HAPPY MOUTH — June 2003

Tonight was Happy Mouth night! It was John’s turn to pick, and he selected NICK & TONY’S, a chop-house in downtown Cincinnati.

Ted, Tracy, Jay, Kristy (minus Chuck — working), Holly (minus Ed — babysitting), John, special guest Greg, Doug, Meg, Wendy, and Drew all met in the evening at the chophouse. The interior of NICK & TONY’S was much larger than I expected, and was all dark wood and heavy furnishings with a large brightly-lit open kitchen dominating the back end of the restaurant.

We sat at a large table at the back of the restaurant. Overall, the restaurant was good, but there were several issues during the evening that prevented it from being completely satisfying.

  • The bread in the baskets was stale. I asked the waitress if we could have some fresh bread, and she replied, “That’s just our bread”.
  • We ordered a macaroni & cheese side dish that never arrived. It was, in fact, completely forgotten about.
  • My steak, which I ordered as Medium Rare was delivered Medium Well to Well. When I called the waitress over to ask for a re-fire, before I could even explain the problem, she said, “Your steak is overcooked”, which makes me wonder if she knew it was overcooked and chose to serve it anyway. Once a replacement steak was delivered, it was excellent (though everyone else had already finished their dinners).
  • The dessert menu lists Bananas Foster, which excited several of the diners. When we ordered it, the waitress informed us that it wasn’t being offered any more.
  • A minor slip-up was that the menu offers a Pork Chop dish with ‘caramelized apples’, which were (inexplicably) just warmed apple wedges that had been brushed with barbecue sauce.
  • After offering to split the checks for us, and insisting that it wasn’t a problem, the waitress had a very hard time getting the right items on the right bills.

These gaffs didn’t ruin the overall quality of the restaurant, but in a climate of discerning diners, these types of avoidable mistakes are not acceptable.

As for dessert… We said goodbye to Kristy & Holly decided to walk down the block to NICHOLSON’S for their excellent Sticky Toffee Pudding, which did not disappoint!

Overall, another successful Happy Mouth!

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