I was surprised to see a negative comment aimed towards this restaurant. My experience was so drastically different.
My wife and I decided to just drop in one night without reservations. Since this is a small and cozy dining room, reservations should have been made. We were greeted very nicely and given a table. We brought our own bottle of wine which the waitress promptly uncorked and began pouring.
We reviewed the menu and made our selections. The waitress asked if we cared for some of their garlic bread. The bread was delicious! Salads came and were small enough to finish with a terrific homemade dressing. When dinner came, we were very happy the salads were small as this meal was going to feed more than just myself. I ordered the veal which was perfect! My wife ordered the linguini with clams. She raved about it! All fresh ingredients. This was a great experience. As far as dessert ... I really couldn’t comment. This dinner was so good, I couldn't eat another bite. Buon Appetito hasn't seen the last of us. This is one not to miss.
I can see the appeal of this place - It is BYOB and has a intimate and boisterous atmosphere. It is small inside, so you will be right on top of people next to you. Food was average, not great, not bad. It's pricey for what they offer, though. Portions are quite large. Everyone at our table agreed they could ease up on the garlic a bit. If this sounds like your scene, check it out.
Went there after a friend raved about the place. Salad was just greens, no regular Italian bread just garlic bread, tomatoes in the clams with white sauce soured the dish. Entrees in the mid 20's. No soups on the menu. Three of us with 2 appetizers, 3 entrees, no desserts and only soft drinks paid over $120 with tax and tip. Marinara sauce was bland. Very disappointing!
Being new in Connecticut and being foodies, my husband and I were looking for gems of restaurants and so far we have found a couple but in trying to find a nice cozy restaurant, with byo, good food and reasonable prices we came accross reviews for this joint, so I read some of the reviews in which people were saying how amazing and delicious the food was and decided to give it a shot. First of all, whoever said this restaurant's food was amazing or even good, must have their taste buds burned by so much crack because it was not good, not even remotely italian and plain tasteless. Second, yes it is byo with a CORKAGE FEE OF $1.50 PER GLASS, WHETHER PEOPLE IN YOUR PARTY DRINK OR NOT. If they put the glass by the size of the party, you will be charged PER regardless. I read on the reviews this was owned by one of the prior chef's of Hot Tomato. If this is what the food @ Hot Tomato in Hartford is like, I will never eat there. The food was not just disappointing but an epic fail. I asked for the linguini in white clam sauce and my husband for the chicken marsala. Easy italian dishes, right? WRONG. First of all the cook seemed oriental, and clearly italian dishes not his specialty. My linguini was overcooked and super watery, there were 3 clams in the shell and the rest was a mush of canned clams, and the dish had pieces of tomatoes. Now I am from NJ and have eaten in TONS of italian places and never have I had this dish with tomatoes. EVER! ...my husband's marsala was tasteless and the presentation horrendous.
Then to get our bill. We got the wrong bill. Waitress goes to fix it. She got it wrong again. Gave us the wrong stub again. Frustration started to increase. My husband asks for a specific bill, he is told NO.
Oh yes, I'm forgetting one more thing! A veal dish in this rinky dink place? $27! the whole experience was outrageous and insulting. Will NEVER again visit or recommend it to anyone.
Please do yourself a favor and skip this place. You will avoid the frustration and waste of money.
