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Posted at 11:20 AM ET, 08/14/2008

Restaurant Week: Reports From the Field

By Julia Beizer

During Restaurant Week, the service at Les Halles left something to be desired. (Lois Raimondo/The Washington Post)

It's no secret that I'm not a big fan of Restaurant Week, but even so, I ended up with two reservations yesterday: lunch at Les Halles and dinner at Darlington House. The day of dining turned out to be a study in Restaurant Week extremes. One restaurant did everything in its power to ensure we'd return as full-paying customers. The other did not.

If I were trying to be smart about my Restaurant Week dollars, I wouldn't have picked Les Halles as a prime lunch spot. Most of the menu items are under $20, so you can get a meal there pretty much any day of the week without spending a ton of cash. But this reservation wasn't about making the most out of the $20.08 promotion; it was about my brother and me taking my dad out to an embarrassingly belated birthday lunch, so any downtown restaurant with a 12:30 lunch table available would have done.

I strolled up to a full patio and a line out the door of people waiting to be seated. I dutifully waited in line only to find out that my father had already been seated. Okay, so a few wasted lunch minutes were spent in line, but on the whole, I was relieved that we weren't going to have to wait for the table we had reserved.

One glance at the RW menu and I knew I wasn't going to be ordering off it. Pickings were slim -- only two appetizer options, two entrees, one dessert -- so we all decided to order a la carte. (Besides, even though the best Restaurant Week deals are usually found at lunch, who has the time or appetite for a three-course weekday meal?)

The food was good -- up to usual Les Halles standards -- but service was lost in the RW frenzy. Our dishes took ages to get to our tables. We couldn't find our waiter and had to ask two employees about the status of our meals. Ultimately, the food was good, and Les Halles and I have a good enough relationship already that I'd go back. The world will go on spinning even though little old me had to wait to get her precious confit de canard. But still, I don't think the restaurant was winning any new customers with its small RW menu and long waits.


By contrast, Darlington House's dining room dazzled. (Leah L. Jones for The Washington Post)

Dinner was a completely different story. Of the 200 restaurants participating in Restaurant Week, Darlington House was the one I was most looking forward to trying. It's relatively new (open since May), and because the entree prices in the dining room are $28, it's too expensive for me to pop in on a weeknight. Since I hadn't even visited the more affordably priced Cantina part of the restaurant (with apps, pizzas and sandwiches priced between $7 and $12), I booked a table here.

The Restaurant Week menu offered three appetizers, four entrees (one with a $5 upcharge) and two desserts. We settled on tuna carpaccio and an Italian bread-and-summer veggie salad for appetizers and roasted chicken and angus ribeye (the $5 upcharge!) for our entrees.

Full portions of each arrived at our table, along with the most brilliant service you can imagine. Three waiters checked in on us throughout the night. A wine steward came by to tell us about our bottle before he served it. And perhaps the most adorably eager pepper grinder in the history of fine dining tended to seasoning our plates. There was a warm feeling about the place -- something I didn't expect from the Victorian-style set-up, and something I haven't experienced during Restaurant Week. Perhaps it's because the place is new and still trying to win customers. Even last night, there were still several empty tables around the room.

In Tom Sietsema's live discussion yesterday, a diner wondered whether good service during a Restaurant Week experience was a reflection of the current economic slump. What do you think? Any reports from the field on particularly good (and bad) Restaurant Week experiences this year?

In other RW news: Darlington House will be accepting Restaurant Week reservations until Aug. 25. Spezie has also announced that it will extend the deal through Aug. 31.

-- Julia

By Julia Beizer  | August 14, 2008; 11:20 AM ET
Categories:  Restaurants  
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Comments

went to cafe mozu at the mandarin for lunch. what's up with the dang dessert? it's like someone ran a strawberry shortcake thru the dishwasher and then put a rotten peach and last year's pinenuts on the plate for good measure. and what's with serving rolls of the week-old bread rack? hope they got a deal on the rolls...even the little squid on my plate was trying to wiggle away from the hardtack...

Posted by: Pam E. | August 14, 2008 12:21 PM | Report abuse

had a nice RW dinner at Vidalia. Service was fine and food was good, nicely presented. However, trout I ordered seemed more like salmon....

