We had eaten lunch & dinner at Cucina Carini a handful of times, attended showers & parties there, & always had great experiences - thanks to the intimate atmosphere, first-class service & food.
So when we happened to be in the area on a Wednesday night before 6 PM, we decided to pop in for dinner. There were literally less than a dozen folks dining at three or four different tables. But when we requested a table for five, we were frowned at & asked if we had a reservation. Really?! We were dressed & behaving respectably but it felt almost as if we were imposing upon the waitress. When we inquired if we could sit over at a nice round EMPTY corner table, we were told curtly that it was reserved. Menus were dropped onto a humpty-dumpty rectangular one just inside the main room. If my daughter didn't have an appointment within the hour locally, I'd have walked out then & there.
No one came near us for at least five to ten minutes. When a different waitress appeared, we were told all they had was soda or tap water, not even seltzer. Five glasses of water appeared with tiny halved slices of lemon. Another ten minutes passed before a gentleman finally came out to take our orders & he was more civil. All the same, by the time we were served, our daughter had to leave her meal half eaten to leave for her appointment. The bill for one order of calamari, one order of gnocchi, three individual pizzas, & a medium-sized salad with shrimp came to $102, plus tip!
Our daughter & son-in-law had held their rehearsal dinner at Cucina Carini in 2010, for 50 family members & guests! It was a very special occasion which we'll never forget. Perhaps this latest experience was due to the full moon, or there's been a dreaded change in management. It doesn't matter. This has completely tainted my opinion of Cucina Carini & it's doubtful I'll ever darken their doorway again.
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