Bova Cucina (Boca Raton)
Bova Cucina, 1901 North Military Trail, Boca Raton, Florida 33431 (561) 392-5595.
You know…if you dress a money in a $2,500 suit (in this case the suit is a great looking restaurant), it’s still a monkey.
Do me a favor and read my review for Mario’s of Boca (July 21, 2008)…it wasn’t very favorable.
Well the owners of Mario’s, recently changed the joint’s name to Bova Cucina and started a “dinner-promotion”…last month it was $8.95, this month it’s $9.95…the “deal”…soup or salad, garlic rolls, entree, pasta side and they throw in a cannoli for dessert.
Well, it’s still the same monkey dressed in the “$2,500 suit”…and the food is still mediocre.
The other night the joint was jammed with “bargain hunters”…trust me on this, the portions are small and like I said before, the food isn’t very good… your favorite neighborhood “mom & pop” serves better stuff.
Fool me once, shame on you…fool me twice, shame on me.
Jeff, been down in Florida since 1987. Born in Queens. Like you, I recall when Mario’s was basically the only player in the red sauce arena. An absolute goldmine and terrific foot to boot.
Over the years competition increased and those competitors most with better food ate Mario’s lunch. Mario’s got so bad that the fried veal parm had the cosistency of an old shoe.
My wife and I haven’t eaten in Mario’s for maybe 10 years. Nino’s, Dominick’s, Augy’s, Pizza Time now get our business.
Last month we saw the name change to BOVA CUCINA and the $8.95 price, and figured what the heck.
Well, the food is the same as it was 10 years or so ago. Nothing even remotely great. The portions are very small and the guys I named above are still much better.
The name change and pricing isa gimmick. It’s the same old dog.
As soon as the specials stop this place is dead.
for 9.95 you get exactly what you paid for.
very small portions which are maybe 1/2 the size of what you get in a regular place. food that is not the greatest. service which is spotty.
Was very disappointed. Don’t waste your time. Miniscule portions. Stick with your regular restaurant.
Saw so much newspaper advertising that we gave Bova a try figuring that all we had to lose was $9.95 a piece. Others must have thought the same as on Friday night the restaurant was wall to wall people. Didn’t help that the outside area tent was being buffered by constant rain and one of the private dining areas had some sort of party going on. Waited 45 minutes and finally got seated. Not going into meal detail but for $9.95 they give soup or salad, main dish, pasta side and a cannoli dessert. portions are very skimpy. The food is alright. Nothing to get too excited about but for $10 it’s alright. Would I run to this restaurant for a bigger portion priced at $18.95 nope. There are many better resturants in the immediate Boca area that have regular prices.
For $9.95 yes. For regular prices, no.
SAME CRAPPY PLACE BEFORE IT CHANGED ITS NAME. $9.95!!!! I WOULDN’T GIVE YOU 10 CENTS FOR THIS CRAP!!!!.
TRIED THERE 9.95 SPECIAL, ALWAYS A 45 MIN WAIT OR MORE,THE DECIBEL LEVEL IS OFF THE CHARTS, THE FISH WAS SUPPOSE TO BE COD,BUT WAS REALLY BASA FROM THAILAND.IT WAS SWEET BUT NOTHING ELSE CAME WITH IT. THERE SALAD WERE PREMADE AND TASTELESS,THERE STEAK WAS OK BUT NOTHING ELSE CAME WITH IT.THERE 9.95 BOTTLE OF WINE WAS A GREAT DEAL. THERE BREAD STINKS WERE THE ONLY STAND OUT.NOT WORTH YOUR TIME FOR THIS ONE EVEN At 10.00 DOLLARS. WAIT STAFF IS OVERWHELMED WITH THE CROWD. JEFF IS RIGHT ON THIS ONE.
NOTHING HAS CHANGED ONLY THE NAME, IT STILL OPERATES THE SAME A MARIOS.SOMETIMES YOU GREAT SOME GREAT DEALS, BUT THIS WAS A REAL BUMMER,
Ate at the Bova on Fed Hwy in Boca Raton on Saturday. Food is terrific.
I have also eaten at Bova Cucina and food is just okay.
Been down here for close to 30 years. Very familar with most Italian restauarnts in area. Hope you dont mind but I went through your list and gave my ratings.
For this one.
