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Xacutti Review (long)

fortheloveoffood | Mar 12, 2005 03:53 PM

My husband and I went to Xacutti last night for a celebration dinner. We had been on a few other occasions and the food was very interesting, tasty and the portions were respectable, and we always felt that we were getting good value. Unfortunately, last night we did not have a similar dining experience.

To begin with, Xacutti has always had a strange reservation policy - that being that they normally only take reservations at 7ish and 9ish so as to ensure that they turn the tables at least once. My husband called to reserve the evening before and was given this shpiel before the hostess finally agreed to seat us at 8pm, on the condition that we did not arrive late. Sure enough, we arrived at the restaurant exactly on time and were seated promptly. The table for 2 next to us was not taken, and there were at least 10 empty seats at the communal table. The restaurant did not seem busy at all. In fact, we were there for approx. 2.5 hours and they might have seated 2 or 3 other tables while we were there. At no point was the restaurant full.

Okay, enough about their silly reservation policy. We perused the menu, and I ordered the duck appetizer and the trout main which I had really enjoyed on our last visit. My husband had the samosa appetizer and the chicken main course. I ordered a cocktail and my husband ordered wine. Our drinks were brought to our table promptly, but we were not served any bread. We are both certain that on our prior visits we had been given a plate of naan to enjoy when we were seated. When asked, the waitress advised that we could order some (at a price of $6 if I recall). We declined.

Our appetizers arrived promptly. My husbands portion was one moderately sized samosa, cut in half, served with salsa of some sort. He said that it had no discernable flavour. My duck was also pretty bland, and was served only luke-warm. I am certain it was not cooked to order.

Our main courses were nothing to write home about either. My husband's portion of chicken was miniscule - he said he could have eaten 3 portions. As for flavour, he said it was only mediocre. My trout was big - but it was a whole fish, so I guess they couldn't skimp as easily. It was nowhere near as flavourful as the last time I had it. I saw the dishes they served to the table next to us and the portions were similarly tiny.

We decided to share an order of the ginger doghnuts for dessert, as they have always been really good. We each ordered coffee as well. The coffee arrived, luke-warm. We asked for fresh coffee, which arrived steaming hot, but tasting of dishwater.

The one and only redeeming part of our dinner was the doughnuts - as always, they were delish.

The meal including tax and tip was $152. Not at all worth it in my opinion. It seems to me that the restaurant has started to skimp on everything from no longer serving bread to tiny portions for both mains and apps. If this keeps up, I don't see the restaurant lasting more than another year... It's a shame too, because I really liked the concept, and the food used to be top notch.

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