Horrible. Absolutely horrible. Now I know why chain restaurants do so well. Reservation was for 8pm. They called me back said they only had an 8:45pm but at least they could get me a booth. We got there at 8:40 didnt get seated until 9:15. This place is small, 25x30 feet tops. Its not cozy its cramped. Sit at the wrong table and your elbows are rubbing against the guy next to you as you try to eat. So cramped you can't ignore the conversation of the person next to you. The waiting area is literally a bench that seats a total of four, and its right in front of the door, so once you open the door you're in the waiting area. If there are more than four people waiting they will literally be standing next to and around eating patrons, looking directly down at their food...uncomfortable. The service is horrendous. I don't want to name our waitress because that would be totally indiscreet (Katie) oh my! She was plain evil. Apparently many of the people that went there knew her by name. If she knows you, great for you, if she don't. look out and we didnt. She was intentionally awful to us several times. She seated us first even though several people were ahead of us...hmm! Right in the middle of the restaurant at the WORST table. I asked her about the booth I reserved, she said no booths available...what! Not even a sorry. We later noticed the people ahead of us, which she knew by first name, got seated at way better sitting areas. ouch! And yes booths became available. Hold on. It gets better. No place to hang your coat so I put mine over my chair. She later asked to hang it up as it was in her way traveling back and forth behind me. When it was time to go, I had to get my coat myself, way in the back, she never offered to get it for me. It was practically in an anteroom in the back. The person I was with was there before. She got an eggplant parm previously. Ordered it again, Katie tells her they don't serve that, and never did. Oh! I guess my friend just had a delusion she ordered, ate and paid for the eggplant parm three weeks previous. So bad was the service Katie didnt offer dessert or coffee when I asked for the bill, she knew the level of service she gave, never once checked to ask us how the food was, once she seated us I think she felt bad and said oh I thought you were a party of four not two as if trying to explain away why we went from booth to the middle of grand central station...party of four! righttttt! I noticed several people around me were still waiting for their food since I got there, and they were done with their salad ages ago. the salad is a joke. It's meager and literally falling of the plate on the table. The garlic bread is average. The food is way below par. It seems the only ingredients they use is oil and garlic. Let me stress this because it's important. THEY USE ALOT OF GARLIC! to the point of being obnoxious. You will literally have garlic coming out of your pores before you leave, and EVERY dish has a lot of garlic. That is not an exaggeration. The portions are generous but not well made. The food is no better than what you find in a food court. Its BYOB but even a Rothschild wont make you feel better after going to this place, and no offense to anyone who posted a positive review but there's a good chance you were buzzing or half drunk when you left there so maybe you have a tendency to give it a thumbs up. I hope Katie reads this because she knows exactly who we are and how she treated us, and I still left a decent tip. stupid me. All I did was encourage poor service. Do not go to eat at this place. You will regret it. I beg anyone that's ever been there to read my review and argue any of this. HORRIBLE. ABSOLUTELY HORRIBLE. (p.s. yahoo you should have an ability on this site to click half or quarter of a star).
This restaurant has potential but the waitress ruins any chances of us returning. She is rude and grumpy. She is also very slow and lazy. I cannot believe how unfriendly she is and expects a tip. My husband and I stopped in for the first time on a Thursday night. We were not greeted, but treated as if we were a bother to her. The place was loud and very uncomfortable. Our sodas took forever to come, arriving only a couple of minutes before our food. I must say the garlic bread was awesome, and the food was decent, but not worth the price. My husband and I each ordered a dinner and a soda. With the measly tip we left for poor service, our bill was $70! That is absolutely outrageous for a chicken and a veal dinner. Save your money and your hearing and go somewhere else!
It seems that maybe sometimes you can't trust a review from a person who doesn't kow fine dining. Maybe Megan can enlighten as far as where else to go instead of just trashing the restaurant. We moved to simsbury CT from Tribecca NYC, where fine Italian dining can only be outdone by actually going to Italy. Since moving to CT, we've yet to find any Italian eatery that comes close to paralelling anything we're accustomed to. Buon Apetito is as good as it gets. Fantastic flavors, generous portions, and a superb fine dining atmosphere.
Usually I would just say to each his own as far as restaurant reviews, but please do not cheat yourself out of one of the best meals you will ever eat by trusting any of the negative reviews on this site. The food is incredibly unique and this chef is extremely talented. I had the mushroom ravioli which was prepared with a seafood sauce of scallop and shrimp and it was easily one of the best things I have ever eaten. It was a very difficult choice to make because the waitress will describe to you, in detail, how each entree on the specials board is prepared and you will want to try every single one of them. Throw a dart and you will experience something wonderful!!! BYOB
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