All Reader Reviews of...
129 Gates Ave., Brooklyn, NY, 11238
at Cambridge Pl.
NOT worth the trek OR the price for the tiny, side dishes that are overpriced.
By heathervictoria on 6/25/2011
I spent 3+ years living in Italy, speak Italian, traveled ALL over trying food(in my former lives, I managed 2 Italian restaurants in Manhattan) I lived with a Italian chef, spent much time in Tuscany, Rome, Puglia, Calabria, Piedmonte and some time in the north as well. The biggest clue here is simple:NO ITALIANS seen eating here who are NOT owners, staff or friends of them. I also read on their menu that the dishes are "SMALL" which I like, but how small? The vibe and interior is, cute, sweet and cosy. The service was very sharp, almost technical actually, & calculating. I had a appetizer of CROSTINI PLATE$ 12.00-THATS $3.00 A TINY tasteless PIECE! 4 tiny average skinny slices of 1inch squared toasts, with some unripe tomatoes chopped on top, average taste and VERY basic and VERY expensive. The tomatoes themselves tasted like the unripe cheap ones you find everywhere commercially grown with no flavor, pale color. The 2 pastas were the EGGPLANT MALTAGLIATI, which was OK, very average again as it was a couple long flat noodles, about 6 bites in all, with some chopped baby cherry tomatoes and 1 spoonful of ricotta cheese and that's literally IT! At $16.50 I felt screwed, scammed and hungry. The second pasta, BLACK PEPPER PICI-consisting of only cheese, and grilled onions was actually quite tasty but still a small portion, about a cup full at $14.50, leaving my husband starving and us both feeling ripped off.
I love this place
By normanmcdonald on 11/8/2009
it's good food, it's a secret, it's tucked away, it's warm, it's great for the neighborhood, it has LIFE, the squash pasta is celestially good, the proprietors are immaculate and old world...long live vini e olii...
Locanda Vini e Olii
By JerryCT7 on 2/22/2009
We went for dinner as a party of 4 on Friday night. The food was generally good, but not exceptional. I was especially disappointed with the small portions of the Pasta dishes. We ordered one dish as an appetizer for two of us and got about a cup each. I felt badly for my son-in-law who made the mistake of ordering a different pasta dish for his main course. The wine list was also pricey and the only bottle of wine I could find for under $40 was a Valpolicella which I passed on in favor of something better. It was my daughte's birthday so we ordered desserts which were also very average. Overall it is not a good value restaurant. Dinner for 4 was about $260 including wine and tips.
Nasty service, miniscule portions, no reason to return
By charissita on 5/14/2008
went in for dinner last night w/a party of four. when we walked in, we were not greeted or welcomed. we were told to wait a few minutes, and then we were seated. after 20 minutes, we received menus. 15 minutes later, we ordered. 20 minutes after that, our wine finally arrived. starters and pastas were decent, nothing great. but once the entrees arrived, we were so shocked by the small portion of our fish that we sent it back. the waiter showed the manager the size of the fillet and she looked at our table and laughed. not cool. the menu described it as roasted branzino - we assumed, since a branzino is usually 1 1/2 pounds, that it would be a whole fish and not some measly fillet. seriously, they got 4 portions off of a 1 1/2 pound fish. and it was listed as $20 on the menu. i will not return. noodle pudding, graziella's, your own kitchen. all better choices.
gets better every time
By amantedicibo on 4/25/2005
After 2 years of going to Locanda, I can definitely say, it gets better every time! The new appetizers are just superb. The staff is so informative and if you let them take care of you you will have a great experience. The portions are perfect to try a little of everything and prices are portioned as well. The wine list is one of the cheapest in town. Thank you guys!
Overpriced small portions!
By missfern on 7/25/2004
The looks are fantastic, which is nice. But the food is really only ok, with super small portions that left me (after splitting a salad, eating a pasta entree and sharing dessert STILL hungry!) The waitress we had was unfriendly and pretentious. I expected more from such a lovely place. I had to get a slice of pizza afterwards to feel full! It also took years to get our bill. $93 (before tip) for 4 people - with no wine!
What a disappointment!
By anakbadung on 1/10/2004
After reading all the great reviews, I decided to bring my friends there for their birthdays. Bad decision! First of all, they put 5 of us in a small table between the door & the wine cellar (this was with reservation) and then reorganized the table so that they can squeeze by to get to the wine. The bread was cold and the appetizers portions were way too small. We thought, lets wait for the entrees to redeem this place. Another bad decision! My papardelle with wild boar was way too salty (I could hardly finish it), the spinach side dish had no flavor at all, and the steak was on the dry side. The salmon & seafood stew was alright. The seabass with roasted onion was the only thing that was good. Dessert was OK -- I can get the same flan in the bodegas. They finally switched our waitress and made us feel a bit better b/c she smiled & made an effort. The dinner was not cheap and we left feeling robbed. Maybe we caught them on a very OFF night. However, it was not worth the price tag, the car ride, and the time.
By motherhen on 11/6/2003
Despite subway fiasco getting there, food, wine and service made up for it. Cab back to Midtown Manhattan only $17 and worth every penny we saved on the food. Great value, lovely atmosphere and incredibly personable service. Both owners very gracious.
A Gem in the Mist
By Lizzybee on 10/31/2003
Okay, it's REALLY located in Clinton Hill, but I'm not grumbling too much. Fantastic, charming, bumbling restaurant makes you feel like you're in Europe and not in a neighborhood your mother warned you about (I only live 3 blocks away, but whatever). Service can be spotty, but in a charming, Euro-way and so you forgive your sweet, cute waiter for forgetting to refill water. Family-owned and run, this place features small portions of homemade food that depends on subtle flavors, delicious olive oils, and fresh takes on traditional favorites to create dishes you dream about later. You won't realize how good the food is until later, when it hits you: damn, that was some fresh pasta! Natural flavors are allowed to exist peacefully instead of being overdone with the "latest" spice/method/trendy food. You'll rediscover how good a tomato/pumpkin/mushroom really is here. Great for taking the folks in from Connecticut/Michigan/Manhattan to. They'll love the food and you can enjoy watching them squirm as they survey the locale. Destined to become your new favorite restaurant.
By cpardon on 8/17/2003
This place is as Tuscan as it gets. The food and service was absolutely fantasic and the host is among the friendliest I've encountered anywhere. The only negative is that I found the neighborhood to be a a bit sketchy. I realize that Fort Greene & Clinton Hill are not the war zones they once were and that this type of place opening up here would have been unheard of as early as 3 years ago, but having come from Manhattan, I can't honestly say I felt comfortable walking around there at night. Nevertheless, it's a terrific place and everyone should go.
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