Restaurants & Bars 4

Ritual Restaurant, Worcester - A HIT!

Science Chick | Sep 23, 2011 12:19 PM

Four of us hit this newish spot in Worcester last night. Mostly a Mediterranean mezze-type place, with some pizzas and entrees as well. The decor is very interesting - - some huge wooden doors imbedded into the wall, the standard downtown Worcester tin ceiling, funky dark/warm ambience throughout.

We started off with their Argentinian Medoc by the glass which was excellent, and shared the dip assortment, stuffed grape leaves, bruscetta and seafood trio. The dip dish had 4 lovely dips (hummus, a veggie-flavored hummus, a carrot/beet puree topped with egg slices - heavenly!, and tzitziki sauce), surrounded by bread, assorted veggies, olives, cheese. The bruscetta was topped with lovely fresh tomatoes w/a light balsalmic dressing and shaved parm. Both the grape leaves and seafood trio had meat, which I don't eat, but the other folks at the table were swooning - - grape leaves were served warm, which was enjoyed. For entrees 2 people had the filet mignon wrapped in bacon, which was well prepared as were various side dishes accompanying. Grilled scallops on lobster ravioli were perfectly cooked and the ravioli were very tasty - I usually don't like lobster ravioli, but these actually tasted like lobster! I had a porcini mushroom and linguini dish which, while tasty, fell short in the complete absence of detectable porcini mushrooms and was chock full of domestic mushrooms. I mentioned this to the waitress and she talked to the kitchen. I was told that people complained that the porcini flavor was overwhelming, so they changed it to a mixture. Still, no porcinis detectable by my palate. For dessert we shared a fresh fruit yogurt parfait that was rich, creamy and satisfying.

The only real complaint came at the end of the meal when they tacked on a 20% tip for our party of 4. I inquired, and was told that it must have been since our reservation had initially been for 5. They took it off immediately, but I was a little dismayed that they would even have added it on for a 5 top, and that it was at the 20% level as an automatic gratuity. Isn't 15-17% the norm when the establishment adds it?

Looking forward to going back. This place has potential.

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