Posted by: Bev | August 14, 2008 12:39 PM | Report abuse

I don't have anything against RW, and usually go and enjoy, but this year I'm a bit confused on how a restaurant can advertise the $35 dinner "deal", but ultimately their three courses don't add up to $35 if ordered a la carte. Isn't the purpose of RW to give diners a bit more than they would normally get? Just a thought....

Posted by: CP | August 14, 2008 12:54 PM | Report abuse

I had an amazing dinner @ DC Coast the other night. I really liked the fact that you could choose any entree from their entire menu and were not limited to special RW options. There were 4 or 5 appetizer options and 3 dessert options. Everything was fantastic and I would definitely go back.

Posted by: AG | August 14, 2008 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Pam E,

Are you high? Cafe Mozu is so awesome. I would sleep under the table every night and eat the scraps off the floor if I could. And FYI, lady, the lobster salad to begin with was incredible. That alone was worth the $20.08 price. You are nuts. And the Sushi Bento was so delicious. I am so angry at you right now I feel like putting soy sauce all over my keyboard and throwing my computer out of the window. I am so mad at you.

Posted by: Christian | August 14, 2008 1:25 PM | Report abuse

We had a lovely meal at Vermillion in Old Town. The staff was very welcoming, extremely attentive, and helpful in explaining both the dishes and the philosophies/themes of the restaurant in general. (It’s great when the staff has a genuine pride in the food and service!) The RW menu actually reflected dishes that they serve there and accented their local-market-fresh approach. We ordered additional appetizers (had to try the famous hush puppies- delicious) with our cocktails and a house-made charcuterie which was excellent. It was a great experience for RW since I learned a lot about the place and am looking forward to returning.

Posted by: honeybee | August 14, 2008 1:36 PM | Report abuse

I went to DC Coast for dinner during Restaurant Week and had a wonderful time! The service, atmosphere, number of choices for each course, and quality of food were all excellent. I'll definitely be returning again soon.

Posted by: clb536 | August 14, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Your poor dad! I put Les Halles up there with Olive Garden, Jordans 8 and Arby's on the list of places I never want to visit again. At least you found out during RW. For incredible French food, go to Bistro d'oc or Bistro Bis.

Better to eat at the bar at CityZen that at Cafe Mozu.

Posted by: frenchie | August 14, 2008 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Zaytinya for lunch:

Delicious as always. Service was a bit spotty, but we traveled in a big group (12) plus it was peak hours. Options were varied and ample. Would have liked to see a few more dishes outside of the standards (hommos, fatoush, spanakopita, etc). The Turkish Delight had me at first bite. All of Andres' restaurants have 4 courses instead of the usual 3 for RW. Granted each plate is a bit smaller, but you definitely get a nice variety and it's still plenty of food.

Oval Room for dinner:

Dessert, appetizer, entree - how I would rank each course (dessert being the highest). The presentation of the food was spectacular; the service absolutely top notch. Our server was there when we needed him, invisible when we didn't. The RW menu was ample with 5 options for app and entree; 4 for dessert. Great experience to eat at one of the areas pricier restaurants. RW, though, always ends up being more than you think.

Posted by: LS | August 14, 2008 3:00 PM | Report abuse

I was a little put off by the difficulty of making a dinner reservation at Tenpenh after I identified myself as interested in the Restaurant Week menu, but the food and the service were excellent. All entrees and specials were offered as part of the Restaurant Week menu with an additional charge for only two entrees. This was my first experience at Tenpehn, but I will definitely return.

Posted by: deliriousindc | August 14, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Went to Domaso in Rosslyn last night. The food was great even though there were only three app options and four entree options. Despite an half full dining room (i had a late 8:30 reservation) our waiter was terrible. We waited more than a half hour for our desert after our entrees were taken away. The food was great but the service showed that the waiter didnt care because he knew how much we were paying, even though he did not attempt to refill our wine or drinks which would have increased the check total. I will not be back to Domaso.

Posted by: Ryan | August 14, 2008 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Pam E, you are 100% right about the dessert option at MoZu. I did enjoy my appetizer and Sushi Bento box, but the dessert was this weird wannabe gelatinous mold thingy (but harder) that was cold and had no purpose, taste, and there was nothing good about it. In fact, I looked around to see many other people leaving it on their plates. My friend and I who dined there Monday during Restaurant week for lunch enjoyed our entree and the delicious lobster roll, but left both confused by and disappointed with the dessert option. As my friend put it, "While I left there totally full, it was probably more because we ate so many rolls. The food was good, but not great in my opinion, and the dessert was repulsive." Sorry Christian.

