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Sad at Sona

i
iLoveFood Oct 1, 2007 03:01 PM

So some friends took me to Sona for my birthday on Saturday. I looked at the menu online and was salivating thinking about all the yummy possibilities...unfortunately the reality was very different.

Let me first start off by talking a little about the service. Hostesses and bartender (only one of them) where very friendly and nice. For me the rest of the wait staff was pretentious, unfriendly and lacking any sense of humor, I actually felt like I was being waited on by the mob. We were sat at our table and offered giant (I would say over 16 inches) awkward breadsticks that tasted alright. Our waiter greeted us with a speech about his sole mission being to ensure that we had the best meal of our lives…that was the last of him we saw that evening. We decided to try the 6 course tasting for $95 and as each course was brought to us a waiter (who kept staring into the distance) would explain our course.

The meal’s only highlight was a roasted black cod which was perfectly seasoned and cooked. Beyond that I felt that the rest of the dishes were overly complex without any reason. To top it off one of the entrees (roasted opa w/ heirloom tomatoes and shrimp) was overcooked…the fish has could have cooked a couple minutes less and the shrimp was rubber. I mentioned this to the waiter who was giving us a lecture on our courses and he looked at me as though I was crazy. Maybe I’m wrong, but in a restaurant of that caliber and with those prices everything should be PERFECLTY cooked including the one lone shrimp on my opa dish.

Overall a disappointing culinary experience definitely not worth your money or time.

  1. c
    CucumberBoy Oct 1, 2007 03:06 PM

    Reminds me of that episode of "Fawlty Towers" where they keep repeating a punch-line to a joke they never tell (the joke IS the punchline and vice-versa): "Pretentious? Moi?"

    Love the part about the waiter "ensuring he's there so that you'll have the best meal of your lives" then disappearing -- classic!

    Sorry your Sona experience was less than tranquil; it's on my list of places to visit but it just dropped a couple of slots. Thanks for the report.

    1. russkar Oct 1, 2007 03:07 PM

      Your not alone! We just don't get it?
      3 different times we've had the nine course Chef's TM and not one memorable dish?
      The bummer is you could have been at Bastide around the corner and had an amazing meal or Providence for some of the most creative food in LA.

      1. c
        CoffeeMonkee Oct 1, 2007 04:51 PM

        It's funny, but Sona seems to be one of those places - It's like there's two different restaurants, a great one and a terrible one. I absolutely loved my meal there, but I've certainly read enough reports here on chow with the opposite.
        I wonder what the deal is? Diner's expectations? what's ordered (although the tasting menu should take care of that)? or are they just really uneven?
        Either way, sorry about your meal. It's soooo disappointing to have your hopes dashed...

        k

        1. r
          RicRios Oct 1, 2007 05:43 PM

          "Our waiter greeted us with a speech about his sole mission being to ensure that we had the best meal of our lives…that was the last of him we saw that evening."

          Yup, no doubt about; you were not dreaming: 100% Sona-ish.

          1. s
            Sgee Oct 1, 2007 11:27 PM

            Like you I was keen on visiting Sona when I first moved to LA last year, since then my enthusiasm is now almost non-existent after my visit to Providence. A whole lot of confusion and unnecessary components in the dishes.

            Don't get why Sona and also Providence seem to think more is more. Just like Brian's performance on Top chef last week.

            1. sku Oct 2, 2007 08:52 AM

              I've done Sona twice and the experience was definitely mixed. The food, in general, was outstanding. The only complaint I had is that I did get overcooked fish which should not be happening at a place of this caliber, but when we alerted the waitstaff, we were given another fish course.

              That being said, I found the waitstaff abrupt and disinterested, and not all that knowledgable about food. When I eat at a place like this (a big splurge for me), I want to know details of what I'm eating, and the staff was unhelpful, not seeming to have the faintest idea, or interest, in the answers to some very basic questions.

              The waiter serving the cheese plate misidentified one cheese and misidentified the source of the other.

              Again, I thought the food was mostly excellent, but the staff really took away from the experience.

              1. r
                rickym13 Oct 2, 2007 11:57 AM

                been there and didn't really impress me at all....specially at $300+ for two.
                i love it when chef has vision and adventurous but i thought he was trying to push the envelope too far and many things did not quite work well for us that night.
                also thought that the place was little pretentious

                1. s
                  sherpa50 Oct 3, 2007 10:54 AM

                  I'll never go there again, mostly because of the crummy service, but the food was nothing special either (we had the tasting menu).

                  Recently had dinner at A.O.C & the service was perfect.

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