crab cakes each and a creamy sauce. Another entree was branzino. The entrees are served with one side dish. Two had the kale slaw and one had the baked potato that was served with individual containers of shredded cheese, bacon bits, sour cream and scallions. The fourth had the cubano sandwich which was served with skinny fries. Our server Katie was very friendly and attentive. She recommended the butterscotch creme brûlée for dessert. It was delicious!! We will definitely be back to the Refectory again. They recently have begun serving lunch as well. Everyone was very impressed.

Y
Philadelphia
188 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2019
Overall4food3service5ambience4

Love this new restaurant on Villanova’s new Lancaster Avenue Campus. The decor is warm and inviting. The Menu has something for everyone including a Vegan Crudite. My favorite was the Avocado and Crab Toquito; so delicious. I liked the Fish and Chips but for the cost, there should have been two filets of fish. Also, the french fries were like potato sticks; dry and salty and not very warm. Drinks from the Bar were great. But that aside, it was great dining out. Natalie, our Server was a gem.

I
Washington DC
21 reviews
Dined on October 25, 2019
Overall3food3service3ambience4

Refectory was a lot of fun - it's big - it's loud - it's got a nice bar right in the middle of the restaurant. The food was hit or miss. The poke was average - way too much rice. The seafood terrine with avocado was divine. I had to send my sauvignon blanc back, it tasted like it never aged. The chardonnay was much better.

R
Philadelphia
21 reviews
Dined on October 25, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Have been here several times. Love the varied menu and the atmosphere. Also easy in/out with the validated parking. The waiter/waitress staff is always pleasant - I would definitely recommend.

OT
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on October 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Second time back in a week. Great staff. Maurice the engineer and his coworker Sunny are top notch. Tom De’Spy’ster wasn’t there this time but he is very attentive. Excellent food. Superb atmosphere. Well done. Thanks.

CM
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on October 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a great time our first visit to the Refectory. The staff was friendly and efficient, and our food was delicious.

a
Chicago
7 reviews
Dined on October 24, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a fantastic time at The Refectory. We loved the appetizers especially the Spicy Crab & Avocado Taquito and the Prosciutto Wrapped Mozzarella. We also all loved The Spinach & Artichoke Dip. It was delish!! Our party of nine enjoyed many entrees and all were very good. The Aged filet was cooked to perfection, the special Sea Bass was divine, the Burgers were perfect and the Poke Bowl was very very tasty. We had a gluten-allergy in the bunch and he had many options to choose from without a problem. The Key Lime Pie and Tiramisu Ice Pops were a perfect finale to a great night. I have to mention that the ambiance was very festive and feel-good, the decor was very well done with a great amount of lighting. Overall a great addition to the Villanova Campus! Looking forward to visiting again.

f
Philadelphia
4 reviews
Dined on October 24, 2019
Overall3food3service1ambience2

Terrible service

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JL
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on October 19, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Gorgeous brand new space with a private supper club ambience. Great lively vibe. Beautiful bar was full but not cramped. Food was out of this world - the dry aged filet beats any steakhouse in the city! Cocktails were excellent and wine list was well chosen. Service was friendly, well paced, and super helpful. Could not have asked for a better experience! Flawless! Definitely will be back!!

LW
Atlantic City
5 reviews
Dined on October 18, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

As Villanova residents, we were delighted when Refractory opened its doors. They've only been open a short while and we've already been there 5 times. The food does not disappoint. I highly recommend the house salad. Delicious and very unique. All of the appetizers are wonderful. The entrees have all been delicious. The Main Line has found a first rate restaurant.

Steve, the Manager, is very attentive to all the customers and has a wonderful way of making you feel special. The service has always been exemplary.

The decor is lovely and the clientele very refreshing. Highly recommend!!!!

S
Philadelphia
31 reviews
Dined on October 18, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Sat at the bar and enjoyed delicious cocktails from the barmaid. She was excellent in her execution. Wonderful tuna appetizers both fresh and creative. Will definitely be back

OT
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on October 18, 2019
Overall3food3service4ambience3

Just ‘okay’. not crowded, they should be able to smooth out the wrinkles

DL
Philadelphia
9 reviews
Dined on October 14, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Really enjoyed ourselves, great addition to the neighborhood. We’ll be back soon

OT
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on October 13, 2019
Overall3food2service3ambience4

Prices need attention...$28 for Fish & Chips?
Mac & Cheese pasta was hard
Chicken Sandwich + White Bread + Kale Slaw NOT a good combo ...soaked bread! Yuk

We will chalk it up to getting the kinks out. Hoping this becomes a neighborhood restaurant with seriously great food.

