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Mamma Maria Restaurant - 21 Reviews - 1637 E Passyunk Ave, Philadelphia, PA - Restaurants Reviews - Phone (215) 463-6884

Mamma Maria Restaurant

1637 E Passyunk Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19148
(215) 463-6884
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Last week my family and I were walking around South Philadelphia looking for a great Italian restaurant. Since my mother?s family is from central Italy, I knew the odds were agai...


We have been at this restaurant for 4 times now over the past few years. I spent almost $300 for 4 people. We were there for a little under 2.5 hrs. Mostly because of waiting for ...

Not impressed 10/25/2011

We were going to try this restaurant but after my experience at the Italian Festival a few weeks ago and the number of bad reviews I've read on this site, I don't think so. My children and I ordered several orders of sausage & peppers & several orders of gnocchi to go at $6.00 per order, not a bad price so I asked for one more order and you would have thought that I asked for the moon. I was really taken back. I really didn't think that giving them more of my hard earned money would have been that much of an inconvenience but apparently it was! It was hot and fairly busy at the Festival so I thought I'd give them the benefit of the doubt and try the restaurant anyway but after reading these reviews about the bad attitude toward customers, I can only assume that this is how you are always treated at Mamma's. P.S. the food was not all that impressive anyway. more

Worst Food I've Ever Had 9/16/2011

Very out-dated, environment. Felt like I was eating in someones 1970's livingroom. Was told the minute we walked in that the part of the establishment we were in was the party area because they just experienced a fire and the entire other part of the place was wrecked. Well, from that point we should have turned around and left! The service was awful. The wine was stale. The antipasta was sitting on the table for hours, because we saw it on the other tables after we sat. The past was box type. The gravy was disgusting. And to top it off, I sent my entire shrimp dish back because it tasted rancid, full of ammoinia taste. I was charged full price without an offer to even take anything off the bill even though only one person could touch their food. I sent everything back, and the girl could have cared less. It was an overall disgrace! You couldn't pay me to return for anything. Even if the food was pallable, I would try it again maybe- but it was god awful! Flies all over the place, a radio on a chair in the corner with a cloth over it so no one can see. The table was so tiny and held up on a block b/c it was uneven and almost fell over when the waiter pulled it out to seat us. Service terrible, food disgusting and rancid, probably served after it soured from the electric being out from the fire they had, and the place is a dump!!!! more

Terrible Dining Experience 2/10/2011

The advertisement in the South Philly Review is so inaccurate. I felt like I was dining at a tourist attraction restaurant in Walt Diney World. The service was terrible and people that worked there spoke broken English. I think they just stepped off the boat from Latin America and tried to pretend to be Italian. Let me rephrase that--they were extremely rude and so was Mamma Maria herself. She looked like someone just pissed in her cornflakes. more

Terrible Experience at Mama Maria's 5/27/2010

We were 5 adults and 2 children celebrating three family birthdays. We had reservations and from the moment we arrived, we encountered a waitress who treated us horribly. We were taken aback by her nasty attitude. None of us had ever met her before, and were baffled. She rattled off the menu at warp speed and became agitated when we asked for a repeat of something. Pros: Outweighed by the cons Cons: Surly waitress more

"" Trust Us "" 3/23/2010

We have been going to Mamma's for years. Over the years to the present time we have notice a decline in service, a decline in food quality, and an increase in price. We went to Mamma's with a party of six people. All we did was brag about the restaurant, and at the end we had to apologize to our friends about everything. The waiter told us the wine was home made, it was Carlo Rossi(cheap wine). They served us canned veggies(not kidding), the pasta was box pasta ,(not homemade),and the main course was bla. Also the price went (UP) TO $55.00 per person. We were there for 3 1/2 hours. The service was a joke. Also with a party of 6 people the restaurant added there own 20% tip on the bill and for 6 people with the tip and tax it was $427.68. DO YOURSELF A FAVOR THINK TWICE BEFORE YOU GO ! WE WILL NEVER BE BACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Pros: Homemade Limoncello Cons: TO EXPENSIVE, SLOW SERVICE,NOT CONSISTENT more

