However when my wife and I sampled the Italian restaurant Intorno in Lawrence shortly after it opened a year and a half ago, it was beyond bad.
Unbeknownst to be until right before we got up to leave, Sweet Lew and his fam were in the booth directly behind us. And they gave Intorno multiple thumbs up. You know what they say about there being no accounting for taste.
And while the chef had reportedly made his mark on The Hill in St. Louis – a highly regarded, historic Italian-American neighborhood known for its restaurants – Intorno didn’t come even close…not in the eyes of locals – not even in the eyes of a certain member of its management team. More on that in a minute.
The evening we ate there my foodie wife was completely non-plussed and she was the got off easy with her entree being at least mediocre.
I on the other hand ordered a shrimp pasta dish. A dish that to describe it as unremarkable would be flattering. After eating the four or five shrimp resting on a bed of congealed pasta I sampled an unsavory forkful of said pasta which proved more than enough.
Suffice it to say, I’m not going to crowd The Pitch‘s Charles Ferruzza with my dining description of the dish. Honestly, it was unworthy of describing.
After we finished our meal a woman came by the table to clear our plates and did a brief double take on my mostly uneaten plate.
“Was it icky?” she asked, an odd inquiry to say the least.
Kinda, I said politely. Why do you ask?
“Well, a number of people tonight didn’t eat theirs either,” she said.
As we left the restaurant I asked our waiter standing by the bar who the woman was that had cleared my table was.
“The owner’s wife,” he answered.
Ah, makes perfect sense. Who better to have asked such an odd question. However that she hadn’t offered to comp the dish, throw in a dessert or buy a drink seemed unwise. All of which lessens my surprise that they finally closed.
On second thought, I need to give nice guy Ferruzza a hard time on this one.
Not because Charles raved about Intorno in his Pitch review a year ago – he did not – rather because he missed the opportunity to save however many diners the waste of time and money eating there. He did so by damning Intorno with faint praise, when it so richly deserved more…if you get my drift.