OT
Philadelphia
25 reviews
Dined on October 12, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Great meal!!! Service was very good except for long wait for drinks and a super tiny pour on scotch that we asked about and was mostly corrected lol, but my manhattan from the cocktail menu was excellent! Osaka Sushi delish, amazingly light Asian salad, great crab cakes! Sautéed spinach was perfect as was the perfect little key lime tart :) Background music was pretty drab, could be a bit lighter. Looking forward you returning to try more items! Yay!

FF
Louisville
4 reviews
Dined on October 11, 2019
Overall3food3service2ambience5

Love the vibe and would go again but would stick to sandwich and beverages. Filet at market price was well done v medium rare. Service was very slow but they were friendly.

BK
Philadelphia
7 reviews
Dined on October 11, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We were very excited to try it out and we were not disappointed! Service was outstanding with a very knowledgeable staff and the food was tremendous. We will definitely be back.

OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on October 10, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food and service were excellent!

JO
New York Area
1 review
Dined on October 8, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Wonderful experience. Very good value. Exceptional service. Great menu including wines.

OT
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on October 8, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

So glad we went. Loved the atmosphere and the service was excellent. Had the spinach and artichoke appetizer and it was the best I have had in a while. Also had salmon and it was excellent. I know only been open for a few weeks but I would recommend giving it a try!

OT
Philadelphia
8 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Everything was wonderful, the Brie and the spicy crab were phenomenal! We had the butter cake and profiteroles for dessert! Can’t wait to go back. Steve the manager, special thank you for your hospitality!

NJ
Philadelphia
28 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2019
Overall4food4service3ambience4

Food was tasty. Atmosphere very nice. Server was very attentive but food was slow coming out despite the order being pretty simple...spinach dip, Cubano sandwich and Nicose salad.

E
Philadelphia
28 reviews
Dined on October 6, 2019
Overall2food2service4ambience4

Service was fine despite mistake in an order. Food was below average. We ordered ribs which seem to have been fried. Salad was fine. We decided not to waste money on desserts. Won’t revisit.

LW
Atlantic City
5 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We love love LOVE Refractory.

HZ
1 review
Dined on October 4, 2019
Overall3food4service4ambience2

But only after warning them the noise level was way over the top. The manager lowered the volume slightly at our request, but the constant beat of background music was very annoying. When the noise in a restaurant precludes enjoying normal level conversation with dinner companion(s), I hesitate to return and/or recommend, despite good food, service, and very attractive setting.

M
Atlanta
19 reviews
Dined on October 3, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We enjoyed a lively evening with our great niece who is a freshman at Villanova. This restaurant is a great addition to the campus.

JF
Philadelphia
5 reviews
Dined on October 3, 2019
Overall3food5service4ambience2

Food was excellent and the salmon was cooked just as I requested though just a plain grill--no special cooking or sauce. Service was good, maybe too good as our entrees came out so quickly we had barely begun to drink our wine. The place looks nice with paneling that tries to look university/clubby, but the main issue was the noise level. We were there during the week and the restaurant was only half full, but between the music blaring and people talking we could barely hear each other speak! There seems to be no effort to mute noise, even though there was a reasonable distance between tables. Our parking was complementary with a validated ticket, but the attendant at the university garage was nowhere in sight. Another couple was also looking for him, and after about 10 minutes he finally showed up. Clearly some things to work out.

OT
New England
2 reviews
Dined on October 1, 2019
Overall4food5service4ambience4

First time visiting the Refectory. The atmosphere very welcoming from the minute we walked in. The service friendly and attentive - just refining their accuracy on food order. The food was fresh and delicious- presentation great too. We’ll be back and I’ve already made two recommendations that resulted in reservations.

OT
Baltimore
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2019
Overall4food5service5ambience4

Good food- a bit too pricey, but everything was delicious. Would recommend for a special occasion but not the day-to-day, particularly for Nova students like myself. Overall a great new spot!

BS
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Food was great and the staff was very friendly. Definitely will visit again!

JB
1 review
Dined on September 30, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This was the second visit within five days. Excellent, other than a few suggestions to the marketing director.