1st time goer, experienced kitchener 9/8/2009

1st time at restaurant tonight with other season Italian americans, still close enough to speak italian. The food was nice, relaxed atmostphere and momma came out to greet us, very hospitable. Several course and all nice, like family food. Still, for a restaurant it's missing creativity and attention to detail. like my mamma, she can cook but not much on technique. Some things were dry and often could have been make better with just a bit more food knowledge. Sometimes home cooking is not enough to send a restaurant to the top. Finally, not a bad value for the time spent and variety given, but if you are looking for fine or creative or any new quisine this isn't the place for you. Pros: homey atmosphere, and friendly momma! Cons: no creativity, little attention to detail of cooking more

Dined too long and was asked to leave ! 8/22/2009

We have been at this restaurant for 4 times now over the past few years. I spent almost $300 for 4 people. We were there for a little under 2.5 hrs. Mostly because of waiting for the food. I had paid the bill and about 10 minutes had passed. We were just about to leave when Momma came over and said the the table was reserved for others and we should leave. I was dumfounded ! Needless to say, we will NEVER goback thre again. I am giving 2 stars because the food is good. Pros: Great food Cons: Cramped more

Like dinner at home... 5/18/2009

Going to Mamma Maria's is like eating dinner at a friend's house. The staff are very friendly, Mamma always comes out and greets the guests, complimentary wine and limocello wine flow freely; however, I have to say that they do take some short cuts on the food preparation. For example, the antipasta was on the table before we sat down wrapped in saran wrap, some components of the dishes were canned (olives, veggies). All in all, we had a good experience but with all the great Italian places in So. Phila, chances are I won't be back. Pros: Homemade limoncello, friendly service Cons: not the best Italian food in the city more

Their reservations do not work well! 2/16/2009

I have to say that my wife and I did not have the chance to taste the food. We made reservation 6 days in advance for Valentine's day. Although we had reservations, we had to wait more than 1 hour and 20 minutes right next to the door! The reservations were just overbooked ! I had never experienced that before and I can tell you that this is not the kind of thing you wish for Valentine's day. We just gave up waiting and left for another restaurant because it was just too much! more

Not what I expected.... 3/3/2008

I felt it was ""average"" not fabulous as some friends said it would be. I felt is was too dark with very old fashion decorations. Red/white wine was plentiful. Although their wine gave me a headache the next day. Not used to that. Appetizer platter: roasted eggplant, peppers and garbanzo beans was good. Bread was warm and crusty. The white bean soup..just okay. Pasta course was good. Entree of roasted seafood was also good....3 large shrimp, 1 langostino, 2 scallops, 3 pieces of calamari.... very little string beans and 1/4 piece of potato. Desserts were fair; nothing to write home about. Six slices of 6 different layer cakes. Come on, this is South Philadelphia...home of the best pastries in the city. No fruit, no cheese after dinner as one of my friends said Maria displays. My double espresso was good. Tried to get another but couldn't get attention of staff. more

the best italian food in the city 5/30/2007

Last week my family and I were walking around South Philadelphia looking for a great Italian restaurant. Since my mother?s family is from central Italy, I knew the odds were against us going in. The only other restaurant was Mexican (which I personally don?t like) we decided on Mamma Maria. Instantly we were seated without a wait (on a Sunday night), and the peppers and eggplant were brought right out. With no menu in front of us, we knew this was going to be an experience. All you can drink wine was the first pleasant surprise followed by many others. Needless to say, the experience was one of a kind. If you like ?REAL? Italian food and want to eat like real Italians do Pros: great food with a friendly staff more

Mamma Maria 2/16/2007

My husband and I sat down to a small plate of antipasto waiting for us- a few pieces of grilled veggies & roasted peppers, along with bread. They brought out what was supposed to be pasta fagioli- it was not pasta fagioli, but rather a vegetable soup of sorts. It was really good, but not pasta fagioli none-the-less. We received a trio of pasta which was okay. Not great, not homemade, just okay. Then the entree. I'm pregnant & considering there were 3 fish dishes, 1 veal, 1 chix, & the 6th was a meat platter, I picked the meat. It had roasted pork, chicken, sausage & lamb-- I figured it couldn't be that bad. The pork had no flavor & no salt. I didn't even look at the lamb b/c it was grey & still on the bone. The chicken was manageable at best; the sausage tasted like it was ground together with misc meats & no fennel. I felt like I was at someone's home & didn't want to be rude but I couldn't manage to get it down my throat. I think I drank 8 glasses of water. The meat tasted like it was cooked the day before & reheated, EXTREMELY gamey. I was mid-bite when I realized we were eating leftovers from Valentine's dinner the night before. After politely mentioning that we were afraid we wouldn't be able to eat the rest of the goodies, we asked them to wrap our entrees to go. They brought out a plate of cheese, cantaloupe & 1 small salad. The salad was my favorite part and it was served on a saucer. All of the desserts were made with liquor except one: the ""leftover cake Mamma made especially for Valentine's day""... the day before. I suffered through the Vienna frosting, hint of biscotti & red cherry on top, and was ready to get out of there. But not before they brought out already opened bottles of liquor for an after dinner cordial- Sambuca, Amaretto, Lemoncello, Orangecello and some sort of white cloudy-cello. The best part out of all this, aside from the fact that we were stuffed FULL of really bad Italian food... was that when the bill came it was $130 w/ tip. more

