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Restaurants & Bars

Casa Antigua

WLA | May 17, 2002 10:08 AM

Went last night with wife in dubious tow. Had told her that it was supposed to me Frechican, or Mexicafrench, (that was more of a "sales job" in order to get her there than anything else since I really had not a clue as to what the food would be).

Look is OK inside. At least the chairs are comfortable. We sat in the back by the fountain, which is pretty, but the background noise of their a/c unit was intrusive. They have spent some dollars decorating, especially the metal sculptures of either horses with really long necks or giraffs that mated with horses.

My wife had a Mai Tai, fine. I tried a Mojito. How many bartenders know how to make this? Not the one here. Tasted like a greyhound with a bit of mint floated in it.

We split an appetizer of crab mixed with chiles, onions and some other things I am not remembering, covered in bread crumbs and baked in two large scallop shells. Way dry and too much bread crumbs. Not to mention it came on a huge white plate with some rock salt underneath, and nothing else. We did ask for some lemon, which helped some, but not enough. But they need a crash course in how to garnish a plate.

Finally I had the center cut pork chops, which were fine. But they came smothered, I swear, in store bought bar-b-que sauce that was added after cooking. They were surrounded by what were some tasty potatoes O'brian, (sauted with onions and shallots), that I have had at Abe's Deli out in Northridge. Very weird food, and not something I would try again.

My wife tried the Crepe's stuffed with langostine, which they translated as lobster. It turned out to be small, and very few pieces, of shrimp, not lobster. The crepes were good though, tied up like drawstring purses on a mild sauce and had spinach inside. Much better than my bar-b-que sauce pork chops.

For the price of $65 plus tip, which included one beer along with one starter, two mains and two before dinner drinks, I would have to think long and hard about going back. The wait staff was really nice and tried hard. Since it is new I was going to give them a lot of slack, and our waiter did get the order right, after checking back three times with menu in hand on what we had told him.

Very depressing as I had high hopes, which were dashed in no uncertain way.

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