WELL. Sounds like somebody has issues with Bova’s. Let me tell you that we have only rave reviews of any Bova restaurant including the Cucina. We can’t believve this person thinks the portions are miniscule. Quite the contrary. Authentic, delicious and plentiful.
Love it. Recommend it to anyone especially at 9.95!!!!!!
i believe most of these angry critical reviews are from the same person.
Florida resident for 15 years. I remember when Mario’s was the place. That all ended when it moved about 6-7 years ago to its new location. Why i don’t know but the food went from delicious to bad. Hadn’t been back in about that 6-7 years until last week to try $9.95 dinner special. Now use your head, why $9.95 specials unless business stunk.
They changed the name but the food is not improved from years ago.
Hey jeff, first it was $8.95, then it went to $9.95, now the same meal is $10.95. These guys just keep moving the price up. People are going to get tired of this game.
jeff eats, same old same old. just a different name. mario’s was terrible and bova is no better. 8.95, 9.95, 10.95 every month price moves up. not good.
Stopped going to Mario’s years ago shortly after it moved to the hotel location. Food was not good. With new name and new prices tried last night. Not good.
what a terrible restaurant. both my wife and i thought that the food was incredibly 3rd rate. the garlic rolls are excellent but everything else was a disaster. toilet city last night for both of us.
Dear Jeff: The food was okay. Not great but not bad, OK. There are many other restaurants far superior to Bova Cucina. Just off the top of my hat in the area, Nino’s, Dominic’s I & II, Maggiano’s, Macaroni Grill.
For starters they had $8.95 then $9.95 and now $10.95. Pretty soon the price will not be even close to a bargain and people will stop coming.
How a restaurant could go from terrific to inedible in a few short years is a puzzle. Mario’s before it move was great.
The new name and cheap prices got me back last night.
Nothing further to say.
Elisa: Just had a chance to read your post.
Based on your post, I am assuming that you either work at Bova Cucina or are one of the owners.
Just so you know, every post “comment” that Jeff Eats published,came from a different e-mail address. Now, unless, this “angry person” that you mention has numerous e-mail addresses, I think the odds are, that many folks don’t think too much of Bova Cucina. Sort of like me.
No matter how you spin-it, to me, the food is nothing to write home about.
Let’s be logical here. Mario’s has been around for years. Everyone knows the “name.” If it was doing-well, the owners would have to have had rocks in their heads to change the name. Throw in the $8.95-$9.95-$10.95 promotions and to me at least, it’s obvious what the story is here.
Anyway…thanks for reading.
Let me put my 2cents in here.
Jeff, you are so correct about Mario’s past history that being the king of the hill years ago and then a major drop to nothingness.
Personally I hadn’t thought about eating at Mario’s in maybe 5 years. On top of that I can’t recall the last time anyone of my friend’s has suggested eating there.
My wife and others mentioned the name change and the new bargain menu price. If others hadn’t told me I wouldn’t even have known about Mario’s renaming itself but keeping the same operation and owners.
To make a long story short, a bunch of us gave the “new” Mario’s a try getting in on the $9.95 price deal. The food was alright nothing outstanding but nothing to get the stomach pumped out over. The garlic rolls were just like way back when delicious.
Will we be back? We’re not tripping over ourselves to get back, but the low prices should keep Bova Cucina-Mario’s busy with the older crowd looking to watch the old wallet.
That’s the straight story.
I have been eating at Marios since 1987 when they were in Glades Plaza. Consistantly good food. Granted Il Mulino is the BEST Italian food in south Florida, Marios holds their own. The $9.95 special was a great value and nice portions. The fish vesuvio was great and I had it 11 times during the month of June. I will continue to eat there, even at the new price increase to $10.95 for the month of July.
Food was fair. Very small portions on $10.95 deal. Had dinner there on 7/4/09.
What a terrible restaurant. My wife and I ate dinner there last night and the food was lousy and the restaurant is incredibly noisey. Not an enjoyable meal.
hey jeff eats, Give Villagio in Mizner Park a try.Good foodand good prices. As for Bova you get what you pay for—- $10.95 meal. I’ll leave it to others to decide what they think but I won’t be back anytime soon. By the way, Matteo’s is probably the best around.
they got a nice inexpensive buffet during the week.
Jeff, love your site. You really call them as you see them. Of course others may see them differently but you sure don’t pull any punches. I also love your writing style.
