1333 Boston Post Rd
Old Saybrook, CT 06475
I know there was another review of Touro some topics back, but I figured another report might deserve its own thread. I went last night with the wife for 7:30pm dinner. It's a quaint little place--if you choose to come to dinner here, you may consider reservations. Very clean. Good wine selection. My wife had a red sangria, which she loved. The menu is intimate, but the offerings on it sounded wonderful. We opted to try the rodizio.
For the uninitiated, the rodizio meals here comprise of three side dishes accompanied by various grilled meats that are brought to your table. They give the table a piece of wood painted red and green on either end. You flip to green when you want more food, you flip to red when you want a pause in your meal. I was worried that my wife and I wouldn't be able to keep up with the bringing of the food, but it seemed to work just fine.
For sides, my wife ordered the black beans, yellow rice, and the mixed vegetables. I must say that the beans were not seasoned at all---which we found weird because everything else was very well seasoned. That being said, my wife would just order a different side instead of the beans next time. I had the collard greens (sauteed with onions, garlic and red pepper and probably a few other seasonings I didn't pick up) fried mashed potato (its really cute--it comes out looking like an egg roll dusted with panko), and my favorite central/south american side, plantains. All my sides were excellent. I must say that it took a while for our sides to come out of the kitchen--more on this later.
Shortly after the sides hit the table, the rodizio started. Up first was a roast chicken leg, very well done, but somewhat not special. Next, I believe was linguica (kind of tastes like kolbasi if you've never had it--very good), a piece of chicken kabob that was marinated in a lime based marinade, roast chicken wrapped in bacon, top sirloin (this was one of the higher points of the meal and I was surprised how well they did it because sirloin can be very tough. This was grilled PERFECTLY). Following that were a few grilled, dry rubbed pork ribs--perfectly cooked--not falling off the bone (I like a little substance to my ribs if they're not smoked and barbecued). Next was lamb---and let me tell you, it was the best lamb I've EVER EATEN. I made a roast lamb for this year's Easter and my family RAVED over it; well, I have to say, Touro's lamb surpasses my own. The marinade (and perhaps a sneaky dry rub too) just permeated the meat--heavy on the rosemary and balsamic vinegar, I think. I might add, this is probably very close to the same recipe I use myself, but again, the flavorings here were just so much stronger. I could have just eaten the lamb and my sides and would have been very happy indeed. Next out of the kitchen came beef tenderloin (a bit stringy, actually but tasty), and grilled pineapple to cap off the meal. I'm sure I missed a dish in there somewhere.
All the food was top notch, and I'd come here again in a heartbeat. I repeat, I will return, and in future visit I'll order the rodizio again.
The downside--the rodizio is expensive, as I reported in another thread, it is 28 dollars per person (we happened to have a coupon). However, for what you get, and IF YOU'RE HUNGRY determines its worth. I may not get the rodizio next time depending on how hungry I am or if I just want to dabble in other parts of the menu--it's nice to have options :) I particularly want to try the feijoada. Look this up if you don't know what it is ;)
I found it awkward (I am a rodizio noob) to ask for more sides--this also comes with the 'terms' of the meal. I was hesitant because of how long they took to come out of the kitchen initially. I would also suggest that when the waiter comes around with a skewer of meat and you want more, don't be shy to ask him right then and there. Trust me, you'll thank me later.
While heavy on the meats, this is also a place where you can eat healthy--dieters, I think you'll do OK.
Another plus, the owner (presumably) came out at the end of the meal to ask us how everything was. He would have liked to take a picture, but we are photo shy and declined. I did tell him that I'd share my culinary findings and thus, my lengthy report. It's well deserved--please give it a try--it's different--it's delicious--it's TOURO and it receives my highest praises.
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