We used to go to the Downtowner all the time a couple of years ago, but slowly it started going downhill and our visits became more and more infrequent. So tonight, when heading out on the boat for dinner, we thought "Hey! we haven't been there for ages - it might have picked up and may be good! Let's give it a try!" Seeing that it was almost empty on a Thursday night was not a good sign, but we forged ahead and got a table outside - which was easy as there was only one other table in use (the rest were empty). Now we understand why it was nearly empty - what an awful dining experience.
Firstly, the heavy metal music playing loudly was a HUGE turnoff and made us want to leave immediately (WHY on earth heavy metal/hard rock??????) - but like real troupers, we hung in there. The service wasn't bad, but considering that we were pretty much the only people having dinner there, it darned well should have been good. Really, the only other people there were happy hour partakers at the bar - such a shame, this place should have been HOPPING - a prime waterfront location with loads of space and great potential - not to mention great docking facilities for those of us with boats and also great free parking just around the corner.
My husband ordered fish and chips (haddock was the fish in case you wondered) - and I ordered the DT burger, well done. The plates were nicely presented - masses (and I mean MASSES) of piping hot chips (fries) on both plates, but the fish portion was small - two tiny pieces - and was completely tasteless, and the burger was a 3/4 inch-thick burned patty of something akin to shoe leather. Well done burgers don't have to be that way! When I think of the burgers at Rendezvous Waterfront Bar & Grill at Marina Bay in Fort Lauderdale (off State Road 84/Marina Mile) for example, I just shake my head in disbelief - I can order a very well done burger there and get a thick, juicy, tasty, DELICIOUS burger, loaded with all sorts of wonderful goodies - AND be very well done - so how can the Downtowner get it so wrong? It came in a cheap white bun with a layer of American cheese, two slices of bacon, and on the side a slice of onion, a slice of tomato resting on an unhappy, wilted piece of lettuce that looked ashamed of itself. It was awful. The fries looked wonderful and they were piping hot (which we liked) but were greasy - but the head-banging music so got on our nerves that we couldn't wait to leave.
Downtowner, I don't know how you stay in business - particularly with a great pub like Briny's opposite you that's drawing in the crowds - but in my opinion, something must be done or else I can't imagine how much longer you can keep going like this. I am hopeful that we just caught you on a really off night and that on other nights, you are a lot better than this. The atmosphere was so poor - and the ambience was just missing something so vital - can't quite figure out what but we know why it was nearly empty.
Service I must say was good, although the waiter did disappear towards the end of the meal and I, desperate to get out of there, I had to go on a search to find him just to get the bill. We mentioned a few of our thoughts and I asked him for a comment card - figuring the management should know why they are losing customers - but he said to just go to their website and write a comment there (which I have done). Don't think he really cared an iota to be honest. Oh well.
Overall it was sad, disappointing and completely lackluster. We won't be back.
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.