We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Flush .... down the tubes!”

Francesco's Ristorante
Ranked #56 of 447 Restaurants in Hartford
Cuisines: Italian
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Reviewed January 11, 2013

The food here is not very good, mediocre at best and far overpriced for its buffet level quality. The owner, Ari, is described by most as pompous, boorish, and tactless. This place was popular when Tony Reale sang and drew his following there but it seems to have lost its crowd since he left. Wonder if they even realize that people are internet savvy and read reviews these days.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank john g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (60)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language

38 - 42 of 60 reviews

Reviewed July 31, 2012

We had reservations for 6:30 p.m. Tuesday evening. We arrived on time, and despite the restaraunt being pretty empty, we had to wait 10 minutes to seat-with our 79 year guest of honor. I asked for a children's menu and was told by a server- who didn't appear to know much English - that they don't offer a children's menu- which was fine- not unexpected. We ordered our meals -4 guests in total (including a 5 year old child). Per page one of the menu given to me, I ordered the cheese ravioli with the sauce on the side for the 5 year old. We had a starter first & entree-this took over 2 hours despite a vacant restaraunt. The 5 year old's ravioli came drenched in sauce with sauce on the side as well. I explained to the server that I asked for the sauce on the side & the child would not eat it. He said that this is how ravioli is made and was quite obstinate. He refused to take it back. I asked if the chef could rinse the ravolis at least. He appeared quite insulted, took the plate and returned moments later with barely rinsed off ravolis . The child took a bite & spited it up. They were lobster ravolis. I explained to him that I ordered cheese ravolis per page one of the menu & he said that he didn't recall that, he just heard "ravolis." he refused to provide cheese ravolis - as he said they are only served at lunch. We asked for this to be taken care of & he agreed. The owner came out & initially was very nice & when told of the ravoli issue - he said it would be taken care of. The bill came & we were charged $12 for the " children's portion." Prior they had no kids menu. When asked to speak to the owner, he said that the "Cafe menu" has cheese ravolis & that's a lunch menu. He said that everyone knows that Cafe Menu means lunch. Apparantly despite our advanced degrees, we are quite dumb. He refused to take off the child's meal despite her not eating one bite & all the errors by the waiter. He told us exactly this " if you are too cheap too come to my restaraunt then don't eat here!!" and stormed off. I have never been so insulted at a restaraunt. We are a nice family, respectful to others & kind. The mushrooms were very good but the rest of our meals tasted like buffet/banquet food. Of course we will never return. The ambiance is dated.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
6  Thank HelloThe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 1, 2012

Returned to Francesco's last night with (4) other couples. We had a 7PM reservation and were immediately seated when we arrived at about 6:50PM. Most of the group have been to Francesco's previously and for one couple it was their first visit. As always, the food was excellent and the service was outstanding. I always request Jose when I dine at the restaurant as his service is excellent and he makes the evening a joyful event. For appetizers we all chose soup. Some had the Italian Wedding and others had the Orzo. The soups were hot and very tasty. The bread served at Francesco's is very, very good. They bring it in from Mass. and it is impossible to only have one piece. I had my usual, Chicken Piccatta which is to dye for. (They named it Chicken Mr Wes) The preparation is unique and the dish is outstanding. I always ask for it over Capelini. My wife had the Chicken Princess and others had the Chicken Saltambucca and Chicken Francaise. One had the seafood special which was Salmon and every dish was out of this world. The chef is amazing. The quality of the meals at Francesco's is very consistent. If you want to enjoy a nice evening dining on Franklin Ave in Hartford, do not hesitate to make a reservation at Francesco's. Ask for Jose and plan on an enjoyable evening. You will want to go back again and again.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank Wes C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 26, 2012

This was our first visit to this restaurant. We had won a gift certificate worth $100.We went on a tuesday at about noon. 5 in our party.There was no one in the place when we got there. We were greeted by a very nice older italian fellow and seated us at "the best seat in the house". He was a real character and was training a waitress who obviously had no clue.We ordered some wine and then lunch.Long story short the food/drinks were good but pricey.The atmosphere/decor was very nice but dated.The problem came when we had to pay up.We had a gift certificate of 100 dollars and the bill was 144. We thought it was odd when we had added a 25 dollar tip to the bill that the italian fellow came up to us and asked weather we knew what the gift card was worth ,but we didnt realize what had happened until well after we had left the restaurant. He had already added an 18% tip to the bill and we put our 25 dollar tip on top of that because we didnt realize the tip had been added to the bill already.Simple as that. He knew exactly what he was doing.We should have been smart enough to realize that but "our bad" .Never will any of us go back. And its a shame because the so called"Little Italy" section of Hartford is obviously dieing and when you operate a business like this i can see why.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
3  Thank fauxmad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 18, 2012

We had a craving for good Italian food, so we decided to try Francesco's based upon some reviews. We really enjoyed the place. We went on a midweek evening. It was quiet. We chose to eat in the pleasant dining room - comfortable, understated elegance, great music. He had a specialty martini, which was strong and delicious. I had a Caesar salad - very good and large enough for two. This was followed by veal francese - excellent tender veal, delicate coating, tasty sauce. He had fra diavolo calamari and clams over pasta, which he enjoyed very much. Servings were large and satisfying. We'll definitely be back.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank pragmatist1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Francesco's Ristorante also viewed

 

Been to Francesco's Ristorante? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing