We have attempted to eat at Francesca's three times. The first time (soon after opening) the bread was delicious, the pasta excellent, and the service fine. However, I still did not feel the food merited the prices (higher than most if not all other restaurants in Hallowell for no better quality). The thing that ruined that experience for me was the cannolli I ordered to go for dessert. It was 6 or 7 dollars (!!!!) and yet the shell was soggy and the filling pasty. Disgusting! However, since the other food had been good we wanted to give it another go.
The second time we went at lunch, hoping for the advertised buffet. We found that there was some sort of trouble with the freezer or the food delivery, however, and the kitchen was unable to offer much, so we left.
The third time we were seated and provided water and bread by a waiter who did not seem particularly happy to be there, or to see us (though we were only the second couple in the whole place). Then we discovered that the bread had a black crust. When we asked the waiter about this he seemed unenthusastic about replacing it, though he did eventually agree to do so. And then when we were going to order, he informed us that the one dish we were most interested in was not available. We decided at this point it just wasn't worth it to risk such uneven service and food.
We went to Pasta'z in Gardiner instead, and had a delicious meal, a warm cheerful atmosphere, friendly service, a smaller bill and one of the best cannolli I've tasted!
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