Posted by: JBH | August 14, 2008 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Restaurants really should examine why it is that they are participating in Restaurant Week. They should realize that many customers use RW as a time to try restaurants where they haven't previously dined. Many of us who dine during RW consider ourselves foodies who dine out regularly and use RW as an opportunity to sample restaurants with typically higher price points to test whether we enjoy both the food and service enough to pay their regular prices. Unfortunately, many of the restaurants offer extremely limited options on their RW menus, limited in both the number and quality of the selections. Sometimes the selections aren't from their regular menus or aren't representative of them (e.g., seafood restaurants that offer their non-seafood entrees as RW options), and thus they do not really give diners a good sample of the restaurant's usual menu. Very often, service is neglectful. Restaurants need to wise up. If they are not going to "dress to impress," so to speak, during RW, they shouldn't bother participating, because they are quite likely just going to LOSE potential future customers, as many restaurants that I have tried during RW over the years have done with me after disappointing experiences.

Posted by: AMK | August 14, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Indebleu was a real treat for RW lunch. Service was almost at the mindreading level, the tempura crab cakes were amazingly light and flavorful, the salmon main was good, but the deserts really shined. You must have the fluffy mango moose placed on a light cake/cookie, encased in more intensely flavored mango coating-unbelievable texture and flavor. Also, check out the rotating booth that makes up the chef's table.

Posted by: gradchef | August 14, 2008 4:39 PM | Report abuse

I went to Cafe du Parc for dinner during RW as I had never been and like others I use RW to try out restaurants to add to my rotation. The service was great but the food choices were limited to 2 each for appetizer, entree, and dessert. My friend and I each got one of the entrees and neither of them were very good. We both got the salad and it was downright awful. The desserts were the only good thing they had. I won't be going back and will not be recommending it to anyone I know based on the food I had there.

Posted by: Dublin Traveler | August 14, 2008 4:57 PM | Report abuse

Fine dinner for five at Belga on The Hill last night. One of us had a RW choice and the rest ordered a la cart. With the wine and copious excellent bier, the tab came to well over $35 each, but that's to be expected. Restaurants make most of their money on booze anyway, and I'm not about to have a nice Belgian meal without tasty Belgian bier. Helpful, well informed service from waiter Nathan K, too -- he knows his bier and how it works with the food.

Posted by: Gastronaut | August 14, 2008 5:04 PM | Report abuse

You had bad service at Les Halles...Shocking.


Food is ok. Better than most. But service always ruins any experience at that place.

Posted by: DCGuy | August 14, 2008 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Went to Ardeo last night and had a very good experience. Service was good, as was the food (well, I somehow picked all the wrong items, but the three other people I was with all loved their apps, entrees and desserts). The nice thing about Ardeo is that they always offer their entire menu for RW, which is such a bonus. Even if you don't make it there for RW, Ardeo has a "Neighborhood Special" on Sundays and Mondays, which is the same exact deal as RW.

Posted by: clevelandparkfoodie | August 14, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse

Went to Prime Rib for RW and Central for fun. Surprisingly, RW service at Prime Rib was far superior to Central. PR waiters refilled wine, water, etc. and everything came out correctly. Whole experience was pleasant. Central was disappointing - waitress didn't introduce herself, rushed through specials, brought a friend's soup out too early, forget salad dressing, and so aggressively cleared our plates we had to beg for them back. Would go back for the food but the service made for a lackluster experience when I expected a whole lot more.

Posted by: JT | August 14, 2008 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Had breakfast at Les Halles last week. Terrible service! Our 3 orders arrived a 3 different times, over a 10 minute period. Despite being the only party inside, we had to fetch out own condiments. The waitress could not pronounce (French) names of the dishes on the menu.

Food was so-so.

Posted by: bcarter3 | August 14, 2008 5:19 PM | Report abuse

I just went to Il Mulino for lunch today & was pleasantly surprised (especially given the bad reviews it received from both the critic & commenters on the Post's page for it!). Maybe they actually read them, b/c one of the complaints was smothering service, which I didn't find to be the case - it was attentive, but not smothering. Decent choices (I don't know what their regular lunch menu is like, though) - 4 or 5 apps, 5 or 6 entrees, 3 desserts. I got the minestrone soup, which was saltier than I like, but it wasn't inedible or anything. And the salmon was perfect. All in all, a pleasant surprise.

