Every once in a while there comes along an incredible restaurant that really surprises you, one that manages to overcome stereotypes of Americanized ethnic restaurants in the suburbs lacking sophistication either in their food preparation, service, or both. Tre Amici does NOT reach this threshold.
In my never ending quest for good food away from cosmopolitan Boston, I took my family to Littleton last night and had what could only be described as a “stereotypical Americanized Italian meal lacking sophistication in its food preparation and service.” We were armed with Groupon as were most of the parties around us. This lessened the pain a little, but we still wouldn’t do it again.
Both our veal dishes – medallions not cutlets – were undercooked. I sent my Piccata back because the meat was visibly red. Rather than prepare a new cut of meat, the staff simply nuked the plate, lemon garnish included, until the redness disappeared. When the server came by to ask me how I liked the way the meat was cooked, I was tempted to respond facetiously by commending the chef for all his hard work. Meanwhile, the best part of my wife’s veal Marsala was the asparagus she had on the side.
Service was okay, but it felt pretentious and pushy. While the waitress was pleasant and responsive, her demeanor seemed forced and unnatural. Superficially sophisticated to fit the mood. Disingenuously nice to get us to purchase more drinks, sides, and deserts in order to increase her tip. An occasional presumptuous close that didn't work. And with everything on the menu sold a la carte, she really tried every trick in the trade to inflate the bill. Often she wouldn’t take no for an answer – a little bit like a Hilton Dreams vacation telemarketer. It made us a little uncomfortable.
Speaking of which, pricing wasn’t exorbitant, but it was no bargain either. Average entrée cost $20-$25, and each side cost $5. Side salad (which we did get and, to be fair, was large portioned, mesclun lettuce) for $7. So if you get one entrée, two sides, and a salad, you're looking at nearly $40 per head before drinks. Not worth it at all. I highly doubt the cooking staff has much training. Sadly, for less money, you could have a meal in the North End that would run circles around this place.
While parts of the old structure were quite homey, the restaurant atmosphere just didn’t feel authentically Italian by any respects. Piped in pop music, electric candles, sliced processed bread from a supermarket bakery. If anyone there was Italian, they were probably third or fourth generation. Most of the dishes were served on linguine, but it was obviously not homemade. All in all, mediocre across the board. Tre Amici is a step below “Not Your Average Joes” at similar prices.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.