Dining in Il Boccone was a see-saw experience: alternatively impressed and disappointed.
Firstly, the setting: while Bodanstrasse can be a busy, traffic-logged street, the large amount of open space set aside for dining was such that I had no difficulty finding a table far away from the noise and petrol fumes. When the waiter came I asked him what dry white wines they had by the glass. He strongly recommenced one from Lake Garda. Even to the eye the wine was not promising and that was borne out by the taste. It was full of flavour - I would guess a sauvignon blanc - but monochromatic, no finish. Then the starter: bruschette; diced tomatoes & mushrooms on wholemeal bread. Good ingredients but coated with what tasted like ketchup. A sweet, commercial taste that has no place in this (or any!) dish. The main course was unusual: Spinach risotto with caramelised pears. Spinach is one of my favourite vegetables but difficult to prepare. On this occasion the spinach was pretty anonymous; difficult to tell if it was fresh (& overcooked) or frozen. The risotto was infused with pear juice and it was a brilliant success. It was topped with two large segments of caramelised pear. So, in spite of the poor spinach I enjoyed the risotto enormously. There were plenty of waiters and waitresses around but it took so long to catch their attention that I decided to skip dessert and ask for the bill. After about 15 minutes I asked my waiter for the bill and waited another 10 minutes to no avail. Eventually I told a waitress that I had been waiting for an eternity to pay. She told a waiter (more of this anon) who promptly brought the bill. Oroginally, after my main course I had intended to give a good tip. But I was so put out by twiddling my thumbs for 25 minutes that I paid just the exact amount and left feeling quite unhappy. The thing is, I love Konstanz and go there often. But there are so many restaurants. Why return to a restaurant where you leave in a disappointed frame of mind? And one last gripe. There were a lot of young waitresses there, but their job was to set tables and clear them. There were also quite a few waiters - older and they took the orders and brought them to the client. Hence the roundabout way of paying because I had spoken to a waitress rather than a waiter. Is this sort of discrimination acceptable in an "advanced" country like Germany? I presume this unequal division of labour is reflected in their rates of pay? Do management really believe that women are not capable of taking orders or taking money and giving back change? Is the restaurant aware of equality legislation in the European Community?
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