New poster, long-time reader, wanting to share thoughts on our recent Providence experience.
We have lived in SE CT for about a year and a half and this was our first visit to Providence other than the airport, for a quick getaway. We stayed at the Dolce Villa hotel in Federal Hill which we loved, by the way.
Lunch at Fire + Ice was not bad. I know that there are one or two posters on this board who rave about it and many more who hate it. It was convenient for us and I was anxious to give it a try. We have some dietary restrictions -- we do not eat meat or shellfish but do eat fin fish. We found the food at Fire + Ice to be pretty good. The vegetables were all of good quality and the fish (I had only mahi mahi and my wife had both salmon and mahi mahi) of very good quality. The food was pretty tasty and not too expensive for lunch. It does take a pretty long time for a meal if you go through a couple of times because the food does spend probably ten minutes on the grill. I also noted a lot of complaints here about the lag between when the food is done and when it gets delivered. Our meal was self-service -- we waited at the grill bar and took the plate back ourselves. I don't know if this is a change in procedure or just for lunch.
Dinner at Geppetto's was so-so. It was right next door to our hotel and owned by the same people and the hotel gives a twenty percent off coupon to its affiliated restaurants. Our onion ring appetizer was really excellent. My wife had fettucine alfredo, which she liked very much and could finish only about half of the portion. I had a ten inch grilled pizza with fresh mozzarella, basil, and fresh tomatoes. The ingredients were good. I had never had grilled pizza before and was underwhelmed. The crust was kind of crackery and the pizza does not get as hot as that made in a brick or wood-fired oven.
The atmosphere of the restaurant was nice enough and the waitress was adequate. I did not like the fact that we were charged for refills on our ice tea while there was no mention on the menu or by the waitress that refills were not free. It strikes me as a kind of "gauge the tourist" mentality.
With our discount the meal came to about 30 bucks which was fine, but at close to 40 it would have left me disappointed. I think next time in Federal Hill we'll try someplace else.
We loved Federal Hill, though. Dropped quite a bit of money at both Scialo Bors. bakery and Venda Ravioli, both places have great great stuff.