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Quattro Mori

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Post by gringal Sun Dec 19, 2010 12:56 pm

Been there twice. The first time was several years ago. Underwhelming, but people are often saying they REALLY like it, so when friends wanted to go there last evening, we did.

Couldn't believe how bad the lemon veal was. Gristly, with overly floury sauce, laden with what tasted like the bottled lemon juice.
Pasta on the side.........no flavor whatsoever, and nothing special about the texture. Our dinner companions ordered the whole fish special. That's what they got. A whole, un-boned, head and tail included, draped uncomfortably over both ends of a round plate. With this presentation, it better be good, right? They gave us samples. Mealy, dry and tasteless.

So maybe we're ordering the wrong things......but an Italian restaurant that doesn't have good pasta, fish or veal dishes? Huh? And please, don't tell me it's "Northern Italian". I've had Northern Italian. I love it, when it's good. I've cooked it myself.

Other than the food, the restaurant was fine. Good service and reasonable prices. Nice warm fire going. One of our companions ordered the house chard and wrinkled his nose. Bad choice.

If somebody out there can suggest something they serve that's extra good........maybe we'll give it another shot. So far, so bad.
Beer Rolling Eyes

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Post by Lehrer Sun Dec 19, 2010 2:28 pm

xxx


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Post by CanuckBob Sun Dec 19, 2010 3:02 pm

Gringal, try Armando's on Privado Ocampo (side street beside Danza del Sol Hotel). I have never had a bad meal there and the ambiance is stellar.
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Post by gringal Sun Dec 19, 2010 4:05 pm

CanuckBob wrote:Gringal, try Armando's on Privado Ocampo (side street beside Danza del Sol Hotel). I have never had a bad meal there and the ambiance is stellar.

We've been meaning to go there. Do they have good Italian, or is it mainly a steak place or ........?

Thanks for the suggestion. cheers

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Post by gringal Sun Dec 19, 2010 4:06 pm

Lehrer wrote:
gringal wrote:Good service and reasonable prices.
Hey, gringal!
What are "reasonable prices" for bad food?????
😕 lol!

You're right..........there are none. Beer

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Post by CanuckBob Sun Dec 19, 2010 4:30 pm

gringal wrote:We've been meaning to go there. Do they have good Italian, or is it mainly a steak place or ........?

Thanks for the suggestion. cheers

I can't recall any Italian dishes. Here is John's blurb on it.

ARMANDO’S ****------------------CONTINENTAL-------------------EXC $ 90 - $ 120
Off Zaragoza-------------Cozy Romantic Atmosphere Inside
766 2229------------Great Place for Birthdays and Anniversaries
---------------------Shrimp in Wine sauce - Known for his Fish
------------------Filet Mignon with Mustard sauce or Pepper Steak
------------------Crepes Suzzettes or Bananas Foster for Dessert
-------------------------One of Ajijic's 15 Best Restaurants

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Post by David Sun Dec 19, 2010 4:42 pm

I don't know if it's an alternate universe or not, but some folks visit La Taverna and have experiences that are so different than ours that I can't imagine them, or explain them. We've been dining there for over 5 years and have never had a bad meal. We've had Pizza, seafood pasta, pasta with sausage, veal scallopini, wild boar ravioli, fish, etc. etc.. Either they enter an alternate universe or the Giuliani and his wife Maria Grazia are playing the restaurant version of Russian Roulette. I understand why Gringal won't go back. Actually, going twice was pushing it. I never give a restaurant a second chance unless they're buying my dinner.
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Post by gringal Sun Dec 19, 2010 6:28 pm

I guess it 's a case of ....what is, is......we wouldn't have returned after our 3 year absence....but our friends had heard good things.......so we went.
As you said, David.......it sounds like Italian or Russian roulette. One of the most important matters for a restaurant is : CONSISTENCY. ...This explains the success of places like Tango's and Panino's. You know what to expect.

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Post by CanuckBob Sun Dec 19, 2010 7:10 pm

and McDonalds.........
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Post by gringal Sun Dec 19, 2010 10:00 pm

CanuckBob wrote:and McDonalds.........

...and Burger King and and and razberry

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Post by David Sun Dec 19, 2010 11:25 pm

Let's hear it for BK! When I need a BK hit, the one at the airport or on Minerva glorieta deliver!
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Post by johninajijic Sun Dec 19, 2010 11:35 pm

gringal - As far as I'm concerned, you explained it exactly what I feel about it. We went there 8 or 9 years ago not knowing what to expect, but thinking how bad can an Italian screw up a Red Sauce. Very, very bad. It was so hot that I thought a Mexican threw chili's in it.

Well about 3 years ago we gave it a second chance with some of our Dinner group. Sauce wasn't as bad as before, but it should have tasted like a cooked down sauce. It was NOT and it wasn't a Marinara Sauce either. We will NEVER go back and waste our money.