Posted by: liz | August 14, 2008 5:42 PM | Report abuse

I went to Grillfish for lunch. Awful, besides the slow service (which I expected), my course was missing scallops, which the waiter brought when I requested it. Unfortunately, it had not been cooked yet and was cold. His response was that he just serves the food, he doesn't cook it. His solution was to take $2 off our bill, but not complete my dish. On top of that, the quesadilla my coworker ordered was cold when it arrived and the cheese hadn't melted. Then at the end, after we had spoken to the manager (who said all of the waiters were going to be spoken to that night), he complained that we wanted to use multiple credit cards. I see no reason to go back.

Posted by: sal | August 14, 2008 6:43 PM | Report abuse

This was/is my first RW EVER! Yes, I was an RW virgin! My group is only doing lunches, FYI. Mon was 14K, Tue was Bombay Club, Wed was Oval Room, took a break today, and Fri will be Ceiba. Thus far, the universal complaint has been service and/or wait time for our food. It's been incredibly long. From the other postings, this sounds like a common RW problem. Good to know for future. 14K has a great crab cake, but the rest was so-so or worse. It's hard to go wrong w/ Bombay if you like Indian. I happened to make some bad choices, but they get the blame for undercooking my salmon. Oval is the place to go if you're on a diet becuz the portions are so small, it's nearly impossible to overeat! And I'm not some buffet-monger either. Their menu selections are divine, presentation is exquisite, and it all tastes heavenly - but portions are smaller than small. Esp. after waiting so long, we didn't know whether to laugh or cry. I'm hoping this is an RW phenom. only! Looking forward to Ceiba. Menu looks great, tho it's gotten mixed reviews.

Posted by: April | August 14, 2008 7:37 PM | Report abuse

Went to Olives for lunch on Monday. My previous two lunch experiences there had been outstanding. This one was not. The RW options were minimal and nothing that appealed to me, so I and my guest wound up ordering off the regular menu. Took forever even to get water and a menu. Food was not as good as on previous visits. Not so sure I would go back after this one.

Posted by: Bucker1 | August 14, 2008 8:47 PM | Report abuse

Had a great dinner at Vidalia on Tuesday. We got the five-course RW offering they have for $50 (because it was a birthday celebration) and it was amazing food throughout. The trout (they ran out of the hamachi that was on the menu) did look like salmon but was still delicious - melted in your mouth. The service was quite good as well so I will definitely come back for another special occasion!

I also went to Dino for dinner last night and again, had a great meal. It was different from Vidalia because the restaurant is sooo laid back but our waiter picked a perfect wine to go with my amazing venison steak entree and was attentive throughout... The peach fantasia dessert was very light yet decadent. I will definitely go back as well!

Posted by: Ropespin | August 15, 2008 8:45 AM | Report abuse

We had dinner at 701 for RW. Inviting place with a warm decor and live music. The food was good (not great) - highlights were the crispy tuna roll and the short ribs. Dessert was an utter waste of calories. Unfortunately, the service wasn't that good. Seems to be a common theme.

Posted by: dd | August 15, 2008 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Had dinner at Neyla last night for RW and was pleasantly surprised with both the food and the service. The RW menu had several selections for the first and second courses and 3 dessert options. Everything that we ordered was delicious! They also had a RW drink menu on which the glasses of wine and cocktails were $1.00 less than their usual prices. The best surprise of all, b/c I have such low expectations during RW, was that we had a great waiter who was friendly, provided helpful advice in making our selections, and gave us attentive service. A nice surprise during this RW that has surpassed my other experiences this week! I'm not sure if Neyla is a huge bargain during RW compared to their usual prices, but I think we did spend a little less than we otherwise would have.

