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Posted by Jason on 01/27/2011
So the place looks like a casual dining chain, they blast dated indie-rock music from the soundsystem, and the service is on par with the most obnoxious restaurants in Carroll Gardens. I was made to wait for a table in an empty restaurant, was treated rudely by the waitstaff and hosts, had to scream over crappy music to talk with my wife, and was forced to pull waiters aside to ask for things like bread and water. Oh yeah, the food? Its good but you've probably had better (and certainly for the price). My wife and I had a bottle of a low-end wine, a few apps, a pasta, 2 mains and dessert for $250. We could have each had the tasting menu at Convivio for that price with a nicer bottle of red and been treated like royalty. You're not missing out on anything by passing this place up. The pastas were the only stand out, and if you can't find a good bowl of pasta in this town then just shoot yourself.
Posted by selena Leong on 01/04/2011
i was seated immediately, having made a reservation, and my dining partner arrived shortly after. we perused the menu, and went with: - bottle of lambrusco (i don't remember which, but it was 41$). - sformato: warm parmigiano custard, chiodini mushrooms - ridiculously rich and creamy, especially when slathered over the thick slices of buttered toast. - mare salad of shrimp, squid, tiny scallops, shaved celery and onion in a very bright and citrus-noted vinaigrette. this would be the ideal summer starter. - tortellini meat filled, brodo romagnola, butter, parmigiano. um, yeah, here this was unctuous, rich, heavy, but delicious. i'd suggested that we order this because i love the braised veal & truffled ravioli in taleggio fonduta at alto and i knew this would be similar. it's executed just as well, with the perfectly al dente pasta skins encasing tender braised beef. here, you could taste the butter, shimmering all over every bite. - porchetta. tender, rosemary infused round of roast pork with crisp, shatteringly delightful skin and a decadent layer of fat. oh man. this is what gout is all about, and let me tell you, it's worth every toe hurting. - roasted brussels sprouts w/ pancetta as a side. what, who doesn't like brussels sprouts? oh, yeah, kids. well, they'll grow out of it. we had a few additional glasses of lambrusco after draining the bottle. despite all the lamentations about how heavy/rich/decadent everything was, THERE WAS NOTHING LEFT. yeah, we FINISHED EVERYTHING. service was helpful, cheerful and friendly; i actually recognized our server from a bar i used to frequent nearly two decades ago. (shut up, yeah i'm old) she knows her food and she knows her booze, so if you get allegra, don't be shy to ask her questions. she's awesome. hmm, this place wasn't cheap, but it's not as expensive as marea, not even by a long shot. pastas are in the 20$ range, starters are in the 15$ mark, and the roast pork was maybe 30$. wines by the glass hover in the mid-teens. figure dinner for two, with a lot of booze, will run about 200$ before tip. like i said, it's not cheap, but it's a great meal. be sure to take your lipitor afterward though. and don't get your cholesterol monitored for like, three months because your doctor will be pissed.
Posted by doctaj on 11/28/2010
I looked forward to eating here after the articles in NY Mag. Firstly, the fellow showing us to our table should take off his fur Elmur Fud hat. The brunch food was not bad, but there should be more to choose and the menu is difficult to decifer. My biggest complaint is the cappucino. I live in Italy for many years and no Italian would consider drinking this swill. A restaurant devoted to Emilia-Romagna should have a real esresso machine with someone who knows how to make cafe. Instead they have a super automatic that make super poor coffee.- shame, shame. Will not be back.
Posted by Anonymous on 11/20/2010
I was so looking forward to going to this restaurant as I have heard such good things about the chef AND went to the restaurant in Italy where he studied. Needless to say it was pretty disappointing. Very heavy food and very average. Nothing remarkable. There are so many better Italian places in the city.
Posted by SS on 11/07/2010
I will say that after a magnificent dinner at Marea recently, we were very excited to experience Michael Whites new restaurant. We could not have been more unimpressed and disappointed. We have been to many new/happening/in-the-moment restaurants but our overall experience was bad. We had a 7:30 rez and were seated on time at a very nice square table in a good spot in the restaurant. However, the tables are so uncomfortable b/c the bottom lip of the table hangs so low that once you sit down, you can not move your legs/cross them or be in any other position than the initial one you are seated with. Bread was good/our waiter was attentive. We ordered martinis.... actual glass size is good but the actual drink came only half way up the glass. What is that? We did not ask for half a martini. So immediately that set the tone. When we made a little joke about losing half the drink on the way to the table, the server( not our waiter) glared at us. Onward, seafood salad was very good and signature pastas were good - not amazing. We ordered 4 different second courses: roasted chicken which was very good, branzino , also good, and 2 meat dishes: pork chops and a sweetbread and sausage kebab style. Both so undercooked it was off putting . It was more than rare - seriously not cooked. Sent back.....so everyone was eating their entrees at different times which leads to an unenjoyable dining experience. Waiter was apologetic and blamed it on a busy Sat night.... huh? a restaurant has to plan for a rockin'Saturday night and know how to handle it. Needless to say, no dessert, nor coffee but a very high bill which would have been fine but not for that type of night. A ton of people as we were leaving (around 10pm) as we overheard would be patrons saying they have been waiting for 30-40 min for their table. I will say, we all dine out a lot - at different types of restaurants and enjoy many different experiences and this did not live up to the anticipation at all.
Posted by Michael on 10/27/2010
The food was good (not great), and the prices were quite reasonable, but when we left we were hoarse from shouting so we could be heard across the table. It was really, really hard to have a normal conversation. No chance I'll be back.
Posted by Jackie on 10/09/2010
I couldn't believe this place just opened when I walked in. It feels like it has been there forever. The place has a great atmosphere and was just buzzing with people. We were warmly greeted by the host staff who let us get a drink at the bar first (celery infused gin! who knew?) and then showed us to our table. I don't think I have to say anything about the pasta- its just what you'd expect from Michael White- PERFECT! And they have wine on draught for $30 or so a liter. Which apparently was made just for them in Italy, I thought that was a nice touch. Food, Service, Atmosphere A+++ And we didn't spend a fortune... We will be back!