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Restaurants & Bars 14

Il Porcino on Solano (Albany): beware!

Jonathan King | Jul 23, 2003 10:15 PM

I doubt any focused Hounds would step foot in this place (site of the short-lived Aegean Grill, just down the street from China Village) if they'd first surveyed the posted menu outside ... but then, I did that, then tried it out anyway. (I live in the nabe, and insist on trying each new eatery on Solano at least once, even when all instincts tell me to shy away.) It was exactly the caliber of mistake I envisioned when I was standing outside reading ... the kind of Frozen-in-Late-'70s-Amber Italian menu that insists on offering every cliched dish in the repertoire regardless of season, so that you'll find your 'prosciutto and melon,' your 'insalata caprese,' and all the rest. Then there's the full array of $15 'veal' entrees: yer marsala, yer piccata (I think), etc. etc. Really a post-graduate course in menu deconstruction ... fun in a way, so long as you don't actually eat there. My daughter and I caught dinner on the run the other night, and it was determinedly mediocre. I'll omit the details: too depressing to revisit. The place was about half-full, which alarmed me, although the clientele appeared fairly undemanding and complacent (or was I projecting just a bit?). It's hard to imagine it lasting long, but then, this is the street that kept King Tsin alive all those years, and continues to support places like Cugini and Filippo's, so who can say? Anyway, caveat emptor ... but do stop outside and read the menu for a giggle.

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