If you want good Italian food in Ajijic go to Angelica's Bistro. Pedro has been cooking Italian for better than 10 years here. Bring home some of his fantastic frozen Ravioli. It's only open until 4 PM on Monday thru Friday. He's directly next to Panino on the opposite corner.
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Post by Carry Bean Sun Dec 19, 2010 11:50 pm

If you go to Angelica's order fettuccine with pesto crudo.

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Post by gringal Mon Dec 20, 2010 10:51 am

I'm a fan of Angelica's already. Oh yum. Just the smells coming in the place make your taste buds dance the Tarantella.
That's another thing: When we had to go through the kitchen at Quattro Mori to get to the dining room..........my excellent nose didn't smell a single hint of anything. How could that be?

I like the sausage take out and raviolis at Angelica's too. Mama Mia! cheers

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Post by Peter Mon Dec 20, 2010 9:55 pm

At Armando's they like to do the "flambé" thing. He has a cart to roll out by your table, torch-off your meal, desserts, and things. My filet mignon was a bit tough for filet but I guess that's on par for Mexican beef, otherwise good. Overall we were please with the meal but not overly enthused. I have to say the service was excellent and atmosphere relaxing, if you're not nervous about fire.

The banana dessert was good, Bananas Foster essentially but I believe it was listed by a different name. Don't go for the peach dessert, they were just the kind from a can not anything special at all, though they do get the flambé treatment. Tere and I were in a dessert mood the day we went to Armando's so saved some room and each ordered a different one and shared them.

I am just recalling too that we had the Caesar's Salad also. No flambé but he pushed out the cart and mixed up the dressing and prepard the salad at tableside for us. No complaints, it wasn't like the good old days where it was customary to have Casear's Salad with meat or anchovy strips but I seem to recall he had freshly grated parmesean cheese and croutons to top it.

Thumbs up on Panino's pies. Definitely a place we will visit each trip to Lakeside. Tango was likewise excellent as all seem to agree. Too good, and too much food. So good I tried to eat it all but I couldn't manage to do that, but certainly ate enough it took two hours or more to feel normal again.

We can hardly wait for after the holidays to make another trip. See you then.
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Post by gringal Tue Dec 21, 2010 4:04 pm

Our answer to the Tango food quantity is that I order a Caprese salad (four large tomato slices with Buffalo mozzarella and capers in an olive oil and vinegar dressing) and my husband orders something else, like the half chicken with reggies or potato. We split it, and find it's just right.
We seldom have dessert, but that blackberry pie (which she is now out of) at Panino's was outstanding. Soon, there's going to be a gelato place on the same strip heading west.......so it sounds good for a light dessert.

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Post by johninajijic Tue Dec 21, 2010 11:37 pm

I just translated "Quattro Mori". The translator said Four Died. Maybe that's what he serves for Veal, Rabbit, etc.
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Post by David Wed Dec 22, 2010 1:33 pm

Hopefully they're all dead by the time they're served. Alternately, in Japan one can have iki zukuri, "made from living," seafood. The best lobster I have ever eaten was alive when served and during the consumption.
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Post by gringal Wed Dec 22, 2010 2:14 pm

David wrote:Hopefully they're all dead by the time they're served. Alternately, in Japan one can have iki zukuri, "made from living," seafood. The best lobster I have ever eaten was alive when served and during the consumption.

I dunno, David. I just can't wrap my head around that last one.
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Post by hound dog Sat Jan 15, 2011 2:31 pm

Peter wrote:At Armando's they like to do the "flambé" thing. He has a cart to roll out by your table, torch-off your meal, desserts, and things.... Overall we were please with the meal but not overly enthused.
The banana dessert was good, Bananas Foster essentially but I believe it was listed by a different name. Don't go for the peach dessert, they were just the kind from a can not anything special at all, though they do get the flambé treatment.
I am just recalling too that we had the Caesar's Salad also. (Peter goes on to discuss the Caesar Salad presentation with its exaggerated flourishes and, while I will not try to put words in Peter´s mouth, I have this remembrance, from having ordered the Caesar Salad we ate there in 2001 shortly after moving here as having been served by Xavier Cugat in full tuxedo with the bananas foster being served by Chiquita Banana in full Hollywood Cuban dress.

After that dinner at Armando´s in 2001 and one follow up a couple of years later we have never been back despite the fact that we live nearby. Suits proffering flames and flourishes but no substance. Dubuque Ramada Inn chic.

