Having visited Gola Osteria on a few occasions, and always loving their food and service, we decided to book the graduation dinner for our daughter there. When I received the fixed price menus available for graduation weekends I was a little surprised at the prices -- particularly for the lower priced menu ($50 per person for family style arancini, salad, house made shells, chicken parmesan, and cannoli) but knowing how great their food has been in the past and given how generous their portions usually are, that was the menu we selected.
We were all terribly disappointed. I had assured everyone that the restaurant was wonderful and that the food would not disappoint. I am a chef and am often relied upon to make restaurant recommendations. The service was very good but the food was no better than what you would get at a local pizza/italian joint and certainly no where near their usual quality and given that it was VERY overpriced.
The arancini was overcooked and they were very stingy with the "family style" servings.
The salad was fine but nothing special.
The complimentary bread was not good.
The "house made shells" were not what you might expect, stuffed shells, just boiled shells with a red sauce. They were served almost raw---not al dente mind you.....almost raw. Clearly not house made but a dried pasta. Also, the red sauce was awful. Completely lacking in seasoning and flavor. We each took one bite and then sent it back. The second platter was cooked properly but the sauce was still awful. We ate none of that dish.
The chicken parmesan was decent but again the "family style" portion was very small.
Finally, the cannoli's were excellent.
We all felt completely cheated. $50 a person for a meal that was barely passable.
We will never be back. What a rip off.
Oh, i emailed a very nice letter to the person with whom i made the reservations for the graduation dinner. She assured me that I would hear something back from the chef. She was apologetic. it has been 2 1/2 weeks and nothing, despite a follow up from me to see if I would hear back from someone.