So from my report from my last visit to the Trattoria, I said I’d definitely be back. I finally got around to it this past weekend to celebrate a couple of birthdays (including mine) with friends and fam, four of us in all. My first hint of trouble was that the original website had been hacked with malware and they’d put up a new one that was sort of sorry in comparison to the old. So then I browsed Yelp to get an idea if the menu or anything else had changed and boy, howdy, had it. But still, this is what my friend had planned so I just went with it. I can usually make something of nothing when I go out to eat, find the high points and all that.
Oo, was I wrong. Every negative aspect I read about came to pass. In a semi-brief rundown we had:
- Servers who couldn’t adequately describe the menu, like items in a salad for my vegetarian friend (VF). Or when asked questions they didn’t understand, they’d simply ignore that part.
- What seemed to be the tiniest table on the planet. One of our members was six-foot plus and semi-claustrophobic. Didn’t go well for him.
- Sub-par food at above-par prices.
That last one was the worst offender, of course. I started with the same lobster bisque I had back in 2011 and it in no way resembled that dish. The oily sheen on top made me wonder if it had been left standing in a pot since then and it was grainy and all but brown, more like a sauce with three small chunks of lobster(?). The formerly crusty, soft crouton in the middle now required a knife to penetrate the rubbery substance. Three of us ordered the “Filet of Veal Parmigiana – with Four Imported Cheeses”; a thin sheet of mystery meat that tasted not at all of veal, then draped with a thin tomato sauce and a stretch of mozzarella. That you could have for the perfectly unreasonable price of $26. VF’s pumpkin ravioli and wilted spinach (wait, this is all still on the “specials” menu from 2011?) was okay but not the same joy-inducing meal it had been. A dessert plate came, but by then my appetite had gone and my good humor with it.
Then the new part happened. This is a more personal thing, but I didn’t go there for a disco bar. Early on, a server perched different hats on our heads. Uh oh. I’d read about this and hoped it wasn’t happening. “Hat Night”. Much later, a smoke machine kicked on, the disco lights started and the quiet Frank Sinatra was replaced by The Village People at top volume. And so it went with the continued blasting of 70s and 80s pop tunes. I was there the first time. I was there for the retread. I’m done. And did I mention that 50% of our party suffers from varying degrees of hearing loss? The evening was essentially over at that point. Several Yelpers commented that they could have had a better meal for less at the Olive Garden and I’m going to have to agree with them. This was an entirely unappealing experience and I cannot endorse the 2014 version of Il Localino.
The highlight of the evening was the valet; polite, efficient and chipper guy. His tip I didn’t have a problem with.