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“A Perennial Treat”
Review of Emerson Grill

Emerson Grill
Ranked #38 of 264 Restaurants in Bozeman
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$ 15 - US$ 43
Cuisines: American, European, Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Special Occasion Dining
Dining options: Breakfast, Reservations
Description: An upscale Italian-American restaurant featuring fresh, local ingredients and nightly chef's creations. Located in the historic Emerson Cultural Center, this spot is just perfect to avoid the crowds on main street and still enjoy a flavorful, intimate meal.
Reviewed 11 October 2018 via mobile

This small, intimate restaurant nestled in a corner of the Emerson is off the beaten path, but worth seeking out. We are locals who treat ourselves to a luxurious date night here several times a year. Last week my husband had a dreamy salmon prepared in a flaky pastry with a yummy seafood sauce. It was divine. I had one of their famous flatbread pizzas served on a wooden plank. Never a disappointment. If you’re an out-of-towner, ask for directions to this true Bozeman gem.

Thank GusMom99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (148)
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4 - 8 of 148 reviews

Reviewed 4 October 2018

Call me a snob but, even as a 78-year-old retiree, I can't get over how many good restaurants I find during my travels from my home in Chicago to the eastern, southern and western regions of the United States. But I'm getting used to it. Take the Emerson Grill in Bozeman, Montana. Established in 2005 and located at 207 West Olive Street, owner Robin Chopus' upscale restaurant specializes in Italian dishes and offers customers a dining room with high ceilings, a patio, a wine bar, a private dining room and local and organic homestyle Northern Italian cuisine. Impressive. After a long and exhausting day of traveling and sight-seeing, we arrived in Bozeman eager to enjoy a relaxing dinner. I had researched the Emerson Grill and determined that it probably offers the finest dining experience in Bozeman. I wasn't wrong. For starters, my wife and I sampled baked brie, lamb meatballs, diver scallops, cheeses and meats and olives and a Caesar salad. Yes, I was hungry as it sounds. But everything tasted so good. In fact, I was tempted to try a pepperoni mozzarella flatbread with pepperoni, red onion, fresh mozzarella and roasted garlic. For entrees, we had tenderloin of beef and spaghetti and meatballs with marinara sauce, two traditional dishes that really hit the spot. For dessert...what else?...we shared a large portion of tiramisu. Hey, it's an Italian restaurant, right? We couldn't have been more pleased with our selections--and my decision to visit the Emerson Grill.

Thank Taylor B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 September 2018

The Emerson Grill is a nice place to eat dinner off the beaten path. The food is always good and Malary our waitress did a fabulous job! I would recommend the pork chop.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank RHoward2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Emersongrill, Owner at Emerson Grill, responded to this reviewResponded 12 September 2018

Thank you so so much for your kind review! Your server Malary also designed the wine list. She has an excellent knowledge of both food and pairings and we are so happy that you enjoyed your meal as well as your service. We hope to see you again soon!

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Reviewed 27 August 2018

We also had a reservation and requested a booth for two (see review below ) and did receive a message that they would do their best

We arrived a bit early and seated us at a table inside.The hostess- Ashley and waitress-Ashley did advise us that if a booth opened up ,they would be willing to move us.This did happen and appreciated their willingness to accommodate. Note that our reservation was later at 7:30, which may have helped.
From all of the reviews about reservations, would suggest that they reconsider their approach;. two diners can routinely outspend three and should be accommodated for reservation requests. Couples make reservations for special occasions and/ or just a nice evening out and should be accommodated not for the number of people

The meals were good, but my fault...ordered the fettuccini bolignese and assumed it was a marinara sauce. The menu did not specify, as it was a light cream sauce. Good but not my preference.
Wife had the pasta seafood, which was nice as ordered.

PS....ordered the antipasto-cheese plate as an appetizer. Am getting to where I will have to ask upfront about whether the restaurant's charcuteries are pre-made and refrigerated or freshly cut. The cheese platter served was precut and refrigerated . I understand why they do this, but the flavor does not do the ingredients justice.

All in all, it was a nice first visit on a busy nite. Would go back again, because of the service and hope for a booth.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank IMHunter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Emersongrill, Owner at Emerson Grill, responded to this reviewResponded 12 September 2018

Thank you so much for taking the time to leave us such a thorough review. It is obvious that you put a lot of thought into your description as well as your opinion. I am so happy we were able to accommodate your request. The outdoor patio often opens up a lot of availability inside the restaurant for other guests.. Our policy has been the same since we opened in 2005. We simply to utilize our limited space as much as possible. It is a very intimate setting. We attempt to treat all our guests equally and hope they will all enjoy their evening, whether it is a special occasion, or just a night out with friends.

As for your food choices, we often find that people have a different expectation of our bolognese. It is a traditional sauce, and we do encourage our servers to clarify with people when they have ordered. Again, it has been the same recipe since we began business over a decade ago.

We have a very small kitchen as well as a small staff. We do our best to make the preparation time as efficient as possible, and often that can mean prepping ingredients ahead of time. It is unfortunate that the flavor was compromised.

Thank you again for all of your feedback, and we certainly hope to see you again soon! Please let us know if there is anything else we can do to receive a better rating for your experience.

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Reviewed 23 August 2018 via mobile

My wife and I had dinner reservations at 6pm and requested a booth. When we arrived there was an empty booth, but were told that it was reserved for “three or more”. There however a party of two at one of the booths. We were given only one choice of a table, even though several tables for two were vacant. We were told the others were reserved! So what about our reservations! The wait staff had a surly attitude from the inception and it was all downhill thereafter. After about ten minutes of discussion I lost my desire to eat here and left. We have eaten here more than a dozen times over the past few years and have never been treated so dispassionately. Why have reservations when there is no advantage in doing so. Why tell us that the booths were for parties of three or more when there was in front of our eyes a couple seated at a booth. We should have been given the choice of one of the numerous tables even though they were tables for “four”. Instead the waitstaff chose to alienate a repeat diner who will never return and will surely tell any who ask about the restaurant to expect such deplorable treatment. Bozeman has many nice restaurants where courtesy is important. This is not one.

Thank Mark I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Emersongrill, Owner at Emerson Grill, responded to this reviewResponded 23 August 2018

Mark, I am so sorry to hear that you had such an unpleasant experience. I know the damage is already done, but I will simply try to explain our policies so that hopefully it can improve your opinion of the decision that was made. With such limited space in the restaurant, booths are normally prioritized for parties of three or more as it maximizes the seating capacity. We try to accommodate booth requests when possible, but can never make a guarantee when reservations are first made, and always explain that over the phone. I can understand your frustration upon seeing 2 people already seated at a booth. Often times during a first seating, we are able to make that a possibility if there are not any upcoming reservations. Two people typically eat faster than 3 or 4, and we are able to get them in and out and have the table set for an additional reservation. However, at the time of your reservation on 8/21 there were none left available. We did offer other tables, however some were also reserved for parties of 5 in which case we have to combine two of the smaller tables that are located in the center of the restaurant. We constantly try to be as accommodating as possible, however with our small amount of dining area, we are limited to what we can offer guests. Our reservations are always of top priority, and will receive a table before a guest that did not make one. My advice to any guest requesting a booth, is that the earlier the reservation is in the evening (5pm), the more likely it is that we will be able to do so, (same goes for later on in the evening around 8pm). Again, we are so sorry that you did not receive the commendable service that you are used to, and that we pride ourselves on. Please let us know if there is anything we can possibly do to win back your trust.

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