Posted by: AK | August 15, 2008 11:18 AM | Report abuse

Had RW dinner at 701 last night. Interestingly, they aren't even offering their regular menu - the only option available seems to be the 3-course RW menu. This is fine, since the menu is lovely - the glazed pork belly (what a great idea to pair it with kimchee!) and crispy tuna roll were fantastic apps, and the lamb (which I believe had a $3 upcharge) was tasty, but the real standout was the halibut. Have to agree with the above poster that the desserts were kind of a waste of calories, but they weren't awful - just not up to the standards of the rest of the meal.
I'm somewhat surprised by other posters' comments on the service, because our waitress was great - very sweet, bantering with the table, quick to get our food and drinks out, and frequently checking in to make sure everything was okay. I will admit that we were there on the early side, so maybe service deteriorates as the evening goes on, but I had no complaints. When it came time to pay the bill, she was clearly getting busy with other tables, but one of the hostesses from up front stepped in quickly and took care of the bill for us. Overall, I would say this was an ideal RW meal, with lovely service and good value for money.

Posted by: yet another for 701 | August 15, 2008 11:28 AM | Report abuse

Bebo Trattoria in Crystal City was surprisingly good for RW lunch. The service was very attentive and the fixed price meal included the entire menu, including entrees in the upper teens. This made the $20 fixed lunch price quite a bargain. The chocolate mousse dessert was amazing, too! The only problem was staying awake at work afterwards...

Posted by: CL | August 15, 2008 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Went to Bistro Bis for RW and to celebrate my husband's birthday. Great service and great food (although I must admit I like the dishes my husband picked better). I've been to Bistro Bis before for a working dinner and had the same excellent experience. Amazing fries and onion soup.

Posted by: Kat | August 15, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Also thanks for the warning about Les Halles. Was thinking of taking visiting family there for lunch RW, but now will not.

Posted by: Kat | August 15, 2008 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Had a really good meal at Me Jana in Court House earlier in the week. Great selections and execution. Good service.

Posted by: Katie | August 15, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Also had a very good experience at Vermillion in Alexandria. Wonderful food and attentive, thoughtful service. I will most definitely be back.

Posted by: Luci | August 15, 2008 2:20 PM | Report abuse

It seems that we've all had very different experiences at Les Halles. I do not think of it as a fine dining establishment, just a good French Bistro. I quite like the food, which is consistently good although it does not stray from a typical bistro menu. I haven't had a bad thing there yet (I try something different every time), but I agree that the RW menu was fairly lame in its tininess. I haven't had bad service there, either, although obviously many others have. I think if you consider it a bistro and not a shi-shi joint, it helps put it in perspective. If you are looking for high-end French, this is not the place for you, but if you want the classics done well and a casual atmosphere, it's fine.

Posted by: Cap Hill | August 15, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

We had a wholly unsatisfactory experience at Vidalia Thursday night. If restaurant week should be a time to broaden your client base with a sampling of your restaurant's fine cuisine, it is not the opinion of their chef. I would not be critical that the servings for three dishes at $35 had a net weight less than a bag of peanuts on Southwest if there had been some attention to the flavor or a flavor at all. My main course was two medium scallops on a bed of rice beans...or actually just rice bean. In this case I just left hungry. I looked at their normal menu and was sorry to see that the dishes described looked like what I really wanted but I instead shelled out over $120 to be an experimental guinea pig. My wife went to DC Coast the night before and said it was an entirely different, positive and impressive experience.

Posted by: Marc | August 15, 2008 6:46 PM | Report abuse

VIDALIA, dinner, Tues night
> OVERALL - A positive, satisfying experience and I am encouraged to return.
> FOOD - Strengths are creativity, selection, preparation and presentation. The standard 3-course $35 menu is a lite meal but choose from among 8 items. The serving size of the maine diver scallops was not overwhelming, but I savored each bite. Diners seeking more full fare should opt for the 5-course $50 menu.
> SERVICE - Satisfactory. My dining companion was 10 min late but we were seated immediately. Server could have been a bit more attentive, but we were not wanting for anything aside from a minor bill snafu at the end. Hey it's RW, which is a real trial for wait staffs, but I believe the better establishments manage better.

Posted by: FX | August 16, 2008 1:35 AM | Report abuse

Ate last night at District Chophouse expecting a great steak. The pancetta wrapped shrimp appetizer and crab bisque were out of this world wonderful. But the steak, the whole reason for going to a chophouse, was a huge disappointment. It was a bacon wrapped filet mignon, which I always order when I order steak, and it tasted like dry ground turkey. Anyone who has tried substituting ground turkey for ground beef in any of their recipes knows the difference I'm talking about. That said, I'll order something else for an entree next time I try this restaurant. Everything else, including the service, was wonderful.