Armando´s reminds me more than anything of 1966 when I was returning from Europe to Alabama on the old Queen Mary as a kid right out of college, really, and, of course, I was in steerage but this was December and the ship was nearly empty so I found a way to sneak up to the first class bar for scotch and sodas and a finer and more luxurious bar I had never seen and, frankly, have never seen since. Well, it happens that I met this wealthy gay interior decorator from Manhattan who introduced himself and offered to buy me drinks in return for companionship but with no frank, open sexual expectations on his part and he was an amusing guy and I was never one to turn down endless glasses of fine whiskey in a bar on the Queen Mary that was luxurious beyond anything I had ever laid eyes upon in my then 24 years on the planet so every day I´d sneak up there to first class to enjoy getting drunk on great whisky with my new friend and I´ll skip some of the details here as being irrelevant to my point but, let´s just put it this way; about half way across the Atlantic, this wealthy New York interior decorator invited me to dine with him at - get this!!! - the captain´s table on the Queen May. Holy Jesus! Dawg was going to dine at the captain´s table on the Queen Mary.

Now, it occurred to Dawg that my accompanying this gentleman traveling alone to the captain´s table might cause the arching of certain eyebrows among other guests but, nevertheless, there was no way that Dawg, who had just grown up consuming "chili dogs" at the Dairy Delight on Commerce Street in Greenville, Alabama was going to pass up an opportunity to eat at the captain´s table on the Queen Mary no matter what those rich phonies also invited might surmise as to Dawg´s sexual proclivities.

So, Dawg went with his new friend to dine in this rarefied atmosphere and there Dawg was in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean dining on lobster thermador and something akin to caesar salad prepared with the utmost flourishes at the table and other fine foods and all followed by Baked Alaska for God´s sake, which, for those of you who never had Baked Alaska circa 1966 was also flamed at the table.

Later, when I arrived back in my small Alabama home town, this man, whose name was Howard, called me to ask if I had enjoyed the quart of Jack Daniel´s Black Label he had bought me upon our having disembarked the ship and some other rather oersonal questions and I assured him I had enjoyed same but my dad wanted to know who Howard was. I never told him as this would have resulted in communication difficulties. My father was of liberal bent for South Alabama in 1966 but there were limititations regarding Dawg´s behavior if you get my drift.

Armando´s, then, reminds me of that dinner at the captain´s table on the Queen Mary in 1966 - not my colorful company but the absurdity of what was considered "gourmet" food and presentation in the 1960s which can be laughable today. Flames and flourishes and mediocre food of no importance and much ado about nothing but then I´m not 24 any longer. Time to move on. Cheese Whoppers at the Guadalajara airport are now my speed.

Some day they´ll laugh at us as well.


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Post by CanuckBob Sat Jan 15, 2011 2:59 pm

You nailed it dawg. Armando's is like being back in the sixties (or seventies). That is actually why I like it so much. I always thought I was born about 10 years too late.

I still like fondues for christ sakes..........shows you where my taste is at.
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Post by hound dog Sat Jan 15, 2011 3:23 pm

CanuckBob wrote:You nailed it dawg. Armando's is like being back in the sixties (or seventies). That is actually why I like it so much. I always thought I was born about 10 years too late.

I still like fondues for christ sakes..........shows you where my taste is at.

CB:

You remind me of when I was a lad starting out as a federal bank examiner in Los Angeles in the 60s and I went to this fancy restaurant on La Cienaga in West L.A. and was dining alone ordering from the top of the menu. I had no idea what I had ordered but it seems that I had ordered the cheesy full-on production of the evening and there I sat, all alone, at a table in the middle of the dining room surrounded by others all in groups with their loved ones and friends and these three guys came out and ostentatiously flamed some dreadful steak with brandy while preparing this salad with all the flourishes one can add with gigantic wooden spoons and there I sat in the middle of the room feeling like a complete moron but my wife tells me this is not a funny story.
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Post by hound dog Sun Jan 16, 2011 6:16 pm

CanuckBob wrote:You nailed it dawg. Armando's is like being back in the sixties (or seventies). That is actually why I like it so much. I always thought I was born about 10 years too late.

I still like fondues for christ sakes..........shows you where my taste is at.

Now, just a minute, CB; Dawg had his first taste if gin and tonic at a summer beach house on Santa Rosa Sound at Mary Esther, Florida sometime in the early 50s when his dad was distracted at a BBQ on the beach and left his cocktail unguarded while murdering the daily crab catch by boiling them alive and Dawg started drinking beer seriously at age 13 in 1955 so don´t try to use youth and lack of opportunity as an excuse for a late start. You simply lacked Dawg´s gusto for mental obliteration.

I must admit, however, that this Queen Mary thing was a stroke of good luck as it was the dead of winter when she sailed from Southhampton to New York on a deadhead run with a small compliment of passengers and, soon after that she became a cheesy hotel in Long Beach which is like Kathleen Turner morphing into Phyllis Diller overnight.

I must admit I also like fondues and Krystal Sliders and, if those atrocities were available here, I´d occasionally indulge in them plus in a Moon Pie and Pabst Blue Ribbon with a side of "cracklins". Time has passed us by old chum.
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