On Cucina Bova you hit the nail on the head. Just fair. As a Boca resident I can tell you that there at least 10 Italian restaurants in the area/same price range that are much better. Not to bore you but try Nino’s in Boca, Nino’s in Delray, Domenic’s and Domenic’s II in Boca, Tony Dell’s in Boca, Thick & Thin in Boca, Positano in Boca, Pizza Time in Boca, Romano’s in Boca, Augy’s in Boca.
Many better Italian restaurants in the Boca Raton area. This is a nice looking restaurant but the noise level on a Sunday night was absurd. Don’t let the $10.95 fixe dinner price fool you as the food isn’t the best. They do make some very good garlic knots but that is about it.
Because of friends we ended up at Bova last night. Fair is the best I can say.
Heard about your site from friends of mine who live in the Woodfield Country Club in Boca Raton. Really enjoy your style.
Just thought I’d tell you and your readers about an incident that I had about 6 weeks ago at Bova Cucina.
About 6 weeks ago I and the family there are 3 of us ate dinner and even with a $10 price we still ended up spending close to $100. We really enjoyed the food, service and the wine.
During the meal the waiter told us that for $12 you could get 2 pizzas for takeout and that we should try them as they were great.
The next day I called, confirmed the $12 price and ordered 2 pizzas. But when I arrived and went to pay I was told that the price was $16. Now $4 isn’t going to kill me, but I know what I was told.
I asked to speak to the GM and he told me that the deal was buy one $16 and get one free. I told him what I was told and this guy refused to honor what his waiter had told me and what I had been told on the phone. The GM was very nasty and didn’t seem too customer oriented. For principle only, I left without the pizzas and got pizzas from Nino’s down the road.
The point here is that I will never go back to Cucina Bova ever again. They have lost me as a customer forever. The owners of this restaurant probably have no idea as to what a moron they have running this restaurant. He really is piss poor in handling people.
JJ:Don’t recall when it was but I could swear that a few weeks ago I saw a $6 pizza add in the Sun Sentinel run by Bova. Based on the $9.95 price my husband and I went to Bova. We thought the food was alright but nothing great. The restaurant was full with 45 minute waits when we were there. The service was good but because of all the crowds very noisey. I don’t know if we’ll eat there again but it was a good buy for $10 or so,
Bova or Mario’s, this restaurant has the best Italian food on the planet, including Italy. They have a mama in that kitchen that really knows what she’s doing. Anyone who disagrees doesn’t know what good food is.
I have been a Boca resident for over 35 years. My wife and I have literally eaten in every restaurant that this city has conjured up. We know Bova (Mario’s) extremely well. This use to be the top dog in Boca. Now it’s an also ran. The food in its latest location is garbage. The only thing vaguely remindful of the old place are the garlic knots. Why Mario’s became a craphole is beyond us but it did. There are numerous better places to eat red sauce Italian food.
Ate at Boca Cucina in Boca last night with a group of 8 business assoicates. Totally disappointing….menu was uninspired & food was poor to fair. I had a beet root salad made from canned beets (soggy at that) & the walnuts listed on the menu were nowhere to be found. Main course was a grilled salmon that was dry as old shoe leather. Looking around the table, I didn’t see any positive expressions from anyone else. With all the good restaurants in the Boca/Del Ray area, you’d be better to eat elsewhere.
Dave S: Just had a chance to read your comment.
If you had read my Bova Cucina review before dining, you could’ve saved yourself a bad-outing. Live and learn.
Right down the road from Bova Cucina, you got Matteo’s which has to be one of the best Italian joints in all of South Florida. Your party of 9 would have loved it.
Thanks for reading…
Have to ask all those out there how they can say the portions are small for the money. Are you kidding me, I can split a meal with my husband and still bring leftover’s home. How much do you people eat in a sitting? I have been to Augy and that place was a joke. I know it has been there for years but the food was a joke. Yuck! what a waste of money that evening was. O I forgot mostly 65 and over and the service sucked.
Just got back from dinner. The food was excellent, we didn’t wait at all and the service was excellent!! Don’t know what all you fools are thinking but it is probaly better off if you stay home and cook!!
This place is horrible now and before Tony
Bova is a nasty man who deserves whatever
he belongs in jail with his parnter rothstein
This is nothing more than a mediocre red sauce Italian JOINT. You want the best in Boca, you go to Nino’s at Palmetto/Powerline. A close second is Dominic’s II on 441/Glades in Home Depot center.
out of business.