Saturday, September 22, 2007

Cafe Marcella, Los Gatos

Look, the food was fine, OK? Really. And there was bread, water, everything. I mean, the minestrone I had was a bit bland and frankly it all felt more country than cosmopolitan, but no real complaints about the basics. Everyone else enjoyed all their dishes, and it was a good choice for ourselves plus the in-laws, always a tricky situation to solve for eating out, requiring that we find somewhere that serves good solid food without too much in the way of "fancy fixin's" shall we say. And spices are right out, 'kay?

However, I'm not planning to return. This place was deafening. The ceiling is low and the dining room quite broad, with hard walls and wainscoting. In short, nothing at all to absorb the roar of noise generated by a place packed with happy diners, as in "happy diners on a Friday night with a few bevvies under their belts". Despite the tables being fairly small - actually making things worse because then can then crowd more people in - it was impossible to hold a conversation without literally talking directly into the ear of the person sitting next to you.

Dining out is about much more than the food. The restaurant itself needs to be a place that you want to sit in to eat, otherwise we'd all just order take-out from our favourite chef, a process that would be far cheaper and generally much more convenient than heading down town, trying to park and then not being able to drink because you have to drive home.

If you do decide to go, find a time when it's not packed. Avoid Friday night at 7 pm like the plague, unless you spent all your youthful years at Black Sabbath concerts and hence came into the game half-deaf to begin with. Or you can sign.

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