Posted by: D | August 16, 2008 8:20 AM | Report abuse

Went to Jordan's 8 and Dino. Dino was great-- whole menu was available, good food and service, and they are doing RW thru the end of August.

Jordan's 8 was awful. Ridiculously loud, only had 2 choices for each course (3 for entrees, but one unavailable) so we ended up ordering al a carte. I wanted to get the dessert off the RW menu but couldn't... only off the "regular" dessert menu. Ummm... what?

Posted by: Bess | August 16, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

I chose Les Halles for my graduation dinner this past May. Service was a bit slow, even though the restaurant was only half full, but I was able to accept that as being part of the European dining experience. Those in our party who ordered the steak frites enjoyed it very much, but when I bit down on a bone in my chicken sandwich (pulled mostly-white meat dressed with mayonnaise and herbs), the manager simply said "chickens have bones." I picked through and found another larger bone and set it on the side of my plate. The manager walked by again and asked how it was now, expecting that it would have been fine, and was a bit surprised when I told him I had found another. He took the bone, did not ask if I wanted something else, and said he would "go kick the chef's a**" Is it really that hard to make sure there are no bones in a sandwich?

Though the food was tasty, the manager's remedies for situations certainly left a bad taste in our mouths.

Posted by: Bettina | August 18, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Had an excellent experience at Kinkead's for lunch on Friday! I had a tasty heirloom tomato salad and an even better cod, served en croute (buttery sauce was intensely flavorful). People tend to avoid cod, but I knew better. My guest had the arugula salad and lobster roll ($7 upcharge). My cheese platter dessert went perfectly with a glass of Verdejo. Her plum cobbler had her smiling all the way back to the office. Each of us will go back, for their regular menu.

FYI - lunch during RW is typically a madhouse with rushed diners all coming in at one time. I have found attentive service is tough for places that don't typically specialize in 3-course meals for lunch. Keep that in mind, and be a little lenient on expecting a 3-course meal in a packed house within...45 minutes? Kinkeads is one place that is used to it, and delivered well!

Posted by: MoDC | August 18, 2008 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Totally agree with Ryan's post above re. Domaso. The decor and the food were great; however, the service was inattentive and slow, when the restaurant was not at all crowded. I would not go back and pay regular prices.

Also, this is not the fault of the restaurant nor relevant to Restaurant Week, but who was the idiot who designed the Hotel Palomar? The hotel lobby/reception area and the restaurant are hidden away on the 4th floor. When you enter from the street level, there is a miniature lobby area that was unattended when we walked in. We had to wander around a bit, trying to figure out where to go. It's not at all welcoming. On the 4th floor, it's a good thing the hotel desk there was attended by staff who could direct us to the restaurant, b/c the signs to the restaurant were not at all noticeable, and once again we were wandering around trying to determine where to go. This visit confirmed my opinion that Rosslyn is a cold, impersonal place to which I do not wish to return.

Posted by: ak | August 18, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

I had a similar experence to Bucker1's at Olives. I've been there several times before and always had great service and great food. Sadly, this time was quite different!

First, we were seated and had to wave down our waitress after 10 minutes just to put in our drink order. Then after ordering 2 bottles of wine, she comes back with one and says that the other one they don't have in stock, but that she'll bring back the wine list so we can choose another. The was the last we saw of her. Except of course, when we saw her with her backpack LEAVING the restaurant! After that we had to wave down two other waiters before we got someone to come to our table. From there the service was just slow and poor.

After expressing our concerns to the manager so that he would be aware of the situation (not looking for any freebies, we had already paid our bill), and after he pretty much just blew us off, out of the group of 7 people there that night, I'm pretty sure none will return to Olives.

Another thing to note: the women's restroom was without toilet paper for over 2 hours. That to me is just simply unacceptable for a any place that calls themselves a restaurant!

Posted by: ty | August 19, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Totally agree with Julia's assessment of Darlington House. Went last night to take advantage of their extension of the RW deals and had a lovely evening. They provided good selection of options for each course, although only 2 options for dessert, and everything was delicious. On top of that, we had very attentive service. The restaurant is also very pretty, particularly the upstairs bar area, which seems cozy and looks like a great place for a drink in the winter time!

Posted by: kma | August 20, 2008 10:27 AM | Report abuse

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