Sunday, April 18, 2010

Meatball? But I Ordered Meatballs...

Yesterday, after rebuilding my pool's Hayward pump, and allowing some sealant on the Sta-Rite filter cleaner's cover to dry, I enjoyed the sunset with a can of Marcona Almonds, several beer, and a chorus of little avian friends who were busy calling out to potential mates, rivals, and warnings of possible threats to their families, flocks, competitors. It was a lovely sunset, but more sustenance was needed that just almonds and beer at the end of another long day. The thought occurred to me... a new Indian place (Indian Garden) that is opening in Avondale, next to Sprouts... and since Dr Desert Flower is in Washington for a scientific conference with her company, and Indian food typically agrees with her less than it agrees with me (which is not a great deal), I thought - quelle bonne idee! I will have Indian food tonight!

I get there, and the health permits are posted on the door, but it is 745pm and the place is pitch black - obviously not open for business yet. Still hungry, I go over to Tagliani's Italian Cucina, across the parking lot. Dr Desert Flower and I had eaten there on several occasions in the past - when Christopher has visited, when we've had a hankering for Italian food, and when her mom's come to visit. Dinner in the bar area assured us good service. Dinner in the general dining area, the service was lacking and food served late and cold. 745pm on a Saturday night, and their parking lot is empty. Bar has 4 patrons (2 couples) in it. Bartender is prompt, and serves me a delightful glass of Coppola Rosso, which I found very drinkable and enjoyable. That's where my enjoyable dining experience ended though.

Take a look at their "pick a pasta" menu (link here). Dr Desert Flower has told me how good it is on more than one instance, so I tried the gnocchi, with rustic roma sauce, mushrooms, ricotta, and meatballs (that's meatballs, with an "s"). A weak house salad arrives, with mostly white iceberg lettuce, and 2 small slices of almost crisp cucumbers, one cherry tomato cut in half. Really, one? That should have been a portend of the future. 10 minutes later, my main course arrives. Once scoop of gnocchi, a table spoon of runny ricotta (still cold) in the middle, with some red sauce splashed around it, perhaps a table spoon of low quality canned (in Indonesia or China probably) generic mushrooms, and a single golf-ball sized meatball. Seriously, one meatball. it was a good tasting meatball, and the sauce and gnocchi were fine... but one meatball?

I left after paying the $20 bill a dissatisfied diner. I doubt I will be back after so lack-luster a meal, and I seriously cannot recommend it to others, unless you are looking for somewhat inexpensive, low quality Italian food, made in a kitchen that does not have much pride in what it produces. Too bad Indian Garden was not open!

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