Guisseppe’s Pizza- Mount Hope West Virginia707 Main St Mount Hope, WV 25880
We were in the wilds of West Virginia trying to find a National Forest campground that had a series of geo coordinates rather than an actual address. Our GPS did NOT have those capabilities. Maps weren’t that useful either since the gravel roads didn’t appear on them. We had been in the car for a terribly long time and the children and hubby wanted steak. I looked up restaurants on the GPS and found the nearest two were the Smokehouse and Guiseppe’s Pizza in the near (you know 20ish miles of mountainous terrain) by town of Mount Hope. Smokehouse sounded like it would have steak so we pushed on ahead.
We arrived at a town, nestled in the valley between two mountain ridges, which time clearly forgot. It looked like the town was booming and growing and then just froze in the 1940’s. The architecture on the old buildings was AMAZING! There were so many huge colossal buildings that would be, and probably were, great resorts.
We located the Smokehouse and weren’t very impressed. We parked in the vacant lot next to it (which was littered with debris from the razing of the building) and entered what one would believe was a BBQ or steak house from the name. It was not. It was a gritty, grimy little bar with some booths on the wall. Rather stunned and taken aback. We seated ourselves, but the look of fear on the kids’ faces was rather apparent. Not of people or clientele… of the food.
The owner/bartender/cook greeted us and was friendly enough but looked fairly uncomfortable that we were there. We looked at the menu and it was burgers and dogs. My husband asked about steak and the owner rather apologetically told us that his food delivery hadn’t arrived and he basically had nothing in the establishment “appropriate.” That was his exact words and it took a nanosecond to realize he wasn’t comfortable having kids in there. He suggested we drive another 20 minutes or so to the highway and get some fast food. Uuuuuhhhhhhh negative. No fast food.
We left and started filing back to the car discussing options. The sign for Guisseppee’s Pizza, right next door to the Smokehouse was lit up and the kids suggested we try there. We turned back around, walked back up the hill and walked into a very pleasant surprise. The restaurant was clean and had the shabby chic Italian vibe so common in many Italian restaurants except their accoutrements weren’t resin casts and replicas, they were the real thing. I always respect a place that can keep plants alive and thriving. We were seated in the spacious dining room and brought a basket of fresh Italian bread (still warm) and butter. The menus were not overly expansive, but had a nice variety. Surprise surprise, they also had steak.
We ordered two steaks, a small pizza and Monkeygirl OF COURSE got spaghetti. The salads were iceberg, (I’m not expecting miracles in a tiny town in the middle of a mountain range) but the house dressing was a very pleasant homemade Italian. Refreshing. The hubby and Monkey got garden salads with ranch. BORING. The fresh Italian bread was replenished. When our dinner arrived, the portions were generous but not overwhelming. The spaghetti had a tad too much black pepper for Monkeygirl and I have zero to report on the pizza. That means that Pavan didn’t come up for air; therefore good. The steaks WERE COOKED TO ORDER. That is *HUGE* because it is our number one complaint!!! They were seasoned perfectly, cooked to order… the only complaint was that they hadn’t been allowed to rest so got a little bleedy on the plate. I was rather pleased with the vegetables; they were cooked perfectly. Very little in the world is sadder than poorly cooked broccoli.
We felt the prices were a little high, but while discussing it, Pavan and Monkeygirl pointed out that it was the middle of nowhere and their food costs were probably higher because of that. Overall, the hubby kids and I were very, very pleased with our meal and Monkey and Pavan buttered the bread, made butter and bread sandwiches and took it with us when we left.
Plates were cleaned, not a complaint to be had, cooked perfectly, and well-seasoned. The restroom was creepy, but it was clean, just oddly located and dated. The lack of photos of the restaurant is a good thing. If I’m taking pictures, it’s because something sucks and I want the world to know it!
If you ever find yourself in Mount Hope West Virginia (like if you go to the New River Gorge National Waterway, for instance) and want a nice dinner, check them out!!