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“Stay Away”

Arise Farm to Table Pub and Pizzeria
Cuisines: Italian
Restaurant details
Reviewed April 27, 2013

I am more than familiar with both fabulous and solidly edible thin crust pizza (In Italy, where I've lived, and in the U.S.) THIS IS NOT IT! We ordered a "my-way" pizza with leeks and arugula. To begin with--the most important thing about thin crust pizza is the crust--it should be crispy, but with some give--not break your teeth crispy and never chewy. This was soggy, with the consistency of wet cardboard and a taste reminiscent of.... well, nothing at all. There was too much sauce and it tasted as if they had made up for mediocre tomatoes by adding a pound of sugar and no spices. The arugula wasn't tossed in oil, or salt or anything. The leeks were caramelized, but lacked any real character. And the cheese--which is supposedly "aged mozzarella" tastes like a bad national product and no better than the pre-shredded packaged cheeses in a supermarket aisle, complete with powdered cellulose. As for fresh--and I mean fresh and brined--mozzarella, it's not even an option. We also ordered the pan-seared calamari, which bordered on rubbery and consisted mainly of paradoxically soggy and hard sourdough croutons--there were almost no calamari at all, and they were served in such a tiny bowl that they continued to steam themselves--a recipe for rubbery squid if ever there was one--a mere ten dollars for the equivalent of one very small squid hood and tentacle sliced and combined with one piece of bread and some lackluster sun-dried tomato and capers. The fried artichokes were only marginally better, six dollars for three small hearts cut in two and fried in oil that tasted as if it should have been changed yesterday. As for the wine list--the markup is so prohibitive and the choices so middling that it seems an insult to all of those vintners out there who make an effort to produce really interesting wine in small batches. In an area with so much access to worthwhile quaffs, why populate your wine list with such dross? As for the waitstaff, they seemed competent, if uninspired and unwilling to acknowledge the shortcomings of their fare--then again, in their defense (I have worked as a cook, a waiter, and a sommelier), what are they supposed to do? It's sad that customers in the Valley should have to put up with this, especially when the local ingredients the staff begins with are so much better than the result. Don't bother going here.

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5  Thank Cortesemente
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (15)
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12 - 15 of 15 reviews

Reviewed January 11, 2013

I had been curious about Tabella, the tapas place that was Arise's precursor, but had heard the food wasn't that great. Granted, I didn't order a pizza, so I can't comment on that. But the chickpea fries with aioli sauce, carried over from Tabella's menu, were bland -- without the sauce, they would've been boring little bricks. The vegetable bisque was good -- but $8 for what was essentially a cup of soup? $18 plus tip is really too much for soup and a side. Yes, they use fresh, local food, but garbanzo beans aren't grown locally.

Service was polite, almost obsequious, but given how few customers were in the place very early on a weeknight when the local university wasn't in session, the server could've been more attentive. This could be a great place; its location near the Amherst Cinema is ideal. But the prices are too high, the food too average, and the service just a tiny bit too slow. A disappointment.

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3  Thank springbyker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 11, 2012

We love Arise, whether it's the summer where you sit outside and it feels like a piazza in a little town in Italy, or winter where the inside is luminous and cozy. Arise has the best sangria, a far cry from the sweet fruit juice that is called sangria in most other places. It's a complex, delicious beverage. Their pizzas are wonderful-I especially like the apple-carmelized onions-aged cheddar that is currently on the menu. Everything is extremely fresh, the salads are always great (always really good greens-they have terrific local sources). Highly recommended.

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5  Thank ellenLeverett
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 22, 2012

Arise is Amherst's best restaurant. Local, sustainable pizza. Get the wings and a salad and a spelt crust pizza. I go goat cheese. The owners know everything about the food and are happy to tell you all about it. They are passionate about what they do and you can tell from the minute you walk in. The waiters provide amazing service. They too know all you need to know. The drinks are amazing. What more can you ask? I don't go anywhere else in town.

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7  Thank Scott B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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