Guess this is the weekend for visiting old favorites. Ate at LaLocanda yesterday evening. Mostly good, some bad and some strange.
When we arrived at 7:00 the restaurant was practically empty but got pretty full during the time we dined.
The restaurant was very smokey from the kitchen. Periodically they had to open the door to air it out. I don't know whether this is a constant problem or they were having exhaust problems. One large party walked out.
Although the restaurant was empty we had to flag down a waiter to get our wine opened and discuss the specials. The service, in general, was ok but a bit abrupt.
We had some special dietary requests including a friend who brought special pasta. The kitchen graciously agreed to prepare it.
They brought the bread and the eggplant dip which was excellent.
We started with ceasar salad, tomatoes and mozzarella and a house salad. The ceasar was terribly overdressed. What is with that? Does anyone else have that as a pet peeve? I feel like shouting "its a salad, not soup"! The other salads were very good.
For apps we split the crab cakes in red sauce with scallops. Really excellent.
For entrees. I had the homemade pasta with shimp, spinach tomatoes with loads of garlic. Wow really great. Probably one of the best restaurant pasta dishes I have had in a long time. Others had the veal saltimbucco, branzino and pasta with red sauce.
The veal was excellent. The branzino came whole even though we requested it filleted. We sent it back and they did it but our friend declared that they didn't do a very good job. It was very bony. The pasta with plain red gravy was really terrific.
As the restaurant filled the noise level got intolerable.
Bottom line: worth a visit but go on a weeknight or early.
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