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Saturday, April 16, 2011

When Good Restaurants Go Bad (and the amazing Street Fair jacket!)

It's sad when a good restaurant goes bad.  It's even sadder when that restaurant is iTrulli Trattoria in Encinitas, once the shining star of the coastal downtown strip. I used to come here a lot, waiting over an hour for a table on a cold night but convinced it was worth it.  And at one time, it was. 

 But that was a long time ago.

Now I love a nice lunch with a glass of wine.  About a year ago my wife and I ordered a bottle, an appetizer, and decided to split an entree.  And then the waiter said "We charge a fee to split plates".  I was taken aback by that.  After all, at that point I was a regular and a big promoter of this eatery.  And I had already racked up a pretty good lunch bill.  But OK, I agreed to the fee.  But when the food arrived it was so over salted that it was nearly inedible.  I told the waiter this and got a shrug.  I assumed he would remove it from my bill but there it was at the end.

It took me a long time to go back.  But last weekend was the Encinitas Street Fair so I decided to give them another chance.  We ordered 2 glasses of wine to start.  I said 2 glasses of wine... to start.  HELLO, I SAID I WANT 2 GLASSES OF WINE TO START!!  There really is no excuse for a wine order to take so long when a restaurant is not busy.  15 minutes?  The bar is 10 feet away.  My wife tells me to relax.  So after a long wait, here comes the appetizer.

Now I know, it looks pretty good, doesn't it?  But it was cold and rubbery.  Like chewing a rubber band with tentacles. It was almost like this was a reheated order.  And like the wine, it took forever to arrive.  Fail.  Epic fail. 

What's the first thing you notice about this pasta?  It's that the cheese isn't melting.  Why is that?  Because the dish arrived lukewarm.  After another 20 minute wait it's not even hot?  And the flavors were nothing special, the pasta and sauce no better than what I buy at the supermarket. Buca di Beppo Fail.

There was a time when the owner would smile when we walked in and bring us free dessert.  But those days are obviously over.  Lunch cost over $60 and I left depressed over just how bad iTrulli has gotten.  I  walked down the street and took a look at the booths at the street fair.

Dammit, this would have been way better than iTrulli!  Look, it's hot!  That's already better than my lunch. I get depressed when I get a bad meal but one thing did cheer me up.

It's the AMAZING 10 WAY JACKET!  You flip the collar one way and it's jacket 1, another way and it's jacket 2!  No one at work is going to figure out you only have one jacket!!  And look, men and women can wear this.  And that 80's look is so cool with the shoulder pads and high flipped back collar. I'm going to wear this jacket to the next big business meeting!  I'll flip it around during the break and wait for people to say "Did you change your jacket??"  Only you and I will know it's the same jacket!

Ahhh, the things that keep me amused.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well, thank goodness for the jacket! :D