Want to get drunk? Good place then! 11/8/2006

The food actually wasn't that great, but there is a lot of it! The unlimited wine and liqueurs were amazing, and the service was great. Not sure it's worth the $55/person though. It was a fun time with the large group that I went with. It was a Sunday night, and there was no one else in the restauant, except for one other table that arrived near the end of our meal. I would have rather had a more upbeat atmosphere, but overall it was a fun experience. Pros: unlimited drinks, lots of food, good for groups Cons: quality of the food, price more

That's AMORE 10/18/2005

This was one of the best meals I've ever had in my life. I went with other folks from a business conference whom I did not know very well. However, we all felt like a family after enjoying the enormous amount of food and personal attention we received. It was a great atmosphere and I would highly recommend to anyone. I would love to find another excuse to go to Philly for work so that I would have a chance to eat here again. more

great for a large group 5/13/2004

We go here once a year with friends - usually about 14 or 16 of us and it is always a crowd-pleaser. Lots of food and courses- and Mario the accordian player who entertains on weekends is great. He always plays "" Can't Touch This"" on the accordian and after a few glasses of house Chianti there isn't anything funnier. Food is good, but not exceptional. But it is a great place for a large group and they bring you a platter of cordials (the whole bottles!) and you can't beat it for $55/pp Pros: good value, entertaining, great for groups more

WONDERFUL! 4/6/2004

We stumbled on Mamma's one cold January night because it was the only parking space we could find. And, what a find it was! The food is excellent. I've never had even close to a disappointing meal. The service is very attentive and friendly and Mamma always makes you feel like family. The only bad thing about it is that I always overeat! The prix fixe menu is great and leaves no surprises Pros: Service, Quality of food, All inclusive price more

Best of the old world 1/15/2004

Mama personally visits every guest at her restaurant, making you feel extremely welcome. The staff are attentive and extremely knowledgable of all foods, and wines served. whether dining with two or ten, you will never be disappointed at Mama's! more

terrible... 11/9/2003

Such a waste of my money and my time. The food was blah at best. I had the swordfish, which was dry and tasteless. Salad? I could have made a better one myself. The dessert was ho-hum. It actually hurt me to pay that bill. I hate wasting good money on bad fod. more

Home With Momma 11/28/2002

I have been going to Momma Maria's for years now. It is the best meal I have ever had. You feel like you at home with Momma Maria stopping at your table to make sure you are happy. The food is fantastic along with the service and atmosphere. You are encouraged to stay as long as you wish. I love the accordian player and his cannoli song. I wish I could eat there every night. more

Now that's Italian! 10/14/2002

We ate there on Saturday night before a show. The service was excellent and timely as we requested. Every course was delicious, especially the pasta trio including basil pesto shells and the seafood dishes. We enjoyed a succulent swordfish with shitake mushrooms and a tilapia broiled with a light marinara sauce. The desserts were decadently delicious. Pros: All inclusive, Service, Food Cons: Too much food, Cheesy music, Table too small more
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Menu for Mamma Maria Restaurant

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  • In Short
    During busy months, a strolling accordion player or stand-up comedian adds to the atmosphere. There is no dinner menu, just seven evenly paced courses for $50. Dishes change...

  • 7/12/2006 Provided by Citysearch

Additional information

  • Hours:

    Mon. - Fri. 10:30am - 10pm;Sat. 5pm - 11pm;Sun. 3pm - 10pm
  • Payments:

    Discover, American Express, Master Card, Visa
  • Neighborhoods:

    South Philadelphia, Bella Vista/ Southwark