My boyfriend booked a table here for our anniversary purely from the reviews on this site. We were met at the door by the head waiter/owner (i think?) who asked if we could come back as the table was not ready. I could see behind him that there were plenty of tables free but he explained there was a large table due in for a birthday and we would have to come back later for ours. Both my boyfreind and i have worked in restaurants before and do sympathise as often tables will take longer than you have allocated for them. However - since we were there and the table of 25 were not i really feel they should have seated us, then freed up further tables as they came available for the larger table. They have a real problem as it's only a small place which leads to great atmosphere but something akin to complete chaos in the table allocation system. There's no bar/waiting area so if your table's not ready they have to ask you to come back later - we witnessed other couples who were also sent away in a similar fashion.
So - we duly returned 15 mins later, when our table was still not free. After waiting a further 20 mins or so in a cloakroom area at the back of the restaurant, with another couple and a family of 4 in the end, we were finally seated.
Once we were seated our experience was much better. The atmosphere is lovely - much helped by an excellent but not intrusive saxophonist. The food was good - not the best italian food i've ever had but a good standard yes. It was a special night so we would have paid more for outstanding food. Staff were suitably attentive and happy to pour your water, recharge candles etc - nice touches.
All in all we had an enjoyable meal and made a point of not letting the wait ruin our night. However, due to the disappointment at not getting a table in reasonable time even after having booked i'm not sure i would recommend this to a freind - unless they were very patient and not in any kind of rush at all!
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