Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Dolce Enoteca e Ristorante

We took a particularly picky out of town guest to Dolce seeing as they offer quite a few vanilla selections on their menu. I had visited Dolce once in the past for happy hour where I had sampled the bruschetta...It was below average, and to be honest I wasn't expecting too much more from the full meal. However, being Italian food, I figured it couldn't be too bad, right? Even though my expectations weren't high, I had to lower them considerably when we were barely greeted by the less-than-friendly hostesses. We arrived for our 6:30 reservation right on time to find the restaurant less than half full. In a situation like this, I think it's reasonable to be seated within 5 minutes of arrival. Apparently this was quite the difficult task for the hostesses, as they sat and pondered over the restaurant layout for nearly 15 minutes while the crowd at the door grew. We were finally seated around 6:45. There is nothing more annoying to me -- and to most diners I know -- than this situation. At this point I was in need of a large glass of wine. Dolce's design is sexy and plush. I do like the round leather booths; however the bar area leaves something to be desired. Most of the seating in the bar area is on one long large leather bench, so you can't really circle up to talk to your friends. The noise level on our Tuesday night visit was WAY out of the ballpark and I wished they would have turned it down 50 decibels or so. They did have a nice crooner there, however... voice as clear as a bell but he needs to learn how to turn that amp down a notch. We started out with a fritti misto which had some shrimp, calamari, zucchini and sweet potatoes. The mix was a nice change, however the same old sweet asian and italian red sauces were a bit of a bore. The foccacia bread served with oil and vinegar was quite lovely though. My husband and I split the chopped salad, which was advertised as lettuce, tomato, mozzarella, salami and avocado with a balsamic dressing. Our salad arrived sans avocado, and was just meh. Nothing special at all. For my entree, my guest and I both had the lobster ravioli, one of the house specials. It had a nice light cream sauce and good size pieces of lobster on top and inside the pasta. Spinach was added for color. The sauce was noted as a saffron champagne however I didn't get the taste of either. Okay dish, but again nothing special. I'd say about a 5 out of 10. My husband had the duck tagliatelle which arrived grossly undercooked and undersauced. The pasta was sticking together in huge clumps and really was quite unappetizing. It's a rarity, but we decided to order dessert this time as the waiter mentioned they had a chocolate creme brulee made with chevre. I was so excited for this as I love chocolate creme brulee and most restaurants only serve the vanilla kind. Welllllll, this was probably the biggest disappointment of the night as our brulee arrived vanilla and not chocolate. We still managed to have a few spoonfuls, but since I was anticipating chocolate it was less than satisfying. Overall I would give Dolce a D+. It is a chain restaurant - that much is evident in the food. The Hollywood ownership and interior decor gives the restaurant a nice sugarcoating... but once you get below that it's pretty darn bitter. Dolce Enoteca E Ristorante on Urbanspoon

2 Say It Loud & Proud:

preppy little dress said...

great honest review! love your soup can image - too funny!

Heidi said...

I think you have a gift for restaurant reviewing. If you wanted to quit your day job...
:)