Excellent Buffet, with a few tiny corrections.
We visited Bernardo's for the "Mother's Day" buffet, and found it to be "over-the-top" excellent. The variety of seafood, beef, turkey, vegetables, omelettes, pastas, and desserts was almost overwhelming. There are two things that do need improving; the boiled, peeled shrimp had no flavor, and were not cooked enough. They need to boil them with some crab boil seasoning and cook them a tad bit longer. However, I loved the snow crab claws and legs; they were fantastic. Also, our table was very wobbly. The atmosphere was wonderful, but a few of the tables need to be replaced. (We sat at table #128, a round table.) But for the atmoshpere, service, and huge variety of food offerings, Bernardo's gains my vote for Best of the Best Sunday Brunches. Gazing at the Gulf while dining in a historic landmark with excellent food, is very hard to beat.
Check your bill carefully.
The architectural splendors of the Galvez Hotel are fabulous. Unfortunately one can't eat the architecture. My waiter's appearance and demeanor almost made me mistake him for a busboy. Service was glacial even though there were only two tables occupied in the entire restaurant. The food was OK but not outstanding. Tea was served with a teacup but no saucer. I'm not talking about a mug here, but a teacup that usually comes with a saucer as standard equipment. I pressed my (used) breadplate into service as a saucer. Note that this tea for one costs $4.50. For that one would expect a saucer. When the bill came I was overcharged $3.00 for my entree. Naturally the waiter had totally disappeared. Rather than track him down I deducted the $3.00 from his tip... not that he deserved one. Galveston has other 3-diamond restaurants. Bypass this one.
Our party of 7 decided to try Bernardo's for dinner. We're sorry about that decision.
The first disappointment was that the menu isn't the one they've posted online, at Galveston dotcom. The actual menu is abbreviated and less interesting. When asked why, they said, "Oh, we're working to change that."
With average entree prices of $25, diners have a right to expect a trained waitstaff, but here, too, they came up short. Intrusive, overly friendly and uninformed about some menu items, she delivered the white wine at near room temperature.
Food was generally ok, but not worth a return visit.
Historic steak and seafood restaurant in the Hotel Galvez.. In Short Though the dining room features linen tablecloths, leather furnishings and elegant appointments, the unpretentious staff and moderately priced menu make Bernardo's accessible and comfortable for more than the Galveston elite that once dominated the restaurant's clientele list. Entrees include halibut, snapper and salmon, plus fried coconut shrimp, pork and chicken. The Sunday brunch offers an omelette station, Belgian waffles, traditional breakfast items and even a prime rib carving station.