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“Big City Taste in a Small Town” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of The Downtown Grocery

The Downtown Grocery
Ranked #6 of 45 Restaurants in Ludlow
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Romantic, Local cuisine
Dining options: Late Night, Dinner, Full Bar, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Woodbridge, New Jersey
Level Contributor
56 reviews
35 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Big City Taste in a Small Town”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 18, 2013

Had my birthday dinner and drinks at the Downtown Grocery on a Friday night. The restaurant was busy but we made reservations ahead of time.

Everything from the drinks to the dessert was insanely delicious. I tend not to get the specials when I eat out, I always feel like the restaurant is trying to push out items that are about to go bad or have too much of. But as our server did such a phenomenal job describing the specials, we wound up ordering the appetizers and my husband's entree (he changed his mind about his original order on the spot). The cheesy bread with arugula or spinach? was incredible. I was so full that I barely ate my burger. He ordered the pork chop which he described as melting off the bone. My burger was tasty but not the greatest. The fries were amazing and the little dipping secret sauce complemented the food well.

If I am ever in the area again I will gladly drop $100 again on dinner in a heartbeat.

  • Visited August 2013
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank ilak55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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269 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    178
    49
    23
    12
    7
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Jacksonville, Florida
Level Contributor
189 reviews
95 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
“Super food with a different twist”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 18, 2013

This is a gem in little Ludlow, Vermont. Unfortunately lots of people are getting to know about it, so reservations can be difficult. You can help with costs by going on a Monday or Thursday evening for their "throw down" menu, which is 3 courses with a lot of choices. Food selections include "all parts" of the meat or fish, creatively prepared.

  • Visited September 2013
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank psf1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sharon, Connecticut
Level Contributor
244 reviews
194 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
“A great place in this small town”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 12, 2013

We enjoyed our dinner immensely. Getting reservations here is difficult but worth the effort. Food is unusual. Great mussels. Drinks are inspired and quite good, I had "bee's knees" for something different. It is a very casual and homey restaurant, with various rooms. There is a bar scene too. Worth the stop over.

  • Visited August 2013
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Bruce C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Westfield,MA
Level Contributor
39 reviews
27 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“A fantastic experience”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 8, 2013 via mobile

Felt like wine country dining. Cornmeal crusted catfish was perfectly done. Smoked heirloom tomato jam was ridiculous. Wife's Zuppa de pesce featured day boat halibut. Attentive but not overbearing staff. Eclectic wine list. (Try the tablas creek white!). Overall one of the best meals we have ever had. Family friendly and casual as well. Tables on either side were dining with kids.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
Thank RugbyMike15
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
31 reviews
24 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Fantastic on so many levels!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 3, 2013

We were blown away by this place. It took over the space from a so so place and is sort of tucked away. We had low expectations but our good friends kept urging us so we reserved (hard to get a good reservation - be sure to plan in advance) ... it was exceptional!

The ambiance was delightful and the servers were WONDERFUL. We split most of our time between Paris and San Francisco but we always return to this corner of VT too ... the food served here can easily compete with the better and more inventive restaurants in Paris and SF.

Their focus on "terroir" local/seasonal is impressive and the chef's attention to flavors and complexities is astounding - it is fabulous to find a young chef who really uses the classic techniques but experiments on combinations/ingredients/seasonings.

The presentation was perfection - each plate was gorgeous! They also prepare delicious specialty cocktails (with house-made ingredients too) PLUS an interesting/thoughtful wine list!

Honestly I hate to ramble on but this is about as good as a restaurant experience can be on every level ... not inexpensive but the value for the money is excellent. One final surprise for us was that there is no need to dress up for this place - perhaps the food was already dressed up enough for everyone ;)

  • Visited August 2013
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank love_to_be_there
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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